I’m incredibly excited to do a bit of shameless self-promotion today. This summer, the Pacific Northwest College of Art’s Continuing Education Department will be hosting an exciting new program specifically geared toward crafters of all varieties–the Summer of Making. The Summer of Making will feature special classes, or unique formats, not normally offered by the school. There are some classes that I am very excited about being taught by some incredibly creative and knowledgeable locals–such as Alicia Paulson, Susan Beal and Diane Gilleland. There will also be a “headliner” from out of town, but I can’t tell you who it is yet. (Trust me, it’s someone awesome! And I’ll let you know as soon as I’ve gotten the okay to reveal it.) I don’t know about you, but I think it’s incredibly impressive that a respected art college wants to embrace independent making, creating and DIY with a multi-week, specialized program like this.
Anyway, since I have a close, personal relationship with the coordinator of the Summer of Making, PNCA asked me to teach a class on my area of specialty, which isn’t a specific craft, but rather, the art and craft of communicating. Electronic media has, as you all know, revolutionized the way we communicate and publish our work. Blogging can be an important piece of that for both independent business people and artists/crafters, as well as those of us who simply want to share with–and therefore learn from–other creative folks. I’m going to be helping to facilitate my students in creating their own self-hosted blog (none of that .wordpress.com or .blogspot.com stuff). Here’s the description from the unpublished course catalog:
Use blogging, complimented by social media tools, to share your art or craft with a broader audience. This course will walk you through developing a self-hosted WordPress blog that is customized for your specific needs. We will collaborate to develop a purpose statement for your blog and create compelling content and imagery to compliment your unique art, craft and individual style. We will explore complimentary social media which can be integrated into your blog, explore successful art, craft and design blogs and have the opportunity to learn from guest speakers. Additionally, we will examine the ethics and etiquette of blogging and freedom and responsibilities of acting as publisher, editor and writer.
Since my professional experience is in marketing, public relations and publications, I plan on bringing that perspective to class–students will get to pick my brain about all sorts of communication issues–from design to branding to the benefits and drawbacks of the various social media platforms. I’m a big proponent of creating a brand or image that is truthful, meaningful and reflective of not only who you would like to be, but who you are–so we will work through those issues together when developing purpose statements and talking about “voice.”
As an added bonus, I will commit to bringing some of my famous chocolate chip cookies to (at least) one of the classes. ‘Cause I’m cool that way.
P.S. My class will be on Wednesday evenings, from July 15 to Aug. 5. When I have more details about the other classes, and registration information, I’ll make sure to post right away, since I know the other, cooler classes will fill up rapidly. (Especially the one from the secret guest instructor.)