Ellie Boyd

Needlepunch Embroidery & Plein Air

Ellie Boyd is a Georgia native who began her journey in creativity at her grandmother’s knee, learning traditional needlework, and later branched into drawing, sculpture, painting and printmaking. Ellie cut her teeth teaching cub scouts leather-working, knot tying, and all manner of outdoor skills, which carries over into her first love — plein air painting.  In 2012, Ellie founded Pomperaug Outdoor Painters in Southbury, and has enjoyed exploring the beauty of New England via plein air competitions and painting with other painters who love the outdoors.  The 2019 season promises to be a great one, so put learning to paint “en plein air” on your list.  If you’d rather be painting with thread, give punchneedle embroidery a try — it’s fun and easy.

Michael Butler Ph.D.

Lecturer of History, William and Mary

Michael A. Butler retired from the Foreign Service of the Department of State in 2010 at the rank of Minister-Counselor (two-star military equivalent) after a thirty-year career. Since 2012 he has taught in the History department at the College of William & Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia. Professor Butler’s Foreign Service postings included Oporto, Lisbon, Washington, Bucharest, Buenos Aires, Oslo, Madrid, San Salvador and Helsinki. From 1993-1995, he was seconded to the US Army as Visiting Professor of Social Sciences at the US Military Academy, West Point. Professor Butler served as Special Assistant to Secretary of State George P. Shultz and was Chargé d’Affaires (acting Ambassador) for seven months during his Helsinki posting.

Professor Butler holds a Ph.D. in History from the University of Virginia, with a focus on American Diplomatic History and a secondary focus on the history of twentieth-century Europe. At William & Mary, he teaches the history of international politics, with a special interest in the intersection of history and diplomatic practice. Professor Butler is the author of Cautious Visionary: Cordell Hull and Trade Reform, 1933-1937 (Kent State University Press, 1998) and currently researches foreign policy aspects of the Hoover-Roosevelt transition of 1932-1933. The Dean of the College of William & Mary honored Professor Butler with the College’s Excellence in Teaching Award during the 2018-2019 academic year.

Dita Carley


Carley has many works in private collections across the country. While in the Northwest, Carley studied under Jacob Lawrence, known for his paintings of African-American culture, most notable, “The Migration Series.” Carley studied with Wolf Kahn, who is known for his brightly colored landscapes. Carley alternates between the whimsical and the serious, looking for connections between visual art, the written word and music. Her materials range from elegant handmade papers to altered book pages, to everyday scraps found and collected.

In Seattle, Carley led workshops at the Children’s Hospital and Medical Center on the Psychiatric Ward for non-diagnostic therapy. Carley also taught art for fifteen years at Cold Spring School in New Haven, CT. Carey has been working with the Seedlings Collaborative for the last three years. In addition she has taught workshops and classes at Guilford Art Center, Guilford, CT and at Brookfield Craft Center, Brookfield, CT, as well as in her private studio. Carley recently retired and has returned to working full time as an artist.

Lorraine Chapin

Acrylics/Oil Painting

Southbury resident Lorraine, a UCONN-trained fine artist, has taught and painted for 30 years. Lorraine says “I love to paint—I can’t stop—it’s something I was born with. I try to convey the feeling for my subject, not just record the details—I want my viewers to feel like they are there with me. ” Lorraine is an artist/member of the Board of Directors at the Fine Line Art Gallery in Woodbury and has won numerous awards in shows throughout the Northeast.

Stephen Collins


Stephen Collins grew up in Cambridge, and received a BA in Literature from UMass Boston. He has been teaching seminars on Whitman, Hardy, Shakespeare, Frost, and Contemporary Poetry at various locations throughout the country. Stephen Collins’ style of teaching has been described as a hybrid between teaching and performance. His current seminars are on Contemporary Poetry, Robert Frost, Thomas Hardy Poetry, Shakespeare, and Walt Whitman. Each course provides an interactive learning experience.

The newest addition to his repertoire is a one man show, Shake-Scene and it has been met with rave reviews. He also works as a professionally licensed tour guide doing narrated historical tours of Boston.

Stephen’s website is

Sandie Daignault

Colored Pencil

Sandie has had a passion for art and art education since college. After retiring in 2011 from a 35-year corporate career, she began teaching art education in Loveland, Colorado to middle school students in after-school programs. She was a substitute teacher there for two years from 2012 – 2013.

