Instructor Bios

The Creative Arts School instructors are some of the most talented in South Florida!  These professional artists, photographers and writers bring a wealth of knowledge and experience to their classes.  As a result of expert instruction here, many of our students’ works have been juried into competitions and accepted into local, regional and national exhibitions.  Several of our high school students have been accepted into art programs at some of the best schools in the country. In addition to the individual website links below, you can connect with many of our instructors on FACEBOOK and LINKEDIN.

NEW! WINSTON AARONS has a Master of Fine Arts degree in writing from Sarah Lawrence College. He has taught courses in English, Writing and Studies in the Novel, at Lynn University for several years, and was Director of the school’s Honors Program. He also taught Contemporary Literature at Palm Beach State College, where he was active in the school’s fiction and poetry workshops. He has given classes on the short story in Delray Beach’s Public Library Lifelong Learning Institute for the past three years. He has published a novel, Jasmine, which Kirkus Reviews listed as one of the top twenty-five of the top One Hundred Best Indie Books of 2012. Mr. Aarons now writes full time. He has two books, Who Is Sor Avraham, and his memoir, Sweet Like Sugar, for which he seeks publication.

NEW! GARY ANTONIO was born in Salem, Massachusetts and studied at the University of California at Davis, CA, where he earned his Bachelor of Arts Degree in Studio Art. Antonio was fortunate to study and assist the following world-renowned Artists: Wayne Thiebaud, Roland Peterson, Manuel Neri, Robert Arneson, and Roy DeForest. Gary Antonio spent a year in Paris, France, studying at the Atelier 17 Workshop with Stanley William Hayter, who is considered “the grandfather” of Intaglio Printmaking. Gary was a Professor of Metal Sculpture and Structural Welding at the City College of San Francisco and Artistic Director of the Childrens’ Outreach Program for The Body Shop, San Francisco, CA. Gary is presently teaching art at the Creative Arts School at Old School Square, The Armory Art Center in West Palm Beach and The Lighthouse Art School in Tequesta, Fl. His paintings have been exhibited at Center for Creative Education, West Palm Beach, Art in Public Places, Palm Beach International Airport, Nathan D. Rosen Museum, JF Gallery, West Palm Beach and Seth Jason Beitler Gallery, Miami.

ROBERT BARRA was educated at the Rhode Island School of Design and The Art Students League of New York and is listed in “Who’s Who in American Art”. He has exhibited at: The Butler Institute Of American Art, The National Arts Club, The Salamagundi Club, James Beard House, The Newport Museum, The Ridgewood Art Institute, Springfield Art Museum, Museum of Texas Tech University, Huntsville Museum of Art, Bergstrom-Mahler Museum, Danville Museum of Fine Arts & History and the McAllen International Museum. He is an elected member of Allied Artist of America and winner of many awards including The Windsor and Newton Award of Excellence for Oil Painting. His work has appeared in major publications including The New Yorker, Gourmet Magazine, Saturday Review and The New York Times. His work is in private collections in U.S. and Europe. He lives in Florida and teaches figure drawing and painting.

JANE STRISIK BUSKER trained at the University of Hartford, Cooper Union, and New York’s International Center for Photography. She has been exhibiting her photography since the 1970s at venues including the Blackwell Gallery (Northampton, MA), the New York Independent Film & Video Festival, and the Ward-Nass Gallery in Soho. Her work was juried into an exhibit at the Soho 20 Gallery by Clare Bell (assistant curator of the Soho Guggenheim), and she was exhibited at 110 East Atlantic (curated by Grace Greenberg). Her piece NY Rain was used as the cover image for Cooper Union’s 1997- 98 Continuing Education course catalog. She currently teaches children and teens for the nationally based Camera for Kids program.

SALLY COOPER has been painting all her life and began actively pursuing her creative talents in the late eighties.  In 1990 she was awarded an annual Art Award from Broward Community College.  In the mid 90’s she moved from detailed representational work and began to seek the abstract.  By 2000 image reference was left behind and her style evolved into explosions of color, markings and movement.  Her work has been included in numerous regional and national competitive exhibitions receiving awards in most.  She is a Signature Member of the National Watercolor Society.  In 2005 her painting “Life Force II” received Honorable Mention in Watercolor Magic Magazine’s national competition. sally-cooper.com.

