Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Tomorrow...

Tomorrow everyone starts coming in from all the corners of the North American continent for our workshop.I am very excited to meet everyone. It has been years since I've done any kind of teaching, but I think that my passion for what we're presenting will overcome any anxieties or jitters I might have. (By nature, I am hypercritical of myself and will, until everything is over hold myself to the highest of expectations... my own!)

One of the things that I hope people take away from this experience is a sense of community. I can't think of anyone I know who is happily successful who exists in a void. I firmly believe that the rising tide raises all boats. When you help and support those in your community, the favor will be returned in some form or fashion down the road. When I was in school and took various residency programs, the people that I met are some of the most valuable resources I walked away with. Some of them have become lifelong friends and important business contacts. So, I hope that everyone who comes will take in account what a stellar group of people are assembling.

Today though we've got a lot of last minute things to finish up. Trips to the grocery store and finalizing of handouts. But I think we're in a good position. Whatever doesn't get finished is merely extra and the success of the workshop will not be diminished in the slightest. So, I am very excited about tomorrow...

10 comments:

Alice said...

I wish I was one of the lucky ones attending this event!

I know your workshop will be a blast!

SueBeads said...

Good luck to you both and have fun! I wish I was able to be there!

debi said...

I have two friends,that will be in the workshop. I know you will all have a great time. Dave and I are flying in on Thursday. Andrew your giving nature makes you a natural teacher.Looking forward to having dinner with the girls and hearing all about it. debi

Andrew Thornton said...

Thanks everyone for your votes of confidence!

I am really looking forward to it and hope that it is a rewarding experience for all involved.

The last time I did any kind of teaching, I was helping prepare high school students to get into art school by developing portfolios and writing essays. It has ground that I had already tread, and although I was relatively young, I was still older and "wiser" than my students. We also had the opportunity to work over the course of several months. So, it was easy to develop a natural rhythm and flow.

The challenge here will be engaging everyone, who is really unique and coming for all different kinds of reasons. All different age ranges, experiences, expertise, and a variety of strengths and weaknesses. I think part of the challenge will be to address all the individual skill set levels and hopefully encourage them to make the best work possible in the shortest amount of time. At the same time, balancing it with fun and levity. I don't think anyone wants to be stressed out or feel too pressured to produce. I really feel less like an instructor and more like a facilitator of a experience. Hopefully everyone will have a great time and learn a lot and be happy with the workshops!

Anne said...

You are so right about how success is tied to community and karma.
Wish I was there!

Salzanos said...

I am praying next to year to attend something like this! I still remember my favorite teacher. She was a sculpture teacher and her way was not to "teach" but to guide. She did not make us do things her way, but showed us all the tricks and tips to accomplish our vision of art. She would come around to each of us with this awesome way of engaging us to reach beyond what we thought we were capable of. Like,"here is the materials, the tools, and a theme" now let your imagination soar. But she was there for any question and never got angry with us. ;-)
Andrew I know you will be a great guide!

Andrew Thornton said...

When I think about some of my best class experiences, I always remember the guided classes being some of the most rewarding. Don't get me wrong, technique or project classes are great, but for me... the ones that were embedded in my soul were the ones that caused me to pause and think for years to come.

Kate said...

I think just the experience of "being" is going to be great.

Being in a creative space physically and mentally with a group of like-minded people is a moment in time that will stick in the memories of the participants for a long time to come. It's not an everyday occurrence for most people.

That's what I always cherish about teaching. Being in that creative space always makes me really happy and hopefully it makes my students really happy, too.

Have a great time and I look forward to hearing all about it.

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