Ya, my 2 cents is not to go to school...Find someone who has been
in the business for some time and learn from them. From what I have
gotten from kids from schools is hobbyist work at best. I had to
retrain them in real world design and repair. Take the time and go
door to door and find that right person to learn from.
I would like to know what your experience has been taking on an
People who say they want to be an apprentice are the first ones to
bail as soon as they find out they have to do basic menial jobs to
I always tell someone who wants to apprentice to go to one of the
three schools locally and learn basics. They have to make a
commitment of their time before I waste any of my time. Not many
young people these days have good work habits or ethics.
One high school class and they want to be a designer.
If I took on an apprentice they would have to commit for a certain
length of time with several thousand dollars as a bonus held back as
an incentive to compete their term, and a no competition clause
within a certain distance of my business. I like to teach, but not
for someone to learn to do what I do and become my competition.
I have had an employee send my designs to another caster and I found
out because one of my customers saw them for sale in Tuscon!!!
Schools teach the basics, you learn a lot quickly, and then you must
practice, practice, practice, to eventually have a low paying job in
a very competitive business. There is a designer who has his
high-end retail shops in the best retail locations in the city I am
in, and rumor is that the main workforce is Vietnamese who are
aggressive competition and very protective of their territory, and
some people cannot work in that environment.