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Flossie Hoy


Virtual Photography

Florence Hoy is the daughter of a 20+ year veteran of the Air Force who served during World War II, Korea, and Vietnam. She is a retired art teacher with 22 years of experience. She began teaching art in Fairfax County, Virginia in 1988. Flossie retired from full time teaching in 2010. She received her BFA from Bridgewater College, VA.  She was certified in Art K-12 from James Madison University. She attended Virginia Commonwealth University pursuing a Masters of Art. She attended Corcoran College of Art and Design in Washington D.C. and the North Carolina State University for course work in Photography and computer graphics. Flossie completed training in both the International Baccalaureate Diploma Program and the Middle Years Program.  She taught Studio Art, IB art, B&W photography, Digital photography, Computer Graphics, and Animation. She was a member of the Fairfax Education Association (FEA) and the National Education Association (NEA). She served as Department Chair for over half of her teaching career. She wrote a grant proposal in partnership with the National Museum of Women in the Arts for a project called “Bridging 2 Communities: Developing Friendship and Photographs. The initiative resulted in 56 inner-city 4th grade and rural high school students’ work exhibited at the National Museum of Women the Arts. Flossie was a Docent for the North Carolina Museum of Art, conducting tours for school-age students. She currently resides in Greenville, SC.




Jason Pak Swienckowski is an artist specializing in pottery and woodworking living in Raleigh, NC. He prefers to use locally sourced materials whenever he can. He is passionate about craft traditions, herbalism, and tasty food. After earning his degree in Fibers and Textile at NC State University’s College of Design, he has spent most of his time continuing his education in woodcraft and pottery, taking classes and working at a variety of craft schools on the east coast. His work reflects the natural beauty inherent in nature, and he is strongly influenced by Korean woodworking and southern folk pottery. Jason loves sharing his knowledge and asking questions, and is looking forward to a lifetime of learning and growth, wherever it takes him.



Ian, a dedicated photographer with an artistic vision, has been honing his craft for eight years, immersing himself in the world of visual storytelling. In 2023, Ian’s talent was spotlighted when he clinched 4th place at the State Fair and secured the prestigious Best of Show award at the Wayne County Fair. These accolades not only showcased his technical skills but also his ability to capture moments that resonate with viewers.

Ian’s preferred genres; landscape, and macro photography, reflect his keen eye for detail and an appreciation for the beauty in both expansive vistas and the intricate world of small subjects. What sets him apart is his unique approach to macro photography, focusing his lens on toys in real-life scenarios. This imaginative twist adds a playful and whimsical dimension to his work. Ian’s portfolio extends beyond personal projects. He collaborates with small brands, translating their visions into captivating visuals that speak to their audience. This collaborative spirit showcases his versatility and ability to adapt his skills to various contexts.

Beyond the lens, Ian’s life has been woven with threads of military influence, shaping his perspective and instilling a profound sense of respect for service and sacrifice. His journey intersects with the military through the experiences of his father, an Air Force veteran who dedicated twenty years to serving his country. Most of Ian’s friends growing up all had military connections based on growing up in Goldsboro North Carolina, home of Seymour Johnson Air Force Base.

During his college years, Ian found himself immersed in a unique chapter of his life, living alongside an ex-Special Forces member. This shared living experience transcended the ordinary; it became a profound opportunity for Ian to witness firsthand the resilience, camaraderie, and challenges faced by those with a military background. These intimate conversations provided Ian with a unique and often sobering perspective on the human side of military service. Through his friend’s experiences, he gained insights into the emotional toll of combat and the challenges faced by veterans transitioning to civilian life. To this day his friend is still held in close regards as they still talk all the time.

Sydnee Yates Headshot



Sydnee Yates is a Creator specializing in abstract art and contemporary dance. Her process, in art, is how she processes life. Painting, to her, is not only a space in which she can learn to make sense of the world around her and her experiences in it but is, also, the arena where her own “demons” can, safely, “play”. Sydnee knows, from personal experience, how important it is to take mental health seriously. Most art takes the outside world and brings it in but, Sydnee believes her art flourishes from bringing the inside out. With this method, an outlet is formed in order to express (and validate) her own experiences. She believes that everyone is an Artist and it is her goal not to teach others how to make art but to remind others of what they already, inherently, know how to do. Syndee is connected to the military through her grandfather who served in the US Army during WWII.



Erin C. Day moved to North Carolina as a child and has never grown tired of painting its flora and landscapes. Rocky Mount was her home for the first part of her life. The next season she moved to Greensboro where she received her BFA in Art Education from UNCG and met her Love and began a family. Wanting to raise their children closer to family brought them back to the Raleigh area and eventually to Wake Forest where her and her husband have raised their four daughters and put down roots. Erin loves calling Wake Forest and North Carolina home, but this doesn’t deter her from traveling far and wide admiring the Creation everywhere she goes!

