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The Studio to Student Program (S2S) is a new arts mentorship offering by The Arts Fund created in response to the state of our community amidst the COVID-19 outbreak. Studio to Student bridges the social distancing gap and brings art, creativity, technical and conceptual skill-building, and professional mentorship right to your home in an exciting new e-Mentorship format.

The Arts Fund has been a leader in arts mentorship programs for over 30 years. Through S2S's parent program, the Teen Arts Mentorship Program, we have placed thousands of students in professional studio environments to work closely with trained art professionals who carefully join technical instruction with expanding teens’ confidence and creativity through fine art practice.


Our new Studio to Student program expands upon a long history of arts mentorship expertise and has been designed as the next-best-thing to an in-person studio experience. We are excited to be expanding our Mentorship offering to the digital realm!


Check out our S2S students' exhibition work in our Student Gallery!

Apply now, and bring the studio to you!



2021 e-Mentorships:



  • Expand your skills and experience in a specific medium

  • Create lasting relationships with other young creatives and your mentor

  • Gain direction and feedback from a professional working artist

  • Become a part of the Mentorship Alumni Network

  • Receive a signed Certificate of Completion


  • Any Santa Barbra county teenager

  • Anyone, no matter their art background or skill level (we do not require a portfolio for you to apply!)

  • Anyone! This program is tuition-free. There are no costs to participate.


Admitted students will join a highly experienced artist in a 4-week e-Mentorship experience.


Students will receive a complimentary Materials Kit, complete with any specialized materials needed for the class, and a few additional fun perks!


Classes will meet over Zoom once per week for approx. an hour and a half to discuss a topic and a carefully designed at-home exercise, as well as relevant tricks-of-the-trade and direct feedback from your mentor.


Students will receive weekly PDFs outlining the at-home exercises accompanied by curated supplemental material such as tutorial videos or helpful articles.


Upon completion of the Studio to Student program students will have completed a final work, receive a Certificate of Completion, and be placed into the Mentorship Alumni Network - a resource for aspiring young creatives to hear about art competitions, grants, art schools application tips, and more.


The Studio to Student Mentors are working artists/creatives of the greater Santa Barbara County community who are knowledgeable & passionate in their field. They are selected for their ability to uplift and engage students from many different walks of life with varying levels of artistic backgrounds. All of our Mentors uphold The Arts Fund’s strictly enforced program safety and standards, as outlined below.

Current Mentors:


Rafael Perea de la Cabada has been a prolific member of the Santa Barbara arts community for over three decades. Known for his drawings but using a span of media, many of his works mix media, conveying, more importantly, a well-thought intention unallocated to a particular material.


Rafael has been a Master Mentor and commissioned mural artist with The Arts Fund and at the Santa Barbara Museum of Art. He is an adjunct faculty member at Santa Barbara City College, teaching advanced Painting and Drawing courses for the Fine Arts Department.


Andrew Philpot is an award-winning actor and a Resident Artist at PCPA, where he currently teaches Advanced Shakespeare studies to the 2nd Year students. He frequently directs student productions there and creates deconstructed versions of Shakespeare’s histories and comedies.

In 2013 Andrew was recognized as a Lunt-Fontanne Fellow for his contributions to theatre on the Central Coast. He is a veteran of over 100 professional productions. His Shakespeare credits include playing RICHARD III, MALVOLIO, PROSPERO, FRIAR
Andrew has also worked extensively in television and Voice-Over, including voicing the leading role in VAMPIRE HUNTER D.


Julie B Montgomery is best known for her abstract paintings which capture the landscape of elsewhere. Her reductive process of pulling and rubbing the acrylic polymer-based paint off of the canvas creates veils of color where forms are built yet never fully defined. Light permeates but remains ephemeral. Mark-making and elusive handwritten text bring one’s focus close to the surface. Her paintings nod to Abstract Expressionism, Color Field Painting, and Impressionism and yet reflect the artists’ own singular style and process.


True to her nature, she explores spirituality and love of beauty through the practice of creative action. In giving back to the community she mentors young artists. Montgomery has shown and participated in fellowships nationally and internationally. She and her works have been featured in magazines, television, and film. Montgomery lives in a Palladian Villa amidst the oak trees and rolling hills of Sonoma, California with her son, Henri, and her two cats, Sheba and Tutti.


The safety & comfortability of our students is a top priority. We implement multiple legal measures as well as consistent training for our Mentors so that our virtual studio environments are not only safe, but empower our students to freely explore and reach new heights in the arts.


The Arts Fund’s standards:

  • All mentors conduct and pass a background check

  • TAF administers Zoom training to all Mentors to ensure that the platform is being used in a safe, secure, and appropriate manner.

  • A member of TAF staff or board of directors sits in on each virtual class meeting to support and ensure proper use of the Zoom platform.

  • Classes always meet as a full group, never one-on-one between students or between Mentor and student.