Friday, October 9, 2015

Alumni Art Show & Sale - True Colors!

Saturday, October 17
4:00 pm - 7:00 pm


For their third year in a row, duCret alumni have joined together to produce a fabulous original art show and sale. Just check out their Flier design - by Brittany Mackason! View the artwork and chat with the artists! It's FREE ADMISSION & FREE REFRESHMENTS, with Music by DJ Dustmite. Bring the whole family and let your kids get inspired!

To be held in the duCret Auditorium - with plenty of parking in back. 1030 Central Avenue, Plainfield NJ

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Brand New! Teen After School Art Program

A brand new program for teens that kicks off the week of October 5, 2015 enables teens to choose a specialty area of focus from a variety of mediums offered. Under the Teen After School Program, those between 13 yrs and 18 yrs can sign up for an 8 week series in Clay Works or Adventures on a Wheel, Web Design, Drawing Techniques of the Masters, Drawing or Oil Painting. The workshops run on weekdays between 4 pm and 6 pm and students can sign up for more than one workshop. Students can enjoy hand building and decorative techniques in clay, learn the basics of oil painting, develop drawing skills, get a taste of web design or explore mediums and techniques used by the Renaissance masters including black and white charcoal, and pen and ink. Teen BFF's are encouraged to sign up together.

Fall Season duCret Offers Multiple Workshops

Fall Semester at duCret has begun and though the courses for a professional art career education are now underway, there are still plenty of opportunities to become a part of the duCret community; through a series of workshops the school is offering. Starting with kids, the school will begin it's Saturday Morning Kids / Teens 8 Week series on October 3rd. This year in addition, there is a brand new Teen After School Art Program beginning the week of Oct 5, whereas five days a week, teens can select to focus on specific mediums offered. The seasonal Graphic Design Workshops (a six week series) kicks off on October 15 and 17, and individuals have the choice of either Thursday eves classes or Saturday Mornings. A brand new 12 week Interior Decorating Certificate Program has just launched this season. It will be offered again in the spring. For those looking to Travel in Summer 2016, there will be an opportunity to meet with trip advisor, Terry Scutro to learn about the upcoming trip. And Wed Eve Figure Open Studios begin on September 30 and run til November 18th. Here the general public is invited to practice figure drawing skills on the fine art floor. Tap the website for more info on all activities or stop in the administrative offices Mon - Fri, between 9 am  - 4 pm to pick up fliers and brochures.

Friday, August 21, 2015

Documentary Filmaker Focuses on duCret

2015 Graduate Rachel Wittchen is interviewed in the film.
For the past two years, film maker John Fazio of Fazio Filmworks has directed and produced a film on the current state of the visual arts industry, at the duCret School of Art. The film takes a deep look at the lives of emerging duCret student artists, a handful of duCret faculty artists and includes interviews with a few world recognized artists (such as popular cartoonist and illustrator Frank Thorne); some who have graced the school via talks, exhibitions or demonstrations throughout the years. The schools rich history in the field fine art education has churned out many successful artists over the decades. Several duCret School of Art graduates have successfully owned either production companies, are multi-published, or own galleries and businesses in the arts. A business-style mentor-ship applied during classes additionally guides students toward entrepreneurship, while they study and develop their foundation skills in the field of visual arts. This 'professional artist' to 'emerging artist' mentor-ship often transitions to a peer-type relationship, as many young graduates have been hand walked into the galleries, exhibitions and art shows that their mentors have long participated in. After spending three years with their mentors in classes, students step into an active community of recognized and successful artists as a way of breaking into the industry - as opposed to being handed a degree and being shown the door. Never straying from a traditional and old-style of one-on-one studio mentoring, and by keeping classrooms to a smaller size, students who attend duCret can develop themselves at a quicker pace. School Director, Frank Falotico, who is also a duCret graduate and who still teaches, has purposefully kept tuition costs low, including all throughout the college boon of the last two decades; where all college tuition's skyrocketed. duCret only raised tuition prices marginally in the last few years, when the economy turned sour, but for many decades, the school kept its tuition rates exactly the same, thus enabling graduating students a much lower debt ratio than most other schools of the area. The school is currently accepting registration for Fall Semester which begins September 8th.

