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Guest JBaymore

And I agree with previous posts that both the mentors and mentees should be assessed.


And here is exactly where the quality of the whole program will reside. And here is exactly where a large, HUGE, MASSIVE amount of labor time needs to be applied to actually do this well. That also brings us to whom will be doing the reviews? The selection of those people ultimately will determine the quality of the review process.


And you still have not gotten anywhere near the actual mentoring end of things.


I think you are re-inventing a system that already exists......but trying to do it for free. That system is called college. wink.gif And despite all the bashing about post secondary education out there... there ARE good programs to be found.






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Potters Council Members are here with full time jobs, families ... Obligations.

They can't take off for four years ... they have bills to pay.


We are trying to help them stay in the studio, stick with pottery ...

so they don't have to leave the field because it's too hard to go it alone.


No one would dispute that good Ceramics programs are the best option ...

We just want to try to provide another.


I hope that with all your experience, you will volunteer to mentor ... The potter who

gets matched with you would truly be very lucky!

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What does mentoring mean to you?


What would you expect from a mentor?


If you were a mentor, what would be a reasonable commitment to one student?


Should it be one on one or is group mentoring better?


How would you assess the success of the process? How would you get out of it if it was not working out?


Would love to get lots of opinions.



I don't know what the actual definition of a mentor is, but my understanding of the word is that a mentor is someone who is responsible for the "passing down" of knowledge or experience. A true mentor should care about the development and success of their student(s). Being a mentor is a great responsibility because they are often seen as role models and students tend to shape their values and beliefs after the person who is mentoring them. I don't have an opinion about whether one on one mentoring is better than group mentoring, but I do think that it should be personalized for each student. Sometimes, certain students will respond better to a one on one environment, and a mentor should take time to figure out when this is the case. A good mentor will also recognize when their student(s) is not learning and may need a different approach. I feel that a bad mentor would pass a student along because they could not get through to them... But, perhaps this should be handled on a case-by-case basis, as not every situation is alike.

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I am very interested in this discussion because, well, I need a mentor! I spent four years in a college system and had a wonderful experienced potter as my mentor. He also happened to be my instructor. In exchange for his mentoring I would do various tasks in return, mixing and pugging clay, cleaning the studio, I changed out kiln elements, mixing glaze, loading and unloading student work. These tasks were his responsibility, however, I got the greatest benefit from the experience! It was more like an apprenticeship, the way pottery should be thought... old school.


Then I graduated and moved across the country.


I set up my home studio, mostly with his guidance, I did well for a few years. Then I stopped growing as an artist. I had no influx of new ideas, no one to discuss my latest test tile with (my husband just says oh, really, wow). So I stopped potting. For four years. This is so sad.


I need a mentor, and mostly a friend. Not someone to just solve problems with me, but to celebrate when I get it right. Potters are a community, I need some sort of community to grow and move as an artist. I am also terribly introverted!


On the flip... I have two kids and a full time job. I may try your technique and sell it!


Would you be my mentor?? lol.


Currently I have adopted two potters on youtube, who will remain nameless... There are some really great demonstrations out there.

I need glaze help the most... and a baby sitter (sorry wrong message board!)


From Winter Haven Florida




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Welcome and thanks for the post!


You might, or might not know that this is a young forum.

We want to be the place where you can safely ask questions and share work images

in an atmosphere of respect and helpfulness.


So, post your images, your results, your questions to the appropriate forum.

There is no problem with space here and your questions are just as valid as anyone else's.

Images make it so much easier to understand, so post them too!


If there is someone who can help, they will try ... Sometimes no one has your answer, but

that is good too. It means youn are pushing boundaries and maybe trying something new

to all.


We are actively working on putting au mentoring program in place ... Like a lot of other things it is easier

said than done. We are figuring out how to make it work for everyones benefit.

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When I mentor an artist about business, I always "get"

as much as I give. I really expect the session to turn into

a long term relationship of some kind... but few people actually

keep in touch. For the past twenty years I've offered mentoring

or consulting in several ways... on Facebook for free or

one hour for the price of lunch (anywhere but McDonalds)

I wish more artists who are well-established would do this

for emerging artists... there are few who won't (if asked).

Without mentoring, most artists who make the "leap" to

wholesaling (instead of a gradual, well thought out plan)

are doomed to fail.


We're in the process of restructuring our own service

fees... giving artists a show discount if they are graduates of

an arts business institute workshop or perhaps involved in

a mentor relationship with someone who can confirm that

they are ready to wholesale. Failure is just too expensive...

and the impact to the ego is difficult to overcome.


Knowledge + Good Work = Confidence.

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