Childhood passion reimagined
LE MARS — The Le Mars Art Center is featuring a local artist, Susan Betsworth, in her first artist reception, 1-3 p.m., Saturday, Oct. 13.
Titled “A Retrospective From the Beginning to Now,” Betsworth will exhibit several watercolor paintings with family, friends and community members.
“I was asked by Judy (Marienau), the art center manager, about a year ago,” Betsworth said of how the event started to take shape. “I hope to see lots of family and friends who will be able to see more of my art in one place.”
The exhibit has become a labor of love.
“It takes a lot of time to get everything ready,” she explained. “I frame all my own pieces, which takes extra time. It has been a good experience so far.”
The path to art wasn’t a straight one for Betsworth. While she was drawn to it as a child, she took a long hiatus in middle school.
“I started painting in grade school. The Rose I painted in 6th grade art class was accepted into the all school show,” she shared. “In 7th grade my teacher told me that I had no talent, therefore I did not take any further art classes.”
That all changed when she became involved with the art center.
“I have been involved with the Art Center since 2011. I have provided accounting services for them since — I don’t remember,” explained Betsworth, who provides accounting services in downtown Le Mars at Betsworth Accounting. “When Jean Weiner started teaching at the Le Mars Art Center, I started taking classes.”
Since 2011, Betsworth has embraced her art. With motivation from her father, she’s gone on to receive accolades for her work.
“Art is my gift from God and encouraged by my dad, Ronald L. Smith. He has done a lot of painting of decoys and rocks over the years,” Betsworth shared. “I have entered several pieces of art into the Iowa Watercolor Society shows. I have four pieces accepted over a six-year period of time. I am now considered a Signature Member of I.W.S.”
Betsworth shared her favorite part of painting is the surprise of the finished piece.
“The final product still amazes me,” she said.
While it’s been a long road with different twists to get to the artist reception, Betsworth is grateful for the people who have helped her along the way.
“I am thankful to all my teachers, especially Jean Weiner, for being so patient,” she stated.