Hot Shops Instructors

Check out the AMAZING instructors we have lined up for the Hot Shops RETREAT!  There is so much talent, creativity and energy in this group of amazing creatives!   Make sure to read their bios to get a little opportunity to “meet” them before your classes.

Amy loves hiking, fresh sour cream donuts, & creating with color! While stitching & punch needling, Amy uses thread to paint, doodle, & letter – but only when it’s fun! Whilst carving, she uses a little knife to create the negative reverse images that she imagines to be very colorful. She embraces imperfectly beautiful stitches and is known not only as a teacher, but for her Hometown Stampler designs that utilize hand carved stamps! She lives in Kansas, with her husband & three teens, but Texas was home for 22 years. Her favorite way to take a picture is with a big smile & her arms spread wide!

For most of the past nine years, Amy & her family have loved & learned from 29 foster children who will always have a special place in their hearts.

Amy creates & shares & advocates on IG/FB at @imperfectlybeautifulus.

Angela Szelag
My journey to jewelry design, was not a direct path. I worked in graphic design, marketing and in television advertising sales for many years. To be honest, jewelry making was never on my radar of dreams, however it was always a curiosity of mine. Little did I know that one TV sales call at a local jewelry store could change the course of my life. That’s when I saw a sign in his window for silversmith classes. I knew I had to sign up. In September of 2014, I took my first silversmith workshop. I fell in love with the entire process of creating jewelry. I enjoyed the way the saw felt in my hand while cutting silver, covering my hand with sparkling silver dust. Watched with intrigue as the silver would heat up and the solder would run, joining two pieces into one. I became fascinated. I was hooked. I couldn’t believe it! I finally found my passion! I wanted to be a jewelry designer.

Angela can be found creating in Studio 220 – Tranquil Sky Jewelry at the Hot Shops Art Center in Omaha.

Carol DeBuse
I have taught art on all levels and worked in all media. I am in Studio 106 at the Hot Shops where I concentrate on jewelry design and ceramic sculpture. Making hand-made journals has been an interest of mine as well.

Caroline Schmitz
As a retired art educator, I have been fortunate to learn and teach in several mediums. Working with fiber is one of my favorites as well as creating in clay and figure drawing. My artwork often combines different techniques and materials. I have shared a studio at the Hot Shops Art Center, Studio 106, for almost 20 years and love discussing and inspiring creative ideas with others.

Cindi Brusse
I began sewing and crafting with my mom in elementary school. Sewing became a life-long passion which continues today with making clothing, accessories and home decor. I have also been teaching sewing privately and to classes for over 20 years. In 2019 I discovered paper crafting and gelatin plate printing. And have not stopped growing and learning as a print artist since. I taught my first Gelli plate printing class in 2021 and look forward to teaching many more. I believe that everyone is creative and can make beautiful art.

Connie Gildersleeve
Connie Gildersleeve is the Owner/Creative Director of Connie Lea Creative (aka the Just Get Sh!t Done Girl!) Connie is both a Gallup Certified CliftonStrengths Coach and Brave Girls Certified Soul Restoration Instructor. With her mad love affair with all things vintage and paper, she strives to incorporate expressions of art and motivation in all of her workshops.

Ina Ohnmeiss
The Creation of an Artist.

I started out doing art that made me happy, be it crocheting, quilting, paper crafts and now mandala painting and fluid pour art. My journey has been one of decades of change and with lots of determination and focus the past 4 years.

When I started this journey to being an Artist, I was working full time, doing art shows and as I’m fond of calling it playing with paint and dots. I woke up one morning and decided this is the path I want to follow, my dream. So goal setting became a priority in that I would have a path to follow to accomplish my dream of becoming an artist. With the encouragement of my husband and best friend Myers, my journey begins…..

Not once had I ever considered that I could make a living being an artist. I will say you have to be business savvy and have an entrepreneurial spirit. Art can be a hard product to sell, you need to create a want/need and make the person visualize a calming peaceful feeling. I strive to make affordable art so everyone can enjoy making a purchase of a piece that makes them light up with joy and it gives them peace knowing they have purchased an “original” piece of art.

I enjoy teaching and have expanded that service this year. Meeting new people of all ages gives me joy, to help them create their art, by giving them the knowledge and desire to explore the process. But the crux of art is making the art and that is my passion. Creating with each dot or flow of the paint a new piece is created and I never know what the out come will be.

Mandala what is that, it is a circular design symbolizing the notion that life is never ending. Mandalas have symbolized my journey through life and it tells my story of where I have traveled through the colors I have chosen for the mandala or fluid pour.

