Susan DeVan started oil painting at the age of nine in her hometown of Washington, DC. Her only formal training was from a high school art teacher, but during that time she won several city-wide poster contests. After studying Foreign Service at Georgetown University, she held jobs as Geographer, Defense Intelligence Analyst, and Office Manager for an international Association. Over the years she continued to paint as time allowed, and had some success exhibiting and selling in small galleries in Fairfax County, Virginia while raising a family.
Susan has won awards for creative writing and oil painting since retiring to Hampshire County, WV, where she and her husband Richard pursue their creative interests. Her paintings have been accepted into juried shows in Maryland, Pennsylvania and West Virginia - where her paintings won awards - and in 2012 she had a successful one-artist show, "Art and Soul," in the Frostburg Museum, MD.
DeVan considers the following points important to her artistic style: light source; the atmosphere between the viewer and the subject; texture; a spare palette; the beauty of scenes and people portrayed subjectively; and transmitting to the viewer the personal emotional response the scene inspired in her. Subjects range from the shores of Maine and Assateague Island to the woods and streams of West Virginia; from the missions of California to the deserts of the Southwest; people: Yemeni market huckster, Amish farm children, and renditions of very old sepia photographs into oils on canvas; birds, from seagulls to vultures; and animals, from horses to frogs and turtles.
DeVan's style is realistic, but occasionally the abstract element of a design in nature or manmade objects will inspire her. Commissions are accepted.