A Huddersfield artist has been honoured for her ‘significant contribution to the arts’.
Award-winning Susan Brown, from Birdsedge, has received an honorary Doctorate of Arts from Leeds Metropolitan University.
Susan graduated from its forerunner, Leeds Polytechnic, with a degree in Three Dimensional Design/ Interior Architecture in 1979 and has had a long-standing career in interior design and contemporary painting.
She said: “This came out of the blue, it was totally unexpected and absolutely magic. To be awarded an honorary doctorate is absolutely wonderful.”
For many years Susan painted in her spare time alongside her professional work as an interior architect, until five years ago when she devoted herself full-time to painting.
Her first architectural commission was for a diamond merchant in Leeds, and since then she has designed interiors around the region and abroad, including the Bahrain Embassy in Kuwait.
As her career blossomed, her reputation as an artist also grew. With agents in London and the provinces, her paintings now sell for thousands of pounds around the world.
Later this year, her work will be shown at art fairs in New York, Seattle and Singapore.
Predominantly using watercolour and acrylic, Susan’s work is held in numerous galleries and collections, ranging from The Royal Bank of Canada to HBOS, The National Trust and Yorkshire Water.
Her style is unique and innovative, with bold, lively images which focus on a range of architectural, theatrical and musical subjects as well as still-life and landscape.
Her awards include The Laing Art Competition, Hunting Art Prize regional winner and Discerning Eye – the Penrose Purchase Prize. She has exhibited widely, including at the Royal Academy Summer Exhibition, the Royal Scottish Academy, The Royal Watercolour Society and the New English Arts Club.
Susan said: “I’m inspired by life in general; Man and his environment is a common theme.
“If I could give graduates any advice, it would be just be yourself and follow your own imagination.”