Updated: May 12, 2022
We are so excited that you joined us here in our virtual community. We at Learn for Life always aim to be inclusive and accessible to anyone, any age, any ability, anywhere. This blog is us opening our heart to you, so that you can be a part of our vision and engage and grow together. We want to engage with you outside of the live and pre-recorded online arts workshops. Learn for Life is an extension of Able ARTS Work who have 40 years expertise in applicable, accessible art and music therapy and education. Here, on the Learn for Life in Color blog, you will be able to learn new artistic and musical skills as well as self-care techniques.
We believe in the power of art and music in life and how it can contribute towards our overall wellness as well as the importance of professional development. There is joy in art, music, and overall creativity. As we welcome you into our community, we would like to introduce you to our instructors and therapists, to what we do, and why we are passionate about it.
Introducing Fabulous Instructors and Therapists
All of our instructors and therapists have years of experience in their field and are highly knowledgeable in their subject matter. In addition to the following, we also occasionally have guests lead special workshops.
Celine Q. Neri , BA
Celine completed her B.A. in Arts Education from California State University Fullerton and Long Beach in 2015 and has a single subject credential in art. She is a High School art teacher when she is not leading online art workshops at Learn for Life. She has worked with high school and elementary school students, migrant students, and adults with disabilities in day programs since 2014. Celine’s curriculum emphasizes skill building in drawing, painting, critique, as well as on different cultures and intersectional activism.
She is currently pursuing her Master’s in Education. Celine believes that art is not just about skill, it is about the meaning of the artwork itself and it should be enjoyed by everybody. Art is a skill that can be learned over time with practice.
Dani Hall, BA
Dani Hall has been an art instructor at Able Arts Work since February 2020. They have a B.A. in Linguistics from Boston University, double minoring in Visual Arts and Chinese. They are currently working on degrees in Psychology and Studio Arts at Long Beach City College with the intent to pursue a Master’s in Art Therapy. In Dani’s free time, they make illustrations and comics using pens, markers, watercolors, and the program Procreate on their iPad. They also have a fondness for ceramics, bookbinding, and other functional art. Dani draws inspiration from video games, their own experiences, and friendships for their art. Dani creates pre-recorded art lessons for the Learn for Life membership channel.
Randy McClure, BS
Randy is a graduate of Delaware State University where he studied music songwriting, production, and guitar performance. Randy facilitates music classes at Able ARTS Work programs in the Greater Los Angeles area. Randy is an accomplished guitarist and keyboardist, performing regularly across the state of California. He also produces music for a variety of independent artists as well as for TV, film, and other digital media.
Randy teaches live workshops for Learn for Life as well as creates pre-recorded lessons for the membership channel.
Stephanie Banderas, BA, COTA
Stephanie is an art instructor and certified occupational therapy assistant. She graduated with a B.A. in Arts Education and worked for Able ARTS Work for over eight years as an art instructor. She recently finished her AA and board-certification to become an occupational therapy assistant. Stephanie has over 8 years of experience teaching adaptive art, dance, and movement classes. In addition to teaching, Stephanie was also the ARTifact gallery coordinator at Able ARTS Work and has experience with community events and helping artists develop their portfolio and increase their professional skills. Stephanie loves being creative in all realms and enjoys guiding others in discovering their creativity.
Cassadi Kulak, BC-MT
Cassadi, originally from Florida, graduated from Shenandoah University in 2020. She moved to California for her internship at Able ARTS Work, and now works for them as a board-certified music therapist. While studying, she worked with a variety of communities, including an assisted living facility, in the memory care unit, and in schools. During her internship, she completed an auto-ethnographic case study exploring the impact of switching from in-person to remote Music Therapy services on a Music Therapy intern. This case study gave her an inside look not only at different types of Music Therapy practices, but at herself as well. Cassadi has a passion for music and loves seeing people meet their goals. Cassadi's favorite instrument to play is the guitar. She loves to sing jazz and oldies. Her favorite artist is "The Beatles”. She is always looking to learn more and dive deeper into the world of Music Therapy.
