Trained by legendary acting teacher Sanford Meisner, Christy English Wioncek opened the Bay Area Acting Studio to teach a new generation of actors how to—in the words of her mentor—"live truthfully under imaginary circumstances." Her stable of equally Meisner-steeped instructors leads classes including introductory adult courses, intensive courses for working thespians, and children's classes for young'uns looking to break into the industry early or convince babysitters they've been diagnosed with a life-threatening ice-cream deficiency.
Bearing the titles of Master of Photography and Photographic Craftsman from Professional Photographers of America, David and Ally McKay embody the keen vision and aesthetic prowess that separated good photographers from great ones. They share these skills during classes at McKay Photography Academy, where they train eyes, fingers, and imaginations to work in tandem as a snapshooting dream machine. Their classes help aspiring photographers progress from neophytes to seasoned pros. When not busy instructing the next generation of shutterbugs, David and Ally also devise photo safaris, which send small teams of photographers to capture shots of famed landmarks including San Francisco's Golden Gate Bridge; the Lincoln Memorial of Washington, DC; or Yosemite's 60-foot statue of Yogi Bear.
What services does your business offer and what makes your business stand out from the competition?
My core principles have always been: enthusiasm, strong fundamentals, and preparedness for real-world musical situations. I utilize knowledge from my classical, formal training and my ten years of professional playing to pass on the tradition of drumming in a dynamic and dynamic and meaningful way.
Do you provide any materials? What should your students expect to bring?
My studio is set-up with a drum kits, mallet instruments (bells, xylophone), all manner of small percussion, practice pads, a piano, and my music library. Students should bring a pair of sticks and blank notebook to the first lesson.
What was the inspiration to start or run this business?
Teaching has always been something I have been passionate about. Every since I graduated with a degree in music I been dedicated to music education Currently I run a private studio, coach percussion for the Peninsula Youth Orchestra, and run a Steel Drum Ensemble for North Shoreview Montessori.
What do you love most about your job?
I really enjoy interacting with students of varying age (my youngest student is in 2nd grade and my oldest is in his 60's!), getting to know them through music, having fun, and seeing their musical growth.
The artists at Wine and Canvas awaken their students’ inner Rembrandts and Van Goghs with classes that pair a featured painting with specialty cocktails and wines. The mobile studio’s monthly calendar includes themed classes in which instructors expound on the nuances of painting Parisian street lamps, Japanese flowers, or Venetian cityscapes. The master painters—many of them local artists—provide step-by-step instructions while students mimic each stroke and periodically dip their brushes into glasses filled with crimson cabernet. Each of the studio’s various drink-friendly venues boasts a specialty libation selected to incite creativity or conversations with fellow painters. When the artistic frenzy concludes, students return home with a finished masterpiece large enough to conceal any wall safe or mirror portal.
Fine-art photographers Rod and Robin Deutschamnn founded In Focus Learning Center on a simple premise: a photo's quality depends on lighting, focus, and the photographer's vision. At In Focus Learning Center, they emphasize these keys to quality, downplaying high-tech gear and post-shoot editing. In their classes and symposiums, the shutterbugs focus on "manual photography," the art of manipulating a digital camera's settings to suit the desired shot—which could be a landscape, an infrared image, or an action shot of a baby on its first high-speed chase.