I take my craft very seriously. I hold my students to a high standard and do everything in my power to help them reach that.
I believe that art is an introspective pursuit. It is a pursuit that can only succeed by the act of making, through trial and error, and experimentation and risk. My ideal teaching environment is one where the student is allowed ample studio time, both in and out of class, to make these strides and then partake in class critiques. Critiques not only give the student valuable insight and perspectives to his/her work, but also illuminate new possibilities and opportunities by analyzing and discussing other students’ work.
I feel that to be successful in today’s art world, artists need to be tempered with a strong foundational knowledge. I stress the importance of covering the basics before moving on to more advanced ideas. Fundamental drawing, composition, color theory, art history, figure drawing, 3d design and more, are an essential part of an artist’s core training. At the close of the project, students present their work in front of the class and partake in critiques; these allow students to learn and utilize artistic dialogue and speak to their own work and the work of their classmates.
My more advanced classes are geared toward building a large body of work. This is offset by a project that all students share, which changes from term to term. The goal of the class is to help the students find and hone their body of work. They should have a clear idea of the conceptual aspects of their work, be able to speak and write about those concepts, and have an awareness of their artistic influences.
I also think it’s important to know practical things for artists. Having a website, entering shows, approaching galleries, even building their own crates to ship their work. I want my students to be as prepared as possible to succeed in the art world.
To me, the best place for me to learn is in my studio, and I like to demonstrate that concept to my students through a comfortable, efficient, and productive work environment.