I’ve been a teacher all my life and some of my greatest memories are when a former student of mine, lets me know what they are doing with what I taught them.  You probably don’t remember, but several years ago, my wife, Bernice, and I took a colored pencil class from you in Sewickley. We were completely new to colored pencil but were thrilled with what you taught us — the secrets… I have you to thank for showing me the way and getting started on an avocation I love… I just wanted you to know what a good teacher you are.


I have taken several onetime classes from Elaine and was blown away by how easy she made it for me to do. I barely passed my art classes in school and was never happy with my work. But Elaine made it fun and actually taught me some skills and encouraged my creativity! I actually like some of my work now and want to do more to build on my skills. She is a great teacher and has a way of pulling some talent out of me. She uses a lot of representations in her own artwork that I relate to. She uses art to bring out her heart and soul. I have learned so much about art from her and have found a new understanding and appreciation for art in general.


I credit Elaine’s ‘painting with 6 colors’ classes with helping me to NOT make mud. Before using this approach, everything I painted ended up looking muddy. I had that ‘aha’ moment when I realized each color can have a warm or a cool bias.


Elaine has been so inspiring as an instructor as she is always encouraging and guiding me to do better than I thought I was capable of. She is generous with her knowledge of techniques and art supplies, and constructive (and kind) with her critiques. I always feel a camaraderie with the other students in her classes because she encourages us to share our work with each other.


Elaine is a fantastic artist. During the pandemic she was very innovative in teaching her classes at local parks or the beaches. We are delighted to have her teach for the First Coast Cultural Center! 

DONNA GUZZO President and Executive Director

Elaine Bergstrom is a true professional to learn from and a lovely person to know. Her passion for art and artists keeps me signing up for her classes, one after another. I trust her critiques and value her input because they come from deep teaching experience as well as current involvement in making her own art. Good stuff all around!