Missing EstelleJohn Marton
I grew up in Chicago going to Estelle's classes and thing I appreciate the most is the knowledge she gave me about being an artist and the difference between an artist and an art mechanic..... I can draw or duplicate anything but I can also put the images in my mind down on any canvas and I can do it in any style. The thing I learned the most is that any style of art is pretty much all the same thing but with a different technique. What a wonderful inspiration she was. I will miss her always and I wish I remembered Wanda Paulch's married name so I could see if I could get in touch with her to let her see what I am doing with what they taught me.
Fedelle paintingDonna Drake
I've retired to a small town in Arizona, where I've picked up an interest in art after a 30 year absence. I also frequent the local yard sales looking for interesting items. Last week I picked up a copy of Estelle Fedelle's "How to Begin Painting for Fun." No big deal, but then today I stopped at a house where a woman was selling a painting by Ms Fedelle!! It's a beautiful water / boat scene with great pink and beige lighting. I figured it was kizmet or karma or luck, but I had to get the painting. Thanks for the others for sharing their memories of Estelle Fedelle so that I could know more about the artist.
The Estelle I RememberTom Larsen
Before the studio on NW highway she had a studio in the basement of her home on West Fletcher St (~5500 W) in Chicago near Belmont and Cicero - very close to the old WXRT radio studio and its huge antenna. Estelle had been and was quite successful as an artist herself. She was also a dynamic teacher, offering classes for kids on Saturday mornings and adults during the week and Sat afternoon. She taught me for about four years. I took a couple CTA buses from Sauganash to her home each Saturday. I made a lot of friends at her studio and in her class. Her business partner and teaching assistant was Vicki. Vicki was also very compassionate and insightful in her teaching. It’s quite a challenge to teach little kids with their short attention span. Some were there because their parents wanted them involved in something and didn’t last long. Some were quite talented. Bobby Hull of the Chicago Blackhawks had a couple of very young kids who went there for a spell and I recall how we all got an autographed 8 x 10’s photo of him. To this day when I think of her studio and all the easels cramped together and all the spotlights I can instantly recall the smell of Turpentine and Pastel chalk dust. She had these little desk-level alcoves where students set up still life objects for their exercises and would work on them for months at a time. The kids would have candy breaks around noon and Estelle would have tons of candy you could buy. I’m surprised I didn’t become diabetic. After the four years and as I was entering high school she told me it was time for me to find an instructor that could take me to the next level – she had taught me all she could. I was shocked at first, thinking she was trying to get rid of me and then I realized she was right. If I had to, I bet I could recall every step of each exercise and every technique she ever taught me. I have shared the lessons with some of my 4 kids. One of my daughters, Danielle, has obviously inherited my artistic abilities and I wish she could have been taught by Estelle. Too bad Estelle has gone on to her studio in the sky. Estelle’s core set of lessons are the same as those taught in the finest institutions anywhere in the world. I had a friend who was trained at a very famous school in Florence Italy and previously at the Columbia School of Art in Chicago. In discussing our paths of learning, we discovered we had both covered the same core material, only mine cost about $100K less. They included basic shape analysis – how every fit into circles squares and triangles, color theory, perspective, planning your project, improving your visual memory, paint chemistry, working with different mediums and learning to be open to criticism and even knowing when to stop. There were many other things I learned but it’s beyond the scope of this rambling comment about Estelle Fedelle. I thought she was a little tough on me at times and I was often frustrated with her insistence on doing things her way. But, hey, she WAS right after all. BTW, you can sometimes find her instructional art book, HOW TO BEGIN PAINTING FOR FUN on eBay. I would appreciate any comments if you ever attended Estelle’s classes in the 70’s.
I rememberNancy Smith
I attended night classes at Fedelle Art Studio in the late 80s and early 90s. I learned so much from Estelle and she made the whole process so affordable and enjoyable. I especially remember one compliment she gaven me one night. There was a new student and Estelle was trying to make her feel comfortable. She went around the room and said, "This one overworks it, this one has trouble with..." When she came to me she hesitated and then she came out with this statement: "This one does everything perfect." I don't know if she didn't know how I would take criticism or if she was truly unable to come up with anything that needed improvement. All I know is I will live on her words the rest of my life and whenever I have doubts about my own abilities I will reflect back to this very special teacher. I went on to create and sell work as a result of her instruction. I ended up teaching art in Palatine to gifted students for eleven years before retiring. I am currently getting ready for a couple of exhibits in April and May. Whenever I am in the area of her studio I wonder about Estelle. You are awesome, Estelle.
P.S. What ever happened to Wanda?
My Art TeacherDaniel Hart
I'm writing this because Estelle Fedelle was an Art instruction teacher who ran a small Art school / business not far from where I lived.On Northwest Highway in Chicago.She was a sweet elderly woman.Teaching children and night courses for adults.Painting and drawing,I went to her classes once a week I believe.On a Thursday or Friday night.There were books and many cut-outs of pictures she had put into folders for reference.She would have coffee and cookies for you and she always had the television turned on.I always felt it was a distraction.I remember telling her that and she say "oh on the contrary,it inspires me".But now that I'm older I do the same thing.I won't watch it but it will be turned on.
That was fall of 1993.I think I attended for a few months but I cannot remmeber how many months total,It had to be at least 3 months.I do remember it was $27.00 a month.
She drove a big brown Caddaliac.Comical to watch her park it.She was a very small old woman and the car I believe was way too big for her.After all these years I still remember her.She was a very nice woman and I am so glad to have been a part of that school.It was a part of my youth and now that I think about it, I loved her.I'm sure she has passed by now.I think of her often and always wondered about her.I visited the place in the spring of the following year and a woman told me she no longer teaches here.That was 1994 I think.
I somehow had that sad feeling because she was perhaps in her 70's or older and still teaching.
She had a profile broshure I remember looking at when I was a student there.It had a picture of her from the 1960's I believe and she had to be at least in her late thirties in 1968,but I am not certain.I dearly miss those days and still have 3 paintings she instructed me on from those days.I had others,but they were lost to a basement flood.If I could go back to those days I would without hesitation.I miss you and your school Estelle.With all my Heart from your student Dan Hart.Feb.2007