In 2013 she came back to CT and began volunteering in the ASAP (After School Arts Program) in Washington, participating and assisting teachers in Region 12 primary school. She became involved with Washington Arts Association, volunteering at art shows and events.

Sandie began taking art classes through WAA, Silvermine Art Center, Rowayton Arts Center, Brookfield Craft Center and several other adult education programs across New Haven and Litchfield Counties. Most recently she has been with Arts Escape since 2018 taking classes in Colored Pencil and Pastel with Rita Paradis, Watercolor with Betty Ann Medieros, Acrylic with Anda Styler and Souby Boski.

Her art has been awarded prizes during the Threads member juried shows at Arts Escape in 2019 and 2020 and several pieces were published in the 2019 Fresh Ink annual journal of Naugatuck Community College. Her work has been shown at WAA and at the 275th celebration event at Averill Farm in Washington, CT.

She has self-published two books of her poetry and artwork, Poetry Expression I and II.

Sandie has two works in acrylic accepted into the 2021 Ridgefield Guild of Artists 44th annual juried show.

Patty Keville Fogle


I’m in search of the persistent, irreducible singularity of things — the essence of a split second of light that illuminates a space, a form — and then I catch it before it’s gone!

I track down these moments often far from home in remote locations where unpredictable weather takes me in as it sweeps over barren untamed ground and water. These distant places dissolve time and feel like a reunion with my inherited past.

Then back in the studio those exterior places move to far more personal territory, morphing into an emotional ride through charcoal on paper. Memory and mood combine through fast application of paint in the final work — surprising me by the new life it takes on.

It should be land, rock, water and sky but it’s paint; it should be paint, but it behaves like weather; a few more strokes and I’m taking another direction. I shift things, and things shift me. When I finish, I’ve gone to a place I’ve never been before — far from where I started.

I grew up west of Boston — later traveled to Europe, East Africa and then to the outer edges of western Ireland, which continue to influence my art. For the past 15 years, I’ve been a member of the Faculty at the Washington Art Association in Connecticut, where I teach Masters Classes in Drawing & Painting.

Kothy Hafersat

Zentangle/Silk Painting/Quilting/Crafts

Kothy (not Cathy) lives in Oxford, Connecticut. She is a national educator for three sewing machine companies. Singer, Viking and Pfaff. She has a love for Zentangle and has been doing it for a while and decided to become a certified Zentangle instructor. She has transformed what she knew in Zentangling to free motion quilting. Kothy loves the entire process of how Zentangle works and she loves to teach and has been for over 35 years. This is just a new addition to what she loves to do. Kothy also co-owns and runs a pattern company that produces quilt and sewing patterns and is a professional digitizer for the 6D embroidery software company which is sold to use with today’s embroidery sewing machines. In her company (Simply Everything) they also produce training software for the embroidery company.

Jean Hansen

Theorem Painting

Jean Hansen, CT native and RN and nationally known Decorative Arts and Theorem designer and teacher and author instructs her students in the “The Fine Art of Theorem Painting”. This technique is an advanced form of stenciling dating  back to the early 1800s and was traditionally done with oil paint on cotton velveteen or watercolor on paper.  It  has been Jean’s intent since 1983 with her first book Touch of Velvet I to offer a more contemporary realistic and diverse design approach with updated supplies and techniques, thus moving this beautiful technique out of the realm of the colonial period so it could take its rightful place in the 21st Century Decorative Art.  Thus, Theorem Painting can now be viewed as a very unique and versatile art form.  Thus, it gives today’s decorative artist the opportunity to CREATE, through the use of multi overlay stencils, a work of art that is acceptable by today’s standards, yet also preserving the principles of early Theorem Painting, an almost forgotten technique.  Some of Jean’s accomplishments early in the 80s was to introduce the Shiva Paintstiks, the Loew Cornell White Taklon Brush and the Velour Surface to this technique.  The Velour surface or Velour Board is now exclusively a Jean Hansen Publication product.  In 1989 Jean had four of her early designs converted to laser and things mushroomed after that.  Jean now offers nearly 300 laser cut stencils in various sizes to meet the needs of today’s stenciler.

