Welcome to our Staff Directory!
Meet the friendly faces behind this innovative social enterprise.
Alyssa is the Operations Manager for Artshine. She is an alumni from the University of Waterloo, having graduated with an Honours B.A. in Legal Studies and a double-minor in Sociology and Social Development Studies.
Throughout high school and university, Alyssa took fine art and art history classes, and has visited art galleries around Canada and the United States. Over the last five years, she has worked for many Kitchener-Waterloo based companies in guest service and program coordinator roles. She is excited to manage Artshine and Arts4All’s day-to-day program operations.
Community Engagement Coordinator
Excited by connecting people to their communities, Ashley has dedicated the last 12 years to working in the non-profit sector to create inclusive opportunities. Starting her career in a community arts centre lit her passion for bringing creativity into people's lives. Working with children and youth in recreational and creative programs has been a source of inspiration for her over the years. Ashley has formal education in Family Studies, Social Service Work, and Public Relations and Communications.
In her spare time, you'll find Ashley exploring the world by canoe with her partner and children.
Excited to be a member of the Artshine community, Becky brings a wealth of training and experience to the team. With multiple degrees in the areas of illustration, child development, special education, and applied behaviour analysis, Becky is looking forward to working with a variety of individuals and sharing her love of art!
Bev is primarily a watercolour artist who enjoys teaching and plein aire painting while travelling abroad. Her work is based upon drawings from art journals, photos, observation and imagination. Her hope is that anyone who views her paintings can experience the excitement and vision that she had while creating them. Bev as an artist, teacher and mentor, continues to grow, explore, experiment and learn through her own experiences and from her students.
Bev’s paintings represented by Fine Art America. website:
Art History Consultant
Brianne is the Art History Director for Artshine. She has both an undergraduate and graduate degree in Art History, receiving her Master's from Queen's University in 2017.
Brianne has been working in the field of museum education for over five years, and is passionate about Artshine's mission to provide exceptional and affordable art education to a diversity of demographics.
Brittany is a part-time high school teacher and has been with Artshine since the beginning! She has a Bachelor of Fine Arts and Theatre from the University of Guelph and a Bachelor of Education from Brock University.
Brittany started with Artshine teaching programs in various schools and moved into the role of Curriculum Developer for elementary students, adult, and corporate programs. She loves creating projects that inspire and challenge students to bring out their individual creativity. In her spare time, Brittany creates and sells custom artwork, and hand lettered calligraphy. She also loves to paint, draw and make messy memories with her two children !
Coming with humour, joy, and a most sacred love for uniqueness, Caroline is the hybrid instructor that blends an anthropology background to her current career as a portraitist, illustrator, and wall art painter.
Emerging from a blissful six years in the French traditional sphere of education, she's further developed her connection with children of all ages by doing daily collective art masterpeices, bathing ears and minds in sounds that take the creation process to roleplaying levels. "Natural order comes from a human whose senses are engaged in creating...", and it's all about bringing a higher sense of appreciation for self, as art is this meeting sone within, that eases your ability to choose what you want to do, in harmony with who you are. Always.
So wave your magic wands everyone, because you are ageless. You are good. You are everything this world ever was curious to meet.
Community Outreach Assistant
Celeste is excited to be a part of the Artshine team as the outreach assistant. Her first involvement with Artshine was actually at the age of 16 when she was a councillor at an Artshine summer camp. Celeste is a recent graduate of Master’s College & Seminary with a Bachelors Degree majoring in Theology. She is a Spoken Word artist/poet and loves to infuse messages of hope into all her art pieces. Celeste is passionate about seeing young people develop their artistic abilities to their fullest potential. Any type of art you want to show her, she wants to see. She especially loves hearing the stories and meanings behind personal art pieces.
In her spare time, you can find Celeste somewhere outside hiking, swimming, biking, snowboarding, etc.
