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Welcome to Studio SS, the online home of a shared art project between Shae Freeman and Suzanne Earley. We will be documenting our journeys as we Make Our Own MFAs and make a lot of art.

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Make Your Own MFA

We want to learn as much about making art and the business of art as we can, but we don’t want to go to art school to do it. So we’re going to make our own art school. We are each designing our own personal MFA programs, filling up our toolboxes with the skills and knowledge we need to further our goals.

Suzanne’s Plans

Shae’s Plans

Want to make your own MFA? Here are some suggestions!

If you want to join in and need help or ideas, feel free to comment on a post here, send us messages on Instagram, or email us at hello@studioss.art.

  1. What are your goals? Write them down. Be specific.
  2. Search the internet for classes, books, and other resources that will help you reach those goals. Be intentional. Look for things that are going to stretch you, not just show you the same techniques you already know how to do. Take a look at our plans, linked above for ideas of where to start.
  3. Get to work. Be intentional about doing the classes and taking what you need from them.

We’ll have lots more to say about this in future posts and we hope you’ll follow along!

About Studio SS

We are Suzanne and Shae, two artists who found each other via Instagram and began to bond over our shared birth year, intense curiosity and interest doing all the things, and love of art supplies. We finally got over our social anxiety and have decided to team up to make art and satisfy our endless curiosity for learning all of the things.


By day, Suzanne is a multi-tasking wizard (aka a school secretary), but at night, she is a mixed media artist who has a strong need to create, no matter what the medium. Her professional background includes a computer science degree, computer networking experience, professional machine quilting, and a short stint as a retail quilt/yarn store owner. When she isn’t playing with paint and paper, she’s quilting, knitting, or reading a book. She lives in her empty nest in Eastern Iowa with her husband (their twin sons are students at Iowa State) and is owned by two cats (Hobbes and Sally). 


Shae is a formally trained metal sculptor turned mixed media artist with a penchant for collage, amassing ephemera, and art journaling. As a devoted student of everything, she has studied anything that has piqued her interest, following three major threads in her life: art, the natural world, and spirituality. She is a Reiki master teacher, medical astrologer, and certified herbalist. She has a no-stone-left-unturned approach to learning and is constantly working toward a synthesis of art and healing. When she’s not learning a new skill, you can find her motorcycling or birding (or both) with her husband in and around the New Orleans area.