BARBARA CRONIE received an M.A. in Writing from New York University. Her diversified background includes teaching, writing, and experience in magazine and book publishing. Starting out in NYC at Random House as a copywriter, she soon moved on to magazines as the editor of Modern Stereo. Two years later she became the managing editor of a publishing house which produced several magazines. Published as a journalist (articles and interviews), she has traveled to Italy twice, promoting food and wine for the Italian Trade Commission, NYC. Among her teaching positions she lists: The Lighthouse International, NYC; Katharine Gibbs School (seminars), NYC; Palm Beach State College; Palm Beach County Continuing Education—before forming the Writers’ Colony. She presently offers an editing service, Editing Par Excellence, for beginning and established writers who are preparing manuscripts for publishing. She is a member of The International Women’s Writing Guild (IWWG).

HANA DAVIS attended Pratt Institute and Fashion Institute of Technology where she studied Fashion Design and illustration.  Hana worked at Breckenridge and Joe Benbassett designing and illustrating Junior Sportswear.  She has taught classes in Figure Drawing and Fashion Illustration to adults and children.  Her work has been exhibited at the Nassau County Museum of Art, the Hecksher Museum, the Art League of Long Island, and the Boca Raton Museum of Art.

DEBORAH LAFOGG DOCHERTY combines two great loves in her work: nature and painting. While working in nature. Deborah strives to give her audience a glimpse of how animals live in the wild. She received the Masters Circle award from the International Association of Pastel Societies.  Her work has been featured in museums, national and international art shows and International magazines as well as in private collections. Ms. Lafogg-Docherty has illustrated a children’s book with part of the proceeds going to save habitat critical habitat in the Florida Keys. Membership affiliations include: associate member of the Society of Animal Artists, signature member of the Pastel Society of America, signature member of the Artists for Conservation, member of excellence with the Southeastern Pastel Society, member of the Oil Painters of America, member of the International Guild of Realism, the Pastel Society of North Florida, Degas Pastel Society and member of the Women Artists of the West and the Audubon Artists.  Visit her web site at www.lafogg.com.

KAREN ESKESEN received a B.A. from Colby College, Maine, graduating with honors as an art major. She also studied at the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture and the Brooklyn Museum Art School. Karen has taught realist watercolor techniques in South Florida for over 30 years, and now teaches at Old School Square (since 2000) and at Bonnet House Museum and Gardens in Fort Lauderdale. She is a member of Bonnet House Fine Artists, and has participated in their exhibits at Bonnet House, the St. Lawrence Gallery, the Fort Lauderdale Historical Society, and Old School Square. In 2006 her watercolor was awarded “Best in Show” at the “Impressions of Old South Florida” competition at Bonnet House.

DONNA STEGER FULLER has a BA in Art from University of Florida, an MA in Anthropology from Florida Atlantic University. She has done extensive commercial work for Motorola, Office Depot, PBIA and others, as well as limited edition posters for the City of Boca Raton and Hilton Hotels and Holiday Inns. Ms. Fuller has designed Cover Art for the Florida Philharmonic and National League of American Pen Women, as well as private firms. Donna has executed many commissions of classical reproductions of old masters, such as Rubens, Vermeer and Guardi to name a few. Donna is a signature member of the International Acrylic Society, American Women Artists – National, Gualala, California Art Center and Women in the Visual Arts. Ms. Fuller’s paintings are in collections in the UK, Japan, Australia and USA.

RON GARRETT has over thirty years of experience as an artist and arts educator with a demonstrated passion to kindle and ignite the love of art to all members of a diverse and growing student body, with a desire to bring national and international acclaim to Institutions that he works for. Mr. Garrett holds a MFA Printmaking from Kent State University and a BFA Printmaking from Guilford College. Ron currently teaches at the Armory Art Center, the Boca Museum of Art and is founder of RagaPress.com a fine arts print atelier. In the past Mr. Garrett has been an adjunct Instructor at Florida Atlantic University and a visual arts instructor at Pine Crest Preparatory School in Boca Raton, FL.

CARLA GOLEMBE  is an award winning painter and illustrator. She has received artist residencies from the Hambidge Center in Rabun Gap, GA; Altos de Chavon in the Dominican Republic and Kalani Honua in Hawaii. Carla’s paintings have been shown widely throughout the United States. Collections include Hyatt, Marriot, Pan Pacific Hotels, Fuller Art Museum, Boston Public Library, Academy Art Museum, University College (University of Maryland, Shepherd Pratt Hospital, Medical College of Virginia, Worcester Art Museum, The JFK Library, Montgomery County (MD) Art in Public Places, Chico’s and other corporate and private collections. An image of her painting “Moonflowers III” was licensed by Icon shoes for their Spring 2012 collection. Dos Puentes Vineyard in Mendoza Argentina commissioned her to create a painting for the labels for three of their wines. She was a chosen artist for “Keys to the Cities” for which she painted a piano that spent 2 weeks in a public place in Palm Beach County and was then donated to a charity venue. Learn more at CarlaGolembe.com.