Daniel loves traditional and digital drawing techniques, with a focus on conceptual art. He has been drawing since he was a kid, and likes graphic styles such as comic books, video game concept art and ink-based illustration. Daniel has a formal STEM background, and is always looking for ways to incorporate creativity and technology together.
Desiree has a love for the pursuit of creativity. She graduated in Fine Art, specializing in Printmaking. She then worked in several creative and teaching jobs, including teaching art to children and adults from home. She has worked as an artist and teacher in the Palaeontology department at the University of Witwatersrand. She has also worked as a printmaking artist and teacher. She ran her own art consulting business until she left South Africa. When she moved to Canada, she volunteered for many years at the local primary school where her children attended. Desiree loved this as she enjoys being with people and find working with children to be exciting!
Regional Manager, Niagara
Diane's mother enrolled her in an oil painting class when she was 8 years old. Her gift was the beginning of Diane's life long passion for art. Diane pursued her education in a joint program at the University of Toronto and Sheridan College, where she received an honors BA in Art and Art History.
As a museum curator, Diane designed exhibits and developed bilingual school programs, and took on a variety of roles within the elementary system. She am thrilled to be an art instructor for Artshine. It is Diane's goal to share her passion for art with children, just as her first art instructor shared their passion with Diane.
Emily is excited to join the Artshine team, she has always loved being creative and is a hobby artist. Her background is in Recreation and Leisure Services (Conestoga College), and she is currently completing a Gerontology certificate through Ryerson University. She has worked in long-term-care providing recreational programming to residents and often incorporated arts into her programming as form of therapy, encouraging seniors to tap into their creativity and express themselves.
Emily enjoys spending time in the outdoors and finds peace in the beauty of nature. She is the mother of two active children and loves sharing her passion for the natural world with them.
EMILY ZINA FISHMAN
Emily has been a part of Artshine since the beginning in various forms and now as the videographer. A graduate from Eastwood Collegiate’s integrated arts program where she majored in visual arts and dramatic arts, as well as a certificate in Media Foundations from Humber College. She is completing her last of three years of Advanced Film and Tv production at Humber College as of April 2021. Emily has been immersed in arts her whole life not only is she a videographer but she does SFX makeup. Art continues to and always has been a positive outlet for her along with many of the kids that benefit from Artshine. Artshine helped provide her with a job at the young age of 16, inspiring other young kids to learn the benefits of exploration in the arts.
Find Emily on Instagram @sfx_by_zina (SFX makeup) and IMDB
Arts4All Unlimited, Board of Directors, Board Member & Mentor
Geoff Bellew is a business executive with over 40 years' experience in the financial services, technology and consulting services industries. Geoff is currently CEO at Athena Software-- a rapidly growing global technology business offering SaaS-based comprehensive case management solutions to the human health and social services sectors. Geoff has extensive business and leadership skills at senior executive levels and has served in a senior executive capacity with Scotiabank, Manulife, ING, Aegon, Dspfactory, Mechworks Systems, Southbridge, and at Communitech where, for the 5 years before joining Athena in 2017, he served as a senior growth coach to scaling tech companies.
Geoff is an FICB and has an MBA from University of Toronto.
Geoff is also serving as Chair and Board Director of Arts 4 All and Artshine since 2013 where he willingly and most excitingly gives of his volunteer time and mentorship to support the healthy growth and outcomes impact delivered through Arts4All and Artshine programs and services. In business and in the community, Geoff has established himself as a passionate, trustworthy, creative and responsible collaborator.
Heather graduated from the Univeristy of Guelph in 2017 with a major in studio art. Her passion is art and seh wishes to pass that passion onto others through teaching. She has worked with many mediums and has provided art instruction in different environments and to all kinds of wonderful people. She strives towards inclusive art instruction so that anyone can participate and not feel left out and because of this inclusiveness, Heather looks to combine her art experience and her expierence in supporting individuals with developmental disabilities in creating a safe and fun art expeirence for all.
