Support AG Bell Today

A Passion for Color

Sue Mooney became an artist by accident. She always knew she was creative, though she didn’t do anything with it.

Lea en Español

by Lisa A. Goldstein

Sue Mooney became an artist by accident. She always knew she was creative, though she didn’t do anything with it.

Then her ex-partner took a picture of their dog wearing goggles. A couple of people told Mooney the picture should be on a greeting card. That’s when the light bulb went off.

Prior to being a full-time artist, Mooney’s career had included being a program manager for developmentally disabled clients in group homes and a medical case manager for HIV/AIDS patients.

When Mooney was two years old, she was found to have a moderate bilateral hearing loss. It became severe and profound by the time she was 11. She uses a hearing aid and a cochlear implant.

Once Mooney decided to follow her inspiration and embrace her passion for color, she went all in. She quit her job, sold her house, and bought a camper van. For a year and a half, she hit the art circuit with her two yorkies. She has been recognized in the media for her vibrant use of color, evident on her website.

In her medical case manager position, the Minneapolis -based Mooney says it was difficult at times using the telephone with her patients. Now when she has people in her booth at art shows, she’s unable to interject helpful suggestions about her paintings unless they are looking at her.

Mooney says her personal strength is her creativity. She has only been painting for about seven years and plans to continue selling her paintings. Her website describes her creativity as evolving over time. Initially, she digitally painted animals using color to add texture and interest. Her current works are textured abstract acrylic paintings. “Entirely self-taught, she creates these works with a palette knife and continues with her signature bold and vibrant colors,” her website states. “Getting lost in the colors is good for the soul,” she is quoted as saying.

Sue Mooney Art, as her business is called, has a list of galleries that feature her work, an online shop, and her upcoming events. She offers consultations, commissions, and will bring her paintings to the home or office in the Twin Cities Metro area so potential clients can see how it will look in their space.

Her advice for people who are deaf or hard of hearing who are interested in becoming artists is to start selling your artwork at community events to see how it goes. “Don’t give up your day job right away,” Mooney says. “Take it slow.”

Pasión por el color

Sue Mooney se convirtió en artista por casualidad. Siempre supo que era una persona con creatividad, pero nunca la había puesto en práctica.

Un buen día, su expareja hizo una fotografía de su perro llevando gafas protectoras. Un par de personas le dijeron a Sue que la fotografía debería aparecer en una tarjeta de felicitación y fue entonces cuando se le encendió la bombilla.

Antes de ser artista a tiempo completo, Sue había trabajado como gerente de programas destinados a clientes con discapacidades del desarrollo en residencias sociales y como gerente de casos médicos para pacientes con VIH/SIDA.

Cuando tenía dos años, se descubrió que tenía una pérdida auditiva bilateral moderada y a los 11 años ya era severa y profunda. Sue utiliza un audífono y un implante coclear.

Una vez que decidió dejarse guiar por la inspiración y su pasión por el color, nada pudo detenerla: dejó el trabajo, vendió su casa y se compró una autocaravana. Durante un año y medio, entró en el circuito artístico con sus dos yorkies. En los medios se le reconoce el uso vivo de los colores, que es evidente en su sitio web.

Sue comenta que, cuando trabajaba como gerente de casos médicos, con sede en Mineápolis, en ocasiones le resultaba difícil hablar por teléfono con sus pacientes. Actualmente, cuando hay personas visitando su stand en exposiciones de arte, es incapaz de facilitar sugerencias útiles sobre sus cuadros a no ser que la estén mirando.

Sue asegura que su fortaleza personal es la creatividad. Su trayectoria como pintora empezó hace unos siete años y se plantea seguir vendiendo sus cuadros. En su sitio web se describe su creatividad como algo que evoluciona con el paso del tiempo. Inicialmente, pintaba animales digitalmente utilizando el color para añadir textura e interés. Sus trabajos actuales son pinturas acrílicas abstractas con textura. «Totalmente autodidacta, la artista crea estos trabajos con una espátula y continúa con sus característicos colores vivos y llamativos», se afirma en su sitio web. «Perderse en los colores es bueno para el alma» es una de sus citas.

En Sue Mooney Art, como se llama su firma, se facilita una lista de las galerías que exhiben sus trabajos, una tienda en línea y sus próximos eventos. Ofrece consultas, acepta encargos y muestra sus cuadros en domicilios y oficinas situados en el área metropolitana de Twin Cities para que los clientes potenciales puedan apreciar cómo lucen en sus espacios.

Su consejo para las personas con sordera o hipoacusia que estén interesadas en convertirse en artistas es que comiencen a vender sus obras de arte en eventos comunitarios para conocer su aceptación. «No se debe renunciar al trabajo diario de inmediato», aconseja Sue. «Hay que tomárselo con calma».

AG Bell membership for families is always free!

Family membership benefits:

  • Financial Support

    Scholarships for technology, therapy, and education

  • Professional Guidance

    Speak to a parent who's been there or search for a certified therapist.

  • State Chapters

    Connect with and get support from local families like yours!

  • Resource Library

    Get answers with access to our information library

  • Volta Voices

    A bilingual magazine with in-depth stories about growing up with hearing loss

  • Loft & Leap

    Access to unique leadership & educational programs for teens

Seeking an AG Bell professional membership?

Get listed on our searchable professional directory, find educational and research resources, scholarships and mentorship.

Professional Membership Has Its Benefits

Join today to connect with fellow members, exchange insights, get listed in our global directory, and celebrate the journey of listening & spoken language.

Professional benefits include:

  • Continuing Education Units (CEUs)

    Earn CEUs through the AG Bell Academy, at our yearly Symposium, or through events held throughout the year for members

  • $100 off Exam Fees

    Take your Listening and Spoken Language Specialist (LSLS®) certification exam for less!

  • Event Discounts

    Discounted registration to AG Bell’s symposium and other events, plus special discounts on travel, restaurants, retail shops and more

  • LSL Professional Directory

    Get listed and found by families that need your services and students that want your mentorship

  • LSL Leading Edge

    An exclusive e-newsletter for AG Bell professional members packed with the latest news and developments in hearing health and the listening & spoken language field

  • Volta Voices 

    AG Bell’s award-winning, quarterly digital magazine in English and Spanish

  • Access to AG Bell’s Network

    Connect with 40+ state chapters located throughout the United States and Puerto Rico

  • Professional Opportunities

    Get involved in AG Bell through committees, task forces, councils and other venues for members to interact and contribute meaningfully

  • The Volta Review 

    Stay current with the latest research through our peer-reviewed, online professional research journal

Seeking membership as a friend or family member?

Membership is always free for family & friends of people who are deaf or hard of hearing and helps connect individuals to our professional community!