Con Passione'
Con Passione' poster for 2006 Oregon Coast Music Festival

In 2005 I was living in Coos Bay, Oregon. I spent about a year there, dreaming about starting a gallery of my own, but the oncoming recession and no money foiled my plans. Nonetheless, it’s a sweet little town. I fell in love with it. It has the quaint features of being a coastal small town, along with the sophistication of hosting an annual jazz festival, a berry festival, tango classes, African drumming and dance and the annual Oregon Coast Music Festival. Plus a really good art museum, adorable downtown, Mingus Park, (which my dogs loved and still get excited when I mention the name) and an amazing lake in the middle of town surrounded by huge pine trees that made me cry every time I stood there dwarfed by their magnificence.  I was stunned when the festival people selected me to create the image for their 2006 poster. They usually chose artists who painted the more traditional seafaring imagery. More so, I was excited to paint my feminine imagery set in the atmosphere of the powerful waves that pound the coast, along with the exotic egrets that are always present in the bay. The theme for the 2006 festival was ‘With Passion’ a befitting phrase for the way I felt about Coos Bay. I created several paintings to give them a choice.

Con Fuoco 24"x 18"

‘Con Fuoco’ is a 24″x18″, mixed media painting on canvas and sold at a later date in 2008, when it was placed in an auction for the Ventura Music Festival. Certainly a beautiful coincidence that the Ventura Music Festival’s Theme that year was ‘con Passione’. Ventura is another insanely quaint and sophisticated coastal town that I fell in love with. I will elaborate at another date and include the chair that I painted for the following year’s Ventura Music Festival.

Capriccio 24"x16"

Capriccio is a 24″x16″ mixed media painting on canvas.


Interlude is about the same size 24″ x 18″ mixed media painting on canvas. I have to go into my files to check the exact size.

And Pianissimo

Pianissimo 14"x30"

a 14″x30″ mixed media painting on canvas, all sold through Fire and Rain Gallery, located in old town Folsom, California in May of 2006.

I still have Pizzicato in my possession.

Pizzicato 18"x24"

She’s hanging in my store in Gordonsville, reminding me of the music of nature.

So, out of the six painting that I gave to the Oregon Coast Music Festival to choose from, they chose………….



2006 Oregon Coast Music Festival Poster

Con Passione’, a mixed media painting on canvas. Now I really have to go into the files and look at the size, but I’m guessing 36″ x 24″, purchased by John and Terri Witty during the poster signing event. I love this photo they sent to me of John holding the signed poster, next to the painting on their wall.

I still have a few of the a/p posters left from the signing. I will make them available on my store:, and asap I will take a picture of me wearing my tee shirt that they sold during the festival. Jan Hooper, the then current President of the Oregon Coast Music Association wrote:

Hi, Susan,

I thought I’d mention that your art has made quite a hit with the orchestra. The cello section is buying shirts and posters in droves. Many, many others have commented on how vibrant and colorful the art is, and how much a change it represents.



Thank you, Jan, for such a wonderful comment. That was the highlight of my year in Coos Bay, Oregon. The coolest thing is that I still exchange Christmas cards with my Coos Bay landlords, John and Linda Bennett. No one could have better landlords. John baked and they would bring me fresh bread, and omg, the freshest eggs from a nearby neighbor. Very happy memories.