Portrait of Jenny in her smock
by Teagan Ruttimann
Jenny Lorito M.A.
We are a supportive arts community. The studio is a space to play, to create, to learn new skills, share stories, make friends, and receive guidance. This is a place to belong to. A place where you and your work is both seen and heard. Our many returning students and campers feel at home here and welcome newcomers to feel the same. In order to create we all must feel like we can be ourselves. We must feel free to express our thoughts and feelings; to feel safe and supported in order to take risks, try the unknown and go out of our comfort zones. The Raise-an-Artist Project is interested in fostering this kind of confidence. We coach our Artists to make choices - to use their voices.
We base our group classes on age and personality to ensure a good working dynamic that is supportive and fun. While classes are driven to enhance skills and cover art fundamentals - the elements and principles of design - they can also have an expressive arts component that offers creative exploration and channels emotional expression. Each Artist's experience is different here. We are very keen to meet the needs of the individual. There are so many different kinds of ways to learn and to make art. Our Artists know this, and so they thrive.
The Raise-an-Artist Project was founded in 2006 when Jenny was awarded an Arts Education Project Grant by the Ontario Arts Council. This grant bridged the communities of Regent Park and Halton Hills - of which she had worked and lived in. Ultimately, at the heart of The Raise-an-Artist Project is the belief that we all see differently; that we all have different hearts and minds and eyes and while there may be guiding principles in art, there are no rules.
Jenny's background is in Visual Art, Literature, Education and Counselling. As an Educator, she has worked as Teacher, Counsellor, Behavioural Therapist, Child and Youth Worker, Expressive Arts Facilitator and Mentor. She has taught throughout Canada and Internationally in many different settings and education systems and has travelled extensively. As a student, she took weekly Illustration Classes throughout her childhood and adolescence and was first commissioned to illustrate an ink home portrait at the age of 12. Illustration was her fundamental base and from there she went on to study Photography, Painting and Creative Writing. Currently she works as a Professional Illustrator, Photographer, Painter, Writer and Editor. As an Artist, she values variety, both in genre and media. This variety of knowledge and flexibility within lends well to her work as an Arts Educator. During her Undergrad and Masters Programs she studied Critical Cultural Theory, English Literature and Creative Writing with a strong focus on identity politics. All of Jenny's diverse experience as Teacher, student and traveller, has greatly influenced her teaching philosophy. The focus has always been to guide others to develop their unique aesthetic, to strive for self-expression, and value their own work. The Raise-an-Artist Project promotes inclusion and celebrates individuality.
To view Jenny's cv click here
To learn more about her Arts Education Project Grant click here
To contact us click here
Rachel is a star when it comes to anything textile or fiber related. She has been sewing for 15 years and taught herself how to embroider 5 years ago. Kitschy hand embroidered buttons, beautiful abstract bead and thread hoops, custom pet portaits, vintage shirts and totes - this gal does it all! Rach loves sharing her passion with others and is a stellar Embroidery Instructor.
Leah is a highly accomplished Portrait Realism Artist with a great sense of humour. She has experimented with a wide variety of media but discovered a particular love for soft pastel. Leah has won many awards for her work and we can see why! She is currently completing her second Fine Arts degree. We are delighted to have Leah in the studio offering Realism Workshops.