Brushing Up!

On May 30 art educators from all over Tennessee came the Frist Art Museum to "Brush Up" on their painting skills and hear the inspirational Melody Weintraub-- they attended the 2018 Mid-State Summer TAEA Professional Development Conference!

A thank you and shout-out goes to my committee who helped so much: Beth Perthel and Jennifer Baltimore. 

Anne Henderson, director of education at the Frist, and her staff were most welcoming hosts. 

Painting was the focus with 3 choices for the day-long sessions: 

Enjoying Watercolor led by artist Dean Shelton. Dean, a member of the Tennessee Watercolor Society, shared with participants what makes his painting style such a success. So many strategies and tips were shared. Margaret Brown, an intuitive abstract painter, led a session helping participants "Go With Their Gut" and shared ideas on how to get students "unstuck." It was truly amazing to realize methods on how to accomplish successful paintings with several media and in turn be able to teach students as well!

Finally, artist/teacher Beth Affolter presented her realism techniques using texture with conference-goers while showing her process with gesso and using acrylics. She also demonstrated how she accomplishes many of her works with water-based oil paints as well. 

To begin the day, artist/teacher, Melody Weintraub, delivered a keynote sharing how important it is to connect with our students and that until we do this, learning really isn't occurring in the classroom. She showed us in many ways how we have to demonstrate we care for them. At one point, we were all encouraged to take a little ceramic heart from a basket and write down a student's name on the back-a student that kept coming to mind for us-as she spoke about challenging situations she encountered over her years of teaching. We all could relate to her stories! We were to place this heart somewhere to remind us. Melody began her talk with almost a disclaimer saying "Michelle introduced me as if I'm Oprah...", well, Melody, you made us laugh, tear up, you challenged us and you encouraged us...

Oprah's got nothing on you. 

TAEA Joins New Tennessee Arts Coalition ArtsEd TN

ArtsEd TN

TAEA has entered into a coalition with other Tennessee arts organizations to help keep an eye on our Tennessee legislature and their bills that effect arts education in the K-12 classroom.  This newly founded organization is called ArtsEd TN.  While TAEA President, I was at the first meeting on this new group and now I am on the Legislature Committee for ArtsEd TN.  I will be keeping TAEA members and all arts educators in the loop of all findings of this group. Right now the focus is K-12 arts classrooms, in the future we may add to this overview.

Your TAEA board debated this decision to join this coalition. Through our investigation we have decided it is important for us to participate with this group.  All the arts groups are represented and we want to be there with them. The CMA, music vendors, and other stakeholders are getting involved to help fund the firm we use to get us the reports.  As visual art educators, we are looking for our visual art vendors to help us with this worthy cause. 

Stephen Coleman, from the Tennessee Arts Academy Foundation, is the Chair of this coalition.  He comes from a music educator background, but is dedicated to supporting all arts education in Tennessee.  With his leadership, we have all the arts organizations pulling together for the good of the students in Tennessee.

With the new ESSA law, music and arts education are part of the well-rounded education and some Title money can be used to support arts education.  Hopefully, Tennessee legislators will see this as the foundation for new legislation in the future. Ensuring arts education for all Tennessee students. We are encouraged by banding together with our arts brothers and sisters to keep an eye on the Tennessee legislature’s activities that will effect arts education in our classrooms.

By participating in this coalition, TAEA receives regular reports on the activities in the legislature during their session.  I will put those updates on the TAEA website to let you see how your elected officials are supporting legislation that supports Arts Education. Please let me know at if you have any questions about ArtsEd TN or Tennessee arts education issues.




Janis Stivers Nunnally

TAEA Past President/State Conference Chair

ArtsEd TN Legislature Committee


How to Nominate

This year our nomination process is a little different but hopefully easier! We created a google form to fill out the original paper nomination form. Make sure you have all of the information you'll need for nominating, because there isn't a way to save your work and come back to it later! I suggest keeping the google form open until you're completely ready to submit! 


