Meet our new Arts Institute Instructor, Rachel Downs!

We are excited to have Free State High School’s painting and drawing teacher, Rachel Downs, teaching two classes here at the Arts Center this summer! Rachel received an MFA in Painting and Drawing from New Mexico State University and an MAE from KU. In addition to Free State High School, she has also taught at Emporia State University and New Mexico State University.  


“A competent art education should focus on individual attention, rich content, and meaningful experiences. Curriculum should be designed to enhance and inspire the individual processes of students, instigate thought provoking inquiries, and redefine culture and history through an artistic lens. I believe that a meaningful art education experience enhances one’s process in constructing or defining a personal identity. I believe that if you pry the dirt from your veins you can make art with mud.”

– Rachel Downs

The first class that Rachel will offer this summer is A Process from June 4th through June 8th, 1:00-4:00 pm. In this class, 6th-12th graders will go from sketch to final artwork using visual journaling, thumbnails, and their own vision.

Rachel will also teach a class called Beyond Collage from June 18th until June 22nd, 1:00-4:00 pm. Middle school and high school students will explore in-depth techniques to create layered, meaningful, and dynamic artworks based on their personal history.

Don’t miss the chance to learn from this talented art instructor this summer. These offerings are only two of the fifty classes for middle and high schoolers offered this summer – enroll today!