Susan Lizotte was always destined to be an artist but her earlier years made her put that passion to one side.
March 9th, 2022
Susan Lizotte was always destined to be an artist but her earlier years made her put that passion to one side. It wasn’t until her life unfolded that she stepped in to her genius…
Here, we spent some time with her to find out more about that journey…
Tell us the journey that lead you to launching becoming an artist…
I’ve drawn and painted and made things my entire life. But growing up adopted in a family that didn’t think going into the arts was a career choice made me put aside my artistic ambitions, until I met my biological mother when I was thirty five. My real mom was an artist and that sparked me to allow myself to realise my dreams. So I think I just gave myself permission to express myself if that makes any sense.
How would you describe your art in three words?
Colourful, history, story.
What emotions do you want to evoke from people when they look at your work?
I hope the colours in my work make people feel something, whether it’s joy or fear or beauty. If I touch a nerve somehow that means the art is doing something to people, which really is the ultimate goal. Personally I feel there is so much beauty out in the world to celebrate which feels important, now more than ever, given the sorry state of the world.
Are you taking part in any art shows this year, if so, which ones?
I’m very thrilled that a new painting from my Spring Map Series will be in a show at the Tokyo Metropolitan Art Museum April 10-15, 2022 (cherry blossom season!). And the painting has been acquired by the Museum so it will become part of their permanent collection, so I’m very excited about this.
I just took part in the LA Art Show and it was very busy, lots of people attending which was pretty cool. I wasn’t expecting such a good turnout in the middle of the Omicron surge here in LA!
What has been the biggest challenge you’ve faced as an entrepreneur so far?
Mixing the business part of being an artist with the creative side and then doing all the paperwork and image work that goes into applying to shows, fairs or magazines. Trying to balance all those things and have time to be creative as well is certainly challenging.
In your opinion, what sets you apart from other artists?
My use of history and art history sets me apart I think. I use art history and history, from as far back as I want (like the Renaissance or Middle Ages for example), which isn’t typical for most artists working today. I also use a specific color palette when I create a painting series. I’ll set out tubes of a cool blue, warm blue, cool red, warm red, warm sienna, cool sienna, warm yellows, cool yellows, ochres in light and medium colors and white. If you see “black” in my work it’s a color I mix myself, never use black from a tube. So mixing up every single color myself that I want to use in my palette makes all the colors sing together which I love.
Using history and art history is my way of telling or retelling an age-old tale in a new way.
Looking back since launching the brand, is there anything you would do differently?
I waited ten year to show my work publicly, I think I would tell my younger self don’t worry. It’s okay to show what you’re working on and let people think through the work for themselves.
How much has social media played a role in the success of your brand?
I think social media has specifically helped all artists since the beginning of the pandemic, it certainly has allowed more people to see my paintings. Social media has allowed certain high end magazines to find my work and invite me into their publications, so that has been very cool! And that has been because of social media so I love that!
What is your go-to quote when lacking motivation?
I don’t really have a quote for that but I certainly tell myself to get up and get it done. When I get to my painting studio in downtown Los Angeles, I feel pretty inspired almost every time I walk through the door. It’s my space and when I’m working on a series of paintings usually the inspiration for the next piece jumps from the one on which I’m painting. It feels like the ideas are out there just waiting for the right person to partner with them, so I try and stay tuned and try to catch whatever comes my way in terms of “ideas”. And the ideas are inspiration themselves.
What advice would you offer to aspiring artists that want to launch their own brand?
Get someone to professionally photograph your work. You need jpegs in different dpi sizes to submit to different things. Having the work photographed in its best light and having the jpegs at your disposal makes everything happen. Then of course there is the work itself. Think about what you want to say, what do you want the work to convey when it’s viewed as an entire body of work. Thinking carefully about those things makes all the difference. And if you want to launch your brand on social media, post the absolute best photos that you can use, it will make all the difference!
Our readers love to travel, what destination is your all time favourite and why?
My all time favorite places are Italy and Bermuda. Bermuda has beautiful pink sand beaches and lovely food and people on the Island, It’s just so pretty and relaxing. And I adore Italy for the beauty of its architecture, the incredible food. I love the art and museums in Italy. Going to Venice and hearing no cars, no motorbikes, just people walking and talking or the water taxis moving on the water is intoxicating.
What’s next for the business?
I think 2022 will bring a new painting series and a hint is that Renaissance tarot cards will be involved. My art is going to be featured this year in House and Garden UK, Traveller UK magazine and British Vogue. That is what’s lined up so far anyway. There will be more shows too, it always comes together.
What does self care mean to you?
What a fun question! Self care for me is anything that grounds me and brings me peace and joy. It can be a drive out to Pacific Coast Highway and driving alongside the ocean listening to my favorite music. Or it could be taking the time to go get a massage. Or simply allowing myself to feel emotions and let them wash over and through me and let them leave me.
Where can people find out more?
People can find out more @susanlizotte on Instagram or my website www.susanlizotte.com
Northern girl Laura is the epitome of a true entrepreneur. Laura’s spirit for adventure and passion for people blaze through House of Coco. She founded House of Coco in 2014 and has grown it in to an internationally recognised brand whilst having a lot of fun along the way. Travel is in her DNA and she is a true visionary and a global citizen.