  • Legal name 
  • Address (city, state, zip) and cell number
  • Email
  • Membership division (elementary, middle, secondary, higher ed, etc.) 
  • NAEA/TAEA ID # *** All of our awards are for members only, except the Friend of TAEA.
  • Current Employer 
  • Position 
  • If retired, date of retirement
  • Work Address and phone number 
  • List of degrees held, institutions, and other education *
  • List of NAEA activities, leadership roles, and positions held at the national level*
  • List of NAEA activities, leadership roles, and positions held at the regional level*
  • List of state and local art education positions* 
  • List of leadership roles in other professional organizations*
  • List of teaching and/or related experiences* 

*The nominee can list this information out for you or you can get the information from their resume/vita 



  1. Tell your colleague you'd like to nominate them! Nominating someone does not have to be a surprise. In fact, you'll need their help to gather some of the information for the online nomination form as well as their resume/vita and a high-quality photo of them. Be sure to ask if they are a member of TAEA! Most of our awards are available only to TAEA members! 
  2. Write a letter of nomination stating why you feel this educator deserves to be recognized by TAEA. 
  3. Ask your nominee to send you an updated resume, a high-quality photo, a short bio, and some basic contact information for the online form. 
  4. Go online to
  5. Fill out the google form for the nomination. 
  6. At the end of the google form, you will be prompted to follow a link, where you can upload your nomination letter, your nominee's resume/vita, and the high quality photo. 
  7. Put your feet up and feel the glow that comes with nominating a deserving teacher for an award!

Deadline Extension for the TAEA "Connections" Exhibition

The deadline for the TAEA "Connections" Exhibition has been extended to April 20, 2018.

The TAEA "Connections" Exhibition is a members only art show that celebrates the talented art educators among TAEA members and their connection to our most talented students. "Connections" is held each summer at Belmont's Leu Visual Arts Building, where the teacher's artwork hangs along side the best student artwork from each of our Regional Student Art Exhibitions.

The Eighth Annual TAEA Member Art Exhibition is a juried show open to all current 2017-2018 TAEA members.  No more than two (2) entries per member may be entered and must be in the form of high-resolution JPGs (minimum 300 dpi). Please crop to show artwork only (crop out mat, etc.).  Please label each image with the full name of the artist, title, medium and size of the piece. For example: John Smith-“Sunrise”-painting-30x40. E-mail images to: and also to  (Please include phone number and mailing address with email submission!).  All entries must be received by April 20, 2018.

The “First Place” winner will receive an award of $200 and the artwork will be published in the TAEA Newsletter.  Additional cash awards for first, second, and third place in the exhibition will be awarded. Questions, please call Jim Dodson at 865-256-2580 or e-mail

Welcome New Board Members!

The board of the Tennessee Art Education Association had our first board meeting of the year on Saturday, January 20.  We would like to welcome our recently elected and appointed board members:

Melody Weintraub, President-elect

David Meade, Secretary

East TN Regional Chair, Phyllis Ball

Middle TN Regional Chair, Michelle Vinci

West TN Regional Chair, Molly Brown

Middle Division Chair, Elizabeth Perthel

Museum Division Chair, Christan Allen

Pre-Service Chair, Gabrielle Buck

Pre-Service Chair, Becca Toungette

From Right to Left: Melody Weintraub, David Meade, Phyllis Ball, Michelle Vinci, Molly Brown, Elizabeth Perthel, Christan Allen, Gabrielle Buck, Becca Toungette. 


If you'd like to learn more about our board and what we do, check our About page on the website. 

We always have a need for driven and passionate educators on our board! if you're interested in joining our board or just learning a little bit more about us, please contact our president, Kathy Dumlao at

TAEA Member Exhibition "Connections"

The Eighth Annual TAEA Member Art Exhibition - “Connections”, will feature artwork created by Tennessee art educators, offering teachers the opportunity to display their talents and be honored for their accomplishments in a professional environment.  The art educator exhibition also provides an excellent venue to show the relationship or “Connection” of exemplary student art with that of their instructors and the high quality programming that the TAA provides in its summer enrichment experiences.


The Eighth Annual TAEA Member Art Exhibition is a juried show open to all current 2017-2018 TAEA members.  No more than two (2) entries per member may be entered and must be in the form of high-resolution JPGs (minimum 300 dpi). Please crop to show artwork only (crop out mat, etc.).  Please label each image with the full name of the artist, title, medium and size of the piece. For example: John Smith-“Sunrise”-painting-30x40. E-mail images to: and also to  (Please include phone number and mailing address with email submission!).  All entries must be received by March 21, 2018.