Jean also authored Touch Velvet II, technique book for the Paintstiks (this is considered a crossover book (transitioning from artist oils  to the cleaner solid form of oil paint.  Jean also authored Kinder Bears for Binney and Smith.  These were all Jean’s original designs using Liquitex Acrylics for the paint medium.

To learn more visit

Lynne Henriquez

Creative Cards

Lynne Henriquez is a former middle school English teacher who “loves to make things!” Lynne enjoys crafts of all kinds, but especially those made with paper or fabric. She loves to reuse, recycle, and reinvent materials giving them new life. Her work includes greeting cards, pins, and fabric bags for varied uses. Currently, her work is on view and for sale at the Silo in New Milford, Connecticut.

Lynne’s professional career spanned 25 years of teaching English both in the United States and the Dominican Republic. She is “nearly” fluent in Spanish. Upon retirement, she completed the CT Master & Advanced Master Gardener programs through UCONN. She is an avid gardener and Friend of the Brookfield Garden Club. She is the former Volunteer Coordinator for Ann’s Place―The Home of I CAN in Danbury and a founder, fund-raiser and former secretary of the Latino Scholarship Fund located in Danbury as well. Lynne is also a member of her church choir and Women’s Guild.

Lynne holds a B.A. in English/Education from Merrimack College and an M.S. in Curriculum from WCSU. She hopes to share her love of “making things” with Arts Escape members!

Dr. Alfred Hunt

Historian/Lecturer - History & Culture

Alfred Hunt, Professor Emeritus, SUNY, College at Purchase, is the author of Works on Slavery and Southern History. Twice a Fulbright Scholar, and an on-camera host for an award-winning cable show, he has been giving lectures in New York and Connecticut for over 15 years.

Barbara Johnston Ph.D.

Lecturer of Art History, Columbus State University

Dr. Barbara J. Johnston is a native of North Miami, Florida, but spent most of her adult life in the Richmond, Virginia area. She earned two undergraduate degrees in Studio Art and Art History, and a Masters degree in Art History and Museum Studies at Virginia Commonwealth University, where she was also an adjunct Art History professor. In addition, Barbara was on the faculty of the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts for over ten years, offering classes and public lectures on a variety of art historical topics as the Paul Mellon Arts in Education lecturer. After earning her doctorate degree in Art History at Florida State University, Barbara was a Visiting Professor of Renaissance and Baroque Art History at the College of William and Mary before moving to Columbus, Georgia in 2008 to join the Art History faculty at Columbus State University, where she is a tenured Associate Professor. Barbara specializes in Medieval, Renaissance, and Baroque art, although she gives public lectures on a wide variety of topics, including Modernist Art, Non-Western Art and Architecture, and the focus of her personal scholarship, Mary Magdalene in the visual arts.

Betty Ann Medeiros

Watercolor/Oils/Academic Drawing

Betty Ann Medeiros is a Connecticut artist who has worked as a successful illustrator, fine artist, art teacher, and Apple computer workshop instructor. Betty Ann specializes in watercolor, acrylic, and oil painting in a colorful realistic and impressionistic style. She graduated with a Bachelors degree in Graphic Design and a Masters of Fine Arts from Western Connecticut State University. She has shown in galleries and shows in Connecticut, sold to private and institutional collectors, and has also been published in books and magazines. Betty Ann has a passion for teaching and loves to see confidence grow in her students. Her work can be seen at

Nancy McMillan


Nancy McMillan of Bethlehem is the award-winning author of March Farm: Season by Season on a Connecticut Family Farm ( She holds a graduate degree in writing from The Graduate Institute and one in music from Lesley University, where she studied historical women composers. She also studied in the MFA program at Manhattanville College. Her essay “For the Love of Linen” appeared in the 2020 Connecticut Literary Anthology and was nominated for a Pushcart Prize. Her essays and articles have appeared in Connecticut newspapers and magazines, and online at Fiction Southeast and The Sunlight Press. She is the Director of the Writing and Literature Program at Arts Escape. In her writing classes, she helps students embrace and inhabit their innate creativity. Find more at where she blogs about pies, writing, music, and connection.

