In the studio with Kim Switzer

Favourite material to work with?

Canvas, Enamel and Acrylic paints. Have done a little bit of Resin work - I just love the shine you achieve and how the colour pops.

What themes do you pursue?

Abstract only. I am starting to experiment with Landscape but I would still class it as Abstract. I couldn't draw if my life depended on it.

How many years an artist?

I have always painted. Just for family and friends, but found it hard to have the time when my children where young and still at home. After being diagnosed with Breast Cancer 4 years ago, I went back to doing more. It took my mind off what was happening and taught me how to relax again. After leaving a very demanding management position at Coles 18 months ago I decided to follow my dreams and paint full time and have not looked back.

What should people know about your art that they can't tell from looking at it?

Everyone sees something different in each piece. I really enjoy getting little messages from people on what they see or how they feel about the painting. It really makes my day. But most of all, the care I put into each piece from start to finish. I make all of my own frames and cover them with high quality canvas. I am known to over-wrap each painting for delivery. And have my heart in my throat waiting for it to be delivered; always wondering if it got there in one piece and if the client is happy with what they have purchased.

Which living or dead artist would you most like to meet?

It has to be Michael Lang (living in USA). I can only dream of achieving what he achieves in his abstract paintings.

Tell us about your studio. Location, clean, cluttered, big, small, etc?

I work from home in Windsor NSW, in what was my husband's shed (man cave). I have outgrown it now and we are in the process of building a new studio (still in the back yard). I need more room as I am a messy painter and get paint on everything - roof, walls, floor, me, you name it, it has paint on it. The latest is his golf bag ... it's fair to say he's not happy.

Art school or self-taught?

Self taught

Do you prefer to work with music or in silence?

Music is a must when I work. The louder the better. I have found a good radio station that plays a lot of 80's / 90's - a good mix and wonderful to get a groove happening.

Favourite brush?

Mont Marte is my favourite brand. The brush I use for everything is so old now and the handle has shaped itself to my hand; an extension of me. I am dreading the day the handle brakes off - it will be a sad day indeed.

Where can we find you outside of the studio?

With my 3 dogs (Siberian Huskies). Love Sundays when we take them down to Windsor Markets and have lunch at a little cafe (the dogs always get a sausage for their lunch). Also, listening to live bands at local pubs in Windsor.

If you couldn't be an artist, what would you do?

It would still have to be art-related. Probably a Curator.

Interests other than art?

History museums and being on the water in a boat just putting around.

What do you collect?

Nothing, you could say I am a minimalist.

What was the best advice given to you as an artist?

There is No such thing as a bad drawing or painting, everyone sees something different and it is up to the individual (Arthur Boyd).

Are there messages within your work?

Not intentionally, but sometimes they appear, being abstract everyone see something different, that's the fun of abstract .

What does your art process entail?

Most important is to enter my studio with a clear mind. In other words, leave your troubles at the door and then go with the flow and just see what happens.

What are your inspirations?

Fire, lava, embers, sunsets, water, fog, reflections, bright colours, unusual colour combinations.

Which art materials could you not live without?

My favourite brush with the warped handle, White / Black / Red / Blue / Orange paints a must, and a extra large canvas.