E. Vincent Martinez
Fashion Design Instructor
The Art Institute of Atlanta
The best way to bring the 'real world' into the classroom is to bring the classroom to the 'real world'. E. Vincent Martinez , Fashion Design Instructor , The Art Institute of Atlanta
Was there a defining moment when you knew you were destined to become a creative professional?
It was never a question. I was only interested in creative projects growing up. Sports, math, science were never my strong points. But, hand me a drawing pad, camera or fabric and the options are limitless.
How do you weave your professional background into the classroom experience?
I’ve found that the best way to bring the “real world” into the classroom is to bring the classroom to the “real world.” In other words, I have gotten my students involved in events like fashion shows and photo shoots in a variety roles from the backstage to the front of the house. They learn best from being immersed in these environments and by working alongside other industry professionals.
In which of your class assignments do you most inspire students to push themselves beyond their perceived limits?
The Senior Collection class is one my favorites to teach because by the time the students have reached this level, they are ready for the runway. This class is where their magic starts to come to life. They are conceptualizing, designing and creating. It’s a wonderful and rewarding process to help cultivate that.
How does collaboration contribute to students’ success—particularly when students from various programs work together?
Collaboration is extremely important-it’s the exchange of thoughts and ideas between like-minded individuals working toward the same goal. Great things can be accomplished through collaboration. It’s important in the classroom and the professional world alike.
What’s the most critical advice you would offer any student embarking on a creative career?
Question everything except for your gut. Keep an open mind because you will never stop learning. Always be professional.