Thursday, August 27, 2009

TDIPT Presents........

Susan Burd of Country Crocks
We asked Susan:

Where do you live?
I live in the beautiful and historic town of Lititz, PA
Can you tell us a little about your family?
I am married to Geoff, my best friend. We have no children, but do have one fur baby named Jake – a big, handsome yellow lab.

Do you work outside the home?
I worked for 23 years as an office manager for a CPA firm, and now I am self employed as a folk artist

Do you have any hobbies/what do you like to do when you're not creating?
I love to go antiquing; I love to read; I love to redecorate the house; and I enjoy going out to dinner and being with friends.

What are some of your favorite things?
I love antiques – especially old crocks, handmade penny rugs and stitcheries. In fact I love all fabric art – probably because I paint!

Do you collect anything in particular?
Nothing in particular – just whatever I think will look nice in my home.

How did you get your start in your creative business? When?
I always loved any types of crafts and did lots of them when I was growing up. I became interested in painting and took a few classes in 1995. I then read and learned everything I could about painting and eventually became confident enough to design my own patterns.

Tell us how you got your business name?
The Country Crocks name came from the fact that I live in the country and my main product was painting on crocks! My new business which will feature all of my prints and things I make from my prints is called Burd In Hand Designs. I thank my friend Nancy Malay for suggesting that name for me!

Is it in the genes......does anyone in your family, now or generations before create?
My Dad was a carpenter and could make anything. He was a truly talented gentleman.

How do you keep ideas coming?
That’s a difficult one! There are times when the ideas come flooding in – and that’s usually in the middle of the night when I can’t sleep! I need to remember to keep a pad next to me so I can jot down these ideas so I don’t forget them. I think I am mainly inspired by all of the beautiful scenery that surrounds me here in Lancaster County as well as my love of antiques and the past.

Who/what inspires you?
Warren Kimble (the father of folk art painting in my opinion), Donna Atkins, John Sliney (to name a few). Also, my TDIPT sisters who I believe are the most creative group of people I have ever met!

Do you have a studio or do you work in different parts of your home?
My basement, and I must say that it isn’t pretty!! Painting tends to be very messy so I wouldn’t want it all over my home. I would love to have a light and bright studio for myself – hopefully in the near future!

How do you organize your supplies?
Well I’m not the most organized painter, but I do know where everything is!

Do you like to listen to music while you work, if so what ?
I do love music – especially instrumentals such as Jim Brickman. Because I love to read and get so little time to actually sit down with a book, I’ve become addicted to audio books. It’s a great way to “read” while I’m painting!

Do you have a favorite piece of art that you've created?
That is kind of hard to say. I tend to “tire” of a certain piece after awhile and am always eager to move onto new designs. I guess I would have to say the piece that I most enjoyed was a design that I created for our town of Lititz’ 250th birthday in 2006. It was a small village featuring the most famous and historical buildings in our town.

What have you learned about marketing
Well I love getting out and meeting my customers or conversing with them on the telephone or via e-mail. I try to be very fair with my prices and always make every piece that I create special. I don’t ever want to sell something that I wouldn’t want to display in my own home.

What keeps you motivated?
Again, that is a bit difficult because I do go through periods where I am not motivated at all. Normally when I have an upcoming show or orders that need to get done, I am highly motivated! Also, when I have created a new design in my head, I am motivated to get it painted.

Do you sell you work in any shops, or will you be in any upcoming shows?
I used to sell in shops several years ago and then stopped that for awhile. I am now getting back to that because of my prints. I am going to sell at a shop in my town of Lititz called Days Gone by Creations – I am actually doing a signing there on September 11 at one of our Second Friday events here in Lititz. Also, my new website will feature a wholesale area where shops may order my prints. I am participating in a show called the Lititz Artisans’ Porchwalk which will be held at 5 locations here in Lititz on October 9 and 10.

Has your work been published in any magazines? Have you received any type of awards/recognition for your work?
I have been regularly published in the magazine, Create & Decorate since 2005. I’m happy to say that I will be continuing that in 2010 also. I have also licensed my designs to a company called Capitol Earth Rugs. They produce fabulous braided rugs. I have new designs that have just been introduced to the market, and more to come in 2010 when I will be featured in their 30th Anniversary catalog! I am extremely excited about that.

Do you have any tips you would like to share?
Just to do what you love and what makes you happy. I find painting is such therapy for me. It really soothes my soul.
Tell us something about yourself that may surprise us?
I am a 9 year survivor of breast cancer. I am thankful for each day that I am given and was very lucky that it was caught in an early and treatable stage. I am also a bit shy and I don’t feel comfortable being the center of attention. I would rather be on the sidelines cheering other people on!

Susan and her late Mother

Thanks for letting us put you in the TDIPT Spotlight Susan!


  1. what a wonderful interview and Susan, you are a stunning knockout!! Just as lovely on the outside as you are on the inside!!

    I loved getting to know you more - thank you for sharing everything and may God continue to bless your every endeavor!


  2. Fantastic interview Miss Susan! Im such a fan of your work, love it and LOVE your puppy dawg.Hugs~~Pam

  3. What a wonderful interview, Susan & who knew you were so GORGEOUS Girlfriend! You have just an amazing talent with a paintbrush & congrats & best wishes on your new line of prints! Love your big pupper dawg & that pic of you & your Lovely Mother is just priceless. Thanks for sharing with us! Hugs, Starla

  4. Hello my friend!
    I was so happy to see and read your interview.
    Your work is wonderful and I can't wait to see the rug designs.
    Be sure to let us all know when they are available.

    Susan the picture of you and your Mom is lovely.

    Hugs, Audrey

  5. great to read more about you, and as I said in the group..
    DANG you're a hot mama! :)


  6. Susan, you're so cute, so is your sweet dog.
    Loved reading and getting to know some more about you.
    I know you must treasure that picture of you and your Mom.


  7. Susan, you are so talented and such a doll! Loved reading your spotlight and seeing pics of you and your mom and of course your furbaby.

  8. Susan,
    Glad you have lots of fur babies to be parents too. Your painting is wonderful. We will be visiting your state in the future as our son goes off to college. Your Mom is a cutie. Bet she is a very missed best friend too!
    Thanks for sharing.

  9. Susan not only are you talented, you are lovely inside and out.
    I love the pic of you and your mama. :> )

  10. Susan, Well dear friend you are the center of attention here and what a wonderful interview! I have always been a fan of your art, I envy anyone who can paint and you are the best! Your mom was a doll! Thanks for sharing!

  11. Hi Susan,
    Thanks for sharing...It is so good to get to know more about our sisters.
    What a wonderful picture of both you and your Mom...Love it.
    Your work is superb...
    Like I say "Take Joy & Paint".

    VFA = Village Folk Art

  12. Susan,
    couldn't be happier to get a peek into your life. I already thought the world of you but now the world will see why!


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