The Compass Atelier with Glen Kessler


The Compass Atelier is home to the DMV’s best art classes! Beginners and veteran artists alike are finding The Compass Atelier THE place to start their artistic journeys or take their artistic learning to the next level!! Beginners find our classes ideal for establishing strong foundational skills, while veteran artists are constantly challenged by new projects and world-renowned artists.

  • We offer WEEKLY CLASSES available seasonally throughout the year. 
  • Our VISITING ARTIST WORKSHOPS bring in some of the world’s best artists and teachers for inspiring lectures and workshops.
  • Our STUDY ABROAD programs allow you to learn from art and culture around the world.
  • And our revolutionary MASTER ARTIST PROGRAM teaches students everything they need to know to become professional artists.

What are you waiting for? Come visit our gorgeous classroom located within the robust ARTISTS & MAKERS STUDIOS ART CENTER in Rockville, MD.

For more information on all this and more visit or follow us on most every social media platform.

Painting Classes with Resident Artist Cathy Hirsh

Workshops with Cathy – Try something new and also make faster progress.  For beginning and intermediate artists or experienced artists new to the topic area.

QuickStart to Painting with Media Exploration – full-day class on fundamentals, sketching, and tools/techniques. Exercises with media reinforce concepts and help students decide what to explore further. $150 supplies and “takeaway” tools included.

JumpStart Watercolor Workshop – 6 hours of technique demonstration and student practice.  $125 all supplies included.

QuickStart to Abstract Painting – full day class covering techniques to create and evaluate abstract paintings. Students will create paintings using three different approaches. $150 all supplies included.

QuickStart to Mixed Media – full day class on approaches and materials used for mixed media art. Techniques in collage, layering, and mark-making will be explored while students create 2 mixed media pieces. $180 all supplies included.

QuickStart to Flower Painting – full day class exploring different flower structures and methods to paint them, individually and in bouquets. Students bring the media, supports, and tools of their choice. $150

Weekly classes also available depending upon demand. for more information.


Workshop Flyer for Cathy Hirsh

Pastel with Artist Jean Hirons

Jean Hirons is a painterly realist using soft pastel to create luminous landscapes. A native of New England, Hirons often features its beautiful architecture in her paintings, or the farms of the Mid-Atlantic, where she now resides. 

Hirons is a signature member of the Pastel Society of America and a member of the Master Circle of the International Association of Pastel Societies. She also holds signature membership in the Pastel Painters Society of Cape Cod and the Maryland Pastel Society. Her work has been included in many national and international juried shows and her paintings are internationally collected.

In addition to her painting, Hirons is an avid teacher and promoter of the medium. She taught at Montgomery College in Rockville, MD from 2005 to 2012 and now teaches at Artists & Makers Studios 2 in Rockville. In 2012, she published her highly-acclaimed book Finding Your Style in Pastel. She continues to share her explorations in pastel in her blog Finding My Style.

Hirons holds a BFA from Marietta College and a masters in library science from the University of Rhode Island. She retired from an award-winning career at the Library of Congress in 2003 to pursue pastel painting full time. Since 2001, she has studied with many of the major pastel landscape painters in the U.S. 

 Sign up for Jean’s Classes

Photography Workshops with Artist Elody Crimi

Elody is currently offering 3 exciting workshops in Studio 203 at Artists and Makers 2.  Join her at the Smartphone Imagery Workshop  to learn how to take great photos with your Smartphone (along with an overview of basic and advanced functions of your phone, a demo of various apps, how to edit your photos, the various peripherals available, social media, printing, etc.)

Intro to Digital Basics Workshops. In this workshop you will learn the basic fundamentals of digital photography to give you a better control of the picture-taking process  Topics include: camera controls, camera modes, metering modes, ISO sensitivity, exposure (shutter speed and aperature), resolution, and essential composition skills.  This is a hands-on workshop, with an opportunity to shoot, using the techniques you learn in class.

And for the advanced photography student, an all-day HDR Photography workshops (with field trip) are offered.  Students enjoy a full day of HDR instruction, shooting, processing and discussion.

Go to: for further information and to register for these workshops.  Elody can be reached at: or 571-274-2051.

The Art of Dance and Movement with Shadiyah

Belly Dance and World Culture Fitness Classes

Shadiyah presents DANCE CLASSES at Rockville’s newest and fastest growing art complex, Artists & Makers Studios!

NOW is a great time to indulge in the beauty and health benefits of Middle Eastern dance!

Join me for a journey of Middle Eastern and World dance styles, music and movement celebrating the diversity of dance and fitness from around the globe and inspired by rotating art exhibits in the gallery at Artists & Makers Studios.

Each class includes a yoga warm up & cool down, while in between increasing your heart rate and having FUN as we sweat, glisten and glow to authentic and exotic rhythms from around the world! You’ll have so much fun you’ll forget there are so many health benefits to dancing!

No dance experience required and all fitness levels welcome! Yes these classes are NOT just for women either! ALL are welcome!

Message me at: for payment information, or call me with any questions at 301.633.9446! Let’s DANCE! Have FUN! Get FIT!


Encaustic Workshops with Resident Artist Angela White

Encaustic Painting Workshop
Workshop can be taken for one or two days

Encaustic Painting Workshop

Workshop can be taken for one or two days

What is covered:
This workshop is for some who have little familiarity and some who have experienced working with the medium, but seek to refine their skills. Demonstrations will be followed by independent working time.

Diversity of learning is covered, including the basic materials and techniques, safety issues and discussions of supports, grounds, layering, scraping, fusing, transparencies, collage, image transfer, including combination with oil and other media.

What is included:
The use of encaustic equipment is included; heated palettes, heat guns & torches.
Required materials list:

Bring panels/supports to work on: 6”x6”, 8”x8”, 8”x10”-luan, pine, birch or other types of plywood.  You may glue paper on them or gesso them ahead of time.  You may also like to bring paper to do some mono printmaking.
Bring bristle brushes or sable; no synthetic as they will burn or melt.

Bring your favorite colors of encaustic paint,  which can be purchased at most area art stores or online.

Rags or paper towels.

Suggested materials list: mark making tools (printmaking, sculpture, ceramic, dental, culinary, burnishers, scrapers, stamps, scribes).

Images for transferring: photocopies, drawings or anything you would like to experiment with.

Workshop may be taken for one or two days.  Group workshop fee for two days is $395 total.  Private lessons in studio are $60 an hour.

To register please contact:
Angela White


Painting with Paola Luther

I love teaching art to children and adults. As a mother of 3 children I understand how to work with children and as a professional that had a previous career in the corporate world I am able to have fruitful discussions with adults about their art goals. I take each project as a collaborative project.

I teach all mediums to anyone interested in art whether they are beginners or advanced students. Classes are held in my art studio located at Artists and Makers in Rockville, Maryland.

I teach individually because I found that is the best way to let each artist grow and express themselves according to their own individuality.

Usual meetings are 1.5 to 2 hours once per week. Contact me for any questions at

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