All About Firstlight’s Teachers
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With a Bachelors in psychology and a Masters in Developmental Disabilities, Arianne has merged her passion for art, with teaching and working with the special needs community, along with our Foundations courses. She comes to Firstlight from a previous position as an instructor and art program director at a special needs school in Miami, Florida.
She mostly enjoys painting with watercolors and doing large scale commissions inspired by her love for nature.
Instructor & Concierge
Ruthie taught grade school in the Metro Nashville public schools for 14 years before joining her husband and founder, Dennas, at Firstlight. As our Creative Conceirge, she helps customers at the studio, and with general administration. Ruthie is also in charge of supplies and helping students during class time.
Illustrator, painter, teacher, and founder of Firstlight, Dennas has been a professional artist for over 40 years. He is the original illustrator of The Beginner’s Bible, and has worked for Disney, Forbes, Nabisco, and Betty Crocker. Dennas has over 5 million books in print worldwide in over 30 languages. Dennas is also the Founder of The Art Instructor and Homeschooling Art, online curriculum sites for art educators and parents.
Jennie Schut is an award-winning artist and a teacher in oils and encaustics, a wax-based medium, in her home studio. She is founder of Fly Forward, an organization that aids creative and spiritual exploration, awakening, and flourishing through educational materials, small groups, retreats, workshops, individual art instruction and creative direction, and leadership training. Since 2006, Jennie has conducted groups and retreats based on material from her book, Waking Up Grey: An Exploration of Creative Awakening. She has released a 2nd edition. She holds a Bachelor’s of Fine Arts in Studio Art from Middle Tennessee State University and a Spiritual Direction Certificate from Selah Center for Spiritual Formation. Jennie has four daughters.