Susan harrison-tustain


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Mentoring Aspiring & Emerging Artists
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MEDIUM: Oil Paint | Watercolor Art
SPECIALTY: ✔ Technical

I am often asked how long I have been painting and teaching in watercolor.  I generally say “forever” and I have loved every minute of it.

There is nothing more rewarding than seeing the joy on artists’ faces and their body language when those ‘magical breakthroughs’ resonate and the ‘light bulb’ switches on and glows like a beacon.  I know how the things I share in my teachings impacted on me when I was exploring and experimenting. Each new revelation lead to a new understanding and a new awareness that allowed me to find an exhilarating new path forward. These are the things that revolutionized my paintings and painting career and these are the things I love to share with artists.

For me, painting is about creating a work that evokes an emotion, tells a story – often resonating with the viewer as they draw from their own memories – from their own history. The magic happens when a painting invites the viewer to step into the world of the painting.

I love to share how artists can create a connection between the artist, painting and viewer. That connection often stays with the viewer long after they have left the presence of the painting. This is the magic I love to weave into my composition and my brush strokes – and to share with the viewers of my work and the artists I am mentoring.

Susan Harrison-Tustain Artwork
Susan Harrison-Tustain Artwork
Susan Harrison-Tustain Artwork
Susan Harrison-Tustain Artwork
Susan Harrison-Tustain Artwork
Susan Harrison-Tustain Artwork


Listed below are this Mentor’s specialty skills. Join this group if you want to grow in these areas.

Specialty: ✔ Technical



Colour and Composition


Technique Demos


Supplies and Tools – what to use, where to save, and where to spend


Studio Setup for Art Production


Providing Art Critiques


Teaching How to Self Critique


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Susan Harrison-Tustain Artwork

Self taught, I have learned from close observation of nature, and using logic to help me unravel what is possible in painting. I'm fascinated by how things work in painting and why they work. I seek to understand the reasons behind everything I do and that logic is the vehicle to convey what I teach. It also ensures we can retain what we learn. Understanding is the key that opens the window of creativity and brings the courage to explore - all of which leads to greater confidence, insight and joy of painting as well as a professional edge.

I currently teach, mentor and paint in watercolor and oils. I also love to paint in oils on 24 carat gold leaf and platinum leaf.

My subject matter is eclectic and my methods and techniques can be used for any subject, surface or texture at all.

Many of the lessons I teach can be applied to multiple mediums such as watercolor, oil, acrylic etc. Examples of lessons that can easily transfer between mediums are critiques, composition, fine tuning, color mixing, color temperature, tonal values, intensity/chroma, edges and so much more. I particularly love teaching artists how to analyze and critique their own work

I have taught painting in numerous countries around the world and online.

My exhibitions have often sold out. My paintings are in many collections in New Zealand and internationally, including Australia, the UK, the USA, France & Germany.

FREE eBOOK: Secrets You Won't Learn In Art School

✔ Where creative BLOCKS come from, how to identify them, and how to quickly move forward

✔ What not to be a SLAVE to (this feels counter-intuitive to most artists)

✔ Two things to focus on that improve the VALUE range making your art more interesting

Plus 16 other tips from successful Master Artists that you won't learn in art school.

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