Colorado Springs Artist’s Online Course Takes Students to Another Country – No Travel Required | North Springs Edition

Kristy Kensinger’s online art classes for adults transport her students to another country to explore, learn and make art, all without flying.

During his Art Passports classes, Kensinger and his students can immerse themselves in the art and culture of another country even when they cannot travel abroad. They discover the textiles, patterns, cuisine, traditions, craftsmen, flora, fauna, landscape and architecture of a country. Then they create art inspired by what they have learned.

“[The courses] filled the void for me and for others when you can’t travel – an outlet where they could explore a place and once they travel to find out a little more about the place, ”Kensinger said.

The idea for Kensinger’s Art Passports classes came from school to his children’s homes during the pandemic.

“It started with my kids. We study one country a month, work together on art or craft projects, and cook a country meal, ”said Kensinger, a Cheyenne area resident who also exhibits her art at the G44 Gallery in Colorado Springs. “That’s how my first classes started – this concept of an artistic passport where we traveled to a new country through art.”

Kensinger studied fine arts and art history at the University of Colorado at Boulder and worked as a graphic designer until January 2020, when she quit her job to return to painting.

“I hit a wall in my job and had to make a change,” she said. “I always wanted to come back to [art.]”

When the pandemic hit, she and others needed an outlet. Teaching has become a place to connect with people all over the world, be part of something, learn and grow.

Kensinger created his first course – Art Passports to Mexico – last December. In April, she published Art Passports in Morocco and plans to publish three more Art Passports courses this year.

She’s designed her classes to be for adults of all skill levels – from beginners to seasoned artists. So far, its students have come from all over the United States and around the world, including Colombia, Greece, India, and Australia.

“I think making that connection online is so wonderful, and I’ve connected with so many more people than I ever would have if there was only one course here,” said Kensinger.

Kensinger’s classes are imbued with his love of art history, travel, and the gathering and sharing of resources.

“Travel has always been so precious to me – all the lessons I’ve learned with it. I really wanted to combine that in the lessons, ”she said. “I am passionate about the stories behind the artist. How their environment affects their work. How it shapes their ideas. While teaching, I really want to connect and grow with the students, and I’m still learning on my own.

Kensinger also creates courses for other artist platforms, including courses in portraits, landscapes and natural pigments. Currently, his Day in Provence course is available on artist Renee Mueller website,

According to Kensinger, online art classes have a variety of benefits, including the flexibility to work at your own pace without requiring travel, access to more teachers, and an affordable price.

“You can get a little something both live and online. Online – you learn the skills and you don’t have to go to school every week. You can pay a lot less and get a lot of information, ”Kensinger said. “People can find the teacher who really resonates with them.”

Her students have formed a rich community in the private Facebook groups that she hosts for each class. They post photos of their work, encourage each other and share articles and tips about the countries they study, according to Kensinger.

“My favorite part is seeing the art created from the course – how the artist takes my lesson and appropriates her works with her style and experience,” she said. “This is where I think it’s so special – what they come up with, their idea and their perspective.”

Kensinger hopes to translate the lessons she has learned from her travels into her classes, paying attention to details and the people around her, appreciating experiences more than things, and seeing the similarities in people wherever you go. be in the world.

“I’ve learned invaluable lessons from travel over the years,” Kensinger said. “If we go our own way by being more open to others and more accepting of ourselves, that in itself is an invaluable lesson.”

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