LEE GORDON has a comprehensive understanding of the art and skills of photography. Since his first cameras – a Kodak Brownie Hawkeye and a Fujica Half Frame – he has owned and operated photographic studios, a fine art photography gallery, and is currently both a commercial and fine art photographer. Lee’s commercial interests are architectural, lifestyle and interior design statements. His creative interests are mastering and teaching photographic digital workflow and producing fine art prints. “My creative intention is to simply capture and share the beauty and wonder of the earth and its magnificent places, faces and spaces.” Learn more at LeeGordonPhotography.com.

IRENE HILL is an award-winning Master Photographer and graduate of Northwestern University with a dual Masters Degree in English and Education.  She has photographed over 200 concerts and events throughout Europe, the Middle East, and Asia, has been a special events consultant to the National Geographic Society, escorted numerous international tours, and created and managed hundreds of lectures, conferences and seminars.  As a lifelong photographer whose goals are now directed to instructing others in the art of fine photography, Irene brings a world of national and international experience along with a love of teaching to her students. Learn more at www.irenehill.smugmug.com.

GENIA HOWARD has a Masters in Art Education from FAU and achieved National Board Certification in art in 2001. Most of her teaching career has been at the high school level, especially with the International Baccalaureate and Advanced Placement programs. Additionally, she has taught kindergarten, middle school, and adult education. Proficient in water media, oil and acrylic, she is equally adept at using traditional drawing media and experimental media.

MANNY JOMOK earned his BA in Art Education from Monmouth College, W. Long Branch, NJ, 1969, and is certified to teach Art (K-12th) by the State of New Jersey. Mr. Jomok studied with renowned artists: Frank Francese, Robert O’Brien, Tim Thies, Pat Dews, and Don Andrews and is influenced by: Winslow Homer, John Singer Sargent, Joseph Zbukvic, and David Curtis. Manny has taught art to disadvantage youths in programs in the states of New Jersey, Maryland and Maine. He teaches watercolors in the Palm Beach County Adult Education Program and also individual lessons on an ongoing basis. Manny is a professional, exhibiting artist since 2006 – exhibiting in Maine, New Jersey and Florida. Mr. Jomok is represented by Frederick Gallery, Spring Lake, NJ and Works of Hand Artist Gallery, Winter Harbor, ME. He has received numerous awards in plein air competitions and exhibitions. His paintings are in private and corporate collections.

NEW! STEVE KESSEL
is primarily a teacher and learned to draw and paint as an adult. He has studied at the Art Institute of Chicago and with many notable artists including master portrait artist Nelson Shanks and figurative artist Alex Powers. He is adept in all media, but primarily works in pencil and crayon. His work has won awards in the Chicago area and is included in many private collections nationally. His primary interest is helping artists of all levels explore their own potential and realize the power of their talent.

SHARON KOSKOFF is a professional muralist and designer widely recognized in South Florida for her projects with children and diverse audiences. She is a cum laude graduate in fine arts from Brooklyn College, and holds an additional degree from New York School of Interior Design. She has taught at the Montgomery Armory Art Center, Boca Raton Museum of Art, and the Norton Museum of Art. Learn more at bysharon.com.

SID DELMAR LEACH graduated from the Ecole des Beaux Arts in Fontainebleau, France. He has a B.S. in Art from B.Y.U, and is the author of two books on perspective and pencil drawing published by McGraw Hill. He taught drawing for seven years at FIDM San Francisco and has lived, drawn and painted in France and studied with Ted Seth Jacobs. Mr. Leach’s drawings and paintings are held in private international collections.

RUSSELL LEVINE has the ability to “connect his heart with his vision, thereby creating the eyes of his soul.”  His photographs inspire you to get in touch with your creative side as you have never dreamed possible.  By combining his technical expertise of the digital camera and his expressive compositions, Mr. Levine is able to teach his students how to photograph using their own vision to create visual masterpieces. Russell’s photographs have been shown in museums and galleries across the United States and he is one of the only photographers to win an award in the prestigious All Florida Juried Competition and Exhibition.

NEW! HANNAH LONG was educated and mentored in Sculpture at Portland State University, before eventually studying at Parsons. She comes from a multitude of interdisciplinary backgrounds, and has focused on several different mediums while successfully operating independent galleries. She has studied advanced jewelry fabrication at the Boca Raton Museum of Art and continued on to one of the more refined schools in the country in Washington, DC. She has taken numerous personal lessons from world renowned instructors who have mastered jewelry fabrication and lapidary work . Hannah is currently a working artist in the South Florida arts scene, selling her metalwork at juried art shows across the United States and retail locations. Her work has been featured in major museums and publications. In her short time in this business, Hannah has received numerous grants and awards that recognize her talents and strong commitment to excellence in the field of design.

