MEET YOUR SUMMER ART CAMP INSTRUCTORS!
All classes are taught by Certified Art Teachers and/or Art Professionals which undergo a background check as required in the Jessica Lunsford Act.
Lakeland CAMP Instructors
Rick Olivo (Lakeland, Florida)
B.A., English Literature, New Rochelle University, New York; Owner/Instructor at Rick Olivo Studios
Rick has taught in many area schools, particularly Rochelle School of the Arts, where his influence continued through numerous students’ journeys to Harrison School for the Visual and Performing Arts, and through various college art programs. Rick's former students have won numerous awards and include the Congressional Award for the 12th Congressional District Visual Arts Exhibition, a Tony, and an Oscar for set design.
In addition to teaching in the traditional classroom and studio, Rick Olivo has spent many afternoons teaching art to the neediest of populations in this county’s migrant camps, without fanfare or remuneration, hoping only to encourage a love and appreciation of the arts and to teach skills not otherwise available to those children.
Rick’s numerous public works have enriched the city and provided much enjoyment for residents and visitors alike. He founded Pied Pipers Children’s Theater (Lakeland Community Theater), restored the interior frescoes and ceiling of the Polk Theatre, sculpted animal figures for local parks, painted exterior murals for St. David’s Episcopal Church, and created the swan prototypes for the Lakeland Junior League’s signature public sculpture project which celebrated Lakeland’s famous swans, the symbol of the city.
"No one has done more for the arts in our community than Rick Olivo." - The Ledger*
Paul Peterson (Lakeland, Florida)
BFA, Sculpture, Ringling College of Art and Design; Art Teacher at Southwest Middle
Growing up, I always liked tinkering around and building weird stuff including my first car and skateboards with windsurfing sails. After a skull fracture at the age of 11 which kept me from becoming a pilot for the Air Force, I decided that I would try to hone my artistic skills. I earned a BFA in Sculpture from Ringling College of Art and Design before moving to Lakeland 20 years ago. I have been teaching in the school system and at the Polk Museum of Art at Florida Southern College ever since, teaching last 17 years at Southwest Middle School. During the last 5 years, I have expanded the Create-A-Skate program at our school by building a skate press with my students and making custom skateboards to share my love of board sports and engage them in relevant applications for the math, science, and art.
Kristi Robinson (Lakeland, Florida)
M.A., Museum Studies, University of Oklahoma; BFA, Graphic Design, University of Massachusetts; Art Teacher at Scott Lake Elementary
I am a visual and performing artist, with more than 25 years of experience in painting, drawing, acting, singing, and playing several instruments. I currently teach Kindergarten through 5th grade art at Scott Lake Elementary in Lakeland and have been an Art Teacher for 12 years.
I hold three visual art degrees. A Master of Arts (University of Oklahoma), Bachelor of Fine Arts (University of Massachusetts), and an Associate of Art (Bristol Community College). I also serve on the Executive Board of Directors at Lakeland Community Theatre (LCT) and have performed at LCT, the Imperial Symphony, and the Polk Theatre.
I am very interested in American Indian culture and art history and recently worked at the Jamestown Yorktown Foundation in Jamestown, Virginia teaching Powhatan Indian art and culture at their living history museum.
Aside from my interests in art, theatre, and history, I love nature and travel!
Kyndil Rogers (Lakeland, Florida)
BFA, Graphic Design, Florida Southern College; Art Teacher at Davenport School of the Arts
I am a local artist and art teacher from Lakeland. I grew up going to Rochelle School of the Arts and Harrison School of the Arts and of course, majored in art. I earned a BFA in Graphic Design and a minor in Advertisement Design from Florida Southern College. I have artwork all over the city of Lakeland and a few places around the States; hanging in Apple stores, restaurants, Harrison School of the Arts, spas, and other local businesses and homes.
I am constantly working on different styles of artwork to learn and grow my artistic skill set. I love to bring fresh new ideas into my personal classrooms. I taught elementary art at Citrus Ridge Academy when it first opened, and now teach art at Davenport School of the Arts, with a focus of digital and two-dimensional art.
I am very excited to be a part of this wonderful summer camp. We are going to have a blast!
