Positive, engaging learning experiences not only expand a knowledge base but also boost confidence in the communication of ideas, encourage future exchange of information, and can improve understanding of the world and ones role within it. Studies in art offer the possibility of interdisciplinary exploration encouraging the merging of multiple fields through visual art. As an artist, I find endless potential in ways in which visual art can collaborate with other fields and provide a new direction for communicating ideas.
My goal as an educator is to establish an intellectually productive and academically challenging environment where creativity, communication and collaboration are embraced. I firmly believe this environment is a successful approach to creating a positive learning experience for the student. Through these three elements, a sense of camaraderie may be developed between students and instructor and excitement for technical development, conceptual exploration, and the upholding of academic integrity may be encouraged.
My experience teaching confirms that no two students are alike. Successful instruction requires an ability to explain a concept or demonstrate a technique in multiple ways. In each course I teach, textual, auditory, and physical connections must be made to the subject. Students are encouraged to write notes, engage in dialog, sketch tools and techniques, and physically assist and engage in demonstrations to establish learning comprehension and information retention on multiple levels. Additionally, successful instruction and learning demands interaction throughout a group. Round table discussions are as equally important as lectures. At the conceptual development stage of each project, students will engage in discussion of their work to encourage critical thinking and conceptual development. Though the use of technology as an artistic tool is embraced, the use of personal technological devices is discouraged in class to help foster an environment open to communication. As an artist, I value both the historical and contemporary aspects to every art medium. Printmaking claims a rich past embracing the commercial, the political, and the interdisciplinary. The medium is based both historically on technique and contemporarily on the expansion of what a print multiple may encompass. In my printmaking courses specifically, students will develop technical fluency as well a strong comprehension of the historical developments that inform what contemporary printmaking has become. My goal as both an artist and an educator is to inspire, challenge, and guide each student through her or his artistic endeavors in ways that will sharpen conceptual development, encourage intellectual thinking, and complement additional media and interdisciplinary fields in which the student seeks to study.