You get the impression from Sue Oliver's paintings that when she sees a place she likes, she paints it. The happy result is paintings which bring to onlookers a flash of recognition and memories flooding back.
People on vacation buy souvenirs to remind them of the place and the good times and pictures evoke happy memories with just a glance. The paintings of Sue Oliver have that quality; they seem to be imbued with happy thoughts.
Using both acrylics or watercolor, Sue is best known for her paintings of the Jersey Shore, the beaches, boardwalks and buildings which viewers delightedly recognise and admire. The flowers are in full bloom and the buildings look their best. Nothing wrong with that. This is how we want to remember a place, especially with all that the Jersey Shore has gone through in the last year.
The Shore isn't all she paints. Sue grew up lakeside in Matawan, New Jersey. Lake Lefferts provided swimming, boating, skating when she was a child and also a painting subject. Trees and lakes, as opposed to sea and shore, is her other landscape of choice and she instills a peacefulness and depth to her paintings. You can tell she loves her subject matter.
In amongst all that nature are usually buildings and Sue is especially good at depicting places of interest and character. “I have painted house portraits for years,” she says “and love doing older homes. Often people want their dog or something they love included in the painting which makes it deeply personal to them. Something they will treasure.”
Sue also paints from photos taken on vacation travels with her husband Bill. In her own home she has paintings of corners of France, England, Germany and different parts of the States. “Places which mean a lot to me,” she explains. And she puts something meaningful to herself in her paintings – sometimes tiny depictions of herself and her husband enjoying the locale.
An art teacher in New Jersey for 28 years, Sue graduated from Glassboro (now Rowan) with an Arts Education major. She doesn't remember a time when she didn't draw or paint.
Where can you see her paintings? Frederick Galleries in Spring Lake keeps a collection of her work all year round. They have prints and originals on canvas and fine art paper and also sets of notecards which make ideal gifts, 'thankyous' and mementos. Frederick Galleries is itself another memory maker, a beautiful setting for all artwork seated at the north end of the main thoroughfare in Spring Lake. They have represented Sue Oliver for 17 years.
There you will see Sue's evocative, sunny paintings of the shore environs – to see her foreign travels is a bit more tricky. They are in her living room!
To view Sue Oliver's work or commission a house portrait contact Frederick Galleries at www.Frederickgalleries.com 1405-1 Third Avenue, Spring Lake, NJ 07762. 732 974 0376.