The Richmond Arts Centre is proud to offer classes taught by some of the best and brightest instructors from around the Lower Mainland. Below are brief introductions to some of those instructors and their qualifications.
Tony Bowden – Visual Arts
Tony, or Mr. Tony, received his Masters in Art at Case Western University with a concentration in Art Education. He also received a scholarship to the Cleveland Institute of Art where he later joined the faculty. He started working in animation on The Care Bear Movie and later apprenticed for an architecture firm. His curiosity and passion for using art to better the world led him to create and direct Image Eccentric, which dealt with visual multi-media shows as benefits for charities such as ArtCares, a charity organization in which he is the creator and founder of.
Mr. Tony is a practicing artist who has been published, photographed and exhibited at showcases like Museum of Modern Art in Cleveland. He also teamed with Mark Brown, creator of the popular children’s cartoon series Arthur to do a limited edition print. He is also dedicated to promoting the arts around BC and was featured twice in Over The Edge by the Canadian Federation of Painters. Mr. Tony is also a member of BCTC (British Columbia Teachers College).
Matthis Grunsky - Visual Arts
Originally from Halifax, Nova Scotia, Matthis Grunksy currently lives in Vancouver, B.C. where he maintains his practice as an artist and art instructor. He graduated from Emily Carr University in 2016 with a Master of Fine Art and received his Bachelor's Degree from NSCAD University in 2013. He studied technical painting and drawing techniques, including the representation of the human figure, in addition to abstract and conceptual genres of image making. In his artwork and teaching practice, Matthis is interested in exploring fundamental qualities of visual perception and how they shape the ways in which we interpret our surroundings.
Caitlin Jameson - Ceramics, Visual Arts
Caitlin Jameson is an artist and ceramicist whose practice has a strong focus on the exploration of functional and sculptural vessels. She is a graduate of Emily Carr University and is currently based out of Vancouver, .B.C. In her current practice, Caitlin focuses on exploring her personal limits of production as well as pushing the temperamental nature of the clay bodies she uses. Her aesthetic can be described as organic, embracing the integrity of natural objects and processes.
Caitlin also works within mixed media to produce other sculptures independent of ceramics. She enjoys sharing her love and knowledge of different art mediums, and teaching school age children new techniques and skill sets to help them develop their own art practices.
Sean Karemaker - Visual Arts
Sean Karemaker is a Vancouver-based visual artist. After a childhood obsession with reading and writing comics, he obtained a diploma in graphic design from Malaspina University-College in Nanaimo (2002) and began a career in 3D design for video games, while also doing freelance work in graphic design and illustration. Personal narrative is a common element in his body of work, which encompasses diorama sculptures, comics, scrolls, and paintings. Sean's work has been exhibited at local art galleries including the Gam, the Gropps, Seymour, Pendulum and Ayden.
Amanda Smart - Visual Arts
Amanda Smart grew up on the Sunshine Coast, near the beach in B.C., where she first developed a love of art and painting landscapes. She graduated from Emily Carr University of Art & Design with a major in painting, and went on to develop a professional painting practice that focuses on both traditional landscape oil painting and contemporary figurative painting, specifically focused on anatomy. She is represented by Betamax Galery and works with the Space Gallery in their collective in Yaletown. Amanda has done numerous group shows and solo shows with both these galleries and various others, as well as having her work on display large scale as part of the Vancouver Mural Festival. She loves ideas around realism and light, and enjoys teaching people drawing and painting skills so they can develop their own voice in their personal art practice.
Emily Sheppard – Ceramics, Visual Arts
Emily Sheppard is an Interdisciplinary Artist currently working out of Vancouver and transplanted from South Western Ontario. She is thrilled to join the Richmond Arts Centre team as an Instructor and as the Technician for the Centre. Ceramics, Drawing, Painting and Mixed Media are the classes she is offering through the RAC. Sheppard believes that creating a fertile learning environment is essential to fuel the art making process. She feels that it is important to encourage students to engage in communication about the art they are making. Her main focus with students is developing a core set of skills, based in traditional techniques, that will serve them as they learn to excel and develop their own stylistic independence. Sheppard has been working in the arts with young people for over well over a decade and received a BFA from Emily Carr and a Visual Arts Diploma from North Island College.
Nicola Tibbetts – Visual Arts
Nicola Tibbetts is an artist and art instructor who lives in Vancouver, BC. She works predominantly in painting and drawing. In 2008 Nicola received a BFA from Concordia University in Montreal and an MFA from the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design University in 2010. Since 2006, Nicola has exhibited her work nationally and internationally in both solo and group exhibitions and has received grants from the government of British Columbia and private institutions.
As an art educator Nicola is interested in fostering the development of well-rounded artists by promoting a multifaceted approach to art education: strong technical skills, efficient use of materials, a solid grasp of art theory, art history and contemporary art. She endeavours to make her classroom a place of experimentation and spontaneity, critical thinking and inquiry.