Artist Teachers PYHaS 2018

Please meet the amazing artist-teachers :



Pia Rom


I am a creative soul and was born and live in Germany…My art wise initial ignition starts about 6 years ago as I discover Mixed Media…From this time on I worked in my journals daily…I am a so called self-taught artist if you will….very quick I fell in love with painting faces, so I practice  them regularly…but instead of studying the „realism-style“ I felt more satisfaction by letting them be kinda raw and undefined ….I love bold colors and scribbly lines and paint most of my work out of my imagination, also known as „hand pulled art“…So because often that, every painting is unique and unrepeatable….Lately I fell in love with more collage as inspiration in my daily art-journaling-process…so hold the line, the thrill remains! ”

Lora Murphy

“My background is Classical oil painting ,I trained in an atelier  in Florence but have been totally bewitched by Encaustic for over 10 years . I teach and demo at The International Encaustic Conference in Provincetown and at various locations all over the USA . I will be teaching at Encausticamp in July 2017 , in New York in May 2017 and in Ottawa in June 2017.

I also teach at many locations all over Europe , including Ireland , Denmark , France , Lithuania , UK and Germany”

Lora Murphy was born in Ireland and educated in Ireland , USA and Italy . Trained as an oil painter, she now works primarily in Encaustic and mixed media . Lora teaches workshops in Contemporary Portraiture in Encaustic throughout the world and online . She divides her time between Ireland and Denmark and maintains studios in both countries.
2014 Jungian psychology with art therapy at Limerick Institute of Technology
2011 The Angel Academy of Art , Florence , Italy
2008-2010 The Crawford College of Art and Design ,Cork ,Ireland
1984 -1991 Art Students League, West 57th Street, N.Y.C.
1983 BA Hons History of European Painting & Archaeology U.C.D. Dublin, Ireland.
2011- present set design Pantomania, Ireland

Shijun Munns

With a passion for art, I try to look at the world with an artist’s eye and a poet’s heart. My art is inspired by beauty in nature and by crossing all boundaries, all cultures. My art depicts vivid scenes of people in harmonious interaction with the natural environment—flowers, grass, trees and animals. The visual representation of human-nature interaction seeks to express the rich meaning of life and a sense of belonging from a Chinese-American woman artist’s perspective, inviting viewers to find, enjoy, and embrace beauty and peace.

My artwork explores the cultural, spiritual, and philosophical meanings of home through a celebration of women, love, and life. I tend to use oils to create a human and spiritual beauty. I am always intensely engrossed by the fine details that are achieved with oil paints and I enjoy a wondrous feeling of accomplishment when I use my hands.

I am a graduate of the Guangzhou Academy of Fine Arts 1987 (BFA). I am an active artist member of the Oil Painters of America, the National Art Educators Association (NAEA) and an artist member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI). I have been a recipient of numerous awards for artistic achievements in both painting and art instruction. I have lived and taught art classes in the Atlanta area since early 2003.

Lucy Jordan

Hello beautiful soul 🙂 my name is Lucy, I am an English artist living on a small Greek island in the Ionian sea. I was formally trained in architectural stained glass and spent many years in England as a glass artist and painter. I had a break from art making whilst living on a boat in the Mediterranean and then running a small business making boat covers. However my passion for playing with color and creativity could not be denied. After some years I let go of the business and jumped off the proverbial cliff. I swapped my industrial sewing machine for painting supplies and once again became a full-time artist. It was the best decision I ever made!

My adoration of color and an obsession for the deeper truths of our existence inspire my work. Like I enjoy breathing… and eating dark chocolate (smile) I really enjoy playing with with color to create something of beauty and inspiration. I love to see other doing same, in their own beautiful unique way. I believe that the act art-making awakens the soul and helps us align with our authenticity. It guides us when we feel lost and disconnected, it heals and soothes us. There is no right or wrong way to paint or draw; simply by engaging in the act of creativity we can transcend the mundane robot-like life we all find ourselves in. We have the potential to experience, even if for a moment, our true selves and feel true bliss.

