Our Jacksonville, FL - Fruit Cove Painting with a Twist Artists
I’ve been loving art as far as I can remember and knew I wanted to be an artist someday.
I doubled majored in Art and Journalism at Rutgers University. After a quick stint at a fine and commercial art company in Philadelphia, I began my 19 year career at a Fortune 500 company as manager of Creative Services. In 1996 our family moved to Florida because of a great job opportunity for my husband Jim. We moved our two amazing kids and the doggie to the Fruit Cove area and I’ve lived here ever since. I stumbled into a job at Durbin Creek Elementary school that needed an art teach to take over an extended maternity leave. I went back to school to earn my Florida teaching Certificate in Art and worked 5 years job-sharing as an art teacher. In 2010 I began teaching fine art in various mediums with adults and senior citizens. Then Painting with a Twist Opened in 2014 and it sounded like the perfect place to enjoy teaching, painting and people! It has become what I call “my most fun job EVER!” My husband and I bought the studio in September of 2016. Now that the kids are moved out and Jim has retired, we decided to sell the studio in 2021 so we could travel more. Libbi and Leslie were the perfect new owners with backgrounds in art, teaching and business! I still LOVE to teach here and hope to continue to help make this studio be THE place in Jacksonville for the best FUN ART experience.
Ciao, I’m Jake. I was born in Long Island New York and moved to Florida when I was just 6 years old. As far back I can remember, I had the dream to become an artist of all mediums. When I was younger I was told by others that I should have more practical goals in life instead of becoming the creative person I always wanted to be. Becoming the outgoing and passionate self I am now was not easy. Eventually high school creeps along and I soon see art as a way to take life’s ups and downs and visualize them into physical representations that I can look back and learn from. My goal was to share that same idea with others. I never gave up on my dream! I found a love for graphic design and painting - two mediums that are very different entities. I wanted my passion for art to become my lifestyle and livelihood. At the end of the day that is what makes me smile. With freelance graphic design jobs filling in the first half of my art dream, I still needed to find the fine arts, hands-on component. That’s when I found PWAT! I work at Painting with a Twist with a major goal in mind - to support and create new artists in this community. Everyone deserves to be seen for who they are. That is why I pride myself in making sure others see exactly that through their art. If you see me in the studio, feel free to sign my apron. I believe everyone I teach or assist at Painting with a Twist is a brilliant artist. Those signatures will remind me of my goal to inspire others in art and they will stay with me throughout my career at Painting with a Twist.
Jason is currently a rising high school senior who hopes to attend SCAD and receive his BFA in animation or illustration. He's had a passion for all things artistic as long as he can remember, including everything from drawing to dancing! He hopes to one day inspire individuals all around the world with his art. Jason would love to have the opportunity to paint with you!
Juliana Gutknecht is soon to graduate from Creekside High School Class of 2021. As a testament of her artistic talents, she was accepted at two prestigious art schools, both SCAD and Ringling College of Art and Design but has decided to attend the University of South Florida in the fall. Her favorite creatures are dragons and she can wiggle her ears. She has loved art since she was little but has recently found acrylic painting to be one of her favorite mediums. Juliana hopes to see you in one of her classes soon!
Hi my name is Julie and I’m am so excited to be working at PWAT! I moved from Ohio to Florida when I was eight years old. Growing up my favorite classes were Art and Music. I have a Bachelor of Science in Fashion Merchandising and a Minor in Visual Communications from Florida State University. Go Noles! I have experienced many forms of art: Painting, drawing, batik, weaving and photography. I have lived in Jacksonville since 1985 and raised both my children in St. Johns County. I loved being a band and soccer mom too.
I have been a Sales Manager for Major Corporations and family owned businesses. I was also a Jazzercise Franchise Owner/ Instructor and a Receptionist for a Music Studio. I am actively involved with the West Point Parents Club of NE Florida and served as Vice President for Five years. I spend my free time painting, reading at the beach, playing tennis, and hiking in the North Carolina Mountains. Fun facts you don’t know about me?
Come paint with me and find out!
Artist Naseeha Aleem is originally from Long Island, New York but is a Floridian at heart. She is currently loving her studying at the University of Florida hoping to attain degrees in Criminology and Philosophy- Go gators!!! She enjoys graphic design and sports like lacrosse and surfing in her free time. The biggest highlight in her young adult life has been working at PWAT since she was 15. Being an artist at this studio has enabled her to meet wonderful and creative people. While learning from several talented artists and her boss, her love for art has grown immensely since she picked up the hobby. She very much enjoys all aspects of art, especially helping others find and build their passion for it (especially new newbies!!!)- Her biggest goal is to spread positivity through life and teaching art, and become a lawyer in a field that is exhilarating to her.
My name is Natalia Pacheco; born in Puerto Rico and raised in the Dominican Republic. Yes! I lived where you vacation. I'm currently a teacher at San Jose Academy in Jacksonville, Florida. I have taught various courses of Social Studies and Geography (6th -12th grade) in International K-12 School settings with the use of various curriculums. I have a Bachelor in Interior Design with a minor in Architecture from SCAD, Savannah College of Art and Design. Art has always been my passion; my background in Art and Architecture enables me to implement and use creative approaches to teaching courses of history that can at times be mundane if student’s attention is not captured. I have taught drawing elective classes and I have facilitated private art/drawing classes for students that wish to create a portfolio for college as well guide them through this stage in their lives. I have also completed a PGCE, Post Graduate Certificate in Education, with a concentration in TESOL and additional credits in History & Geography to meet teaching qualifications for History. I am currently completing a Masters in Education with a concentration in Technology Integration, I have my temporary teaching certificate for Dual Florida State K-12 Certification in Art and Social Science from 6-12, and I am also completing requirements for teaching Spanish K-12. Si! Hablo Español. As you can see Education was not my first career choice but it has been my life vocation and PRIDE. I have been teaching for over ten years and my plan is to grow with every experience as well as to learn as much as I can to be a great teacher for my students. PWAT has been perfect for me because it combines both into one positive environment and feed my soul by allowing me to express my creativity and helping others. I’m a Husky Mom and I work hard to give a good life to my Fur babies.
With a passion for creativity, Zenna has been drawn to the world of art since she was first able to pick up a crayon. Sketching her way through school, she obtained degrees in business and psychology but something was still missing...After several years she ended up leaving the office world behind so she could turn her love for creativity into a career. She worked for 3 years with Mad Science of Jacksonville where she provided a fun interactive learning experience for kids and their parents honing her live, on stage skills and creating slime, rockets and dry ice. Her love of art helped create her online store and landed her a job as an instructor at Painting with a Twist helping others find their inner Bob Ross!