The Art Institute of Charleston, a branch of The Art Institute of Atlanta
What I love about teaching students at Ai Charleston: I love teaching students how to sew. They start off a little apprehensive—maybe even afraid of the industrial sewing machine—and as they make their way through the program they become fashion warriors filled with bright new ideas and create designs they would never would have imagined they were capable of producing before. Julie Duvall , Fashion Instructor , The Art Institute of Charleston, a branch of The Art Institute of Atlanta
Was there a defining moment when you knew you were destined to become a creative professional?
While studying the play Death of a Salesman, I was inspired by Willy Loman's message that you can find happiness and life meaning by working with your hands—and being able to see and touch what you’ve created.
How do you weave your professional background into the classroom experience?
In Elements of Garment Construction, I introduce sewing techniques I’ve used in the real world to help students execute their design visions and understand how professional garments are created.
What class assignment exemplifies your approach to teaching and mentoring?
We build a skirt and a tailored shirt in that same class. I walk each student individually, step-by-step, through the sewing process. I encourage them to enjoy the process as they learn the meticulous nature of sewing.
How does collaboration contribute to students’ success—particularly when students from various programs work together?
When students get a chance to see how others deal with issues, solve challenges, and make design choices, they’re inspired to look at their own art differently...and maybe try something new.
What’s the most important thing you impart to students to help them succeed in class and the real world?
Commit yourself completely to your art.
What’s the most critical advice you would offer any student embarking on a creative career?
Dedication to your passion will deliver excellence in your work.
Anything else you’d like to share?
I love teaching students how to sew. They start off a little apprehensive—maybe even afraid of the industrial sewing machine—and as they make their way through the program they become fashion warriors filled with bright new ideas. They create designs they never would’ve imagined they were capable of producing before.