Annie Hamman

I am an artist and a teacher from South Africa, but I am originally Russian. I tend to fluctuate in styles and media, as I am constantly curious about new possibilities in art. I can describe my style as symbolic soulful story art. Occasionally I gravitate towards surreal, then to realistic, then to expressive. My favorite color palette is muted or monochrome, but I do venture into full color blast areas of art and find it exciting as well. I am looking forward to creating fresh works of art for Paint Your Heart & Soul 2018.


Lucy Chen

Hi, my name is Lucy Chen. Coming out from depression as a result of denying my feelings and truth for years, it is now my mission to give you the inspiration and courage to fully love and accept yourself. I want to make a difference in your life through my paintings, online courses, private coaching and art commissions to facilitate your self-reflection, self-compassion and self-healing.

Nikol Wikman

I was born and raised in Victoria, BC Canada. It’s a beautiful place and I’ve always felt so lucky to live here. For as long as I can remember I have always had the deep urge to create. I loved art class in school and as a child spent hours upon hours drawing in my sketchbook. Over the years the time I spent being creative grew less and less though. I became caught up in adulthood and let that part of me dim, but it didn’t disappear.

After my son was born I was feeling really lost. My husband was working long hours so I spent a lot of time alone with the baby. It should have been one of the happiest times in my life but I couldn’t shake the awful feeling of…what now? I began asking myself what I needed to change in order to live the life I wanted. After a little soul searching I realized it was art. I needed to make art. So I bought some canvas, dug out my supplies, began painting and everything changed. Suddenly I felt alive again. I was so much happier! Years later I’ve never looked back.
So here I am now. I have a tiny studio off of our kitchen where I paint as much as I can. Being a mom of two young children, most of my work is done in what I call stolen moments. Ten minutes here, 5 minutes there. I think working in these short increments has had a big effect on my style.I paint intuitively, inspired by the natural beauty that surrounds my Island home. The trees, the sea, the sky all speak to me on a deep soul level. I use mostly acrylics sometimes mixing in some pastel or charcoal. I rarely use brushes and instead prefer sponges, rollers and my hands to get right in there and play with the paint. It is fascinating the way different colors interact with each other. I could get lost for hours in the studio. My hope is that when my paintings find their way out into the world they bring feelings of peace, hope and joy to those around them.

Sara Burch

I am an intuitive artist who loves creating original faces and works of art. Each painting has a special purpose and is created with love and positive energy. When a painting finds a new home, my hope is that it will encourage the viewer to go deeper within their own spiritual path, their own truth. I love when a painting resonates with the soul, a character strength or emotion they connect with, either from the past, what they are currently going through, or what they desire to become. Especially if it is an emotion they are searching for. Like a mark in time on their ongoing spiritual journey; past, present or future. I love art that touches the soul ʅ “Art much like music, speaks what cannot be expressed, soothes the mind and gives it rest, heals the heart and makes it whole, flows from heaven to the soul.”

Art is life… Since stepping into being an artist, a couple years ago, my everyday life has become much more colorful and dreamy, even with the struggles of living a creative life, art is such a gift to us all. My relationships with all in my life have become more connected, meaningful and beautiful. I’ve formed lasting bonds with so many creative, soulful, loving, beautiful people. Art has changed my life in ways I never expected, it has awakened me in the most amazing way possible. I’m so grateful for this journey of art and life, to feel more connected and grounded in my spirituality, and for all the beautiful souls in my life. Love is the Answer ʅ Love to all… Sara

Roselyn B. Pratt

Roselyn B. Pratt is an artist and professional musician. She is the owner of Whitegate Studio, a local center for the arts and plays violin in her city’s symphony.

About her artistic journey, she says ‘Music and Art both appeal equally to me, in a unique way.  There is no possibility of achieving perfection.  I don’t believe in perfection.  That makes every artistic endeavor a TRUE risk.  Learning and developing any skill can be scary but the rewards are endless.  Mastering my talents, improving and increasing knowledge- I think any ‘risk’ of imperfection is worth having those experiences.  Art is exciting! And I think it’s fun knowing my journey does NOT have an end.’

