Elizabeth Longstreet Titmus
Elizabeth had a rich life before she was a painter. Surprisingly, she spent much of her life working with numbers. First at First & Merchants Bank in downtown Richmond, then across the street at the ad agency, Siddall, Matus & Coughter, instead of canvas she worked on a spreadsheet. After almost 30 years in accounting and finance, she worked her way up to CFO. She loved working at the agency because she was surrounded by creative people. She never imagined she was an artist herself.
After retiring in 2006 she began painting and studied with artist in the Petersburg area. For the last 6 years she has been coached by Chuck Larivey in “Swimming-in Paint”.
“Being a part of this team has enriched my life with new friendships and the opportunity to learn with this team.”
Inspiration comes when I least expect it, catches me unaware.
Her favorite subjects are drawn from life --places that she travels, landscapes, wildlife, birds, her koi. Elizabeth has a wall at Crossroads Art Center where she displays her current work and some prints.
A successful accountant turned fervent artist, until retiring Elizabeth Longstreet Titmus did not believe she had a creative bone in her body. “It wasn’t until my sister came to visit after I retired and suggested I take up painting. Eventually, I signed up for a class and that’s how it all began.” Elizabeth entered juried shows and began selling her paintings at various shows, which encouraged her to dive deeper.
Through fellow artist and friend Terry Lacy, Elizabeth joined the Swimming-in-Paint group, led by Chuck Larivey at Crossroads. “You learn so much by being around artistic people. I didn’t start painting large scale until I joined SIP.” Elizabeth prefers to paint from photographs, often of her favorite places like the Outer Banks. “I can only paint things that bring me joy. It’s nothing definite, just a feeling.”
For Elizabeth, the most rewarding part of being an artist is inspiring and creating an emotional connection with the public through her artworks. “When someone is inspired enough to buy my paintings, then I am inspired to paint again. I like that we cause a reaction in someone that they want a creation of mine for their own. It’s nice to know your work is out there in the world and someone is enjoying it!”
Throughout her artistic journey, Elizabeth has discovered a few truths. “You need to find what flows within you and let it speak. I haven’t always followed every artistic rule, I follow intuition.” She continues to live by her mantra “life is a journey, keep moving.”