Featured Artist Susi Rood

Inspired by the beauty of her South African homeland, artist Susi Rood creates colorful, multi-layered bird paintings. See more of her portfolio on her website.


bird painting by Susi Rood

“Utopia, I have Lived There Once” oil on canvas, 124cm x 140cm x 4cm


My thoughts as an artist…


bird painting by Susi Rood

“Miss Vanity” oil and gold, copper and silver leafing on treated Fabriano, 57cm x 77cm


Some people become artists perhaps the way monks become devotees. There certainly is such a thing as a calling. I was called to paint at the age of nine. My paintings or works were either stories from the bible or drawings of adults I admired.


bird painting by Susi Rood

“Come Walk with Me A While” oil on Belgian linen, 160cm x 120cm x 4cm


One such woman was the wife of an art lecturer and was my teacher as a young girl. She opened my mind to all possibilities of creating, from making life-size people out of stuffed pantyhose to creating strange made-up characters. I often painted birds in an idealised setting. These works as a young girl were crudely yet sensitively drawn.


bird painting by Susi Rood

“Gustav’s Heart is Good” oil on canvas, 30cm x 30cm


I was not a happy child, so this new world where I could paint what I imagined was where I found solace. I’ve been down many a road of self-destruction in the search for self-love and inner peace. I recommend painting a forest.


bird painting with figure by Susi Rood

“The Bird Charmer” oil and 24 ct gold leaf on Belgian linen, 100cm x 126cm


If I practice my art and try to release all attachments to outcomes and free myself of materialistic pursuits, even if just for a few hours a day, this, I believe, is where happiness lies.


bird painting by Susi Rood

“The Unattainable” oil and gold, copper and silver leafing on treated Fabriano, 77cm x 57cm


I am an African through and through, the country runs in my blood. I’ve painted wildlife, the great open plains, the shy tribal communities, the people and the birdlife. I started to work in series to keep a cohesive body of recognisable works.


bird painting by Susi Rood

“Heavenly Aviary” oil, enamel and 24 ct Gold leaf on Belgian linen, 135cm x 135cm


The “Bird Scapes” and the “Birds of Emotion” came about during the past two incredibly lonely years being separated from my children. I had to find something to “get lost in” to stay sane. I wished I was a bird so I could fly to see them. This fantastical thought materialised through my art.


bird painting by Susi Rood

“Hornbills in a Caffra Tree” oil on canvas, 88cm x 94cm x 2.5cm


When I paint a large bird scape I try to create many layers so that the viewer feels pulled into a tapestry of sorts and gets lost for just a moment in my “bird world.”


bird painting by Susi Rood

“Little Clouds, Big Dreams” oil on canvas, 45cm x 60cm x 2.5cm


When I start a large painting, I choose the palette and the bird species; the rest follows by simply allowing the magic to flow through me. Painting this way could lead to dangerous explorations, and also reveal some uncomfortable realities. I try to capture all in my paintings.


bird painting by Susi Rood

“A Midsummer’s Day” oil on canvas, 100cm x 100cm


Sometimes images come to me like long lost memories or déjà vu. I remind myself every day in the studio to be present and be conscious of the ever-changing beauty around me.


Artist Susi Rood invites you to follow her on Facebook.


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  1. Susi,
    I like your portraits in ” The Unattainable” and ” Miss Vanity”. Although the painting with many different kinds of birds have different personalities.

    • Dear Annamarie

      Thank you so much for the kind words. After coming out of a rather “dark” period, the birds of emotion series allowed me to be more expressive.

      Happy weekend and thank you.



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