Mandy Turner (left) and Scott Ibex (center) learn oil painting from Jim McKew during the 2013 MARC Winter Arts Program. [Photo courtesy / MARC]

As the new year begins, the Moab Arts and Recreation Center (MARC) is offering several classes to inspire creativity, talent and ability. The 2014 slate of class offerings for January, February and March are now open.

“It’s the off season,” said Laurie Collins, director of the MARC. “The holidays are over and people often look for creative things to do.”

The variety of classes range from watercolors, to circus arts to creating jewelry with dichroic glass. Dichroic glass uses metal oxides to create a visual display of a variety of colors based on the point of view.

The season begins with a series of classes taught on Tuesdays called “The Artist’s Way.”

“It is one to teach people how to stretch themselves artistically,” Collins said. “It is meant to expand your brain.”

The inspiration for the class is Julie Cameron’s book, “The Artist’s Way,” a bestselling creativity guide for both aspiring and professional artists.

“There will be drawing, some painting, even some journaling and movement,” Collins said. “It is a spiritual discovery of your creative side.”

Catherine Moore, the art teacher at the Moab Charter School, will be teaching the class.

“She truly believes in the power of art,” Collins said.

Larry Christensen will teach painting with oil or watercolors. Chad Niehaus of Subvert will share his passion for block printing. Most classes are geared to beginners.

Louise Nevelson, from the Ah Haa School of Arts in Telluride, will be coming to be Moab to teach two classes in February.

The first is a sculpture class on Saturday, Feb. 22.

Nevelson is known for using discarded objects to create large three-dimensional, monochromatic sculptures.

“She’ll work with an entire wall and put several items together to create a huge collage, then paint it one color,” Collins said.

The second day is a class to create Mardis Gras masks from plaster gauze. The masks will be formed on the face.

“It is a messy, tactile way to create masks,” Collins said.

The afternoon portion would be decorating the masks in flamboyant ways.

There will be health-related classes for people who want to “jumpstart their year,” Collins said.

Emily Stock of Sundial Medicinals will teach a series of classes on herbal use and applications on Wednesdays from late January into February.

“This is a great class to learn about Ayurvedic, Western and traditional Chinese herbal applications,” Collins said.

Collins said she took a class from Stock at Moonflower Market about “adaptogenic” herbs and is still using the information regularly for better health.

“If anyone is interested in self-treatment, this would be a good class for them,” she said.

Sarah Finkbeiner will be hosting a series of classes on Tuesdays in January and February for women’s health and happiness called the “Whole Woman.”

“She wants to spread her information about emotional eating to build a healthy body image,” Collins said. “This is an opportunity for women to work together, support each other and be passionate about being healthy.”

Collins said that the dichroic glass jewelry class is back due to demand.

“People had so much fun last year, we decided to bring her back,” Collins said. “People wanted to make more jewelry to wear.”

Last year students made pendants. This year they can make earrings to match.

Collins said that the classes build a creative community and connect people to build new friendships with shared interests.

“We need more artists, more creative problem solving in this world. I encourage anyone who wants to be more innovative or break free from their inner critic to sign up for a class,” Collins said.

Scholarships are made available through donations and support from WabiSabi.

“So, if you have an interest in any class, please contact us. And vote for the MARC at WabiSabi so we can offer more scholarships in the future,” Collins said. “Our partnership is an example of support by community for community.”