PATRICIA MAGUIRE has a B.S. in Studio Art from Skidmore College, Graduate Studies in Art and Animation from Syracuse University and an M.B.A. from Florida Atlantic University. Patricia has won numerous awards for her enamels, acrylics and oil paintings, and her work hangs in galleries in Florida and in private and corporate collections in the United States and abroad. She was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina, and has lived in several countries before settling in Florida in 1983. Visit her web site at: patimaguire.com for more detailed information.

NEW! GARY JOHN NORMAN is an award winning image professional Gary was born into a coastal fishing family in the most easterly town in the United Kingdom and yes he does have British accent! Studying photography and digital arts to masters degree he then went on to apprentice with renowned advertising photographers in London. This is where he mastered the skills of studio lighting and an uncompromising attention to detail that reflects in his work today. An international career for multinational companies took Gary around the world creating unique imagery of people, places and lifestyles. Soon advertising clients began using the highly sort after work and in the late 90’s he was lucky to be given the opportunity to work in the USA for a magazine’s creating marine lifestyle product images and Florida became home. Recently returning back to Florida after teaching in London at a private photography school, Gary is eager to pass on his knowledge and skills to curious image creators. Having always been interested in the medium of video but frustrated by the cost that was often associated with productions he now embraces new video technologies and produces video clips for a variety of clients. The expansion of new delivery platforms has allowed easier access for all to produce and Gary is eager to share his enthusiasm for creating video for both leisure and the business community. His own work explores diversity and curiosity, coupling image concept, beautiful lighting and people direction. The depth and breadth of his creative process searches for a balance between or perhaps a meeting point for humanity and nature, looking to capture a human breath where it seems nature’s forces have united to create that split instant in time. Visit his web site at: garyjohnnormanphoto.com for more detailed information.

RALPH PAPA was born and raised in Manhattan and studied art and architecture in New York at Queens College and CCNY and at the Art Students League. His paintings range from studio works composed of real and imagined themes to figurative, portraits and plein air paintings. Mr. Papa teaches drawing and painting at his Delray studio and at the Delray Beach Center for the Arts. He is a member of the Garrison Art Center, the Delray Art League, Past President of the Artists’ Guild of the Boca Museum and co-founder of ‘Plein Air Painters of Palm Beach’. His works are in public and private collections in the U.S. and Canada and can be seen in galleries in Boynton and in Delray Beach at his studio, the Artists’ Guild Gallery and on his website at www.papagallery.com.

CHARLES PASSARELLI retired from commercial illustration where he had done illustrations for Coke, Air Canada, Bell South, I.B.M., G.E., and many others. Charles has taught watercolor classes at Delray Beach Center for the Arts for over 12 years. His paintings are in private collections from London to Los Altos, California. Charles is a Signature Member of the Florida Watercolor Society. Learn more at passarelli-art.com.

NEW! PETER G. PEREIRA is a versatile artist in Painting, Illustration Performance and Installation Art. Based in New York over the past twenty plus years, is now ready to settle in beautiful Delray Beach. He studied at the University of Omaha and Art Studies in Europe and Africa in the 1980’s and 90’s. On his return he was accepted into several prestigious galleries for painting including Timothy Roberts Gallery and Gallerie D’Art Contemporain (to which his abstract work has returned). He has since continued to create across disciplines and notably evolved the Trees of Life Sculpture Multimedia Installation over the past 10 years in New York and toured Internationally in recent years (with Figment Arts) bringing this unique Installation Series as far Geelong Australia. Based on Painting and Drawing from his time in Africa and later Montreal he also created the Paradox Box Series of Wrap Sculpture and Painting Performance Series and compose an original Album for the show which later became performed off-Broadway. As an Illustrator his Comic Book Narrative work appears in Strauss News.

DICK ROSENBERG graduated college in 1959 and joined his family retail business. In 1987, when the business was sold, he retired from the corporate world. A friend suggested he try sculpting in stone, so he found a teacher in Delray Beach who taught him all about stone carving. Mr. Rosenberg happily did that for the next 25 years, until it became clear that hauling around 300 pound pieces of stone by himself and carving them with powerful tools was not very prudent for a 70 year old! In 2012, Mr. Rosenberg became intrigued with Paper Clay. He is excited to share his techniques.