Heather actively works on her own artistic practice in-between instructor others in painting, drawing, sculpture, and more. Though she primarily focuses on piantings (either in acrylic, oil, gouache, or watercolour), she also enjoys creating acrylic pours or resin art in the spare time.
Jackie Traverse is an indigenous Canadian artist from Winnipeg Manitoba currently working out of Her studio in the arts district In Winnipeg .She attended the School of Fine Arts at the University of Manitoba and graduated in 2009. Jackie Traverse is a multidisciplined artist that works in several mediums from oil and arcylic paintings to mixed media, stop-motion animation and sculpture. Jackie draws her inspiration from her indigenous culture and her experiences as a native woman living in Winnipeg.
Follow Jackie on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Art-of-Jackie-Traverse-330720811012566/
For Jen, there is no greater joy than sharing her passion for art with others. Jen was born and raised in BC and has since lived all across Canada. She recieved her Bachelor of Fine Arts from Concordia University in Montreal, studied graphic design at George Brown College in Toronto, and began teaching art to children and adults in Halifax. She now resides in Hamilton where she is enjoying being a Ticats fan and also exploring the thriving art scene.
She considers herself to be a multifaceted artist and designer who loves illustration, painting and learning new forms of art. She believes that art is important for everyone at all stages in their lives and she loves to help people discover their inner artist. Jen's favourite thing about teaching art to children is the sense of pride they feel after completing a piece and watching their confidence grow.
She is so excited to be a part of Artshine and cannot wait to see what her students will create!
Jessica is a graduate of Ontario College of Art and Design, Toronto. She also studied in France, at Ecole des Beaux Arts de St. Etienne. She went on to work for many years as an Art Director in several advertising agencies in France, Montral, Halifax, and St. John's. After moving to Ontario and having her second child, Jessica started an off-beat chocolate company and eventually shifted to painting. She's passionate about making art accesible for children, and is often busy creating something exciting with her kids in some way, shape, or form.
From as early as Karun can remember, the world of visual art has mesmerized me through multiple mediums. Whether it was a videogame or an animated film, Karun was hooked to the idea that these masterpieces were created from imagination and skill.
Karun has an animation education and has worked as a pre-production artist for 2 years. He then pursed my passion for storytelling and published his own children's books. Karun has been teaching children for over 3 years. It helps him to understand the new generation's psyche and understanding towards concepts for stories.
Halifax Artshine Instructor
Katelynne is an Nova Scotia-based artist/illustrator currently residing in Halifax, ON. She recently graduated from the University of Toronto’s Art and Art History program where she specialized in drawing and painting. Katelynne's work in her artistic practice is often autobiographical, discussing topics such as body positivity and self care.
Katelynne is a firm believer that everyone is an artist—no matter the skill, practice, etc. What Katelynne loves about Artshine is that she gets to share my passion for art with children, as well as inspire the artist in every single person she teaches. The amount of creativity the children have in the Artshine program amazes her, as every child has their own interpretation on each project they do together. It’s inspirational, not only to them but they inspire me as well. Katelynne hopes to continue to spread the message that art is for everyone, and continue to inspire each child.
Kemahee is an instructor for Artshine. She is an alumni from the University of Waterloo and was born and raised in Kitchener. Kemahee loves culture, art and music. She graduated with an Honours (B.A) in Spanish, with a Specialization in Latin American Literatures and Cultures and a minor in Psychology.
Kemahee began painting as a therapeutic means after a car collision changed the course of her life. Prior to the collision, she did not know that she could paint. It wasn’t until after the collision she realized that she was blessed with the gift of art and desires to share her art with the world. Kemahee says “there’s always a blessing in every situation”.
As an instructor, Kemahee loves to encourage children to find their creative voice and express it in through their art. She often diversifies the art lessons to encourage children to add their own personal touch to their art. Kemahee’s main priority is to help build and nurture children’s self-esteem. “It’s amazing what encouraging a child can do. I really believe in the vision behind Artshine and I desire for every child to get the full Artshine experience”!