She is mesmerized by the beauty of the Creation and works to bring the outdoors- in through her artwork. Being an Art Educator keeps her open to all mediums. She works in oils, acrylics, watercolors, pastels, ink, basketry, ceramics, etc. – whatever the mood is of the day. Being an Educator also affords her the challenge to keep growing and learning. You can teach an old dog new tricks if they are willing to learn!

Erin’s work is predominately of the flora and landscapes she photographs when out and about or working in her garden. Though Erin works in many mediums, she uses color to capture the mood in her work, focusing on light and its effects within the frame.  Her work tends to lean on the impressionistic style, applying dashes of color upon color to make up the whole as opposed to laying down solid areas of color. “So colorful!” is the description often given to Erin’s work.

Erin grew up listening to her grandfather tell stories of his life in the Navy during WWII. He survived the attack on Pearl Harbor and spent days afloat in a life raft. She has several uncles and cousins who have served in the Marines and Army. Her mother taught her to appreciate and honor those who give their life in service to our country and she is trying to pass this respect on to her own daughters.

Operation ART Metalworking



ShopSpace is a nonprofit focused on both education and providing an open workshop for the community. We cover a range of metalwork including forging, welding, and small metals. The community shop is open for participants to practice and work with a wide variety of tools not easily accessible for the backyard smith. ShopSpace’s partnership with The Joel Fund will focus on providing veterans with a series of classes focused on the techniques core to all forging with fire and anvil.

The UnIntentionals



The UnIntentionals are a community-focused Entertainment group that specializes in performing fast-paced, uniquely engaging Improv comedy in a family show setting. In addition to performing shows, we also teach a variety of Comedy/Performance classes to help more people learn the various skills it takes to be a quality performer, and we lead Corporate Training events to help professionals use Performance skills to learn a variety of soft skills. Everything we do has 1 goal in mind – to positively affect our local communities.


Virtual Writing

A professional writer for four decades, native New Yorker June Guralnick has created fifteen full-length plays and performance projects produced throughout the country and published by various presses. June has also written poetry, creative non-fiction, and blog posts, and taught creative writing and drama at colleges including North Carolina State University, St. Andrews Presbyterian College and Guilford Technical Community College. Serving with distinction the arts field; June’s past positions include National Endowment for the Arts Theatre Administration Fellows, Executive Director of the Theatre Association of Pennsylvania, North Carolina Arts Council Theatre Arts Director, and City of Raleigh Arts Commission Executive Director. 

June’s arts residencies, including three years as a North Carolina Arts Council Visiting Artist, have had a life-changing impact on her work. Collaborating with diverse populations, she has created critically-acclaimed, large-scale outreach projects devoted to the goal of strengthening community connection and reflection through the arts. With a personal goal to pay-it-forward, June has been a passionate advocate for the importance of non-writers to capture their life journey through poetry, stories, and dramas. 

Working with veterans through a year-long series of interviews conducted as part of the process creating her play, Across the Holy Tell (about a female veteran returning home from the Iraq War), June currently teaches creative writing classes at The Joel Fund as well as leading writing classes for active military, veterans, and caregivers at community centers across the Triangle.

June’s work has been performed at theatres around the country including the Kennedy Center (Washington, D.C.), Abrons Arts Center/Henry Street Settlement Theatre (NY), Spirit Square (NC), Equity Library Theatre (NY), Bethany Arts Center (CA), Burning Coal Theatre (NC), Southern Appalachian Repertory Theatre (NC), AS220 (RI), the North Carolina Museum of Art – and beamed to the Space Station! June’s dramas have been published by North Carolina Literary Review, Playwrights’ Center (Monologues-Heinemann Press), Blackbird Press, Smith & Kraus, Red Clay Review, Applause Books, and Murze. Most recently, Applause Books has published selections from June’s play Birds of a Feather, and speeches from June’s new play, LITTLE ♀, are featured in the just released Smith & Kraus publication, The Best Women’s Stage Monologues of 2020.

Awards for June’s plays include the Silver Medal-Pinter Drama Review Prize, North Carolina Arts Council Literature Fellowship, Southern Appalachian Repertory Theatre New Plays winner, Virginia Center for the Creative Arts Writing Fellowship, Hambidge Center for the Arts Writer-in-Residence, Writer-in-Residence at Wildacres Retreat, Artist-in-Residence at Azule Arts, United Arts Council of Raleigh & Wake County Regional Artist Grant, and Sewanee Writers’ Conference Tennessee Williams Scholar. Additionally, June was Runner-Up for the Tyrone Guthrie Center VCCA Fellowship, and earned Second Place for the Judith Royer Award in Playwriting Excellence. June most recently was awarded the 2022 Raleigh Medal of Arts and a 2023 United Arts Council of Raleigh & Wake County Artist Support Grant.

