E D U C A T I O N

City University London, London, England – Graduated with Merit, 2004-2009

  • MA in Cultural Management with an emphasis on arts-for-social change organizations

Xavier University, Cincinnati, OH – Graduated Magna cum Laude, 1998-2002

  • Bachelors in Fine Arts Degree with a Concentration in Sculpture
  • Minor in Women and Minorities Studies

Group Dynamics Education, Brookfield, IL , 2013-Present

  • Dubrow and Associates
  • A monthly resource group for those who work with people such as teachers and social workers

 

A R T    E X P E R I E N C E

Visual Artist, All My Life

  • Utilize a variety of materials and processes including drawing, painting, sculpting and mixed media with a current focus on illustrating stories
  • Exhibited in galleries, cafes, kids’ stores and a national traveling exhibit

Illustrator, 2012 to Present

  • Released my first illustrated book, Jitterbugs! (written by Margot Toppen) Fall 2014
  • Completing my second illustrated book Wings of the Heart (written by Kevin Dubrow) by Spring 2016
  • Created an ongoing cartoon project, Lessons Between the Lessons, which depict the silly and serious in an urban classroom
  • Created an ongoing cartoon project in collaboration with Writer Carey Robin, Celibate in the Suburbs which depict the female experience of seeking out meaningful work and relationships against the hard reality of time and money

Graphic Designer, 2007 to Present

  • Create flyers, brochures, logos and other materials for non-profit organizations as well as businesses

Body Painter, 2011-2013

  • Founded a body painting business with two partners
  • Sought to bring a person’s inner beauty to the surface by making them into a work of art
  • Carried out private sessions as well as public events

Studio Owner, 2007 – 2010

  • Ran Studio Light, a storefront studio in Oak Park, for three years
  • Created, sold and taught art to children and adults

 

E X H I B I T I O N   L I S T

2016    Upcoming permanent mural installation, Hononegah High School – Rockton,IL

2015   Jitterbugs, Solo Exhibition, Ganesha Yoga and Adventures in Fitness – Chicago, IL

 2014   Natural Medicine, Solo Exhibition, Ganesha Yoga and Adventures in Fitness – Chicago, IL

 2013   Spring, Group Exhibition, Life Force Arts Center – Chicago, IL

Natural Medicine, Solo Exhibition, Kids Rule Toy Store – Chicago, IL

 2012   Windows and Mirrors, National Traveling Group Exhibit windowsandmirrors.org

Beauty Inside and Out, Exhibit of Collaborative Work, The Toolbox – Iowa City, IA

 2011   Beauty Inside and Out, Exhibit of Collaborative Work, Harrison Works – Oak Park, IL

 2010   Beauty Inside and Out, Exhibit of Collaborative Work, Joie De Vine – Chicago, IL

Truthseeker, Solo Exhibition, Loose Leaf Lounge – Chicago, IL

2009   Transformation, Juried by Sharon Schmidt, Norris Cultural Arts Center – St. Charles, IL

Evolving Artists, Juried by Gabriel Akagawa and Cathie Ruggie Saunders, Beverly Arts Center – Chicago, IL

2007   Some Assembly Required, Juried by Lauren Levato, Woman Made Gallery – Chicago, IL

The Mind’s Eye, Group Exhibition, High Risk Gallery – Chicago, IL

2006   Juried Alumni Exhibition, Xavier University – Cincinnati, OH

Truths, Solo Exhibition, Starbucks – Cincinnati, OH

2005   Juried Alumni Exhibition, Xavier University – Cincinnati, OH

2003   Altering the View, Three Person Exhibition, Riverfront Work Lofts – Chicago, IL

Women Artists Group Exhibition, Last Kiss Café – Chicago, IL

 2002   Containing Layers, Solo Art Thesis Exhibition, Xavier University – Cincinnati, OH

Emerging Artists Exhibition, The Artery – Newport, IL

 

