Susan O"Reilly has been a working artist for more than 25 years. She was trained in Fine Arts and English Literature, graduating with a B.A. from St. Joseph's University followed by post-graduate study at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts.
Susan's flair for seeing the usual in unusual ways and her love of fine arts has followed her through her careers in computer graphics, logo design, illustration, art instruction and commissioned artist. Her paintings span a range between extreme detail and whimsy, with a special focus on how light turns everyday images into emotional vistas.
I paint because I have always been drawn to this rich and versatile medium as a means to express light and beauty that I don’t want to go unseen. I am inspired by how light transforms both the inanimate and the living, how it can change moment to moment and is never the same from one to the next. Painting to me is analogous to life- it requires careful observation, analysis, problem solving, passion and reward. My paintings are built in stages to offer a sculptural quality to the surface, as well as to offer me the process of revisiting with new eyes a scene I may not have appreciated in every manner. I also enjoy adding details which broaden the narrative of the scene and can be found only after viewing the work over a period of time.
In my latest work, I aim to capture the same feeling one might have in a dream- the scenery looks very familiar and welcoming, and yet there is something abstract and possibly even unsettling. I want the viewer to make the connection and fill in the pieces, as it were, to make the scene their own. I’ve often been asked why there are few if no people in my paintings. My response has always been the same- you are in the painting. That is my joy, my passion and my reward, to welcome the viewer into these places