Danica Loncar, Director of Art Works Art School
On Sunday, November 25th from 2-4 pm, Art Works Art School will celebrate our 22nd Annual Open House. Drop in for a Free Family Day event on the 3rd floor and make personalized gift wrap and cards for the holiday season! Tour the studios and facility and view the student art work on display! Faculty will be on hand to answer questions about our programs. Refreshments and snacks will be served in the Frank Hoff Library on the 2nd Floor. Free parking
- When did you open your business?
Twenty two years ago, in 1996, we opened a small art school to a mere handful of students in two small rooms over top a Pizza Pizza in Bloor West Village. Today, in our new home at 238 Jane Street, Art Works Art School teaches approximately 1000 registered students each year.
- What prompted you to open your own business?
As an OCAD graduate in Drawing and Painting, I was looking to open up a small teaching studio in the Junction or Bloor West area close to where I lived. I learned that a small struggling Bloor West Village operation was shutting its doors due to financial and administrative difficulties and bought the license, completely re-building and re-branding the studio into a full school. Due to our expansion and success, we eventually purchased a building to house the new facility and burgeoning student population. The current facility now has four studios on three floors, an art library, a gallery, retail art supplies, and a backyard mosaic garden. I began with teaching and have now moved onto administrative and curatorial duties, running Art Works Arts School successfully into its 22nd year of business with help from assistant director and mentoring coordinator Joana Gomes and an excellent faculty of 6-8 teachers year round, all trained and practicing professionals.
- Tell us a bit about your business (products, services). What makes you unique?
Art Works Art School is a community based art school that introduces art to students in a positive, creative and enriching environment. Programs include kinder kids, elementary and high school students, university students and adults. We offer varied art classes in portfolio preparation for regional arts program applicants, college and university applicants from all over the GTA spanning from central Toronto to Roncesvalles and High Park, Bloor West Village, Baby Point Gates into Etobicoke, Mississauga, North York and east to Scarborough. We offer classes for everyone, emphasizing our motto “Art for All Ages”, teaching students from the young age of three all the way up to seniors and whole family programming. You can select from the many types of visual arts classes available, including traditional and contemporary art making. These include mixed media art classes that broaden into new media, with stop-motion film animation, movie making, storybook illustration, design fundamentals, cartooning, classical animation, fashion, architecture and more. We currently offer full yearly scholarships and subsidies through our partnership with the Arts Access Fund and the Ontario Student Awards Foundation, both are registered, charitable scholarship funds. If you would like to find out more about how you can qualify, contact us by email or phone: for the Ontario Student Awards Foundation firstname.lastname@example.org or phone 416-766-0662; for the Arts Access Fund visit www.artsaccessfund.org.
- What is “a day in the life of a small business owner” like for you?
Very busy but rewarding. Being organized, developing and planning programming a year in advance is essential, sticking to timelines and meeting deadlines is crucial.
- What has been your biggest success as a small business owner?
Maintaining and balancing the quality of our programs with expansion and growth.
- What has been your biggest challenge as a small business owner?
Diversifying the selection of classes, services, and programs, to meet the demands of a changing market, demographic, and technological future, while maintaining our favourite traditional classes. Offering a balanced schedule of courses to suit the variety of interests, needs, and times for students of all ages.
Art Works Art School, 238 Jane Street, Toronto, Ont. M6S 3Z1
TEL: 416-766-0662 FAX: 416-766-8641