You Just Have to Ask

By Donna Anderson

As we continue into the New Year, I’d like to share a little insight from a 40 year career as an art educator. Number one on my list is “It’s okay to ask for something!” I waited a long time before I had the courage to ask for something that I needed in my classroom. I thought I was being greedy or that they would say no. And sometimes they did say no. But, that’s okay. No, is an okay answer. If you don’t have something and the answer is no, you still don’t have it, so you’re even. If the answer is Yes, then you are ahead! You might be wondering who they are. My first Supervisor always called “them”, “the powers that be.”  “The powers that be” could be your Principal, your Supervisor, the School Board, the PTA at your school, or even the Junior League in your city. After I got over my fear of the “Powers that Be”, I realized that they were not my enemy and most of the time they tried to help me. I was very fortunate that I got many things for my classroom. I asked for Scholastic Art Magazines and the PTA helped me out for several years. I asked for a copy of “Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain” and did a workshop with some of the School Board members. I was surprised with a class set of the paperback books. Another time, the art department had some extra money and I got an email asking if I needed anything. I called the office and said I’d really like a class set of Printmaking books since I taught a lot of printmaking and didn’t really have many examples to show them. There wasn’t a high school textbook at that time, but there was a book about Printmaking that I suggested. I got a call several days later that no one else responded and they were going to buy me the class set of books. Yay!!!  As you know, I ended up writing a Printmaking textbook for high school, and yet, I never had a set in my classroom to use with my students. This is the year for textbook adoption for Art, Music and P.E. If you haven’t already, ask what is available for you. The next adoption for Art won’t be for 7 years, so now is the time to ask. You can go online and see the list of books available. There are about 11 different art books and about 100 different music books. Again, there is no Printmaking book on the list. I am working on a digital version right now, so maybe next time. That would be 7 years from now! I hope you decide to ask for what you need.

Voting Results!

Greetings to all the TAEA art educators during this holiday season!  As I am rolling off as your President, I wanted to take a moment to recap the TAEA activities this past year. 

TAEA has been updating by making the changes needed to make us relevant to all our members.  We have added online meetings for the board, so we can meet four times a year to keep up to date.  We have created committees that bring in non-board members as well as board members. Our website has been revamped to bring current information to our members, as well as letting members comment directly with questions.  Our Communications Committee has put us on Twitter, Instagram, and yes, we are still on Facebook. 

We had 3 Regional conferences, one in Memphis, one in Franklin, and one in Knoxville throughout the spring semester.  Please look for more information on this year Regional Conferences coming up soon!

I hope more of you put your students’ artwork  in TAEA’s Regional Student Art Exhibitions. Each region hosts a student exhibition where the students can earn cash and scholarship prizes. Check the website for more information.

During our annual Fall Professional Development Conference at MCA in Memphis, TN in October 2017, we voted yes on constitutional/bylaw changes.  The new version will be on our websites soon. We also voted on our Regional Chairs, Secretary, and President-Elect.  Here are our newly voted in Board Members:

President-Elect: Melody Weintraub, Memphis, TN

Secretary: David Meade, NE Tennessee

East Regional Chair: Phyllis Ball, Knoxville, TN

Middle Regional Chair: Michelle Vinci, Fairfield, TN

West Regional Chair: Molly Brown, Memphis, TN

As always, if you want to help us in anyway, you can contact your regional chairs, your divisional chairs, or anyone on the board.  Our emails are on the website also.

I also wanted to make sure all TAEA/NAEA members that NAEA has an election right now on Regional VP-Elects and President-Elect. All members should have received an email from NAEA with a specific voting number to use with your membership number to vote for NAEA SE Regional VP-Elect and NAEA President. Look in your email from December 1st…check spam folder!  Let your vote count on the National level also! This vote is over in early January.

Thank you for the privilege of leading TAEA these two years as your President.  I am on to my new role as Past President at the beginning of the year, which has the responsibility of organizing the next two Fall conferences. Next fall, November 1-3, 2018, we will be in Arrowmont in Gatlinburg!  Please make plans to attend!