Who We Are & What We Do


Budding Artists seeks to stimulate a more inclusive and creative global society by providing transformative process-focused art experiences to pre-kindergarten children in under-resourced communities.

Our Story

Established in October 2018, Budding Artists was conceptualized between two close friends, Dakota McMahand-Owens and Sarah Tanberg, both educators, seeking to create sustainable change in under-resourced communities of color. Our project objective is to provide free process-based art experiences to children ages 3 -5 to prepare students for successful participation in STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math) programs during elementary school.  


STEAM is the movement of adding arts education (liberal arts, fine arts, music, design-thinking, and language arts) into the STEM field. The "A” in STEAM promotes curiosity and can create a pathway in attracting more students, specifically underrepresented ethnic groups and females into STEM fields. By participating in Budding Artists process-focused art programming, children will learn how to think critically, problem-solve and use creativity, which are all necessary skills needed in order to compete in this global economy. 



Budding Artists is a member of the National Art Education Association, California Art Education Association,  National Guild for Community Arts Education and the SELA Artists Guild.

Land Acknowledgment  

Every community owes its existence and vitality to generations from around the world who contributed their hopes, dreams, and energy to making the history that led to this moment. Some were brought here against their will, some were drawn to leave their distant homes in hope of a better life, and some have lived on this land for more generations than can be counted. Truth and acknowledgment are critical to building mutual respect and connection across all barriers of heritage and difference. We begin this effort to acknowledge what has been buried by honoring the truth. We nurture creativity on the ancestral lands of the Chumash, Tongva, and Kizh People. We pay respects to their elders past and present. Please take a moment to consider the many legacies of violence, displacement, migration, and settlement that bring us together. #HonorNativeLand

Learn More About Us 

Click the logo to learn more about us from these media outlets!

Budding Artists-2.png
Budding Artists
Screen Printing Materials

Our Community Impact

Budding Artists nurtures creativity, serving over 2,500 children and adults in the South and South East Los Angeles areas since October 2018.


Within our first year, 25 preschool-age children and 20 adults engaged with our process-based art classes through our 2019 Summer Exploration Program at the Lucy Avalos Community Center in partnership with the City of Lynwood Department of Parks and Community Services. More than 90 people attended our Annual Culminating Exhibition which documented our student's creative exploration over the summer. 

We have distributed over 1,000 new or gently used books to children and teens as part of our Next Page Program. Additionally, our Gift of Play project donated over 60 toys during the 2019 holiday season and over 35 Baby Art Kits during the 2020 holiday season in the South East Los Angeles area. 

In light of the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic, Budding Artists has distributed over 200 free Process-Based Art Kits to bring creativity home during a time of statewide school closures and social distancing. We've also launched and/or supported several community art projects including our Budding Artists Paint and Sip event and the SELA Arts Festival. In December, Budding Artists provide several free online winter workshops for the South Gate Museum and Art Gallery. The Eastside Arts Initiative 2020 SELA Arts Survey Highlight Report notes, "Budding Artists seems to be the most active local organization". We are thrilled to be able to nurture creativity in our community!

What Are People Saying?

"This was so awesome!! My girls had an amazing time! They said they can't wait to go back! Thank you!!" - Parent, 2022 Pop-Up Photography Workshop

"It was fantastic per my five year old" - Parent, 2022 Pop-Up Photography Workshop

"My daughter often gets anxiety when asked to read for the class (Zoom),...but participating in these art classes has really helped her come out of her "shell"! Thank you so much for the support you provided to our children!! They need a boost in their self-esteem and start believing in themselves again!! This (coronavirus) pandemic cannot take their shine away!!" - Parent, 2020 December Online Winter Workshop  

This gave my son an opportunity to do something different than video games and watching television. It gave him an opportunity to draw freely anything that he pleased and he found that interesting.” 

–  2020 Process-Based Art Kit Parent/Guardian

100% of survey participants indicated the Process-Based Art Kit brought joy and hope into their homes during this current COVID-19 pandemic.

-2020 Process-Based Art Kit Survey

My child loved the experience of working with different tools, she is very introverted and has been coming out of her shell with a new interest in painting.”  –  2019 Summer Exploration Program Parent/Guardian


Meet the Team


Board Member

Board Member


Board Member


Past Board Member