|“When I Was Ten” oil/canvas 8″x10″ 2012
1. Who are you and what do you do?
Well… My name is Suzanne Falk and I’m an artist. I work mainly in oils but I also work in watercolor + pencil + pen+ink and even sometimes chalk. My style is probably best described as Photorealism because of the detail but I also do a lot of illustrative small works that are more cartoonish in nature and I’m writing a book about an alien deer who finds a friend in a fox who likes whiskey.
2. How did you get your start?
I’ve had quite a number of starts, really. I started out at a really young age being surrounded by artists and going to shows. The people I met all seemed to have this air of something about them, not that I understood this at the time but it was something I wanted to emulate. My mom’s an amazing artist too. When I was really little, like five or six, she had her easel set up in the living room so she’d be painting while I played with dinosaurs and Hot Wheels on the floor. I did my first real watercolor of my mom around that time and I received a lot of encouragement to do more. But really I didn’t start up with art very seriously, outside of doing cartoons of cats, until I was in the last two years of high school. I got accepted into a Vo-tech class for advertising art and I pretty much assumed I’d be doing art for 4AD and living in London by the time I was 22. As luck would have it I got a job in Tempe at a place called B.M.O.C. It was in the basement of the college bookstore and I designed t-shirts for the sororities and fraternities. The woman who hired me is named Nikki Kasapis and I will always think she is one of the coolest chicks to ever grace the planet, having someone hire you to do art is a really thrilling thing and the first time totally rules. This job led me to a copy shop gig where I designed fliers for artists and made color copies of ford robert black models. Being surrounded by artistic types keeps things really interesting. But it also can make things really dramatic in a shitty way…. I got married when I was like 25 to a writer who I met when I was 19 it was tumultuous at best and shitty things went down so I’d have to say I really got my start painting again because I wanted to do something nice for myself, I wanted to escape. I found I had some talent and showed my mom who continued to encourage me. In 1996 I saw an ad on public access one night for a local gallery called Art One and I called and made an appointment to show my work, I was super nervous and brought down 12 or so watercolors that I had matted and shrunk wrap. Kraig Foote took a look at them and said he’d take 6 or 7! I was sooo stoked, I took them home and put frames on them and had my first gallery sale within two days. The cool thing that came out of all of that is I saved up enough money to get out of a shitty thing and moved on with my life. I lived in Taos for a while and expanded my horizons and that’s when I got my start in oils. Since all of this I’ve been sooo lucky to be in a lot of really cool shows, met an amazing group of friends and other artists who I admire. New starts abound! They’re everywhere!
3. What inspires you?
I am inspired by soooooooo many things. Part of my inspiration is sort of hard to explain but I think it’s the need to tell a quiet story to the people with whom it speaks. I’m also really inspired by my friends and people that are curious and looking for answers and actively doing whatever moves them in a positive direction. I’m inspired by good things like when you find a marble in the desert, or you have a dream about someone you lost; I’m inspired by getting tuned into a frequency that is not totally obvious. Oh!! and also I’ve been really digging “The Duncan Trussell Family Hour,” some of his episodes really light up my brain in a most excellent way. You can find his podcast online.
|“Our Days Have Been a Dream” oil/canvas 14″x18″ 2012
4. What do like about Arizona?
The Papago mountains are neat because I can still find a nice quiet path to walk my dog in the city and see a coyote or an owl. I like that I grew up here because I know of all the best side streets and backroads to get almost anywhere. And I like my friends.
5. What would you like to accomplish before you die?
Geeez, well I hate to admit it but I think about death a lot. Not maybe in the ways you might think but I think about it like beyond death and what’s left behind… Really I guess the main thing is to just be a decent human being who did the best I could because who wants to be remembered as an asshole who wasted time? Although there is something to be said for a reasonable amount of dicking-off. 😉
6. What is your weapon of choice for the inevitable zombie apocalypse?
Well after I claimed the nearest and coolest church for my own personal home…. I would have to go with a moat of zombie-melting-acid. I’m not sure if that’s the zen way to go but I really can’t have zombies eating my brain before I find enlightenment, you know?
|“The Defenders of Sweet Dreams” oil/canvas 24″x30″ 2011
|“Shake It Off” oil/pine 4″x4″ 2012
|“Stone Cold Fox and Seagrams on the Rocks” oil/canvas 2″x2″ 2012
|“Singularity” oil/canvas 2″x2″ 2012
|Suzie and Starflash