John Munno


John Munno is a multi-talented and faceted full time professional photographer who makes his living by creating beauty through his photography.  John studied photography professional through the New York Institute of Photography.  His career started out as a Fine Art Nature and Landscape Photographer specializing in photo healing art for healing and medical environments.  He has permanent displays in UCONN, and Yale Greenwich Hospitals as well as many medical facilities throughout Connecticut.  He has a line of Connecticut greeting cards, calendars, dvds and books and his work has been featured on many magazine covers of Seasons Magazine.  His Nature photography focuses on the beauty of Connecticut and brings a sense of peace wonder and appreciation for Connecticut’s wild and scenic lands.  In addition to his nature and landscape and commercial photography, John is a full time wedding photographer shooting over 30 weddings a years and merging is landscape photography skills with his wedding experience to bring captivating, evocative images capturing the moments and telling the story of the wedding day.    He worked as a professional photo editor and has over 10 years’ experience as a professional photographer.

His love and enthusiasm for photography and teaching has helped many to go on to become accomplished photographers.

View his Nature and Landscape work at

Views his Wedding photography work at

Adele Moros

Multi-Media Fine Artist

Adele Moros is a multi-media fine artist always ready to try a new medium or a new approach to an old one.  For her, creating each new piece is an adventure in line, form, color, value, and expression.  Nothing is ever the same.

Moros works both large scale and miniature.  She has created a large number of public works as well.  In 2000 her faux stained glass “Tiffany” cow reaised$60,000 for charity at the NYC Cow Parade.  Slides of that cow are in the permanent collection at the MET and are used in Tiffany lectures.

Moros has since created pieces for Danbury Hospital, Boston, Stamford, New Haven and several companies in japan.

She is a Fellow with the International Guild of Miniature Artisans.  Adele’s small works have been collected world-wide and several of her 1” scale paintings are in the permanent collection of the Toy and Miniature Museum of Kentucky.  Currently Ms. Moros is represented by Gallery 25, New Milford, CT and she is President of the Society of Creative Arts of Newtown.

Rita Paradis

Colored Pencil/Alla Prima/Pastel

Rita is a versatile artist, working in four mediums: oil, colored pencil, pastel, and acrylic. Her work is joyful, colorful, whimsical and fun. She studied English Literature at Concordia University in Montreal Quebec and graduated Summa Cum Laude with a BA. Rita then went on to study Printmaking at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst and graduated with a BFA. The summer after she graduated she spent an awesome summer in Florence, Italy as a teaching assistant in printmaking at the Studio Arts Center International in Florence. Rita has been creating paintings for several years. She is a signature member of The Colored Pencil Society of America and of the Connecticut Pastel Society. She has won many awards on local and national levels and two awards in CPSA’s International Exhibitions.

Anda Styler

Acrylic Painting

Anda lives in Sandy Hook, Connecticut and began painting in acrylics when she was 16. From there she also went on to discover oil painting. Acrylics, however remain her favorite medium, which she has worked in for over 45 years. She attended Parson School of Design and graduated in 1983 with her bachelors degree. She has had many accomplishments in the art world, including, interviews with both local and national publications, such as American Art Collector (article published in June 2007), Who’s Who in America, Country Garden Magazine, Victoria Magazine, Art Speak Magazine NY, numerous awards and recognition for work as a painter. Her paintings and techniques are published in two books by North Light Publications. Her works are currently represented by several galleries in and around New England and to her credit she has had many one woman shows with great success. In July of 2007 she created 4 large paintings that are part of a permanent collection purchase by Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago. Her work is the cover art of the 2010 Old Farmers Almanac Engagement Calendar. Her work also appeared in the NY Times in December 2011 and again in 2015. In 2015 the new book by North Light Books – “Captivating Color” features her work. She has had several one-person gallery shows with great success, participating once again in testing new products form Chroma paints. Anda teaches in Rowayton, and now has moved her studio painting classes to the Art & Frame Gallery in Newtown, in addition she teaches workshops focused on the power of using light and shadow in the landscape with a limited color pallet.

