Curtis Center for the Arts Instructors

Meet the instructors of the Curtis Center for the Arts!  All of the classes at the Curtis Center are instructed by professional artists, staff and certified teachers who strive to provide the best educational experience for all artistic levels.  Learn about the instructors, view their artwork and find out what classes they are teaching.

Arts on Fire - Arts on Fire is Highlands Ranch’s fun and friendly paint your own pottery studio where there is never a studio fee! We also offer glass fusing, and canvas painting. To learn more about Arts on Fire visit their website at

Arts on Fire will be one of our special guests at the After School Art Studio, Art in the Park, Pee Wee Art and Spring Break Art Camp

Arts on Fire Logo

Behnaz Ahmadian - Behnaz Ahmadian is a self-taught artist based in Highlands Ranch, CO. She was born in Iran and raised in the United States. She is an Artist, Interior Designer and Art Instructor. After becoming an Interior Designer, she was inspired to create her own line of colorful pieces of art. Her sense for color and pattern, creates pieces that are truly unique. To learn more about Behnaz visit her website at

Youth Art Classes - Colored Pencil for Kids and Observational Drawing for Kids

Art Class and Workshop - Colored Pencils, Doodling Workshop, Mixed Media Workshops and Observational Drawing

BA - My Imagination

Candace French - Candace French is a professional Mixed Media Artist who blends brilliant colors, textures and light. With an ever-expanding range of mixed media, Candace is inspired to create and teach art for the joy of it and to bring joy to others. Her work is in private and public collections throughout North America. To learn more about Candace visit her website at

Class: Mixed Media Series

Candace French with Teen Summer Art Studio

Charles Parson - Is a renowned artist and teacher who worked in education from 1972 to 2018. He taught at a wide variety of schools in Michigan and Colorado, as well a worked as a Visiting Artist or Artist in Residence at several schools throughout the country in conjunction with his exhibitions. Some of the western regional institutions he worked at included teaching /chaired departments at Rocky Mountain College of Art and Design, the University of Denver and most recently the Community College of Denver, Auraria campus. He also did teaching stints at Metropolitan State College, and the University of Colorado at Denver He also instructed graduate level work at Regis University and the University of Denver.  He also has done a large range of diverse art-related employment activities throughout his career, including working in the Exhibitions Department at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science, where he also was a contract muralist and illustrator from1986 to 2012. To learn more about Charles visit his website at

Class: Beginning Drawing


Christa MacFarlane  - Christa is an artist for life and an art teacher for more than 20 years. As a native Kansas gal, she obtained her BFA degree majoring in design at the University of Kansas. Currently, Christa is a professional artist and leads artistic workshops throughout the Denver area. "A life without the ability to express myself through the arts is not an option; it’s a must. I am continually reminded to abandon fear, to live abundantly and to find beauty in all things" - Christa. She does this by pursuing what she is passionate about__ making art and walking alongside others as they experience the creative process. Learn more about Christa by visiting her website at

Classes - Begin with a Drawing

Christa MacFarlane

Christian Dore - Born in Kent, England in 1970, Christian Dore spent most of his childhood living abroad.  At the age of 13 he returned home to settle in the small village of Shorne in Kent.  At age 18 years of age he was accepted into the Kent Institute of Art and Design before continuing his education at the prestigious Bournemouthe and Poole Collage of Art.  His career began as a motion graphic artist for the BBC as well as MTV and Nickelodeon.  After accepting a designer’s position in Colorado, it was there that his artwork truly flourished.  After moving to the Colorado foothills, it was here that Dore’s work evolved into the work that is owned in private collections throughout the world.  Dore’s work explores the Impressionism of the lush environment around him.  He takes the expressive qualities of color and mixes them with a somewhat whimsical narrative to capture his feelings. Learn more about Christian by visiting his website at

Class: Abstract Colorado Sketching and Painting

Christian Dore

Cliff Austin - Cliff was born in 1956 He has lived for over 50 years in Denver and Aurora CO. After what I considered two incredible years, I graduated from the Rocky Mountain School of Art in 1980. My love of drawing began in 1976, as I studied Technical Illustration at The Denver Institute of Technology. I quickly found out this type of drawing was not enough to satisfy my love of drawing, and after working as a patent draftsman/illustrator/office manager in a small drafting shop… I wanted more. My employer casually remarked, “go to art school” and the path to being an artist was forged. He shows in Arts at Denver Fine Art Gallery Denver, Aar River Gallery Westminster, Majestic Fine Art Gallery Idaho Sprgs, Cornflower Boutique in Frisco CO, Mary Williams Fine Art Gallery in Boulder CO. Cliff works in Littleton at his private studio and teaches there also. To learn more about Cliff visit his website at

Classes and Workshops: Fundamentals Color Theory, Introduction to Drawing, Landscape Painting with Oils, Live Model Quick Sketch, Pastel Landscape Painting, Plein Air Workshop, Watercolor and Gouache Sketching, Watercolor for Beginners

Cliff Austin - Beginner and Intermediate Watercolor

Katie Trapp - Meet out newest instructor the Curtis Center for the Arts! Katie is from New Orleans and she enjoys teaching, primarily mixed media projects for kids but can teach any medium. Katie received her artistic training from the New Orleans Center for Creative Arts and the School of Art Institute of Chicago. Follow Katie @ktrappart.