Arts4All Unlimited, Board of Directors, Secretary
Kent Taylor has over 24 years experience working in the youth justice system here in waterloo region. Kent is currently the Program Director for the youth reintegration program at Ray of Hope. Prior to this role Kent was the Program Director for Hope Harbour home; a youth correctional facility. He currently sits on the board for Youth Justice Ontario as the Treasurer and has been in this role for 5 years. Kent also represented Ray of Hope at the Connectivity tables in Cambridge and Kitchener for 2 years. He has worked with a number of agencies in the region including both local school boards as well.
Kent chooses to invest his time on the Board as treasurer for Arts4all Unlimited because he believes in the Artshine program and its impact on youth. The ability to have the opportunity to be creative is something everyone should have as it can be life changing.
Arts4All Unlimited, Board of Directors, Chair
Krista has spent several years working in a variety of settings in the Social Services sector. Working in a variety of settings has allowed her to support culturally, economically, and socially diverse individuals of all ages. She is passionate about work that supports a community where everyone can contribute and thrive. Krista is currently working at Region of Waterloo within Housing Services.
Krista started as an instructor with Artshine and fell in love with the program and their dedication to giving back to the community in the form of scholarships and free art programs. Krista chooses to invest her time into ARTSHINE/ARTS4ALL because she truly believes in what the organization does - create a community were participation in the arts is not limited by income, ability or life circumstances.
Lisa has always been passionate about art and creative expression throughout her life. Her family's background in performing, painting, and craftsmanship have helped her to develop and explore different art forms. She has always loved to build and create things with her hands and welcomes the opportunity to foster a love of the arts with others. Her current passions include decoupage, macro photography, and chalk sign painting.
Lisa is thrilled to be a part of the Artshine team and can't wait to work with a diverse range of artists through Miss Frizzle's motto: "Take chances, make mistakes, get messy!"
For as long as Liz can remember “creativity” has been part of her life. Watching her Grandpa and Mom paint were early inspirations. Attending Art camps and paint days were always joyfully anticipated.
During school and varied work carriers, “creative projects “were never far away. Liz had the pleasure of organizing and teaching children’s art programmes for many years in Owen Sound, Walkerton and Hanover. She enjoys hearing from these past student “Picassos” that still call her “Miss Liz”.
Liz is an award winning artist, wife, mother, friend and a new favourite “grandma”. Liz’s work can be seen in local venues in Bruce and Grey Counties, Durham Herb Fair, Folmer’s Spring in the Garden, Walkerton Juried Art Show, Davishill Nurseries, Legacy Gallery and Spirit of the Season. Since retiring, Liz has taken up the watercolour brush to add to her creative repertoire.
“By doing what you love, you inspire and awaken the hearts of others”
Lyne has joined Artshine because it combines her love of children and making crafts.
Coloring, painting, crafting fulfills many hours of pure happiness for Lyne. In each Artshine class, she am hoping to share her love for creating art with kids, get them engaged, embrace their creativity and most of all, make them feel proud about themselves.
Artshine is a great school program, the reward of seeing kids smiling about their amazing art project is a simple pleasure of life and essentially, this is what art should feel like.
Mark is super excited to join the Artshine Team! He has been drawing and making art since he was old enough to hold a pencil. He graduated from OCAD in Toronto with a Bachelors of Design in Illustration and is always looking forward to sharing his skills with people of all ages. Mark has experince in collage, mixed media, watercolour, pen and ink, painting, digital drawing and community murals. When he's not teaching art he enjoys drawing and painting with his 4 year old daughter.
