Summertime Fun and Learning

I know it’s been pretty quiet around here lately.  There are a multitude of reasons, from the fact that I’m making some decisions on the direction I want the Artful Geek Girl to go in to a week of camping in the Maine woods.  Although my posting might have stopped for a bit, I can assure you that my creating has not.

Have you ever taken an online class? I’m a big fan of them, not just for arts and crafts related learning, but for business and other learning as well. In fact, I teach a class on becoming a virtual assistant on the learning site Udemy, so I’m pretty familiar with the concept.  One thing I hadn’t ever done was take a live class online, meaning that there is live interaction with the teacher and timed release of the material.  All of the classes I’ve taken in the past were like my Udemy course, with all the classes available at once, allowing me to take the classes on my own time schedule and minimum if any interaction with the instructor.

The ‘Ever After 2016’ course that I spoke about in a previous post is a live course.  And although it’s still structured to allow students to leisurely complete the classes in their own timeframe, it’s not all available at once.  At the beginning of each month several new classes are released to be completed within that month.  I’m finding that I really love this structure.

Why?  Wouldn’t being able to have all the time in the world to complete as much or as little of the material as I wanted be ideal?  Not really.

What tends to happen is life gets busy and because I can complete the classes any time they get the lowest possible priority, even though I really, really want to learn what they offer.  Having a set time frame to complete my classes and lessons means I have to give them a higher priority. And that means I actually am learning, not just putting it off until I have time someday.

Another aspect of the live course that is awesome for me is the sharing and feedback that’s given by the instructor(s).  Often, we are much more critical of our own work than we should be. We expect perfection when it’s not necessary. In art perfection may not even exist.  Having an instructor point out the things you’ve done well or grasped well is priceless.  As are the helpful tips and hints they may give to help you through concepts and techniques you may find a bit more difficult.

If you’ve never taken a course or class online, I encourage you to do so.  Learning new things has never been more accessible than it is now.  If there is a technique, craft or project you’ve always wanted to learn how to do, seek out an online class and use the summer to learn it.

Here is a list of some great online art and craft classes available:

  • Ever After 2016– put together by Tamara LaPorte featuring some amazingly talented artists as instructors. Tamara and the other artists also have their own separate classes
  • Online Card Classes by Jennifer McGuire and Kristina Werner has a wide array of fun classes focused on card making from some pretty awesome names in the crafting/cardmaking world. One of this summer’s featured classes is Tim Holtz’s 3 part Creative Chemistry  Here’s a chance to take a class(es) with Tim if you aren’t lucky enough to attend one of his live events!  And of course the creative brilliance of Jennifer and Kristina themselves with classes like ‘heat wave’ with heat embossing tips & tricks, Jennifer’s ‘Stretch Your Dies’ class (in the awesome Stretch Your Supplies section and Kristina & Jennifer’s ‘Kick Start’ class to give you the creative ‘oomph’ you need to get making when the inspiration just isn’t there.
  • Looking to learn quilting, embroidery, cooking, photography, jewelry making and more? Try Craftsy. Prominent crafters like Lia Griffith, Nichol Magouirk and my one of my personal art journal favorites Vicky Papaioannou offer classes through Craftsy.
  • Creativebug is another online craft class site with a wide range of subjects. From mixed media to kids classes, you’ll find something for just about anyone at Creativebug.

Have you taken online classes?  Did you have a good experience?  Bad experience? Share with us in the comments below.



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