Jessica Dawson, BC-MT
Jessica Dawson, a board-certified music therapist with Able ARTS Work, has been with the company since 2019. She received her bachelor's degree in Music Therapy from California State University, Northridge in 2019. During her education, she worked as a music therapy intern for Professional Child Development Associates and provided individual and group music therapy sessions to children with developmental and intellectual disabilities. Her favorite activities are songwriting and sing-a-longs to client preferred music. Piano is her preferred instrument and she has been in love with it since she was 7 years old. In her down time, Jessica loves to explore the city of Los Angeles and go to Disneyland whenever she can. Jessica also creates pre-recorded content for the online learning membership subscription.
Katie Prodanovich, ATR-BC, LPCC 7087
Katie is a board-certified Art Therapist and clinical counselor who completed her graduate studies at Prescott College in Arizona. She has worked at Able ARTS Work for over 6 years, holding a variety of positions, and is currently the Program and Community Inclusion Manager for the Art Center adult day program. Katie enjoys working with mixed media, but also has experience with watercolor, acrylic, and oil paint; oil pastels; and graphite. She lets her emotions and the environment around her be her inspiration. Katie will often find interesting patterns or textures that spark her creativity.
Maria Alvarado, BC-MT, NMT
Maria has been a practicing Board Certified Music Therapist since 2019. She is a graduate from the Berklee College of Music in Boston, has an M.A. with a degree in Music Therapy and completed her clinical internship at the UCLA Mattel Children's Hospital in Los Angeles, California. Since then, she has worked as a music therapist at Able ARTS Work. Maria also co-leads a free peer support group for new music therapists once a month. She is a clinical fieldwork supervisor for music therapy students from California State University, Northridge and the Berklee College of Music. Maria has recently been certified in Neurologic Music Therapy. Maria's favorite instrument is the voice. She is inspired by kind people, good movies, yummy food, and of course, music! Maria creates pre-recorded music therapy content for online learning membership subscribers.
What do we do?
Through the Learn for Life online learning platform, we offer both live and pre-recorded art and music workshops. The goal of these online classes is for all of you to be able to virtually come together and learn new music and art techniques in an inclusive learning environment, and walk away with applicable skills, new projects, future ideas, and the opportunity to engaging with each other across the country in a creative, collaborative community.
We have had wonderful experiences in all of our online workshops, sharing and creating songs, learning how to be creative with homemade art supplies, exploring music production for beginners, therapeutic art projects, and so much more. We are constantly offering new virtual workshops. You can follow us on Facebook and Instagram (handles @ableartslearnforlife), to be able to keep us with all of these opportunities and discover what creative workshop is right for you.
At Learn for Life, we understand that life can be busy, which is why we offer pre-recorded online lessons. You can access a library of learning videos created by our instructors in the areas of art, music, and therapy, by signing up for a monthly membership. A new video is uploaded each week. There are beginner watercolor lessons, healing music therapy sessions, and the basics of synthesis and sound design, just to mention a handful of the available membership videos.
Why we are Passionate
We at Learn for Life love art, we love music, and we love serving our community. After reading about our incredible therapists and instructors, it should be evident that our hearts are in our work. We believe in the power of the arts and we believe that every who wants to, should have access to quality therapeutic and educational art and music.
Learn for Life in Color is an extension of the passion and fun that we share in our online classroom. We have future blog posts coming up about the benefits of music therapy and art therapy, connecting creativity and wellness, “how to”s with a variety of art and musical techniques, and so many more fun topics. We are here to share with you, celebrate with you, and grow with you. So, Welcome, again, to the Learn for Life in Color Community!
We would love to have you join us in our live workshops. You can view upcoming online courses here. And to stay up to date on new blog posts, new classes, and any other events, fill in the contact form so we can send you the latest information, and you can follow us on social media, on Facebook and Instagram(@ableartslearnforlife).
Sydney Davis-Campos is the Virtual Learning Coordinator at Able ARTS Work, Learn for Life. She has a B.A. in Studio Art and Art History. Sydney has worked at Able ARTS Work for almost 5 years where she has also held the positions of Art Instructor and an Assistant Program Manager.