top of page

About Me

26341_155.jpg

I am an artist and an art educator. I live in Utah with my husband and three cats. I completed my Art Education BA degree in 2017 and am currently teaching junior high school art and shop while working on my Master's degree in Visual Communication Design. At any given time, you may find me browsing Netflix, reading a book, or drawing in my sketchbook. I love all forms of art, but my current favorites are charcoal, watercolor, and bookbinding. For art prints, handbound books, and 3D printed objects, visit nataliegarffart.square.site.

Teaching Philosophy

At the core of my teaching philosophy is the belief that education is a collaborative journey, where both teacher and students engage in a mutual exchange of knowledge and insights. This approach not only enriches the learning experience but also cultivates a classroom atmosphere where creativity, problem-solving, and innovation thrive. In my practice, I prioritize not just the teaching of art skills, but also mentoring students in ways that prepare them for life's challenges, encouraging them to apply their learning beyond the confines of the classroom.

My dedication to teaching art transcends the conventional; I view art as a pivotal means of exploring and understanding other subjects. Whether it's connecting historical contexts through ancient artworks or applying geometric principles in visual design, my goal is to equip students with the ability to see the interconnectedness of their knowledge. This interdisciplinary approach not only enhances students' appreciation for art but also fosters a more holistic educational experience.

In my instructional methods, I balance between demonstrating essential skills and encouraging independent exploration and discovery. This is evident in how I structure my lessons, from basic techniques in beginning art classes to more sophisticated concepts in advanced courses. For example, in a portraiture lesson, I not only teach the fundamentals of drawing but also create opportunities for students to apply and refine these skills through peer interaction. This hands-on approach ensures that students are not just passive recipients of knowledge but active participants in their learning journey.

Assessment in my classes is multifaceted, incorporating pre-assessments, sketchbook checks, and project critiques to gauge student progress comprehensively. This approach allows me to tailor my instruction to meet the evolving needs of my students while providing them with continuous feedback for improvement.

Finally, continuous professional development is crucial to my practice. I actively seek opportunities to experiment with new teaching strategies and collaborate with colleagues across disciplines. This openness to innovation and shared learning has significantly enriched my teaching repertoire, enabling me to offer an engaging and effective art education.

Curriculum Vitae

Qualifications

2024-Present

Visual Communication Design MA

Liberty University

Master's program in Visual Communication Design, leads into MFA in Graphic Design.

  • Courses in contemporary art history, graphic design, publication, and typography.

  • Expected conferment January 2025

2017-Present

Professional Utah Teaching License

Secondary Teaching License

  • Visual Arts endorsement K-12

  • Technology endorsement 7-12

  • Adobe Level 1 and Level 2 Creative Cloud Educator Certificate

2013-2017

Art Education BA
Brigham Young University

Art Education degree from Brigham Young University, learning art skills, classroom management, and teaching methods. 

  • Earned a 3.54 GPA while working part-time

  • Member of NAEA, BYU Student Chapter

Teaching Experience

2018-Present

Art Teacher
Granite School District

  • Teaching a wide variety of classes - Art Foundations, 2D Art, 3D Art, Ceramics, Yearbook, Construction Technology, Robotics Technology, and College and Career Awareness

  • Piloting the ceramics program at Hunter Jr. High

  • Assisting in the creation of district-level proficiency scales for Robotics Technology

  • Participating in the faculty morale committee

  • Maintaining the school workshop

  • Member of NAEA and UAEA

  • Member of UEA and GEA

2022-Present

Private Violin Teacher

Teaching violin techniques and basic music theory to students ages 8 and older

January 2018 - May 2018

Substitute Teacher

Kelly Educational Staffing

Substituting for multiple subject areas for all grade levels in Alpine, Wasatch, Provo, and Nebo School Districts

Media Experience

While working on my degree, I had exposure to many different mediums and styles of artwork. I focused more on some mediums than others, but I am comfortable working in most.

Medium Experience

  • 2D Mediums: Watercolor, acrylic, and oil paints; charcoal, pastel, and graphite; printmaking techniques; film photography and processing, digital photography; and digital media programs including Adobe Creative Suite, Autodesk Suite, and Corel

  • 3D Mediums: Ceramic sculpture and pottery; some woodworking; some metalwork; and bookbinding

Activities

February 2022 - Present

August 2023

June 2023

September 2020

August 2020

December 2019

June 2019

May 2018

January - March 2018

April 2016

March 2015

Magna Air Stream Orchestra - Principal Violinist

Magna Main Street Arts Festival - Artist Vendor

Penny Lane Market - Artist Vendor

Beehive Bazaar - Artist Vendor

Craft Lake City - Virtual Artist Vendor

Beehive Bazaar - Artist Vendor

Americana Arts Festival - Artist Vendor

RAW Artists - Artist Exhibitor and Vendor

Box Show - "Untitled," bookbinding

Mayhew Student Art Show - "Untitled," oil painting

Voices of Courage - "Courage to Be," photograph

bottom of page