Teaching was never something I though I would want to pursue as a career. I didn’t spend my formative years teaching the other kids in the neighbourhood, I didn’t particularly excel a school and I guess the truth is I’ve never really believed I have anything to teach!..but things change.
Over the last few years I have dabbled and contemplated and tried and failed at career in education (not mainstream schooling but adult and outreach work), a few volunteer positions presented themselves but for the most part opportunities to shadow a tutor have been non-existent. Many emails sent, few replies received.
In May of this year a local Artist and Tutor was kind enough to answer my email and spare me a little time, to chat and to allow me to observe her sessions….and ever since I have been assisting with workshops at ‘The Drawing Room’ whenever I am able. I’ve loved it from the first session and, if it were an option, I would quit my day job in a heartbeat to spend all my time in class. It is primarily, perhaps entirely, thanks to Kate that I have finally managed to find a footing on a somewhat illusive ladder. Not choosing the ‘conventional’ route of teacher training , Schools etc, has made it difficult to get started but I think i’m starting to make progress.
‘Rebuild’ by Kate Conway – Print and Conte on Paper
After the first session one of Kate’s students, as he was saying goodbye, said to me “Thanks for the help” ….and it made me feel so happy to think, to know, that something I had said had made a difference, had value to someone else and perhaps gave them a little more confidence. Since then I’ve had this experience/feeling a few times (the sense of satisfaction doesn’t lessen) and each time it makes me think about THAT teacher, the one that makes all the difference, the ‘good one’ who challenges you, encourages you and in many ways makes you.
For me, that teacher was Mathew Gibson who’s scathing critiques woke me up and spurred me on, who’s persistence helped me to find and embrace my ‘style’, who’s encouragement gave me ambition and confidence. And now, every time I’m in the classroom and someone say’s “Thanks” its really thanks to Mathew for getting me where I am now.
So….. Thanks Mathew and Thanks Kate….please forgive me stealing images of your work…. I promise it’s only out of admiration and huge respect.
‘Desk’ by Mathew Gibson – Oil on board