Meet our Dynamic Instructors!
The Le Mars Arts Center feels very fortunate to have such amazing and talented educators willing to share their time with us!
Martha Ericson Youth Programs Coordinator and Instructor
Jean Weiner (Watercolor Artist)
Jean grew up in northern Illinois, and majored in biology while at Augustana College in Rock Island, Illinois and received her Bachelor of Arts degree. She went on to receive her Master of Science in biomedical engineering from the University of Wisconsin, Madison.
After a battle with cancer in 2003, Jean picked up her brushes again ending a 25-year hiatus from painting. Her memberships with professional art groups have grown to include the Tallahassee Watercolor Society (Signature Member), the Iowa Watercolor Society (Signature Member), the Southern Watercolor Society, and the National Watercolor Society. She currently serves on the board as treasurer for the Southern Watercolor Society.
In 2009 Jean's family relocated to Le Mars, IA when her husband received a corporate engineering position with Wells Enterprises, Inc. She exhibits, competes, and sells her art nationally, and has won numerous awards. She has been commissioned to do a number of paintings for private collections. Jean has been teaching watercolor classes at both Western Iowa Technical Community College and the Le Mars Arts Center since 2010. She also conducts watercolor workshops. For additional information visit Jean’s website: www.jeanweinerart.com.
Randi is the co-director for Creative Arts at her church. She has taught watercolor and acrylics focusing on the Master Artists for both children and adults at the LeMars Arts Center, as well as private lessons for adults in her home. She is a professional artist creating art for the Le Mars Alley Art project, private commission work as well as showing and selling her work in Le Mars IA and Tulsa OK as well as from her website, www.randimackey.com.
She holds a certificate for Transformative Art-Making in Service to Communities from BuildaBridge International, Philadelphia PA and uses the Buildabridge model for learning in her classroom. Children not only learn about art, but they learn how to respect themselves, their classmates, authority and artwork whether theirs or someone else’s through positive reinforcement.
Judy Thompson (Drawing/Painting Instructor)
Explore, discover and create are words which describe the learning processes for Judy Thompson’s exciting visual art classes and workshops. By combining her experience as a professional artist with hands-on instruction, Judy designs meaningful and engaging lessons which are age appropriate, content dense and fun for everyone. Learners of all ages will discover and explore art principles by creating meaningful art projects.
Judy’s own art interprets the people and places of the Great Plains. Her vivid watercolors have received regional and national awards, including two artist residencies with the National Park Service. Her Homestead Series, inspired by one of these residencies, has been touring throughout the Midwest.
Judy is a signature member of the Iowa Watercolor Society and the National Association of Art Educators. She exhibits her work regionally and is represented at Rehfeld’s Art and Framing in Sioux Falls, SD. When not teaching or painting, Judy enjoys hiking and biking with her husband Dale through the fields and prairies which surround her Orange City home. Visit her website: www.judythompsonwatercolors.com.
Karol earned a double Bachelor of Science degree in Art and Elementary Education from Westmar College in Le Mars. She designed the initial art education program for Gehlen Catholic High School. She took a break from teaching to start her family and returned to the classroom at East Middle School, Sioux City. She earned her Master’s degree from Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa. Karol volunteered her time and talents to establish an after school art club at East Middle School, the largest middle school in the state of Iowa at that time. Karol guided the students in art projects and art appreciation. Her students learned organizational skills for an annual fundraiser to finance field trips to art museums, exposure to high school art classes, and art related careers. Karol retired in 2011, after 30 years in art education. She volunteers her time and talents within the community to create art. She recently donated numerous hours to create and complete a mural for the American Legion Olson Halweg Post 125. “Four Seasons of Patriotism” portrays Karol’s gratitude to America’s Veterans, past and present. Karol continues to share her love of art and the visual message it portrays through her involvement with the Mainstreet Committee in Le Mars, Iowa. She has painted 3 fiberglass ice cream cones for the community. Currently she is working on the alley art project, creating window coverings. She also is donating her time for the Le Mars Art Centers classes for students of all ages.