Art teach­ers flour­ish as stu­dents learn

Whitsunday Times - - BETTER BUSINESS -

FROM a woman teach­ing art in her home to own­ing and op­er­at­ing an es­tab­lished stu­dio, gallery and store with four other teach­ers on board, Suzi Han­cock­Jan­icki re­flects on where she has come from and ex­cit­edly awaits where she is head­ing. SmartArts in Can­non­vale Mar­ket­place is a year-and-a-half-old and has grown from 39 stu­dents to 270. They host art classes five days a week from ju­niors, teens, spe­cial needs, adults and nude life drawing classes cov­er­ing five dif­fer­ent medi­ums – pen­cil, char­coal, pas­tel, oil and acrylics. Classes for spe­cial needs has just re­cently been in­tro­duced on Wed­nes­days as Ms Han­cock-Jan­icki felt there was a de­mand to make it a weekly ac­tiv­ity. SmartArts has been a roller­coaster for the ac­claimed artist but it’s a love that never dies. “I’ve been do­ing art for 30 years, I re­mem­ber wait­ing for my fa­ther on the let­ter­box ev­ery Thurs­day be­cause he used to bring me home some­thing arty,” she said. She is thrilled to have four fab­u­lous art teach­ers by her side that she taught and hand­picked her­self. She de­scribes ju­nior and teens art teacher Bek Roberts as a dy­namic, en­er­getic and fun woman who brings a cer­tain pizzazz to the stu­dio.

Life led Brigitte Peel back to art, af­ter al­ways be­ing artsy in a school Ms Peel was caught up in travel and cor­po­rate work be­fore find­ing art again and even­tu­ally teach­ing it. For Deb Mur­phy, art has al­ways been about an es­cape. Af­ter be­ing strictly fam­ily-fo­cussed for many years, she fi­nally found time to do some­thing for her­self and de­scribes teach­ing as a re­ward­ing feel­ing. Denise Brady is SmartArts’ new­est teacher, hav­ing taught one ju­nior class which was hailed a suc­cess. Ms Brady is a be­liever that open­ing one door leads to oth­ers and can’t wait to see where art and teach­ing will take her. Ms Han­cock-Jan­icki looks to the fu­ture with her ec­cen­tric team and says SmartArts will only get big­ger and bet­ter.

SASSY TEACH­ERS: Smart Arts teach­ers Bek Roberts, Deb Mur­phy, owner Suzi Han­cock-Jan­icki, Brigitte Peel and Denise Brady.

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