I had a back-to-back art workshop at Art in Aura last October. I don’t know what came over me to schedule workshops for the weekends, as if holding one workshop wasn’t a challenge enough! Looking back, I was pretty stressed out about it (talking to so many people reminded me of my management trainee days), given once again it decided to rain very hard (why the typhoon just happens to hit Manila when I have a workshop is a mystery….).
Before diving into the workshop pictures, I’d take this opportunity to write about what goes on when I decide to have a workshop. If you are just interested in seeing the pictures, feel free to skip the succeeding paragraphs!
Setting up a workshop takes a lot of work and I’ve been doing it almost for each month this year – this is part of my “artist” goal if you could call it that (I feel embarrassed calling myself an artist because there are real artists out there). I’m not exactly a positive-thinking-rainbows-and-unicorns kind of person either – more of the opposite. But I like to think of ideas and execute them. (Later on, I’d lament on the many little things I could have done better to make things perfect.) I want to keep pursuing something beyond the confines of the traditional office (it gets deathly boring in front of the computer and I finish up my work pretty quickly). I want to inspire others and ignite their passion in painting as I firmly believed that art and painting led me to a much more peaceful state. You don’t have to be the best painter, but you feel happy knowing you created something for yourself.
Anyways, I have default topics for workshops – Beginners Watercolor, Florals and Portraits. I really like Florals and Beginners Watercolor which I’ve done several times this year. Sadly my portrait took a back seat and when I do portraits now I cringe at my work – buuuut I resolve to practice! After choosing a topic, I’d make my pricing/supplier management if needed. Then I have to decide on a date to announce it. I was advised to put my workshops on the week when people have their pay – higher chance of people actually paying! But I find that it doesn’t really work that way, when people want to learn from you, they find a way to pay. Heck, I even had people pay months in advance just to confirm their slot. I create an Event in my Facebook page with a date, some workshop info and a link to Google forms should they want to register. I like making an Early Bird rate to encourage people to register early – this is especially important if you plan to order bulk items with discount from suppliers. Art materials suppliers offer discounts with 10 items or more so of course you need to shell out money first and pray that you get 10 students or more. But if you plan to hold several workshops in the future, I’m sure you’ll be able to get the ROI from those cost.
Does it matter if there is an inclusive materials or not for the workshop? Yes, if you plan to include materials in your workshop, make sure you get the eye-catching and artist grade brands like Sennelier, Holbein, ShinHan, etc… People will always ask me – “What are the materials included?” Before I used to get Prang as the material (it’s still one of my fave honestly!) but now people want paint which they don’t have. And that goes the same with brushes. Most likely the people enrolling workshops these days already have materials – and they are even better than yours hahaha! The number of times I drooled at a student’s watercolor set and brush!!! I would suggest to offer an option with materials and without materials. 🙂
When it comes to tie-ups there’s a lot of coordination happening on the week of the workshop. Especially when the weather decides not to cooperate. I had to request to Art in Aura for the workshops to be moved indoors due to the rain and I take it it was difficult to get permission to set up inside the mall, plus getting plastic tables and chairs. I would suggest to approach cafes for any workshop packages. You can include food in your workshop too as a way to payback the use of the space. I find that people get hungry after concentrating for so long in their painting. Especially if you teach kids. I also bring some candies and chocolates and put them in the center of the table so people can nibble while they paint. It creates a nice and relaxing atmosphere.
Of course while doing all of these, I’m also prepping the lesson plan and taking notes of what I wish to impart to my students. I am more or less more drawn to teaching my process (since I am self-taught) after tackling the basics of watercolor. It is easy enough to know wet-on-wet and wet-on-dry techniques but how to approach a certain painting? Where to start? What to add? Should you stop adding? What color to make it pop? I don’t know how others teach watercolor, but this is just what I find useful to share. 🙂
Now on to the photos of my workshops. I have more photos of the Watercolor for Beginners (coz I have kind a sponsor like Faber-Castell and my friend, Toni, who took photos!) than the Graphite Portrait one.
Then on the next day, I had my Graphite Portrait workshop. This is the first ever kind of workshop I did and I just had an idea of wanting to teach portrait with a twist. And those that follow me in Instagram know how I love my Artgraf Viarco watersoluble graphite pan so this was the highlight of the workshop!
These are the last workshops for the yearrr!!! For these last two months of 2017 I’m working on my merchandise – if you haven’t followed it yet, check out Hanamiph, where I handpaint pouches, notebooks and sell my floral designs in notebooks, postcards and art prints! Perfect for Christmas gifts and/or giveaways! 😀
Next year, I’ll be back to teaching and I hope to see familiar faces in class. Cheers! 😉