I have been inspired to become an educator because of the great benefits I have received from the wonderful teachers and professors that I have studied under. I am an un-conventional learner and appreciate the value of a good education and the impact it has had on my life. I strive to give a multi-faceted approach so that differentiated learners like myself, can find their inner strengths and grow. As an educator, I aim to be part mentor, facilitator and inspiration. When I am presenting new concepts, I act as a mentor, making new ideas and techniques accessible. When I am in critiques, I facilitate new conversations by asking provoking questions and presenting contrary or unconsidered positions. I believe it is important to be practicing art in the same studio as my students, and recall learning and being inspired by those professors who would do the same.
My lessons introduce new materials and processes as vehicles to represent bigger contemporary art practices. Wearble art, installation, incorporating new media and performance are some of the concepts I center projects around, so that the projects stay relevant and exciting. Skill building projects can be helpful, but I also strive to find the most engaging and exciting ways to present new processes so that my students stay engaged and in return, retain the skills.
When teaching studio classes, I present artists that demonstrate concepts and processes we are learning in each project to try to bridge the gap between what students are learning in the books and what they are doing with their hands. I encourage learning to go on outside the classroom and for students to use galleries and artist talks to enrich and support my teaching. I encourage cross disciplinary methods and a want to facilitate students in finding the best medium and process to articulate themselves. I believe it is important to get to know my students and help them to understand their strengths and weaknesses.
My idea of success is not just the outcome of a project. I believe there is a tremendous amount of learning that occurs in failure. I strive to push my students to new places, and help bridge learning gaps for them to develop new skills. What I find success to be is at the end of a project, for the student to be applying new ideas and skills to make jumps on their own. I believe that teaching art is important because the skills acquired in a creative field have such a large impact on who we are, and how we perceive ourselves and the world around us. I believe that creative thought, independent learning and critical analysis when taken out of the classroom, are life long skills and it is truly important as an educator to stay passionate and involved. My passion and hope is to pass these skills to the next generation of the emerging artist.