"When life gives you lemons, make lemonade!"
The Delightful Art Co. came about due to a moment when life gave me lemons. I had to make lemonade.
I was teaching art at Spiritual Twist Productions and working as a freelance graphic designer when the Covid shutdown happened. I had to move my art class online without notice. I lost a lot of students who didn't want to go online, but a core group of students were willing to give it a try and it actually worked out surprisingly well. I lost all my graphic design work at that time too, but I had two kids in college, so I had to find a way to get back into business. I held an online interest meeting and invited Challenge II directors from a FB group I'd been active in. Over 50 women came to that meeting. I pitched an idea: an online class in which we'd learn art skills by imitating the great artists from history and learning a little more about history, too: a fine arts class that aligned with what they were teaching in Challenge II. They loved the idea and told me they'd sign up their kids if I did it. They also asked if I'd do one in the summer for them. So I did! It turned out to be great. I thought the students would benefit from having samples in print while they worked, so I wrote a book to go with the class, writing a chapter after each week of teaching. About one year later, I had a booth at a homeschool conference to advertise my art history class and lots of moms asked me if I'd do a class for younger students, so naturally, I said yes, and found a teacher, wrote a book and launched a class for younger students. All that was in one year! The online classes have doubled each year so that in the 2022-2023 school year we'll have 4 teachers and 8 classes...and hopefully lots of students!
How did I know how to do all that, you ask? I graduated from North Carolina State University with a degree in Graphic Design. I worked as a graphic designer for the N.C. Blumenthal Performing Arts Center, and then taught art at the Bemis School of Art when my husband's career took us to Colorado Springs. Once we had kids, I led youth group, designed a lot of t-shirts for my church, wrote Vacation Bible School Curriculum and began homeschooling in 2006. I learned to love Classical education and became a teacher, and eventually a teacher of teachers traveling internationally to speak about classical Christian home schooling. I also wrote and designed homeschool materials such as, Marvelous to Behold, The Essential's Trivium Tables, and the PreScripts Handwriting and Drawing Series. I took on clients such as CiRCE Institute and designed several books for them. I also was involved in the first design of The Math Maps math curriculum with Leigh Bortins.
When I'm not leading a class or designing books, you might find me at Spiritual Twist Productions where I love to volunteer. I also enjoy painting, spring snow skiing, walking my dog, Zoey, and traveling. My next big dream is to go to Italy and see in person the things I've been teaching...perhaps it'll be a study abroad program with students!
In May of 2022, I became an adjunct instructor with Bryan College. This allows students of Paint Your Way Through Art History to earn college credit at the same time they are earning high school fine arts credit through concurrent enrollment! Bryan College leadership and I are very excited about this partnership as well as future co-working opportunities.
I hope Delightful Art Co. will help students find a path to becoming fine artists, graphic designers, or art teachers.