T E A C H I N G   E X P E R I E N C E

Founder, Teaching Artist                                                                                       

Creative Courage Art, Chicagoland Area, 2014 to Present

  • Utilize art as a tool to inspire and empower people to courageously seek, image and create meaningful lives for themselves and to transform the world around them
  • Create and implement classes, workshops, camps and private lessons
  • Manage all aspects of operating a small business
  • Partner with organizations such as The Community House, Oak Park Education Foundation, Berwyn Park District, Hinsdale South High School, Brookfield Library and the Oak Park Arts District businesses

Art Teacher                                                                                           

University of Chicago Charter School: Carter G. Woodson Campus, Chicago, IL, August 2012-June 2015

  • Developed lesson plans and taught ten sixth and seventh grade art classes per week
  • Taught an elective class focused on collaborative beautification projects
  • Created and lead two art mentoring groups for select students who desired to explore deeper concepts and questions

Teaching Artist                                                                                   

Changing Worlds

  • Graphic Design After School Program, Pilsen Community Academy, Fall 2014 – Present
    • Explored concepts of warriors and bullies to create digital collages in Photoshop
    • Taught students how to create personal logos in Photoshop which were printed on t-shirts and shown at a fashion show culminating event
    • Investigated causes that students cared about at their school and created campaign posters in Photoshop.
    • Explored mandalas around the world and led students in creating their own mandala
    • Guided students in creating their own collaborative mandala which was performed in front of teachers, administrators, parents and students.
    • Implemented Small Group Dynamics and Processes to demonstrate to students how they can play positive classroom roles and have better relationships with their peers
  • Tribal Art After School Program, Hearst Elementary, Spring 2014
    • Taught students tribal art traditions from around the world including Austrailian Aborigine Dot Painting, Huichol Yarn Paintings and Native American Warrior Shields
    • Challenged them to create work in the style of these ancient practices while reflecting their self-identity
    • Built awareness of the shared identity of other cultures and their own culture
    • Increased their use of symbolic language
  • Group Painting After School Program, Hearst Elementary, Winter 2014
    • Guided students in creating a collaborative painting to be displayed in the school
    • Explored what it meant to have Creative Courage
    • Taught and practiced playing positive group norms and eliminating negative group norms
  • Spring Break Art Camp, Fulton Elementary, Spring 2014
    • Created and taught projects on the theme of spring and the beauty of the natural world.
    • Collaborated with a theater teaching artist in developing creative movement activities and theater games to go with the theme
  • Theater and Art After School Program, Fulton Elementary, 2013-14 School Year
    • Collaborated with a theater teaching artist to integrate theater and visual art activities
    • Taught about the concept of what it means to be a hero
    • Led students in creating life-size portraits of themselves as superheroes and masks which were used in a theater performance

Retreat Co-Leader                                                                                   

The Community House, Hinsdale, IL, June 2015

  • Guided college students in the process of discovering their gifts and developing a vision for being heroes in the creation of a better world through Small Group Dynamics and Processes
  • Taught a warrior shield art project utilizing symbols from around the world to serve as a reminder of what they learned and what they need to work on bringing into the world.

Teaching Artist                                                                                   

Oak Park Education Foundation, Oak Park, IL

  • Storytelling Masks In-School Residency, Longfellow Elementary, Winter 2009
    • Led students in writing stories and creating the main character of a story
    • Taught them the process of using papier mache to create masks of their character
    • Created a group story using all of their characters
    • Utilized a guest teaching artist to teach them how to dance out their story and created a video of their performance
  • Stories of Freedom In-School Residency, Beye Elementary, Winter 2014, 2015 and 2016
    • Led students in identifying symbols of freedom to complement their lesson on the Underground Railroad
    • Symbols are used to create stories that students write around their drawings
    • Teach the students watercolor and oil pastel resist process
    • Final works are woven together to create a quilt and displayed at Village Hall every year
  • Bugs Naturally In-School Residency, Longfellow Elementary, Winter 2015
    • Complemented current curriculum on bugs through teaching the process of creating papier mache bugs
    • Challenged students’ imagination by asking them to incorporate dreams they have for their future in the painting of and accessorizing of their bugs

