I strive for flexibility in my teaching. Each student comes into my classroom with different levels of knowledge of art, skills, and ideas. My responsibility to my students is to create a supportive environment where critical thinking and exploration is encouraged to discover new paths a student can take with their artwork. I create this environment by encouraging the exploration of different ideas and approaches both in art making and ideation and an ongoing conversation about their practice. It is important for me to maintain a conversation throughout the course with the students because it shows them that I am invested in the development of their work.
I encourage my students be conversant with ideas involving of ideas both art history, contemporary art, and social issues. Exposure to diverse ideas and practices opens their eyes to the possibilities and potential in their own art practice. It is important for students to know that many of the questions they ask themselves about their art practice have been asked before by many other artists. I want them to know of the variety of ways they can reach answers.
My role as a studio instructor is to provide a different perspective and guide my students in an individualized manner. I put great efforts into being able to see the potential in their work and ideas and give them feedback that will serve as a foundation for them to stand on and explore.
I encourage my students to find their own questions, strive to take different approaches, and go beyond the obvious. This is very important because through exploration they will reach unexpected outcomes that will then spark their curiosity and encourage them to continue the process and exploration in their practice.
My goals for my students are to walk out of my classroom with a useful set of tools.
1. Problem/question finding skills: These skills will be developed through study of different ideas in both art making, concepts and an active art practice.
2. Technical skills and craftsmanship are an important part of the art making process, they not only elevate the value of the work but consistent practice of skills develops discipline.
3. The ability to talk and analyze their work and the work of others through critical thinking.
4. Recognize that failure is a part of the art making process and avoid being discouraged by it. Through trial and error comes answers and new discoveries that will enable the student to diversify their art practice.
5. Work ethic. Students will understand that good results come from hard work.