Monday, September 13, 2010

Purpose

It's Monday, another week begins and it's packed! New instructors getting to know the ropes, getting their ducks in a row and it's exciting to see. We add new talented artists all the time - we're searching for them and they are finding us.

When I think of where we were 18 months ago, I can't quite believe where we are today. The platform continues to be improved to make it easier for both students and instructors to navigate and use. Our tech partner is amazing - forward thinking and we are so grateful for all the hours and all the weekends spent working on our behalf.

New people discover us daily - we've not done any marketing and promotion, other that our facebook page, this blog and the work of individual faculty members but we are growing - it's a steady uphill curve. We've got members from over 80 countries! I often wonder, how we were found. I'm grateful we have been.

When building an entity, any entity, it's a good idea to reach back occasionally and touch on original purpose. Double check, are we on the right track? If not, make a course correction, don't wander off into the tulies!

We all know there is a lot of beginner instruction out there on the net, in magazines and in books. CraftEdu also provides basic free tutorials for beginners. I've written 3 books, publishers like lots of projects and techniques - pack that book full. That's good and bad. Yes, there is a lot of variety, but sometimes that means that a sacrifice has been made in depth of instruction. Authors have to compromise with their publishers, it's understandable, it's about space - numbers of pages, numbers of images. These valuable resources can begin a student, provide the basis for further growth but where do you go to jump to the next level? This vacuum has been filled by in person workshops.

I travel and teach. I take as a maximum enrollment, 24 students. Most of the time I have 24 students. If I taught every weekend of the year (which would kill me) I could only reach a finite number of students. Some of my students fly to get to the workshop, check into hotels. I receive inquiries all the time - when are you coming to Russia? Someday, I certainly hope to but the chance that I'll get there very soon is remote.

So, our goal is to provide what someone like I would in person, online. To help our students jump to the next level, from their own homes. And, with this platform and the capability for our students to reach us with a click of the mouse, we've done that.

This week we offer another great workshop from a great artist/instructor, Maggie Meister. This particular class is another example of our original purpose - to provide that in class, jump to the next level workshop experience in the comfort of your own home and according to your own time schedule. The Mosaic Chain Bracelet would be a weekend workshop with Maggie. CraftEdu means you don't have to travel to get to her, perhaps pay for a hotel and take care of those expenses accrued when you're on the road. The added benefit? The cost of the workshop is also a fraction of what that in person workshop would set you back. And, with that click of your mouse, you get Maggie, if you need her!

As everyone becomes more experienced with the technical aspect of the platform, we will offer more and more classes of this intermediate and advanced level to fill the gap and elevate your art which is the ultimate purpose of CraftEdu.com and every artist/instructor teaching here.

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