French Program Coordinator
Maya is happy to join the Artshine team as instructor in both Anglophone and Francophone schools. Originally from Kitchener-Waterloo, Maya completed a BA in Fine Arts specializing in printmaking from the University of Waterloo. She then moved to Montreal seeking adventure, creativity, and culture. While there, Maya finished an MA in Art Education from Concordia University and was also a member of the Atelier Circulaire printmaker collective. Her work, which plays with line, colour and texture, has been exhibited in group shows in Ontario and in Montreal. Maya enjoy being creative in every aspect of my life, whether it be cooking, crafting, teaching or spending time with her two artists-in-the-making at home!
Maya believes that education happens everywhere and can be for everyone. For Maya, teaching the visual arts embodies this belief: art education is an asset to all by providing them with a common cultural language. Not all students will become artists, but by being exposed to a variety of educational experiences including the arts, they will learn that there are many ways of understanding the world around them.
Maya is a part time French teacher and an art instructor with Artshine in Barrie French schools. She graduated from a French school with a Baccalaureate degree issued from France. A graduate of Fine Arts and Interior Design, Maya taught drawing and arts at International French and English schools in Dubai. She have a passion for art, and is an occasional painter for family and friends. As a mother of four kids, Maya believes that no two children are alike; every child is different with a unique combination of abilities and needs that shape the way they learn.
Saskatoon Artshine Instructor
Megan has had a passion for art since I was a little girl. She was enrolled in Saturday art classes and took every art and creative course that was available to her throughout high school.
Megan is a Child & Youth worker and is excited to be part of the Artshine team; a motivated and fun group of people who truly enjoy their jobs. Artshine has allowed her to experience various opportunities and will continue to do just that. For Megan, Artshine is more of creative outlet and she thoroughly enjoys seeing what the kids and youth she teaches comes up with.
Megan has always had a passion for the visual arts especially painting.
She loves working at Artshine because of her love for children as well as teaching and the arts. Megan hopes to travel and to continue to explore her creativity and art across the globe.
Monica has loved art, especially drawing, since she could hold a pencil. For Monica, it has always been the best form of expression and conduit for her imagination. Her love for working with children led her to acquire a bachelor's degree in education.
It was through Artshine that Monica not only got to use her two favorite skills, but she also discovered a passion for working with people of all ages with disabilities and special needs. Through these programs everyone is able to let their creativity loose and accomplish something beautiful, and Monica is proud and grateful to be a part of this process.
Social Media Coordinator
Natalie is the Social Media Coordinator for Artshine. She is an alumni from the University of Toronto, and has completed her Bachelor of Education at Western University with a specialization in Early Childhood Education.
Natalie has a love of art and teaching, which she discovered while working and volunteering in museums. In her spare time, Natalie enjoys creating one of a kind items for people across Canada. Natalie is can’t wait to share her love of art with the Artshine community and is excited to inspire others to create masterpieces of their own.
Nivine is a student at Niagara College, who previously studied Graphic Design and is now working her way towards the Social Services field. Art has allowed Nivine to find ways to express herself and appreciate how much we can do with it. In the past, Nivine got to work with children of all ages. Working with kids brings her so much joy and she aspire to be a good role model for children by encouraging them to express themselves and be who they truly are. From a young age, Nivine always loved art and got to create her own projects and today Nivine hope to give back to the community by embracing art and helping kids find their passion! With her background in Graphic Design, Nivine had the wonderful opportunity to find her own style. She worked with mixed media and learned fundamental skills. She loves to create pointillism art, as it follow many design principles and elements such as contrast, balance, emphasis, movement and so on. Nivine excited to be a part of Artshine because she strongly believes that art should be encouraged and children are have so much talent that will shine right through!
Renee has always loved to draw, even as a child. Creating different ideas and watching as it comes together. It was no surprise that she went to art school at Sheridan college and later on to Algonquin college for animation for television.
Working with children in the Artshine program has been a fun, creative way to motivate in a positive way. Renee considers herself a kid at heart, so we all can be silly! On the side she also oil paints and is part of a theatre group in her community. Renee says that "the “arts” have always been in my blood".
