19th Ave New York, NY 95822, USA

Kate Santucci, Artisan


Just over a year ago, Kate Santucci joined Scenic Solutions to work as an artisan in both softgoods and in our paint department. At the time, we were building floats for Royal Caribbean’s Anchor’s Aweigh! parade. Kate says, ” I did a LOT of quilting last year when we were building the parade floats–super fun! I make a lot of sandbags and theatrical weights, and have hemmed miles of curtains. I have done some painting, and even a little sculpture. And I spent several weeks wiring cherry blossoms to trees.”

Kate, with a BFA in Visual Arts from Wright State University, brings us a mix of skills. Her background is in costuming and fine art, with a concentration in sculpture. “I learned to sew from a family friend in high school, and decided that I wanted to go into theater. My first two years of school I was a costume design major in the theater department, and learned how to sew, drape patterns, and run costumes. I decided to focus on the art end of things, and switched majors to visual art, where I concentrated in sculpture. I ended up working as a costumer for the Dayton Ballet several years after graduation.”

After spending the morning at Scenic Solutions, Kate moves on to her other job In the afternoons as a professional artist where she primarily paints in encaustic and cold wax mediums. “I feel like I have the best of both worlds!”

Encaustic is a mixture of beeswax, damar resin, and pigment that is applied to a wood surface while hot. Each layer is then fused with a torch when it is applied. Kate says, “I’m very process oriented, so the steps and process involved is almost meditative for me. The medium allows for very smooth and glassy surfaces, or for extremely textured ones that can be built up, scraped back, and carved into. It has a lot of sculptural aspects, which is one of the reasons I love it so much. Also, it smells lovely, and has this gorgeous softness to it. You can see through sheer layers to images below, so it has such beautiful depth. It’s fantastic to use with other mediums, such as oil paint, pigment stick, graphite, and pastel.”

When we asked her what advice or wisdom she would share with someone entering the entertainment industry she told us, “Time management skills are a must, and despite your best efforts, it’s always going to come down to the wire. So take a deep breath and get it done! Also, clear communication about projects, timelines, et cetera is really valuable. It’s much better to ask questions than to do it over.”

Kate continued, “I’ve had a great experience working at Scenic Solutions. I enjoy the work itself, but am constantly amazed at how great it is to work here. They truly care about each of us. It’s also really fun for me to be back in a theater environment. Being part of creating a large work of art is very satisfying.”

In case you’re interested, Kate’s artwork is available for purchase and she also takes commissions. You’ll find her art here: