Do you consider yourself a visual learner? In other words: do you
learn faster and retain more from a live demonstration
or video of a jewelry making technique than you would from reading
about it in a book?
Yes, I am a visual learner. But I am also an intense reader (I
occasionally am asked to do book reviews in my “other” field,
Assyriology). I like live demonstrations because I often can ask
questions afterward, about details I missed/misunderstood or which
were missing. On the other hand, the book stays with you, for
constant reference when needed. For that reason, I take copious
notes during live demonstrations (which is pretty difficult – to
watch, listen, write, and sketch within a brief period of time). But
if I don’t take notes, I forget chunks of what I have seen.
I have had no experience with videos of jewelrymaking.
Most of my students seem to be primarily visual learners and seem to
have little interest in reading instructions.
When you read a jewelry making text book, how important are the
visual images to your choosing one text book over another?
The visual images are very important to me, especially in newer
books, because I think the art of writing with clarity is in decline.
Do you consider the writing style to be important Or is clarity
and brevity of instruction better for you?
I am interested in clarity. Writing style and brevity of instruction
are of much less interest. At my age and stage of involvement in the
field of jewelrymaking, I do not need to be entertained or motivated.
[Additional, unrequested rant: I think that Art Jewelry magazine does
a good job of integrating pictures and clear text. Many beading
magazines (which often have instructions on making metal jewelry)
have fair pictures and sometimes abysmal instructions. Even the
pictures may be lacking, especially when it comes to showing
finishing touches, such as the ends of bracelets. I have recently
taken up a little chain mail (to teach, not to sell), and the
instructions for that can foster insanity (coupled with the effort to
find the base metal jump rings I need/want). I love reading Connie
Fox’s instructions on anything.]
If I remember, I’ll ask my students (at my one-day class in mid-June)
the questions you have listed here.