Studying for a Bachelor of Fine Arts at the University of Ottawa, Senka is passionate about helping students access their creative potential and develop their technical skills through fascinating projects. She believes that art should be open to everyone, regardless of experience or “talent.” Mainly practicing in sculpture and media arts, Senka is equally enthusiastic about painting and drawing, believing that all mediums and art forms can grow alongside one another. In her teaching, she encourages students to challenge themselves all the while remaining true to their creativity.
Regional Manager, GTA
Setareh is a full time student at Wilfrid Laurier University studying French, and hopes to get her Bachelor of Education after she completes her undergraduate degree. Setareh has always had a huge passion with working with children and expressing hercreativity. In the summers, Setareh work as a summer camp counsellor and one of her favourite things to do with campers is super fun crafts. She loves seeing children push themselves to express their creativity and creative imaginable and unique things. Setareh also thinks working with children is one of the most rewarding jobs she can have, and every class is a new adventure. Artshine is an amazing program where Setareh can help children expand their creativity and watch them creative amazing things!
Artshine Instructor/Curriculum Creator
Sonia has a lifelong devotion to art and children, starting her journey with art at the age of 2. Sonia has illustrated over nine children’s books. Her most recent book earned her the 2016 mom’s picks award and a bronze Moonbeam award.
Sonia has earned a bachelor’s degree in fine arts and a diploma in Early Childhood Education specializing in inclusion, supporting children with special needs. Sonia sees her role at Artshine as a perfect opportunity to connect both of her passions. She loves the art the children create through the program and she loves the positive outcome the art creates for the children.
Artshine Instructor, Curriculum Creator
Stephanie has loved art ever since she was little. She have my Bachelor of Fine Arts Honours Degree from Queen's University and has been working in Arts Education.
Stephanie began teaching with Artshine in 2013 and immediately fell in love with the program. The focus was on process rather than perfection - teaching students to use their imagination and develop their technical skills in fun and engaging ways. When she's not teaching with Artshine, Stephanie runs her own art studio. Her work can be viewed at Paula White Diamond Gallery in Waterloo and at Canvas Gallery in Toronto.
For more info about me and my work visit:
Art Supplies Manager
Art has always been a hobby of Taryn's. Throughout her children and teen years, she studied fine art and learned to work with a variety of mediums. In her adult years, Taryn put her education and passion for visual art to use by teaching through Artshine's non-profit sister company, Arts4All. Taryn loves working with people who do not necessarily like art but are will to try something new. She is often surprised at how many non-artists love learning new art skills and using that creative part of their brain. Art continues to bring Taryn joy and relaxation, and she tries to enocurage others to give it a try and be aopen to the positive feelings art inspires.
Regional Manager, Barrie
Tina is an artist with a passion for polymer clay. Having the privilege of teaching children's art for over 10 years has given her the opportunity to share my love of creating. A fine arts graduate from Georgian College, Tina is a wife, mother, pet owner, and outdoor enthusiast living in Innisfil, Ontario.
Trina Nadeau, active in community arts, enjoys creating and sharing in the arts experience with Artshine. Music plays a part in Trina's life, with various bands, and teaching. She is grateful for being part of the creative journey Artshine and music cultivates.
Art Supply Room Assistant
Vanessa is a hard worker, motivated, and reliable. She has set goals for herself and has achieved some of her goals already.
Vanessa enjoys spending time with her family and friends. Some of the things she enjoys are reading, swimming, yoga, movie nights, baking, and going to the gym.
Wayne values creativity and connection above all else. He is from the East coast and is a graduate of the Film & Video Production program at the College of the North Atlantic. During school, his greatest strengths were project management and video editing. He moved to Ontario after graduating and has worked with bold and innovative companies ever since. Wherever there's opportunity to grow as an artist and make an impact in the community is where he'll seek to go. Hobbies include illustration, writing, photography, and watching/talking all about movies!
Bio coming soon...
Founder/CEO of Artshine