I am a firm believer in constantly learning and strive to improve my skills in whatever area of the fine arts I'm involved in at the given moment. From collage to book arts, I have taken many live workshops with wonderful instructors at the Center for Book Arts and at other art retreats across the country. This year I decided to try some on-line classes to learn some new skills. I checked out YouTube of course for free online tutorials and they are fun to view and try new things. Most are created by artists who wish to share their skills and are very adept at teaching and translating their skills and lessons to video. But, I really wanted to try some professional workshops and classes via Craftsy and some other sites. After checking out some of their topics, I decided to try an online class on Craftsy for wire weaving. I was delighted. The workshop instructor spoke slowly and demonstrated very well the technique and her explanations were concise and informative. I felt as if I was there in the class with her one-on-one. I viewed it once and have yet to do the project as I also am teaching myself via book with projects, but, I was so pleased that I signed up for another one on wire weaving. Most of the Craftsy online classes are priced economically and I had received emails for discounts which enticed me to sign up for the second one. Craftsy also offers some FREE classes for viewing which is fun to test out the medium to see if it is for you. There are pricier online workshops but most of Craftsy's offerings range in price from $12.99 to $39.99 which makes it an affordable option. I liked the website format which was easy to navigate and allows for note-taking on each video chapter and question and answer as well. The videos are well-lit and taped and edited professionally. Personally, this is another option I will be adding to my year-long adventure into wire weaving and other metalsmithing techniques. Have you tried online classes? What were your experiences and would you do it again? I think it's always interesting to explore new mediums of learning and I'm glad I took the chance. Happy Spring and keep learning and creating!
Maryann J. Riker, owner of JUSTARIP Press is a mixed-media artist who delights in designing and creating artist's books and creating collaborative book art projects as well as viewing other book artists' work. She definitely enjoys the process!