The Right Brain Initiative


Artist Details

Sarah Ferguson


Book this artist using the Residency Request Form


Imagine and visualize: children form an idea and learn to express it through the visual art medium of painted paper collage.

Experiment with a variety of tools and materials in a guided process which encourages active exploration of possibilities and creative problem solving.

Build and create: young artists learn elements of design and practice principles of design as they make a range of choices and build their collage.

Celebrate and reflect: children share finished work in art walk setting, then reflect on their art and process, using design vocabulary.


I am a teaching artist who paints, collages, and builds murals and installations. For over twenty years, I have shared the language and experience of making visual art with young people throughout the region.  A visual art residency gives children the opportunity to work with tools and materials, learn about process, and give form to their ideas. The projects engage, challenge, and empower the young artists.

I’ve been awarded several Regional Arts and Culture Council grants for Community Art, and Arts-in-Education projects, and was named 2008 Young Audiences Sunburst artist of the year. I have a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the California College of the Arts.


2D Visual Arts,








Painted Paper Collage and Elements of Design (K-5)


Four session residency; student creates an individual take home artwork.

I begin each session with a short introduction and demonstration of the day’s project.

Imagine and Brainstorm: children use their imaginations to brainstorm ideas around a specific curriculum area or theme.

Paint Papers: students experiment with color mixing and painting using a variety of tools and techniques to apply paint, create textures and build layers. The painted papers become a shared resource for the collage session.

Build Collage: students make a series of design choices as they select painted papers, cut and build with shapes, play with color and contrast, add texture, and combine the elements to create their collage art.

Celebrate and reflect: students share finished work in art walk setting, then reflect on process and make observations about the art using design concepts and vocabulary.


Thinking Big: Painted Paper Collage Mural (K-5)


A permanent mural created with students’ artwork through a collaborative design and art process.

Four session residency for a grade level or all school project.

Follows a similar format to Painted Paper Collage residency, except the final project is a permanent art installation in the school building. Between sessions 3 and 4, the artist will assemble the children’s collage artwork onto the mural panel(s) and install in the school building. Paints and paper used for this residency are chosen for their permanence and archival qualities.

A mural project requires funding in addition to Right Brain Initiative funds to cover costs of artist’s time and materials to assemble and install the mural panel. This will be discussed at initial planning meeting.


The painted paper collage residency programs can support a wide range of curriculum connections. I have extensive experience designing projects that support a range of learning styles and skill levels. I strive to make the children’s art experiences exciting, engaging and empowering.


Individual Projects:

  • Nature similes and metaphors
  • Animals and habitats



  • Biomes of the world
  • Community celebration, honoring diversity and inclusion
  • Bridges of Portland and Suzhou
  • Native American cultural regions in Pre-Columbian North America
  • Life cycles in the garden
  • Outer space and space exploration
  • Kelly Creek regional watershed habitat
  • School learning garden community


Space Preferred: Dedicated room with sink, tables and chairs where I can teach sessions 2 and 3, stage project and have space to assemble the mural.


Sessions: Prefer sessions to be scheduled once a week for multiple weeks, but depends on number of classrooms participating.  Session lengths vary: Sessions one and four are each 30 minutes in length, and sessions two and three are each 75 minutes.


Breaks longer than an hour will be charged.


Technology: none


Travel:  I drive and am available for residencies outside of Portland.

Travel Costs: Artist may charge for travel costs based on site location.






$73 per classroom session (50 minutes)

$73 per  hour for preparation, planning and meetings with school

$215 for Teacher Workshop (90 minutes)

Artist may charge for travel depending on distance

Additional cost for residency supplies, $2.50- $3.50 per student.

Murals: additional costs for mural supplies and artist time to assemble and install mural.  These costs are not covered by Right Brain Initiative funds



Questions? Contact your Right Brain Coach.


(503) 225-5900 x231




Stacy Bartley

5th grade Teacher

Milwaukie/El Puente Elementary


Kaline Klass

Teacher and Executive Director of "Let There Be Arts" 2002-14

St James Santiago School, Lincoln City

Elaine Luckenbaugh


Hogan Cedars Elementary

FAQ Arts