By: Jen Russon
For the last 37 years, the artist Sue Greeley has taught her craft at North Broward Preparatory School in Coconut Creek; this year, the veteran teacher adds a new highlight to her resume: the Signature Artist Award for the Coral Springs Festival of the Arts.
She was chosen for the prestigious award last spring, while manning her usual tent at the event.
Greeley, who teaches visual arts for grades 6-12, said her students are excited – and she couldn’t be more thrilled.
“Such an honor. It’s so nice to be able to share what I do with others,” said Greeley, whose canvas of a blue and white heron congregating in the Everglades, is on the Festival of the Arts poster.
The artist’s work is varied. Her canvases portray both natural and urban settings that – while often tropical – can also seem many miles removed from South Florida.
That’s because they are. The Ohio born artist is married to a Canadian, and the couple have summered in Toronto most of her adult life.
The 61-year-old painter said she enjoys capturing the contrast between plain air and the buzz of the city.
“When I’m in Canada, I’m air painting every day in a different location,” said Greeley who said it’s a happy day when the scenes she paints – of flowers, farmlands and busy storefronts in quaint downtowns – find a home.
Her price points for acrylic, water and oil paintings fluctuate but are rarely steep.
“I would much rather my paintings be in a good home than sitting in my house,” Greeley said.
Greeley, who graduated from Florida Atlantic University with a degree in art education, described how she loved making art from a very young age.
“I was in third grade when I decided I wanted to be an artist, and I’m grateful every day that I’ve gotten to spend a lifetime doing what I have always wanted to do,” said Greeley, adding that being a teacher informs her work.
“Student art can be experimental. They aren’t afraid to try new things, and their responses to my ideas are always fresh,” said Greeley.
To see Susan Greeley’s award winning canvases from the Nature Calls collection that include a vibrant piece depicting Coral Springs’s city slogan, come to the 15th annual Festival of the Arts, Saturday, March 16, from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and Sunday, March 17, 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. 2874 N University Dr in Coral Springs, FL.
Jen Russon is a freelance writer and English Language Arts teacher. She has published two novels to Amazon Kindle and lives in Coral Springs with her family.