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MCRAE, Suzanne

DegreeSuzanne McRae

Bachelor of Visual Arts - Ceramics

Graduation year

1996

Current position

Sole Trader Artist, Hip Hip Decay, creating bespoke mixed media sculptures

Employer

Self-employed

After graduating I moved into costume and fashion, operating shops and web businesses sewing for clientele near and far. Most recently I have returned to my beginnings in sculpture and ceramics, coupled with my textile experience, to create pieces which are finding a place in galleries and the homes of people who are transfixed by their character and charm.

What are some of your career highlights?

Window Exhibition at Australian Design Centre Sydney, invitation to Chateau de la Carriere France as artist in residence, stocking local and international stores. Self-publishing my book, Hip Hip Decay, has also been another highlight!

Describe the most enjoyable and challenging aspects of your job

The most enjoyable aspects are that I am in charge of how I run my business, I can make any decision I want to, say no to anything I want to, weigh up the short term and long term benefits of every action I take.

I work the hours that I want to, and I don’t worry about a work life balance as they are the same thing.

There is no cap on what I can earn, if I make good decisions and take good risks then the financial potential is infinite. This means that I can be perpetually excited to continue on and have new ideas.

Challenges can be the allocation of work time, the self employment issues with financial institutions, keeping momentum when sales are down, and keeping stress levels down when sales are high.

The world is open to anything, and it is uplifting to be able to conceive of any possibility and put it into action.

What are your strongest memories while you were studying at the University?

The people I studied with and met, the social aspect of engaging with new types of people I had never come across which broadened my opinions and ideas.

The discipline of turning up each day and completing projects that often felt like drudgery but in hindsight were building strengths in consistency and playing the long game. Self motivation is born here and is necessary as a self employed person.

Antonia - Suzanne McRaeDo you have any advice about life after study to pass on to current students?

Try and hone your skills continually…… there is no point marketing yourself and your interest whatever the topic, if your skills and knowledge are not up to scratch. Keep working through producing mediocre or rubbish work until you are confident in your field.

Continually ask yourself if what you are doing, whether it is doing extra study, trying a new method of painting, binge watching tv, is furthering the direction you are trying to go.

Choices and opportunity happen every day, it’s whether you grab them or waste them that makes the difference.

Edwardia - Suzanne McRae

The Good Ship Maude - Suzanne McRae