Friday, June 26, 2015

Swain's Art Gallery 'Selected Works' Exhibition

For several decades now, the duCret School of Art (NJ's oldest art school) and Swain Galleries (NJ's oldest retail gallery) have united to showcase the works of award winning duCret students each and every year. On Saturday, July 18, from 5pm to 7pm, art lovers and supporters of duCret are invited to the Swain Galleries to view this years 'Selected Works'. This opportunity, which also is a classroom requirement, enables duCret students to become part of a 'live' gallery exhibition. Many times the student works are sold through the gallery. Over the years Swain Galleries has also kept on board, some of the promising new artist's works, and for many, this introduction into the gallery scene affords them the ability to springboard to do other gallery exhibitions. At this coming exhibition, guests can mill about, view all the works of duCret's varied artists and meet the artists themselves. The work is family friendly and the exhibition is free to the public. Swain Galleries is located at 703 Watchung Ave., Plainfield, NJ.

Friday, June 12, 2015

Spend Summer at duCret!

This summer there are activities for the whole family at duCret! Visit to learn about all the summer workshops available for adults (16 yrs+). Kids and Teens can attend summer art camp. Registration is also being accepted for Fall Semester 2015, which begins on Sept. 8th. To schedule a tour and free art career consultation, please contact us Mon - Fri between 9 am - 4 pm at 908.757.7171..

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Planfield's Mayor Mapp Awards duCret Student Lauren Nazco

On behalf of the Mapp Civic Association, Plainfield Mayor Adrian O. Mapp awarded duCret School of Art student Lauren Nazco an honorarium of $200 for winning a logo design contest for the upcoming 'Queen City Art Festival'. Lauren is a freshman at duCret, NJ's oldest art school and art center that for more than eight decades, has prepared aspiring artists for careers in the fine and commercial arts fields. Founded in 1928, the school has been located in the former Wardlaw School property since 1977.

In the recent year, Mayor Mapp committed the City of Plainfield to continuing the Plainfield Outdoor Festival of Art, which marks its 51st year on Saturday, July 11, 2015. Under Mayor Mapp's leadership, the event has been re-branded with a new name, the "Queen City Art Festival," and given a new location, which will be at the main train station plaza on North Avenue.

"It is a real pleasure to acknowledge the cooperative effort between the City and duCret to help foster both our aspiring young artists and this treasured community event," said Mayor Mapp. The art festival, founded by the Central Jersey Chamber of Commerce, was taken over in recent years by the City. The renewed festival is the responsibility of the City's Division of Parks and Recreation, with Superintendent Veronica Taylor personally overseeing this year's relaunch.

For more information about participating in this year's festival, call the Division of Recreation at (908) 753-3097. More information about duCret School of Art can be found at

Friday, March 13, 2015

Honorary Alumni, Frank Thorne's NYC's Illustration House Event... Smokes!

When young illustrator Mark Romanoski first met legendary artist Frank Thorne, it was as if fate had destined them to one day work together. The meet occurred several years ago when Romanoski was enjoying a day of sunshine and beach at the Jersey Shore.  On the same beach, a few sand spots down from Mark, was a gentleman with long white hair and a white beard. Mark recalls thinking," I should bring a business card down here tomorrow and introduce myself.  If I ever need to paint a wizard this guy would be a perfect model." Later that day and without another thought, Mark took off on a bike ride. While turning a sudden corner he noted a huge and immaculate cloud formation over the ocean.  The wizardly looking gentleman was there again, taking photographs. 

He turned to Mark and stated, “Pretty spectacular hey?"  Thinking out loud Mark remarked, “Yeah, it looks like a N.C. Wyeth Sky." (Wyeth is a famed illustrator and known for such images).  "Oh Yeah? Well I think it is a Maxfield Parish sky," proclaimed the wizard.  "How do you know who Maxfield Parish is?" inquired Romanoski. “I’m an illustrator,” responded the gentleman.  "Well, I am also an illustrator,” Romanoski responded back.  "Well, I am a fantasy illustrator," the gentleman clarified. "Well, I am a fantasy illustrator too," responded Romanoski.
Image Provided by Fazio Filmworks
And there, an instant and magical bond occurred. That wizard in disguise was none other than Frank Thorne.  As soon as the wizard had stated his name, Mark instantly knew of his work.  Thorne is an artist / writer /creator of such strips as, "Moonshine Mc Jugs for Playboy, "Lann" in Heavy Metal, "Danger Rangerette" in National Lampoon, a miniseries "Rabit" for Comico, as well as Fantagraphice Books Graphic novels "Ghita of Alizarr".  But Frank may best be known for his work at Marvel Entertainment, on Robert E. Howard’s Character Red Sonja. Thorne drew the character Red Sonja beginning in Marvel Feature #2 and continued throughout most of her 1977-79 series.