 Teaching Artist                                                                                   

Urban Gateways Center for Arts Education, Chicago IL

  • Gods and Goddesses Summer Arts Residency, Ashburn Elementary, Summer 2013
    • Inspired students with mythic tales
    • Taught basics in drawing self-portraits and color theory so students could create themselves as Gods and Goddesses with superpowers
  • Rituals Saturday Morning Residency, Carter Elementary, Winter 2013
    • Explored how art has been a part of rituals throughout time
    • Led students in creating art in the style of other cultures that depicted their own culture and identity with a contemporary slant
  • Artist Books After School Program, Olive-Harvey College, Spring 2011
    • Structured the residency around artists who create artist books
    • Taught techniques in creating an artist book and each day students created one page
    • Theme of violence and fear emerged from the student work and was discussed and expressed in many ways
    • Using the best work of each student, a group artist book was created and put on display at the school
  • Self-Identity In-School Residency, Elementary, 2009-10 School Year
    • Collaborated with classroom teachers to create and teach art projects that integrated what students were learning in literature, math, science and social students
    • Developed art projects through which students investigated their self-identity and culture
    • Included students in a national traveling exhibit called Windows and Mirrors created by the American Friends Service Committee
      • Students learned to draw portraits of Afghani children depicted in a variety of ways to break down stereotypes.
      • The portraits where collaged to create a quilt effect and students imagined what those children might be like cultivating empathy and illuminating what we have in common as human beings.
    • Provided a field trip experience in which students completed a scavenger hunt at the Outdoor Sculpture Park
  • Mixed Media Art After School Program, Sherman Elementary, 2008-09 School Year
    • Created a program for K-6th grade students through which they explored a variety of materials and art processes
    • Created a field trip experience through which students created art out of natural materials in a park inspired by the work of Andy Goldsworthy
  • Recycle-able Art In-School Residency, Greeley Elementary, Fall 2007
    • Explored environmental issues through the creation of art entirely with items found in recycling bins
    • Students created “worlds” that depicted the beauty they saw around them
    • Created an installation of their work connected by a web with their pledge on how they will help the earth

Teaching Artist, Founding Member

Oak Park Arts District Summer Arts Camps, Oak Park, IL Summers, 2007-Present

  • Students create art in real artist spaces
  • Develop and implement mixed media art projects that encourage students to explore themselves and the world around them

Workshop Facilitator

University of Northern Illinois, Dekalb, IL, May 2014

  • Led a workshop called “Getting Off the Assembly Line: Using Group Dynamics in the Middle School Classroom”
  • Engaged undergraduate education students in discussions on creative and innovative ways to build relationships with their students and involve them in creating their own positive educational experience

Teaching Artist                                                                                   

Street Level Youth Media, Chicago, IL, Winter 2012-13

  • Developed and taught a Photoshop after-school program to late elementary school students
  • Explored their self-identity through the creation of digital art
  • Created a collaborative installation of a hero story integrated digital heroes that they created which was displayed as a part of an exhibition

Teaching Artist

Woman Made Gallery, Chicago, IL, May-July 2012

  • Selected to be a Teaching Artist for the 20 Neighborhoods project
  • Worked with senior citizen women and Hamdard Center for Health and Human Services to give voice to the needs they have as individuals, as a community and as a city
  • Led them in created mixed media work reflecting those concerns
  • Displayed work at the gallery alongside of work created by residents of 19 other neighborhoods in Chicago

Teaching Artist

Grailville Retreat Center, Cincinnati, OH, October 2010

  • Led a workshop called “Containing Me” for college students and adults during a weekend retreat
  • Guided participants in exploring how they see themselves as they learned how to draw self-portraits