Youth Art Classes: Acrylic Painting, After School Art Studio, Art in the Park, Modern Masters, Paper Mache Creations, Shoe Box Robots, Teen Summer Art Studio, The Great Outdoors and Wild About Art 

Roese Ramp - Cell Phone Photography for Teens

Elizabeth Rouland - Elizabeth shows her oil paintings and limited edition prints in solo and group exhibitions around Colorado including Fort Collins Museum of Art, Framed Image Gallery, Knoll Gallery, Lone Tree Arts Center, Anderson Ranch, PACE Center, and the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR). To learn more about Elizabeth visit her website at

Classes: Beginning Oil Painting and Paint the Town Cityscape Painting

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Julia Rymer - Julia Rymer is an artist and art educator with over 10 years of teaching experience for both kids and adults. Her classes encourage expression and exploration of process while learning the fundamentals of painting and design. She holds an MFA in Painting from Pratt Institute, and an BFA in Painting from the University of Denver. Her abstract paintings are deeply influenced by a childhood spent in the Colorado environment, and she is happy to call it home. To learn more about Julia visit her website at

Youth Art Classes: Colorful Landscapes for Kids, Watercolor Landscapes + Abstracts for Kids and Expressive Mixed Media for Kids

Adult Art Classes and Workshops: Creative Approaches to Abstraction and Drawing Fundamentals


Lauren Brant - Assistant Cultural Arts Coordinator, Curtis Center for the Arts

For fifteen years, Lauren Brant has worked for the Curtis Center for the Arts as the art education programmer.  Lauren received her Bachelor and Master’s degrees in Visual Arts with an emphasis in art history from the University of Northern Colorado.  Lauren oversees all the art classes at the Curtis Center for the Arts and teaches a variety of youth art classes at the Center. Lauren has taught art appreciation and art history at Rocky Mountain School of Design and Red Rocks Community College.  If you have questions about classes, please contact Lauren at or 303-708-6112.

Follow Lauren on Instagram at #curtiscen and #lilwellsart and check out the Curtis Center for the Art's Facebook page to see how-to art project videos for kids!

Classes: After School Art Studio, Art in the Park, Pee Wee Art,  Spring Break Art Camp, Spooktacular Art, Whimsical Holiday Painting and more!

Art in the Park

Maggie Stewart - Maggie Stewart is a professional artist, Colorado native, and owner of Mama’s Belly Inc., a company specializing in bronze belly bowls. She creates work in many mediums including silk, photography, stone, and found objects. Maggie has taught for over twenty-five years in a variety of museums, art centers and schools. She and her husband have a studio in Denver where they often collaborate. Maggie sells her art worldwide.  For more information about Maggie visit her website at

Youth Art Classes: Ceramics for Kids and Teens and Discovering Pollock for Kids and Teens

Adult Art Classes and Workshops: Fabric Arts, Ceramics and  Discovering Pollock

Maggie Stewart - Silk Painting

Michael Dowling - Michael Dowling was born in Denver in 1972 and grew up in Colorado. He began drawing at a very young age but didn’t begin to study formally until the age of 24. After several years of study in studio practices, Michael sold the business he owned and moved to Florence Italy to focus on making art and expanding his skill. He completed his studies at Il Instituto de Art, Scuola Lorenzo de Medici in 2002 with focuses in studio practice and contemporary theory. While in Florence, Michael studied under the duo Rosenclaire (Rose Shakinovski & Claire Gavronsky) who continue to be his mentors and advisors. 

Class: Figure Drawing

Michael Dowling 1

Rick Brogan - Rick Brogan has been painting full-time for over 20 years and has worked as an illustrator, cartoonist and production designer.  Although Rick Brogan was born in Montana, he has enough ties to Colorado to be considered a native. His credentials and attention to details have helped him create an enviable niche in the art world. With a master’s degree in Art from the University of Denver, he worked as an animator in Hollywood, an illustrator for Martin-Marietta (now LockheedMartin), an Art Director in the Denver area and a free-lance artist. His work is included in many collections, including the Xcel Energy collection.

Classes: Drawing and Sketching and Watercolor Studio

Rick Brogan Sketch 1

Victoria Eubanks - Victoria Eubanks brings thirty years of graphic sensibility and design experience to her art studio. She has been teaching encaustic workshops since 2009, her enthusiasm and passion for the medium is evident. Victoria serves on the board of directors at Arts Students League of Denver, Recent recognition includes a coveted Best of SAM award, Best in Fine Art award from the Castle Rock Chamber 2017, and Featured Artist for the 2017 Fine Art Market at the Arvada Center. Victoria has twice curated the biannual WAX Stories juried exhibition in Denver, 2015 and 2017. She is a long-time member of the MIX Co-op at the Niza Knoll Gallery, Denver and a founding member of EXPAND artists, who exhibit together. She is a member of the Encaustic Arts Institute in Santa Fe, NM and the International Encaustic Artists. To learn more about Victoria visit her website at

Classes: Alternative Printmaking Techniques, Basic Encaustic Techniques and Expand and Experiment with Encaustic

Bird and Eucalyptus