Art Instructors


Beth Leahy

Adult Oil, Workshops,
Youth Oil & Drawing

B.A., St. Xavier University with additional classes taken from the Art Institute of Chicago, American Academy of Art, Palette and Chisel, and School of Representational Art. Beth is a member of the Oil Painters of America and has taught oil painting to adults and children since 1997. McCord has been privileged to have her teach since opening in 2004. Beth has exhibited and taken many awards over the years.


John Howard

Multi-Level Watercolor, Oil,

Still & Life Drawing

Mr. Howard received his training from the American Academy of Art in Chicago. As a professional artist and Muralist, he has been awarded the CFS medal from the American Watercolor Society’s 136th Annual International Exhibition in New York. He has been teaching various classes for over 21 years and joined McCord in January 2005. His murals and paintings can be found in the corporate, residential and gallery settings.


Carmelo Schifano

A professional educator, Carmelo has been teaching for 40 years. He holds Bachelor's and Master's degrees in Vocational Education. His teaching career includes Chicago Public and Community Collages of Chicago and he is currently certified with the State of Illinois in several areas of education, including art and design. Since leaving the school system, Carmelo has been putting his teaching skills to good use in conducting professional watercolor classes. His motto is to have fun and lose your fear.

Beginning Watercolor


Liz Wall

Pastel, Palette Knife, Youth Classes

Ms. Wall holds a Certificate in Drawing from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and a B.A. from Marycrest University. She has been awarded Master Pastelist Designation for the Chicago Pastel Painters Association. She is also a member of the Chicago Plein Air Society and is an Artist Member of the Palette and Chisel Academy of Fine Arts. Her work has been featured on Chicago Tonight, and she had a solo exhibit at the Center Gallery in Glen Arbor, Michigan in the summer of 2014. She is a founding member of the Gallery Committee and McCord is honored to have had her on the faculty since opening in 2004.


Tony Crnkovich

Colored Pencils

Mr. Crnkovich is a professional artist/instructor in the Chicagoland area. He is a graduate of The American Academy of Art with an Associate’s Degree in graphic design. Skilled in a variety of subject matter and media, his foremost specialty is portraiture. His work includes published and private commissions, a highlight being “The Sound of Music” collectible plate series for Knowles China.