Art Classes Gift Certificate

Looking for a fun holiday gift –  how about a Gift Certificate for an Adult or Youth Art Class?

Give an experience that is sure to bring a smile!


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 Purchase Gift Certificate for one Adult or Youth Class – $25

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Ceramics at Picket Fence Art

Despite high winds and the loss of power, this week Picket Fence Art Studio was turned into a ceramics studio!

I wish I had a recording of all the times I heard “this is so fun” this week.

For Tuesday students, don’t worry! We will be making our ceramic creations in art this coming week.

I’d also like to offer the opportunity for all Wednesday students who missed class because of the crazy weather and the illnesses going around to come to class on Tuesday at 4:00 so we can all participate in this project. Just email me if you’d like to join in the Tuesday class so I can have a spot ready for you.

A little History:

The craft of ceramics has been practiced throughout history by almost every known culture. Some of the earliest work came from the Middle East and date back to 5000 BC. Ceramic objects were made most often for functional use—drinking, eating, cooking, or ritual. Ceramics along with other crafts were called the functional arts or applied arts because they “applied” to everyday necessities. However, they were never created to be strictly utilitarian.

Hand-crafted ceramics are beautiful and are meant to be admired for their form and decoration and as the individual expression of their creator. Source

David Stabley and Narrative Art:

Narrative Art is art that tells a story, either as a moment in an ongoing story or as a sequence of events unfolding over time. Some of the earliest evidence of human art suggests that people told stories with pictures.

Pennsylvania ceramic artist David Stabley alters traditional, functional forms, and uses shape, surface, texture, and color to tell stories on clay.


Originally trained as a printmaker, David uses the clay surface as his canvas on which he draws, paints, and carves.

We also looked at Narrative Works by Chagall.


Chagall flirted with many radical modernist styles at various points throughout his career, including Cubism and Surrealism. Yet he rejected each of them in succession, remaining committed to figurative and narrative art. Source

 Our Creations:

The students were then encouraged to create their own narrative stories on clay.  Here is a glimpse at the early stages. The ceramics will be fired during Thanksgiving Break and then we will glaze them and fire them again to create our final projects. I loved seeing all of the creativity this week.


Stay warm!

Wednesday Night Teen Class – Value

This week we learned about value in the Teen Class as we began working on Torn Paper Portraits and got a brief taste of using acrylic paint.

Value: Value is the amount of light reflected from the surface. Value creates depth in a picture making the object look 3 D.  We started by painting the classic sphere in our sketch books and labeling the values as follows:

Highlight: Brightest spot where the direct light hits the object.

Light: As the surface curves it gets less light and thus becomes darker.

Shadow: The side away from the light source that does not receive any direct light. It is not completely black because it does receive light from the surroundings.

Reflected light: The light that bounces off the surface the object is sitting on.

Cast Shadow: Darkest dark that gets lighter as it moves away from the object.


A picture was taken of each student and it was abstracted in Photoshop using the cutout filter. This filter breaks the image down into specific values. The student mixed black and white acrylic paint to create similar values on pieces of paper.


The photo was attached to foam board. The students are in the process of tearing value-toned paper into small pieces and gluing the pieces directly onto the photo. We will finish by adding some multi-media collaging to personalize the portraits.



Thank you for sharing your student with me.

Youth Classes – Picasso Roosters

It was so great to be back in the studio this week. In our Youth Classes we learned about Picasso and made Picasso Roosters using soft and oil pastels.

About Picasso:

Pablo Picasso was born in Spain but moved to Paris to attend art school when he was 23. He painted many sad scenes all of them blue and so this is called his blue period.

He is best known for creating Cubism. Cubists painted objects from different angles and ignored perspective and round shapes.

He painted mostly from his imagination and loved to paint people who were important to him such as his daughter Paloma, which is the Spanish word for Dove.  During his Surrealist period he said: “I paint objects as I think them, not as I see them.”

Picasso created more than 20,000 pieces of art in his lifetime. He put a date on every piece of artwork he created because he wanted to create a timeline of

His work:

We looked at Picasso’s painting, Le Coq, Primitivism from Surrealist Period, Pastel on Paper, 1938.

Le Coq

And we created our own Surrealist Roosters. Picasso showed both the profile and frontal face views in his portraits and in The Rooster. We looked at how the beak and eyes are drawn this way.  We had fun creating our Picasso Roosters with pastels.

Picasso Roosters

Picasso Roosters  Picasso Roosters

Picasso Roosters

Picasso RoostersPicasso Roosters

After we completed our Picasso Roosters, we made our own abstract animals.


We will be digging into ceramics next week!

Thanks for sharing your children with me.  It is such a blessing to have them in class!

Thursday Adult Class – Book Binding

It was great to be back to classes at Picket Fence Art Studio this week.

We enjoyed binding our encaustic journals in the Thursday morning adult class.  Thanks again to Erin Keane for teaching me how to make these beautiful encaustic journals.

Encaustic Journals

encaustic journals

Encaustic Journals

Encaustic Journals

Encaustic Journals

Encaustic Journals

I am thinking about adding a Tuesday Evening Adult Class (6:00 – 8:00) beginning right after Thanksgiving.   We will spend December learning encaustics and making these journals.  Please send me an email if you are interested in more information.

Back to Class this Week!

Hi Everyone! I am back in town and we are back to class this week!

Wednesday, November 11, is a Northshore school district holiday but since I have been gone so much, I am planning on having class on Wednesday. Please send me an email if your student will NOT be in class on Wednesday. As long as I have notice, you do not need to pay for classes that you miss.

Thanksgiving is the week of November 23rd.  We will have class on Tuesday that week but will not be holding classes on November 25th or November 26th.

The Studio will be open the first three weeks of December closing for Winter Break on December 18th.

Tuition for November is due. Tuition is $25 per class.

I had an amazing adventure sharpening my photography skills on Easter Island and in Patagonia with my Dad. Once I have sorted through the 10,000 images that I took, I will share some of my favorites with you. For now, here is one of them:

Sunrise on Easter Island

Sunrise on Easter Island

As always, feel free to email me with any questions.