The Consulting Arts

ValfamTCA1000042139The Consulting Arts spawns environments that are catalysts for creativity, focusing on piano, voice, creativity coaching, art and writing. Karen Smith-Will teaches students of all ages and with various learning styles, disabilities, and health concerns. Typically her students' ages range from 5-100, and accommodations can be made for exceptional students.

Twitter @ConsultingArts  Valutivityleaftiny  Facebook The Consulting Arts

Why music?

Reading individual notes is a incremental building block that can later be used for sight reading music. These games make sight reading fun to learn and competitive:


Sight reading series - I Can Read Music: A Note Reading Book for Violin Students by Joanne Martin - this series is available for the treble staff. Wish they had one for bass! Although it says it is "for Violin" Students, it can easily be used for voice practice.


Have you heard something like this: "That girl is amazing! She can play anything she hears without music." Translated, what this really means is "she can 'hear' the intervals accurately and knows her instrument well enough to replicate those intervals." YOU can practice this skill, too!

Whom this would benefit: Any music student, especially voice students and instrumentalists learning music by ear.

“The real difference that we see in expert performers is that they behave fluently – both accurately and quickly, without hesitation.” Carl Binder

Carl Binder was one of my instructors when I was learning instructional design. At the time, my target was teaching thousands of people around the world to use e-learning to master software, learn marketing or practice customer service principles. Now, I am teaching music. But the principles of mastery are identical for any of those fields.

sftb sm

Singing's for the Birds is a music program Karen designed in 2013 to teach vocal intervals through the use of birdsong. This innovative program pairs music with ornithology (bird science) in an engaging way dozens of students have enjoyed. Besides highlighting all-new, original scores, the program demonstrates how phrases from birdsong appear in classical and popular music. Karen teaches this program in the Richmond, Virginia area; students receive a copy of the curriculum, published under the Valutivity Press imprint in 2014. Some ornithology curricula included in the program comes via Cornell University's Cornell Lab of Ornithology. Karen's role as Bird Sleuth Ambassador allows students to receive materials from Cornell Lab for no additional charge. 



PXL 20230601 1614048193birding 📽️ presents a gentle afternoon of watching birds in meadows, trees, ponds and streams. the soundtrack is by a friendly Northern Mockingbird who samples all of his friends in his 4.5-minute song.


Screenshot 20230602 165303a kind artist at the Vietnamese New Year festival in Glen Allen, Virginia, artfully created this poster for Singing's for the Birds. it provides a reminder of all the unique different types of calligraphy. (it is unclear whether this style is personal to the artist, or whether it could be recognizable to have Vietnamese stylistic roots.)





Screenshot 20230602 172121Charla Hayen of Name Portraits by Charla was kind enough to customize her famous "Music" print, for display at The Consulting Arts studio. Charla is Virginia artist, based in Winchester. As you can see in the blue highlight, she has added in our product name into the top right hand corner. She has a lot of exposure for her art, but I first became familiar with her in the Hearst magazine, Victoria.