Roselyn resides in Idaho with her husband. They have three children.


Karine Bossé

Hi there! I’m Karine Bossé also known as Kabostudio. I’m a graphic designer, mix-media artist, doll maker and online art teacher.

There is never a dull moment in my life, I’m always busy creating something, I started Kabostudio about 10 years ago, developing my style and exploring as much as could with different mediums. Thanks to the wonderful internet I found the mix-media community about 5 years ago and it has been eye-opening for me.

Although I was already mixing everything on my own finding a community driven by the same joy and need of creating felt like finding my home, it was the missing piece. Since then, I became an art teacher.

My art is all about strong women in all their aspect because sometimes being strong also means being vulnerable. Duality is a constant theme in my art. Lights and shadows and how opposite side has to meet to create balance. Myths, legends and fairy tales have always been a big inspiration for me.

I strongly believe that we can achieve everything we set our mind to; one step at the time. “The only difference between a master and a beginner is that the master has failed hundreds of time more than the beginner as ever try.”

Ursula Wollenberg

I believe the art process and journey is a very personal one.  Art is a means to expression and communication.

My creative journey began at an early age.  Although it has taken many different directions, it has always kept me grounded and true to myself.

Art takes me into another world and lets my imagination soar!


Katrina Koltes

I come from a childhood of constant travelling, discovering, and seeing new places. We were fulltime volunteers, often on the move, and we made art with children all over the world, especially in South-east Asia. Often after a natural disaster, or in a war-torn country, we would try to help and cheer up those people who had just lost everything. I think that’s one thing that in some way influenced my art later on. I wanted to create some place where we would feel safe, even for just a little while. I longed to tell their story, and of course, my own. I now live in Italy, am married to a wonderful Italian man and had have a sweet little budding artist son. A few years ago, I began a difficult journey of self-discovery and deep change in my both myself and my art. I learned how to really listen to my heart and my intuition. To let go of my fear and express what I had inside. I painted of feelings repressed, of hopes and dreams, of magic and mystery, of emotions and yearnings never expressed. I realized that more I painted for just me and the pure joy of it, and for expression, the more I began to paint what I felt inside, opening up a whole new world in my art… I began to discover my own magic. I am now pregnant with my second son, and have been teaching online workshops since about a year. I am truly happy and blessed to be able to share my story and help others, the best way I know how, and discover our own inner magic and voice. I believe we can never stop learning, evolving, and discovering our own voice and expression through art.

Lucy Brydon

I am an artist and art teacher living in the beautiful north east of Scotland. I have taught art to school aged children for over 10 years and more recently, to adults both in person and online. My main medium is Gelli Monoprinting, although I love to combine this with other mixed media and collage. I love the rich layers and textures this creates and I mostly create whimsical and illustrative images, with nature, animals and a story telling theme. I have taught in several online classes, including paint your heart and soul 2017, and have recently created my own ecourse devoted to making illustrative images using the gelli plate. I am inspired by my surroundings, both in nature and the old buildings and architecture of my country, and also by children’s book illustrations both old and new.


Natalie Mecham

I grew up in Utah county, surrounded by the beauful Wasatch Mountains.  I spent a lot of my me with

my older brother drawing and occasionally stealing his charcoal pencils to draw by myself.  With fashion

and Naonal Geographic magazines I taught myself to draw portraits.

I got married and moved to Idaho the year a!er high school.  A!er a few years my husband and I

decided to grow our family.  We soon discovered we had ferlity issues.  During that me I had become

very depressed and lost my desire to do any art.  A!er years of trying we found out I was expecng.  I

started to do art again and this is when I discovered watercolors.  Unfortunately, I went into preterm

labor and our twin boys were born at only 23 weeks gestaon.  They died two days a!er birth.  I again

went into a depression but this me I used art to help myself cope with the loss of our boys.  About a

year later I became pregnant with our twin girls.  It was a di)cult pregnancy with many trips to the

hospital to stop labor.  I was put on full bedrest.  But I +gured out how to connue doing art, I would

hold my paper above me while laying on my back and use water +lled brushes to paint.