For more information about June’s background, visit

Kristianne Ripple



Kristianne Ripple was born in Madrid, Spain to American parents who were working there as missionaries. When she was eight, her family moved back to the states and lived in a myriad of places including Oregon, Indiana, Pennsylvania, and New York. When she was 13 she found her interest in art at MollyOlga Art School in Buffalo, New York. While in high school she had the opportunity to assist sculptor, Penelope Fleuming in her studio in Philadelphia. She was selected out of twelve hundred applicants to attend Alfred University, School of Art and Design in New York. While there, she studied with artists like Wayne Higby and Jesse Shefrien. For the first semester of her junior year at Alfred, she went to England to study printmaking at Brighton University. She graduated from Alfred in fall of ‘99 with a BFA in Printmaking and Graphic Design. Since then she has shown and won awards at:
Hallwalls Contemporary Arts Center, Buffalo, New York
Fine Art Framing Gallery Raleigh, NC (solo show)
Emerge Gallery, Greenville, NC
Visual Art Exchange, Raleigh, NC
Crossroads Gallery, Raleigh, NC (solo show)
SparkCon, Raleigh, NC
Studio 17, Carter Building, Glennwood South, Raleigh, NC
Flanders 311, Raleigh, NC
Greenhill, Greensboro, NC
Block Gallery, Raleigh, NC
Cleveland Country Arts Council, Shelby, NC
Durham Arts Council, Durham, NC
311 West Martin Street Studios and Galleries
Cape Fear Press, Carolina Beach, NC
Hanover Art Gallery, Carolina Beach, NC
Harris Warren Gallery, Wake Forest, NC
Evening of the Arts, Crossroads Fellowship
She has also had the opportunity to run printmaking workshops, jury shows, assist with a printmaking workshop at Artspace, and help found Printmakers of North Carolina (PoNC).
Grace McFetters Headshot - Fiber Arts Instructor



Grace McFetters Caldwell has studied various fiber arts since 2013, starting with knitting. She began to explore weaving in early 2017. Grace established her fiber studio, Transcend Fiber Studio, in 2018, and formalized her fiber business in early 2020. She has taught Ukrainian Easter Eggs since 2011, and began teaching fiber arts, including knitting, weaving, hand spinning, and dyeing since 2018. While Grace grows as an artist and continues learning new techniques, she continues to add to her teaching repertoire. She now teaches sewing, both by hand and by machine, as well as some fun topics like needle felting, wool painting, and textile collage!

Picture of clay instructor Emily Malpass.



As a native North Carolinian and daughter of an artist, Emily was born to appreciate ceramics and all things handmade. Growing up in the Carolinas, she dug into red clay in her family backyards and admired clay art for as long as she can remember. Her first wheel-throwing experience was at age 12. She eventually returned to this craft in college, taking ceramics electives while pursuing a degree in English and Linguistics at UNC-Chapel Hill. After graduation, Emily taught middle school Language Arts for a year, then packed up her wheel and moved to sunny San Diego, where her spouse was stationed with the US Marine Corps. Five years and four deployments later, his enlistment was complete and they returned to North Carolina to start civilian married life. The former Marine pursued his degree from NCSU. Emily unpacked the potter’s wheel again, returning to apprentice with her ceramics professor at UNC, who encouraged her to attend Penland School of Craft as the next step in her artistic development. 12 years, 2 kids, and 6 Penland workshops later, Emily now resides in Raleigh with her family (and that same wheel), where she teaches intergenerational clay workshops at Pullen Arts Center, serves as PTA President at her children’s school, and practices To-Shin Do martial art while also working as an interdisciplinary artist. She makes wheel-thrown porcelain vessels but also works in fiber art/quilting, slow mending and embroidery, murals and watercolor painting, and performance art. However, clay remains her favorite teaching medium. Its elemental nature and ability to record touch, combined with its therapeutic nature, keep Emily coming back to clay, and working to put it in the hands of as many people as possible, at every age and stage of artistic development.  Emily is honored to have the opportunity to teach handbuilding with the Joel Fund Operation Art, where she can combine her experience as a teaching artist with her esteem and appreciation for the sacrifices of Veterans and passion for inclusion within the world of craft. She is eager to support each artist in finding their own way with clay and connecting to themselves and each other in the process.