Tina Tocco

Writing for Children and YA

Tina Tocco is a longtime member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, where she has taught children’s writing and won multiple awards. Tina’s work has appeared in Highlights, Highlights High Five, Cricket, AppleSeeds, Humpty Dumpty, Turtle Magazine for Preschool Kids, Pockets, and other children’s publications. She is the author of the children’s poetry collection The Hungry Snowman and Other Poems (Kelsay Books, 2019). Tina’s fiction, nonfiction, and poetry have also been published in various literary journals and anthologies, such as New Ohio Review, Crab Creek Review, Potomac Review, River Styx, Sou’wester, and Best Small Fictions 2019. A Pushcart Prize nominee, Tina earned her MFA in creative writing from Manhattanville College, where she was editor-in-chief of Inkwell, the college’s national literary journal.

John Tuohy

Music Lecture

Guitarist John Tuohy, based out of Fairfield County, Connecticut and a music lecturer focusing on the artists and their lives along with live performances. John lectures and demonstrations to a diverse group of audiences on many topics pertaining to the development of musical artists and styles from the first half of the 20th century. He currently is the in-house “Music Lecturer” at Riverwalk Assisted Living in the Bronx, NY.

John has performed with many groups across multiple styles and genres over the past 20 years.  Winner of “Best Band in Connecticut,” at the 2016 New England Music Awards, the progressive rock band, Mile Marker Zero has been his main group for over 10 years.

John graduated Magna Cum Laude from Western Connecticut State University with a degree in Jazz Performance, and his work as a private guitar instructor and business owner for 20 years has given him unique insight into overcoming hurdles and challenges that come into play as a serious student of any instrument.

John has also contributed session work for various artists and companies as well as having the honor of being featured by and judging the “King of the Blues” contest at Guitar Center.

Priscilla Watson


Priscilla Watson has been teaching for Arts Escape since 2015. She received her BFA in Painting and Art Education from Rhode Island School of Design and taught in the Connecticut public school system for over thirty-four years. She studied Adolescent Psychology and Photography at Southern Connecticut State University during her teaching career. Priscilla has a gift for working with teenagers and special needs students. She also teaches many private students for Arts Escape. Giving her students the freedom to develop their own skills and styles gives her great joy. She feels it is her job to support and guide her students on their personal creative journey.

Priscilla is a working abstract artist who has won many awards for her work.

Linda West


Linda West is a contemporary representational artist and teacher who specializes in portraiture and still life artwork. In pursuit of a fine art education in New York, she received a Certificate for Fine Art from the National Academy of Design, was a Merit Scholar of The Art Student’s League, studied at Grand Central Academy, and privately at the ateliers of Burton Silverman and Carlos Castano. Additional studies were at SACI in Florence, Italy. The mediums of choice are oil painting and mix media drawings receiving awards in both. Linda’s early art profession began with illustrative work for commercial clients including Young and Rubicam (Channel 13), The Wall Street Journal, Double Day Books, Mercedes Benz, etc. Her portrait clients include the late politician Jack Kemp, Johnson & Johnson family members, doctors, corporate leaders and children. Her work has been exhibited in New York at the Cork Gallery, The Salmagundi Club, the Phyllis Harriman Mason Gallery, in Connecticut at The UConn Stamford Gallery, Hurlbut Gallery, Artwell Gallery, the Behnke Doherty Gallery, and the Cudahy Gallery in Virginia.
In Linda’s journey from art student to illustrator, to portrait artist, to fine arts artist and art teacher, she continues to learn and experience the blessings and joy that creating art and observing from nature have to offer. She teaches classical art skills for a strong technical
foundation with encouragement and guidance toward the student’s creativity. You need both!

Agnes Wnuk


Agnes Wnuk is a Connecticut native who has been studying various art mediums for the past 8 years. She sketches daily, primarily using pen and ink and watercolor, among other media. Agnes travels extensively throughout the state and further afield with her sketchbook in hand capturing people, places and events around her, taking part in the Urban Sketching phenomenon. She participates with local plein air painting groups and the New Haven urban sketching group at their local events. She is also an avid photographer and painter in pastels, watercolor and oils, for which she has won several prizes at local exhibitions. Currently employed at Yale University Library, she previously worked in textile conservation, with previous museum work experience at both the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Wadsworth Athenaeum.

“Arts Escape – where creativity and
learning promote well-being.

Marilyn Wald
"The teachers are encouraging, not judgemental. They always find the good in you – they hold up the mirror to you like a good friend, so you see the good. It’s the journey not the appearance of perfection that’s important."