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Metal Arts instructor

I am hoping that some folks out there may have the time and be able
to answer my question. We are starting a metal arts group in the
Olympia Washington area, and I have volunteered to ask other metal
arts organizations about their selection of instructors. What kind of
and materials do you ask for up-front from new potential
instructors, and how do you handle the evaluation process for your
instructors? I would appreciate any commentary you might care to
send my way.


Alison Fine

Hello Alison, I would ask to see examples of their work. I would ask
them to demonstrate a soldering process to a small group of us.
Make sure they can communicate well with the students and that they
are concerned with the students progress. It is not enough to have
the facts and be a production worker. They have to slow down and be
capable of helping students see and learn. Steve Ramsdell

Hi Alison; Allow me to chime in here. I think that since you are new
to this business of evaluating an instructor, might I suggest two

  1. Consider carefully what you wish the instructor to be able to
    present to the students. Broad based metalsmithing skills of the
    kind found in academia? Skills specific to the jewelry trade such as
    classical stone setting methods and small run production casting?
    Design skills AND high end trade type skills such as would suit a
    self employed designer/craftsperson? 2. Go to where someone who meets
    those criteria is teaching what you’ll want your instructor to teach
    and ask to sit in on one of their classes to see how it’s done. Make
    sure you get referred to someone who is a good instructor. Then when
    you have your candidate demonstrate their teaching style, you’ll have
    something to compare it to.

I know that if you were here in Norther Michigan, I’d be glad to have
you watch me run one of my classes, watch a demo/lecture or critique,
look over the class outline, check what a qualified instructor’s
curiculum vitae (resume) looks like, etc. So I have to figure you’ll
be able to find people like myself around the country. I’d suggest
you start by calling a few places like Arrowmont, Penland, perhaps
some of the college metals programs, or maybe Alan Revere could refer
you to someone. Let me know if I can provide further help. David L.
Huffman @David_L_Huffman