DIMITRI SAGATOV is fine art photographer and designer based in Delray Beach. Primarily self-taught, Dimitri’s photographs are in private collections across the United States and abroad. An active member of the Delray Beach community, he serves on the board of the Delray Art League. His artistic focus is on producing unique fine art prints, and sharing his passion for photography through teaching and exhibiting his work throughout Florida. “My intention is to evoke the memory of a time and place in my photographs. Not just as it was, but as I felt and experienced it.” Visit Dimitri’s website at: dsprints.com.

NEW! BOB SCHMIDT has been in the art glass industry for 38 years. He is the owner and operator of Schmidt Stained Glass. Originally from Pittsburgh, he started as an apprentice at the age of 16. He opened his first studio 4 years later creating custom art glass for architects and builders in the new home construction field. His work included cabinet glass, windows and custom front entrances. He operated an art glass studio in Pittsburgh for many years and has developed his skills as a master craftsman. In 2004, he moved to Florida to offer his expertise in a high end studio to set up a retail store, teaching facility, cabinet glass shop and repair center. In 2010 he reestablished Schmidt Stained Glass as a classroom and full service studio producing architectural art glass and creating one of a kind unique pieces of art. Robert is a Delray Beach resident and has a studio in Boynton Beach, FL. “Your Ideas Captured In Glass.”  Visit his website at: schmidtstainedglass.com

VICKI SIEGEL earned a B.F.A from the University of Illinois and continued her M.F.A coursework at Tyler School of Art in Rome, Italy.  Ms. Siegel developed a passion for painting while she pursued a career in advertising.  Vicki’s work is influenced by memories, both personal and collective. Colors and light of the tropical landscapes in South Florida are inspiration for her energetic paint stroke of abstract expressionism and the use of multiple images of pop art.  Ms. Siegel frequently exhibits in South Florida and her work is included in numerous private collections.  View her work at vickisiegelart.com.

BETH SLOAT has a B.A. from Hofstra University and B.F.A. from Colorado State University. Beth has extensive experience in youth instruction, pre-school through high school. Ms. Sloat has exhibited her work in various locations locally and has completed workshops with Master Artists. Beth challenges herself and her students to “catch the moment of inspiration and make it live on the canvas.”

NEW! ROXENE SLOATE holds a BA in Art History from Smith College. She has studied at the Kansas City Art Institute, 5 years at the New York Art Students League, many marathons with Graham Nickson and workshops with other contemporary artists. Color and paint are her subject. She uses this passion for color to communicate the energy, relationships and excitement of our experiences and existence. She is currently teaching at the Boca Museum School and the Armory in West Palm Beach, where her emphasis is personal discovery by exploring the magic of color. Roxene is a member of the National Association of Women Artists, the Boca Raton Museum of Art, the Artists’ Guild and a master pastellist Member of the Pastel Society of America. She is presently represented by the Armory. She exhibits throughout Florida, nationally and internationally. Her paintings were juried into the 57th and 60th Boca Museum “All Florida” exhibitions. She has won many awards and is in numerous collections including the Boynton Beach Public Library, the Lynn Cancer Center, the Marcus Neurological Center at Boca Hospital and the Christine E Lynn Women’s Health and Wellness Institute at Boca Raton Regional Hospital. Her work can be viewed at: roxenesloate.com.

NANCY SPIELMAN received her M.F.A. from Florida Atlantic University and prior to that a B.S. from Southern Illinois University, with a major in Graphic Design. Nancy currently teaches Studio Art classes as well as Art Appreciation at Florida Atlantic University and Palm Beach State College. She participates in a contemporary genre called Daily Painters, which focuses on small scale paintings. Her inspiration comes from everyday ordinary encounters. She travels with camera in hand and her photographs are the springboard for her artwork. Nancy received the South Florida Cultural Consortium Award in 2009. As an Artist Educator for Strathmore Fine Art Paper, Nancy gives lectures annually on the attributes and uses of fine art papers. Her work can be viewed at www.nancyspielman.com.

NEW! NEAL WISEMAN was raised in Massachusetts and attended Northeastern University, where he earned his B.A. in Psychology. He received his doctorate in School Psychology from Rutgers University, became licensed as Psychologist in Massachusetts, and spent 20 years in independent practice as well as the position of Chief Psychologist at the Hampstead Hospital in Hampstead, NH. His training includes coursework in New York at the Institute for Living/Learning and extensive training at the Boston Gestalt Institute in Cambridge, MA. Neal’s interest in dreams and Group Encounter led to workshops in New Jersey, Massachusetts, and here in Florida. His interest in photography took root in 1966; he continues to train with renowned photographers: Lee Gordon, Rick Knoche, James Schot, and Bob Neiman.