Today we’d like to introduce you to Penelope Quirk.
Penelope, we’d love to hear your story and how you got to where you are today both personally and as an artist.
I’m the President of Art Smarts, Inc. I developed this company from the ground up. We teach after school art lessons all over San Diego to children ages 5 – 16. I have a BFA from the Philadelphia College of Art. Art Smarts was born out of necessity. Art was taken out of the schools and I vowed to put it back in! There’s a definite thirst for art in young children. We teach kids to think “outside the box”, and are always uplifting and encouraging them to enhance their artistic skills. We tell them “You never can do anything wrong in art.” and that usually sticks with them. The dog I posted on Instagram was from the lesson “Crazy Color Dogs”, done with aqua crayons, and that art lesson has them using colors they normally would not use, and also using aqua crayons which is a medium they may not even be aware of. I have over 5 years of lesson plans, so the kids keep coming back year after year. Kids love Art Smarts.
We’d love to hear more about your art. What do you do you do and why and what do you hope others will take away from your work?
The artwork for Art Smarts has both drawing and painting lessons. As for the artwork, or art lessons of Art Smarts, it’s my mission to let each kid see that everything around them is created by an artist and that there are many different types of jobs to do in the art field. About half of the lessons are animals. A few of the lessons are on Sea Turtles or Honu, since Penelope, the president of Art Smarts, has a passion for painting sea turtles and has a website called www.HonuWisdom.com, with each painting giving intuitive spiritual guidance from a Honu Wisdom Oracle card deck.
The stereotype of a starving artist scares away many potentially talented artists from pursuing art – any advice or thoughts about how to deal with the financial concerns an aspiring artist might be concerned about?
Keep focused on your goal as to what makes you happy in life. It took me years to get to where I am now, and even still, I am focusing on my long term goals so my company will be sold and will work well without me. I started small, with one school, and reinvested my profits over and over as I kept my focus. I wedged my passion for painting sea turtles through the cracks and now have over 30 paintings on my website. If I keep my focus on my dream rather than the lack of it, the universe always provides me what I am asking for.
Do you have any events or exhibitions coming up? Where would one go to see more of your work? How can people support you and your artwork?
Several current photos of children’s art are frequently displayed on Facebook at the website called https://www.facebook.com/ArtSmarts.net/ so parents can see what we currently are working on. The website www.ArtSmarts.net is where parents can sign their children up, and see what’s going on. On the website there is a donation button for scholarships for children to take art lessons.
Donations can be sent to Art Smarts, Inc., P.O. Box 191441, San Diego, CA 92169-1441
or if you would like you can click on this Paypal.me link to donate https://www.paypal.me/ArtSmarts
Scholarships are greatly needed for kids whose families cannot afford art lessons for their children. As a small for profit business we have come to find there is a misconception about where money comes from for scholarships.
There is no scholarship fund. Scholarships are personally funded by the president. For profit businesses are not eligible for most grant funding. Costs for one child ranges from $15 per class to $126 for a nine week session which includes art supplies plus the finished project.
- Website: www.ArtSmarts.net
- Phone: 619-944-3323
- Email: Penelope@artsmarts.net
- Instagram: artsmartssd
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ArtSmarts.net/
- Other: www.HonuWisdom.com
Penelope Quirk, Art Smarts, Inc.