On March 7th, the Illustration House in New York, located at 34 West 27th street in NY, hosted an exhibition and sale of a retrospect of Thorne's career featuring many of his Red Sonja originals. Frank, an honorary alumni of the duCret School of Art and Mark Romanoski, a current instructor at the school have maintained a strong bond over the years. The show has also given Thorne and Romanoski a chance to finally work together.  For the show, Frank suggested that Mark paint the cover to Red Sonja #1- arguably one of the most recognizable images of his series.

For the new painting, Mark worked right on top of Thorne's original pencils and design.  ”I wanted to stay as close to Frank's original image as possible, but the tighter I got with the image, the trickier it became to blend the two styles,"  states Mark.  Certain elements that work great in comics do not necessarily translate into reality.  It always is a question of what to leave in and what to leave out.  The result of this collaboration; a 20 x 30 oil painting also on display at the Illustration House exhibition.  Thorne enthusiastically states, "Mark has accomplished a magical transformation of a linear drawing into an awesome painting of the ‘She-devil with a sword!’  Thorne and Romanoski are also planning on making available for purchase signed limited edition giclee's of the image. The exhibit remains on display at the Illustration House until March 30th.

duCret Second & Third Year Students Rock!

When a new student first arrives at the duCret School of Art, as in most new beginnings, individuals often arrive with lots of questions in mind. Can I really paint? Do I have the talent to really make it as an artist? How long will it take me to learn everything I need to know to be a good artist?

Two such students, named Rene Carr and Rachel Wittschen came to duCret within a year of one another. Each had a strong inner inkling that they wanted to work in the art industry but neither knew at the start, what was in store for them - or how fast they could progress in just a few years' worth of training. Both to-date, have proven themselves over and over. Both are art award winners. Both have been featured in Swain Galleries as up and coming NJ artists. Both have found themselves on YouTube, have been interviewed for cable TV by Non-Profit TV, and both have been filmed as part of a documentary on the arts, which is currently in post-production by Fazio Filmworks

Both have produced amazing collections of work in different mediums. Rene found that she not only has a love for doing portraiture, she is also an exceptionally gifted artist, who has already begun to accept private commissions. Her portrait drawings are exquisite, as are her renderings in oil. Rene's personal enthusiasm often parlays into the many school events held each year, where she often demonstrates her learned skills to visitors, or gives talks to visiting schools on the Fine Art Floor.

Rachel's finished and unfinished work on display.
Rachel similarly, but fascinated with a different medium, dove immediately into jewelry making at first and already has a collection of one-of-a kind gem stone necklaces and silver animal rings. She too has begun crafting individual commissions, where those interested in her designs can order direct from Etsy. Rachel paints too, and like her esoteric-style jewelry line, she has begun to incorporate her own soul-knowledge of the Universe into unique hybrid-like paintings, which feature part animal and part human figures. Rachael has also become a regular model for Tues Eve Open Studios, donning original costumes she has either designed, or created - right down to the boots she's sewn. When questioned about their start at duCret compared to where they are now - both exclaim surprise at their levels of progress and the strong inner self-awareness they have developed as artists. Both securely know who they are in the world. Both have already developed a 'signature' and both are powering forward into their careers with an unseen and yet steadfast vision. Keep an eye out for these two, as their ascent in only a few years at duCret has already put them on the map, so to speak!

36th Annual High School Art Show

On Friday, February 27th, the duCret School of Art marked its 36th year of celebrating the works of high school junior and senior artists from across the state. Four hundred and forty five pieces submitted from individual artists filled the school’s auditorium. Every year the duCret School of Art invites high school art students to participate in one of NJ’s largest art shows for teenagers. It is free to submit a piece of artwork and certificates and cash awards are given out at the opening night reception.

This year, 95 awards were given for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place, along with Honorable Mentions.  Click for Awards List. Frank Falotico, the school’s Director, created the show initially so that young artists could experience being part of a large exhibition. Teenagers could also view the works of their peers from differing counties within the state, all in one night. The show has grown enormously over the years and at the Opening Reception, high school teachers, students and their families can mix and mingle in the auditorium, as well as speak to demonstrating duCret students and faculty members. Entries this year came in from as far as Freehold, Livingston, Bloomfield, Monmouth County and Bergenfield High Schools. Above image: duCret Instructor Peter Ambush speaks about his choice of mediums and the artwork he produces.

The duCret School of art offers a 3 year art career program as an alternative way for emerging artists to get started in life. There are courses and workshops offered throughout the year for the general public, as well as children. 

Visitors are allowed to stop by the school Monday – Friday between the hours of 9 am – 4 pm. Prospective students can call 908.757.7171 to schedule a tour and career consultation.