I gave birth to my twin girls at 29 weeks gestaon.  Finally, a!er two months in the hospital they were

able to come home.  I slowly got back into painng, +rst painng things to hang in the nursery.  Then I

started painng for other people, this began a whole new journey in my life.   I use mostly watercolor

and graphite but I sll experiment with any medium I can get my hands on.

I grew up in Utah County, surrounded by the beautiful Wasatch Mountains.  I spent a lot of my time with my older brother drawing and occasionally stealing his charcoal pencils to draw by myself.  With fashion and National Geographic magazines I taught myself to draw portraits.

I got married and moved to Idaho the year after high school.  After a few years my husband and I decided to grow our family.  We soon discovered we had fertility issues.  During that time I had become very depressed and lost my desire to do any art.  After years of trying we found out I was expecting.  I started to do art again and this is when I discovered watercolors.  Unfortunately, I went into preterm labor and our twin boys were born at only 23 weeks gestation.  They died two days after birth.  I again went into a depression but this time I used art to help myself cope with the loss of our boys.  About a year later I became pregnant with our twin girls.  It was a difficult pregnancy with many trips to the hospital to stop labor.  I was put on full bedrest.  But I figured out how to continue doing art, I would hold my paper above me while laying on my back and use water filled brushes to paint.  I gave birth to my twin girls at 29 weeks gestation.  Finally, after two months in the hospital they were able to come home.  I slowly got back into painting, first painting things to hang in the nursery.  Then I started painting for other people, this began a whole new journey in my life.   I use mostly watercolor and graphite but I still experiment with any medium I can get my hands on. Through sharing my art online I have met so many amazing people.  I love hearing their stories of how a painting of mine is connected to them.  My girls are now four years old and I am able to do more art with them.  I have discovered a passion for teaching and helping others express themselves through art.

Mystele Kirkeeng

All the play- filled paths I’ve followed since 2008 have led me to my own way of painting and seeing- my way of creating. Upon closer inspection, you can see playful layer upon layer of story-telling in the backgrounds, and it’s these layers that eventually yield the quirk-ily beautiful characters and scenes that make you stop long enough to smile, to think, to remember, to laugh, to feel life in all of its bitter-sweetness, and to take heart in the midst of it all. My prayer is that the art that comes out of my life will renew your sense of wonder in the midst of a world that has so many dark places.

Kate Thompson

I have always been a creative person, studied and received a degree in Fiber Arts and worked as a textile print designer in the apparel business in Los Angeles for 20 years. My real education started in 2009. I started painting and I haven’t stopped. I became so focused with my work and developed a discipline to practice every day. After a couple of years of devoted practice I saw improvement. The point is I was not a natural painter. I really had to work at it and found I loved the discipline I put on myself to grow as a painter. I work with watercolors and gesso, acrylics with oil, pastels with inks or all of them put together. I am an experimenter. I create my own substrates using vintage linens or painting on ledger paper. I also paint on more traditional substrates such as watercolor paper and canvas. I am now devoting much time to oil painting.

My work is very expressive and although I have had classical training years ago that hasn’t really been in my practice the past couple years. I am devoting some of my creative time to hone those skills once again and apply them in my own expressive way. I teach online as well as studio classes. I teach all over the United States, here are a few venues- Random Arts, Saluda, NC, Donna Downey Studio, Huntersville, NC, Art and Soul, Portland, Virginia Beach , Art Unraveled ,Phoenix as well as private workshops. I am getting ready to go to Italy to teach a one week workshop. My passion is focused on the creative process and I am as passionate about teaching as I am at creating art

Tina Berendsohn

I am an artist, a dance therapist, and mother of an almost grown up son. I am currently studying art at FIU Hamburg/Germany.

