You all know how much I love teaching! I think that’s another reason I love Jane LaFazio – she is a fantastic teacher – someone who willingly and generously shares her creativity and the joy of art! Here is part two of my interview with this lovely artist.
Lyric: What do you gain as an artist by teaching?
Jane: On a concrete level, it keeps me making art. I’m always creating artwork to learn the process so I can then teach it to my students. I get great ideas and inspiration from what my students create, based on the so called assignment or technique I’ve shown them. And, teaching suits me. I enjoy it very much, I love to get people sharing stories and art with each other, I love to laugh, and make people laugh, I love seeing individuals access their own creativity, and I love sharing and encouraging the process of art making.
L: Tell me about the work you do a Mundo Lindo.
J: I created Mundo Lindo, a free afterschool art program for 4th and 5th grade kids in low income Escondido in 2007. It was funded by a grant for the first two years, and now the center, where the classes were held, has hired me to continue the program. For 2 hours each week, I teach about 20 kids an art project. We’ve painted palm husks to look like African masks, created papier mache sail boats, drawn and collage Trees of Life, woven watercolor landscapes, made Haiti House pins sell and donated the money to UNICEF for Haiti, sewn small quilts for the Dream Rocket project… wonderful fun projects that I think up each week. The arts programs in schools are nearly non existent, and I’m thrilled to be able to give these kids some creative time each week.
L: Tell me about some of the upcoming workshops you’ll be doing, and where we can find out about them.
J: My workshop page on my blog is always updated, and tells me I have a very busy summer ahead! In July, I’m teaching for the first time at Idllywild Summer Arts program, it’s a beautiful mountain community about two and half hours from LA and San Diego. I’m teaching a two day mixed media workshop on July 4 & 5 and a wet-felting workshop July 6. I’ll also be teaching at the Long Beach Quilt Festival.
Another new venue for me is a Utah retreat, July 15-18. Limited to 8 students, and I’ll teach 6 hours or so each day. Should be very fun!
So – do you love what Jane does as much as I do? Leave a comment and tell us about what you think makes a really great teacher. Have you had any fantastic experiences during a class? What was it about that teacher that really opened things up for you? Remember to leave a comment here or here to be entered to win a copy of her DVD (which I’ll review next week).