Students in the Winthrop Arts Teen Drawing Class, led by Mariel Bell, are able to interact with one another virtually. While the Art Factory is closed due to COVID-19, the class has been set up via Discord. Shown here are examples of the students’ works of art.

Winthrop Arts offers many different art classes at its teaching facility, the Art Factory, located in Riverview. Classes for children (5 and up), teens (sixth grade and up) and adults are offered along with summer camp. While the Art Factory is currently closed due to COVID-19, it is still offering classes virtually either online or on YouTube.

One of the most exciting classes offered is the Teen Drawing Class led by art instructor Mariel Bell. The class is set up on Discord. Students will create accounts and log in on Saturdays from 3 to 4:30 p.m. They will be able to interact with one another and Bell and will learn about and create unique works of art.

Bell earned her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Smith College. She has worked at the Art Factory since August 2019. Bell’s Teen Drawing Class is normally offered on Tuesdays from 6 to 7:30 p.m. She did not want her students to miss out on creating art even though the Art Factory had to be closed, so she came up with the idea of holding the class online.

Bell said, “I like seeing my students grow in their artwork. I honestly feel like a proud mom when I see that they feel good about what they have created or that they are trying different things than they normally would. I want to teach them to expand their horizons.”

The idea behind the Teen Drawing Class is to provide older students with an opportunity to create and learn. If they want to learn how to put a portfolio together, Bell guides them in this effort.

Bell also gets to know her students so that she can tailor the lessons that will best suit them, saying, “I like to make the activities something that any of them can do. I ask questions of the students that allow me to familiarize myself with their styles and what they like to create. In that way, I can guide each student individually as well as the class as a whole.”

As the class is held virtually, Bell has had to adjust a bit.

“I cannot give them the materials to use, but I can still give advice and introduce them to new topics,” explained Bell.

If you have a student who is in sixth grade or higher who would like to join the Teen Drawing Class, please email kathy@winthroparts.org and they will get you started.

For more information on Winthrop Arts, please visit www.winthroparts.org.