Chris Roll (Lakeland, Florida)
M.A., Art Education, Buffalo State College; Art Teacher at Lakeland Senior High
I am an award winning two-dimensional mixed media artist, and a visual arts teacher, living in Lakeland. In 2013, I earned my Masters Degree in Art Education from Buffalo State College, Buffalo, New York. After teaching for many years at Sleepy Hill Middle, where I was award Teacher of the Year in 2014, I have moved to teaching at the high school level at Lakeland Senior High School. In addition to teaching high school art, I also teach evening classes for adults and teens at the Polk Museum of Art at Florida Southern College. I am excited to return to the Museum this year as a summer camp instructor. I’m confident we will have fun together this summer with hands-on lessons, inspired by field trips to Florida Southern College and Lake Morton, and by interacting with the Museum’s collection of art in a way that will challenge and inspire, the artist in each of us!
Julie Terhaar (Lakeland, Florida)
BFA, Illustration and Painting, Savannah College of Art and Design; Art Teacher at Sikes Elementary
I have loved art my entire life. Art is has deep roots on both sides of my family; my grandfather was a portrait artist and craftsman. I have been an art teacher for adults and children for nearly 20 years. Originally from Atlanta, I attended Savannah College of Art and Design, studying Painting and Illustration. After college I moved to the Washington D.C. area where I taught elementary and middle school art in both the private and public school system. I taught children's and adult classes at the Loudoun Academy of the Arts as well as at the Martinsburg Art Centre, where I was Executive Director. I have shown my artwork in numerous galleries and juried art shows in the Northern Virginia and D.C. area, and completed nearly 200 commissioned portraits and works for clients.
I currently teach art at Sikes Elementary and I am fairly new to the area. I moved to Lakeland a couple of years ago to be closer to my parents who are now retired and have lived here for 16 years. In addition to teaching elementary art, I also teach evening and weekend classes for adults and teens at the Polk Museum of Art at Florida Southern College. I taught Spring Break camp this past March and I am looking forward to teaching summer camp!
Winter Haven CAMP Instructors
Katie Fernandez (Auburndale, Florida)
B.A., Psychology, University of South Florida; Art Teacher at Auburndale Elementary
Art has always been “my thing.” While I was in elementary school, I was allowed to be in a program for students that showed artistic promise, and that was it, art was everything. I moved to Polk County in 1992 and in high school at Auburndale High, I was known as “that art girl.” My most proud moments were painting the sets for the school play, designing the school play program, and winning the senior t-shirt design contest. I became an artist from that point on.
My ultimate goal was to become an art therapist so I majored in Psychology at the University of South Florida. After working in a corporate setting for many years, I went back to school and took a slew of art courses to gain my certificate from the Florida Department of Education to teach art. During my time at school, I won several awards for my artwork and the college purchased two of my pieces for their permanent collection.
Since then, I have had the amazing fortune of holding the art teacher position at Auburndale Central Elementary, and the opportunity to teach the After School Art program and Spring Break Art Camp at the Polk Museum of Art at Florida Southern College. It is all a total blast!
I am not just a teacher but also an artist. When I have time, I like to participate in local art festivals. My favorite medium to work with is graphite, but I tend to do a lot more acrylic painting these days. I try to know how to do a little bit of everything and teach what I know to others. Teaching children has been the most rewarding thing I have ever done in my life aside from being a mother. Inspiring young minds is my passion and I hope to do it for many years to come.
* Source: Posted Aug 29, 2012 . Rick Olivo. The Ledger, www.theledger.com
Natalie Helms (Winter Haven, Florida)
M.A. Art Education, University of Nebraska at Kearney; Art Teacher at Elbert Elementary
I knew I wanted to be a teacher on the first day of kindergarten! My interest in art began in my high school ceramics class – I loved manipulating the clay with my hands and experimenting with the medium. Being more of an abstract artist, I thrive for the opportunity to create the unexpected and provoke thought.
I carried this interest into college, receiving a Bachelor of Fine Arts at Georgia Southern University. In 2004 I studied drawing, painting, photography, and art history abroad in Bayeux, France for a summer. This experience was awe-inspiring, and the taste of European culture will forever affect the way I live my life. In 2012, I earned my Master of Arts in Art Education from the University of Nebraska at Kearney.
I began teaching elementary art in 2005 at Winston Elementary in Lakeland, and have been at Elbert Elementary School in Winter Haven for the past 10 years. While at Elbert, I have started a number of successful programs, including Elbert’s Art Club and a monthly rotating student exhibition at Richard’s Fine Coffee in downtown Winter Haven.
My journey with the Polk Museum of Art at Florida Southern College started in 2008, and I look forward to teaching every summer. I always feel rejuvenated and refreshed when the new school year begins after sharing lessons and techniques with colleagues throughout the summer. Working with such talented artists – teachers and campers alike – each summer is an inspiration year after year!