This is who I am.

Jackie Jacober
Jackie is a local artist with a degree in both Studio Art and Art Education. She has 20+ years in leading class rooms and workshops.

Jackie also holds a certificate for Trauma-Informed Expressive Arts Level One from the Trauma-Informed Practices and Expressive Arts Therapy Institute. ​ Jackie’s workshops incorporate all of five senses. Her purpose is to bring consciousness into creativity. Art is used to keep our spirit feeling fully alive. We don’t need special skills or tools, we are that special magic.

Kelli Sweet
Exploring is the general theme for all of artist Kelli Sweet’s creativity as she explores color, texture, patterns or history with vintage inspired treasures.   As Degrees by Kelli, her favorite mediums are jewelry, collage & painting as well as all things quilt & fabric related.

Kelli loves to connect and inspire creativity.  She founded Hibernate & Create as the 31 Days of Creativity Challenge which has blossomed into a beautiful Facebook community from across the US and Canada and expanded into retreats to bring people together for dedicated creative time with friendship & food!

Lori Skupa
Lori Parrott Skupa has been melting and manipulating Italian glass into beads since 2002; and art form known as lampworking.   She has had the pleasure of taking instruction from renowned glass artist from around the world.  Lori takes her finished beads and incorporates them, with other mediums, into gorgeous wearable art under the business name -Parrott Flameworks!

Every piece created is unique, you’ll find no two alike.  Her artwork has been feature in several juried shows and galleries.

Lynn Kvigne
I have always been a maker, whether it be with words, music, or tangible materials. Creating jewelry & sculpture with metal & stone allows me to leave a legacy & outlive me. Much of my work contains elements of medieval chainmaille weaves, and I love sharing the history and process behind making it. Plus, working with tools, chemicals, and FIRE is a lot of fun.

Maria Yearian
I completed my first mosaic in high school after my aunt showed me how and have been hooked on mosaicing ever since. I also enjoy painting in acrylics, watercolor, cold wax & oil, encaustic wax, resin, and alcohol inks. In addition to art, I love the challenge of DIY and home improvement projects and began playing drums during the pandemic. I was born, raised and still live in Nebraska with my husband and two young children. I currently substitute teach for the Millard school district.

Michele Michaelsen
I work with wire to create timeless and elegant jewelry and try to make each piece as handmade as possible. I often weave with wire just like you would do for fabric or cord to create beautiful textures and patterns. I use mostly copper and silver wire with gorgeous natural stones or glass (which is another medium I work in). Many of my pieces are one of kind or something that you will likely not see elsewhere. Artistically, my goal is give each client a well-constructed and beautiful piece of jewelry that can be enjoyed for years to come. While jewelry is my first love I also enjoy working with yarn. I started arm knitting a few years ago and really enjoy teaching that as well! Follow me on Facebook at!

Rhonda Berman
Rhonda is primarily a fiber and mixed media artist. She started designing with zippers and needle felting about 5 years ago and since has written two books on the topic as well as designing many broach patterns and framed pieces. Rhonda has taught many workshops across the Midwest and loves sharing her passion for experimentation with others and watching the spark of creativity light up someone’s face. Examples of her work can be found at

Skyler Thomas Koehn
Skyler has been working with polymer clay for 15+ years. Although they dabble in many mediums including glass blowing and painting, polymer class has always been their one true love. In 2015 they started teaching classes so that they could share that love with others!

Stephanie Wolcott
I have always loved to CREATE and spend time making a beautiful and happy home for my family.  After college, I have spent 20 plus years as a stay at home mom to two boys. During this time, I stayed active by sharing my time, passions and talents through volunteering in the public school, master gardening program, 4-H, church and other organizations.  I have also blogged throughout the years.

My love of painting, restoring, crafting, cooking, baking, gardening, soaping, junk hunting, DIYing….is always growing….

I currently have a shop and studio  SimplyHomeSweetHome where I teach a variety of workshops and am allowed to share all my passions and sell my creations.

Val Kemp
Val Kemp is the crochet artist behind Yarnimals by Val.  Val’s specialty is making crocheted creations of famous people, including musicians, sports stars and politicians.  She also loves creating cute animals.  An avid knitter for years, Val began crocheting during the pandemic as a way to keep her hands busy while helping her kids with remote school.  When not creating with yarn, Val works as a middle school choir teacher and enjoys playing guitar, singing, spending time with family, and watching a good rom-com.  Val lives in Omaha, NE with her husband, two kids and two dogs.