Artist Susan Shoemaker is a native of Birmingham, Alabama and received her BFA from the University of Montevallo in 2000. Her education concluded with a double concentration in Printmaking and Sculpture (with Painting not too far behind). However, once leaving UM, she found herself as a printmaker without a press, and returned to her first love of drawing as a way of making art. This led to her creating a studio called, “pencilpress”.
Shoemaker works on wood panel, canvas, and paper. Typically her artwork involves several layers of drawing which result in a very textural piece. In addition to original work, she offers silk-screened shirts of her designs, reproduction prints of selected originals, and also does commissions upon request.
When asked about her work, Shoemaker says she finds inspiration from nature and tries to combine her concern for wildlife conservation with a little bit of humor.
“Using animals as my primary focus in art can be tricky and I am always looking to find the balance between straightforward representation and having a sense of humor about myself and about my work. My goal is that the animals are well represented, funny when intended, and always portrayed in an interesting way.”
In 2017 Shoemaker was selected as the featured artist for ArtWalk Birmingham and was also invited to create a piece, “Greeting Rabbits”, for the permanent collection of the Ronald McDonald House in Birmingham, AL. Previous awards include being named the featured artist for 2013’s Moss Rock Festival, placing 2nd at 2013’s Annual Holiday Craft Bazaar, and receiving the 3rd place (Maystein Founders Prize) at 2012’s Art on R Mountain. In 2014, Shoemaker was named as one of the “15 Artists to see at Artwalk” by AL.com.
Shoemaker has had solo exhibitions at Lowe Mill Arts & Entertainment in Huntsville, AL and at the University of Alabama Birmingham. Throughout the year you can find her exhibiting around Birmingham, Alabama at juried festivals such as Magic City Art Connection, ArtWalk, Moss Rock Festival, Bluff Park Art Show, and Handmade Homewood. She has also participated in Birmingham’s inaugural Art Crawl, Avondale’s annual Holiday Craft Bazaar, Saturn Swap, and contributed to themed shows curated by Yellowhammer Creative.
Her work can be found online in her Etsy store, “pencilpress”, at Square One Goods Co. in Birmingham, at The Kentuck Gallery Shop located in Northport, AL, and also travels across the US with Small Room Collective–a road emporium.
Shoemaker’s art can be followed online under “pencilpress” on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook.Her website is pencilpress.org