My process of painting is a lot about allowing the subconscious to express. I tend to seek the raw and instinctive path. The human figure with its gestures, human emotion and relationships is my strongest inspiration. Working as a dance therapist refined my perception of physical expression, sensing the emotion, the trauma and the potential behind movements. I also draw a lot of inspiration from nature. I believe art can become a strong messenger for the subconscious, a path of healing, expressing all aspects of life. I am drawn to strong colors, lots of layering and abstraction. I get excited when I don’t quite know how a painting is going to evolve, actually I like to be surprised by my own creation.

Bio: Born in 1969, I grew up in Spain and Germany.

I studied graphic design and education, then went to voice and theatre school and studied dance and movement with Suprapto Suryodarmo, a Javanese dancer and Performance artist, as well as Butoh dance and Contact Improvisation. After some years of performing, I eventually became a dance therapist and counselor, a field in which I worked for about twenty years.

My son was born in 1998.

I have lived in the U.S., Spain and Germany.

From 2007 to 2014 I founded and managed the LOTUS Centre for dance and creativity.

In 2015 I decided to go back to school to fulfill another passion of mine, and so I am currently studying art at FIU Free International University in Hamburg, Germany. FIU was founded by students of Joseph Beuys.

I am now living a nomad life between Hamburg/Germany and Ibiza/Spain.


Renata Loree

I am a mixed media artist, spiritualist and a born optimist, even though I might let myself down sometimes. And from all that turmoil of opposites sometimes striking agains me, it might be challenging to keep balance, but I work at it very day. I come to my canvas or my desk filled with pens and papers and I let all the turmoil out. I think the balance comes when what comes out can be shared and celebrated with others, but the work never seams complete. It’s as if the end was constantly running away from me, and so I am learning how to live in the moment and not aim for the end result. I look for love in all things, but sometimes love escapes me. I learned not to look for it outside of myself, and so as it weaves through me, it weaves out through my hand and right onto the painted surface where the images seam to take a shape on their own.

And so my art is a path to self discovery and art might be just the right way to do it.

I was born in Czech Republic, but at the ripe age 18 I left my country to travel far and see a lot. I wanted to learn by living my life, not necessarily being confined by stereotypes or obstacles. It has been a long road, but I think I finally landed where I want to be. I have a studio near Boston, my son is all grown up and I can now choose what I want to do – and that is to create and teach others how to do so as well.


Leslie Wood


Leslie has been creating art ever since she can remember. She has a bachelor’s degree in Aerospace Engineering, but after working for a few years, decided to go back to college and take art classes. She enrolled with the University of Alabama in Huntsville and studied photography, sculpture and painting.

Over the years she expanded her creative skills with numerous master led classes. Her work varies from mixed-media and art journaling to sculpture and jewelry making. Her recent solo exhibitions include ‘Dreams and Reality: The Artwork of Leslie Wood’ at Carnegie Visual Arts Center and Evelyn Burrows Museum, Visiting Artist Exhibition at the Huntsville Art League and an exhibition at Lowe Mill ARTS & Entertainment in Huntsville Alabama. An avid art journaler, her journal work has been published numerous times in Somerset Studio’s ‘ART Journaling’ magazine including a feature in the 2016 Winter and 2017 Spring editions. You can find her work at local shows such as Montesano Art Festival, and Panoply Arts FestivalShe teaches various classes throughout the year in the Huntsville Alabama area.

Twitter and Instagram @lesliewoodarts


Robynne Engel-Pirkle

Robynne Engel-Pirkle is a prolific mixed media artist, specializing in the use of vibrant color and illustrative work, in a free-spirited style, punctuated with skillful details. She began creating art at a very young age, as she comes from a family full of artists and designers. Her art is in several private collections, as well as, her Gallery, “Robynne’s Nest Artworks”, nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Georgia, only 2 hours north of Atlanta.

Robynne has a BFA in Illustration from SCAD (Savannah College of Art and Design).

