Edinburgh, Scotland, is a wonderful place to be an artist. I moved back to Edinburgh to become an artist because I love the quality of the light, the very high and deep midnight-blue velvet skies that we often get are wonderful to paint. Those skies contrast perfectly with all the light-tan and rich dark smokey brown tones of the sandstone of the Georgian buildings, a delight to this Scottish artists eye, I could paint those colours forever. I think their intrinsic matt quality is why I find myself using pastels so much in my drawings and art about Scotland's capital city. My main focus with my painting just now is how to emulate the lovely dusty matt quality of pastels in oil paint.
I love going for long walks around Edinburgh finding new scenes to paint. I knew I loved the colour palette of the city but having gone out drawing cityscapes around Edinburgh, I've become aware of just what a fantastically dynamic layout the city has. Edinburgh's packed with dramatic scenery for an artist to paint. It's not just Edinburgh castle sitting high on a dramatic vantage point making a wonderful subject for a painting or drawing, buildings on the royal mile and bridges tower over 200 foot drops to the grassmarket and cowgate, a multitude of steep little streets branch up and down between them, grand windy streets swoop around and finally, the whole lot cascades down to the firth of forth.
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I love to put energy and dramatic movement into my paintings and drawings and Edinburgh, Scotland's great capital, is a riot of dramatic viewpoints and compositions for cityscape and landscape paintings. I always make initial drawings or sketches in situ, before working them into paintings in my artist studio. Drawing is a way of gathering enough material to make the painting rich in interest, texture and colour. Once I've chosen a subject in Edinburgh I go there with my artist's easel and sketching kit and start with rough compositional sketches, in ink or charcoal. Then I make colour studies with pastels, watercolour pencils and watercolour crayons and I sometimes use a damp cloth or a wet brush to liquefy parts of the colour to get smooth washes or blend colours.
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Sometimes I use oil pastels too to get a coarser texture to the colour. Once I have enough material I start the oil painting in my artist's studio but I often find myself going back and making more sketches throughout the duration of a painting. I have had several commissions for paintings over the years. Many artists have painted Edinburgh castle and I relish the challenge of painting such a popular subject in a new and distinctive way. The crags and the night-lighting of Edinburgh Castle provide ample drama for a painting. I'm not just an Edinburgh artist, I'm also a Scottish artist; whenever possible I love getting up to the highlands of Scotland to sketch the mountains. Glencoe is a favourite subject for Scottish artists to paint.
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Latest news & Exhibitions
Recent Exhibition

Edinburgh Night & Day
debut solo show

Patriothall Gallery, Stockbridge, Edinburgh.
4th - 12th May 2013

Latest Work
Work from the "Edinburgh Night & Day exhibition
Latest Commission
Innis & Gunn headquarters, Randolph Crescent, Edinburgh

2 large oil paintings of Randolph Crescent and Melville St.

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e:susie_keith@yahoo.co.uk mob : 07717 826 593 All images on this site are copyright, please don't use them without permission. © Susie Keith 2013 website by Susie Keith Sep 2012
Link - Susie describes being a Scottish artist in Edinburgh