Susan Paterson attended Mount Allison University, receiving her Bachelor of Fine Arts in 1980. In 1981 she received an Elizabeth Greenshields grant, which enabled her to study at the Byam Shaw School of Art in London, England. She has also studied at NSCAD, the School for the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, Academy of Realist Art and, with the support of a Nova Scotia Arts Council grant, Grand Central Atelier in New Hampshire. Her work has been featured in several publications and has been a finalist in International Artist Magazine, Art Renewal and BoldBrush art competitions. In 2014 Susan was awarded an artist's residency at Nova Scotia's Port Bickerton Lighthouse. Her work is in numerous private, public and corporate collections.
Susan's work evokes the past, both in technique and in subject. She does highly detailed studies of everyday objects, focussing on subtleties of light, colour and texture. Her grandparents' homes have been an inspiration and many of the items passed down, with their wonderful colour, patina and story, are included in her work. She works in a traditional oil painting technique with an underpainting and glazing, doing sketches to work out the composition and then slowly building up the painting layer by layer.