Robynne’s soulful artwork speaks to the spirit, as well as, the eyes. Her art is often described as whimsical, spirit-filled and colorful. Whether depicting portraiture or animals, her work is uplifting and joyful, and reflects her deep love and observation of nature and life experiences, often infused with her quirky sense of humor.

Robynne loves to share her years of creative experience with other budding artists, and you can often hear her telling gallery guests “anyone can paint, you just have to try”!

Pamela Hayward

For those of you who don’t know me, my name is Pamela Hayward 🙂 I’m originally from Grand Falls, New Brunswick, but I now reside in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

I have always been passionate about art, but I put that passion on hold for many years to concentrate on my studies becoming an elementary school teacher. Now that I am home raising our two daughters, I have rekindled my passion to create again. Since then, I have grown such a passion for art that I cannot go a day without wanting to create something new!

Ever since I was a child, I have always had a strong connection with animals and nature, therefore most of my art consists of these two elements. I love creating pieces that represent the beauty that surround us. Whether it is the stars that shine above us or the intense eyes of an owl, their beauty haunts me. I mostly work with acrylics, however I love to experiment and I am always up to trying something new! I look forward to sharing my art journey with all of you!

Tracy Verdugo


Artist. Explorer. Teacher. Writer. Happiness. Dweller. Wondering Wanderer. Curious Creative. Inspiration Instigator. 🙂

If Tracy Verdugo was given the opportunity to coin a term for a new art movement based around what she teaches  she  might call it “Curiosity and Wonderism”or  maybe “Loosen-upism” or “Endless possibilitism”

When she is not hanging out with her family in their artsy adobe home in a small village on the shores of Jervis Bay, Australia, or throwing paint around in her little purple studio in their backyard, you may find her wrangling with two large suitcases attempting to board the BART in San Francisco en route to teach at an art retreat or sitting in a circle on St Pete Beach Florida listening intently as women share their stories of creative longing.

Tracy is an inspiration instigator, prolific painter, singer/songwriter and lover of the written word, smitten traveller and soaker up of all that is beauty-full.  She teaches her Paint Mojo and other creative workshops all over this amazing planet and reminds her students of the wonder that already resides within them.

Her works are vibrant and filled with joy, inspired both by wanderlust, diversity and the beauty of everyday life. Since 2000 Tracy has held 16 successful solo exhibitions and her works are held in collections both in Australia and internationally.

Mostly though she is mama bear to two gorgeous, zest-filled daughters, Santana and Sienna, and co-adventurer  in life with her amor of 32 years, the talented and brilliant Marco.

“The universal theme of connection underlies all of my work; connection to each other and the ways in which we express our humanity; connection to the natural world and the beauty that surrounds us; connection with the divine and a sense of something greater at work in our lives. I am inspired by our travels and the colours, exuberance of Spirit and magical experiences I have shared with my family in discovering other cultures and places. I love texture, and the sensuality, rhythm and pattern of fabrics and often incorporate these mixed media elements into my work. I like to believe that we are all part of an intricate and breathtaking tapestry. Our only choice, each moment, is whether to be a part of the creating or a part of the unravelling. “


Olga Furman

I’m a mixed media artist, and my passion is painting portraits and figurative art with elements of surrealism. When I paint – I dream, I disconnect from reality and get into my own world, in which everything I couldn’t express with worlds comes out from my brush.

I was born in Russia, enjoyed my early 20s in Israel and now live with my family in the US. I was drawing and painting as long as I can remember myself. I earned a pedagogical degree in art and music, attended still life course in a fine art school and I continue taking online courses and workshops. I just can’t stop learning and I really enjoy to be a part of an amazing online art community!

I’m honored to host ‘Paint Your Heart and Soul’ second year and I can’t be any happier!

I’m excited and looking forward to 2018! I can’t wait to share with you this beautiful adventure of creating art together!

Thank you very much for stopping by and I hope you going to join us!

Instagram @OlgaSFurman


****Artwork shown here are only representative samples of the Artists work and mostly not a part of the course curriculum. The artists are currently working on the projects for the course. All the lessons are brand new and made especially for PYHaS 2018 course.