Clarie Brewer

Little Stars Preschool, Visual Art + Set Design

Expert In: Art Education, Reggio Emilia practices, carpentry, printmaking, surface design

Most Memorable Gig:  As a resolute introvert, I don’t have a long history of “gigs” per se, though I do play cello in the Issaquah Philharmonic Orchestra. I’ve been fortunate to work on a number of memorable projects including designing and building an immersive quiet play space at the Mercer Island Community Center inspired by the local wetlands and its resident frogs and friends. 

Career Highlights: Group and solo gallery shows, inventing a new surface design technique, having that technique and, separately, a few of my prints published. I also worked at a hands-on arts and science camp centered around the marine life of the Puget Sound.

My Journey to Teaching: I love teaching! I’ve worked with kids since I was a kid myself. I even started my college career on an art education path, but the lure of art studios proved too exciting. Once I had children of my own, I had the privelege to work in the art room at my son’s cooperative preschool. The dedicated teachers there reignited my passion for education and I’ve been developing and leading art lessons at elementary schools ever since. Now, I’m thrilled to be a part of the Big Star Family and to work with my teaching partner, Jillian, to bring adventurous creativity and imaginative exploration to our Little Stars friends and beyond! There truly is nothing more fascinating or rewarding than supporting the self-directed work of young minds. 

My Mission: First and foremost, my mission is to foster and engage the natural curiosity that is so vibrant in children. But I have a sneaky, second mission and that is to engage young introverts in the fine and performing arts. I grew up as the shy black sheep of a theater/ performance family. Building sets and costumes, lurking backstage and hiding in orchestra pits gave me an incredible sense of belonging and pride in my outcast self and in my backstage work. Whether a child seeks the spotlight, or has never, and will never, set foot on a stage I truly believe in the rich, engaging, inclusivity of the arts.