Teaching Artist

American Friends Service Committee, Chicago, IL

  • The Many Faces of Afghanistan Workshop, Spring 2010
    • Lead students from local elementary schools in drawing portraits of Afghani children as they pondered what things they might have in common
    • Collaged portraits into a “quilt” that became a part of the nationally traveling Windows and Mirrors
  • Recruitment Posters for Peace Program, Spring 2009
    • Taught middle school students at Perspectives Charter School basics in Photoshop
    • Led them in discussing issues of war and peace as they created Recruitment Posters for Peace
    • Partnered with Roosevelt University’s Gage Gallery to have an exhibit of their work which also was a fundraising event for American Friends Service Committee
  • Iraqi Refugee Workshops, Winter 2008-09
    • Partnered with Perspectives Charter Schools to provided art workshops through which students could learn about the plight of Iraqi refugees.

AmeriCorps Intern – Tutor, Substitute, High School Art Teacher         

East End Community Heritage School, Cincinnati, OH, August 2006-August 2007

  • This was a position through the Urban Appalachian Council.
  • Tutored struggling students in all grades, K-12
  • Substituted for absent teachers in all subjects
  • Became the High School Art Teacher developing curriculum and teaching basic art techniques

Teaching Artist

Comfort Cottage, Camp Comfort, Newark, OH, July 2006 and 2007

  • Developed and taught healing art projects to elementary-aged children going through traumatic life experiences
  • Taught them how to create both individual work and group work as they learned to support one another and understand that they are not alone

 

N O N – P R O F I T   W O R K   E X P E R I E N C E

Development Associate and Fundraising Events Coordinator, April 2007-April 2012

American Friends Service Committee, Great Lakes Region, Chicago, IL

  • Cultivated individual donors through the coordination of mail appeals across the four offices in the region
  • Organized and ran fundraising events regionally and nationally
  • Communicated the latest program developments to constituents
  • Designed postcards, brochures, newsletters, t-shirts, manuals and more to promote the program work to current and potential donors and partners
  • Implemented special projects including the development and execution of arts programming with the young people involved in the organization
  • Managed interns and volunteers
  • Taught basics in Adobe InDesign, Illustrator and Photoshop to staff and the young people involved in programming at the organization

AmeriCorps Intern – General Manager, August 2006-August 2007

Pendleton Heritage Center, Cincinnati, OH

  • This was a position through the Urban Appalachian Council.
  • Created and implemented arts programming
  • Wrote successful grant applications
  • Held fundraisers and a membership drive
  • Recruited volunteers
  • Managed daily office administration

Program Manager AssistantJanuary 2005-July 2005

Pan Intercultural Arts, London, England

  • Developed an educational resource pack
  • Liaised with schools, press and funding bodies
  • Assisted in workshops and provided administrative support to a team of people implementing arts-for-social change projects
  • Primarily worked on a project called Your Choice, Your Voice which sought to utilize forum theatre techniques to increase the participation of high school students in transforming society

 

R E S E A R C H   E X P E R I E N C E

Masters’ Thesis Research

City University London, London, UK, Fall 2008 – Spring 2009

  • Examined the question, “Can integrating Community Cultural Development practices into high school Social Justice Education increase the participation of young people in transforming society?”
  • Implemented workshops on the Iraqi refugee crisis utilizing a slide show presentation created by activist organization, American Friends Service Committee, to two high school classes and administered surveys to the students and teachers to see how strongly they felt about the issue and whether or not they are compelled to take action based on what they learned
  • Collaborated with teachers and staff with ideas from students to create an arts-based workshop on the Iraqi refugee crisis and then administered the same survey
  • Results demonstrated that the creative process opens up a dialogue, whereas typical activist practices do not invite the flow of ideas, that art facilitates the process of imagining new possibilities instead of resorting to futility and that art can also build bridges between a global issue and one person’s life on the other side of the world, increasing empathy and stimulating innovative ideas for taking action in fun and engaging ways.
  • Created guidelines for implementing effective Community Cultural Development programs with the aim of increasing the participation of young people in social justice issues