Online classes and videos:
fit into your busy schedule and can be watched anywhere
are typically focussed on one technique
can be watched over and over again
are great refreshers for any technique you might have drifted away from for a while, and
best of all are also low- to no-cost learning options.
You Tube is a great resource for online learning. It can be overwhelming, though, to sort through and know which videos are useful and which ones are just too hard to watch or understand. That's why many of your favourite designers and suppliers have set up their own You Tube channels. You can subscribe to them and get notifications when they add new videos to their channel - just search channels by topic. Many channels hold weekly contests for their devoted followers. I subscribe to the following channels because they have great/trusted content and thousands of followers: Jill Wiseman (who has almost 65,000 subscribers and about 100 videos); beadaholique; Rio Grande; Fire Mountain Gems; Kate Richbourg; KS Productions (Beads Baubles and Jewels); Artbeads; SLK Ice Resin.
There are also free and pay content on sites such as beaducation.com, Craftsy, beadingdaily.com and many others. Download instruction sheets, download videos or follow along with taped content.
Periscope is a great app that offers you the opportunity to interact, in real time, with a teacher or expert. For instance, I follow Kate Richbourg on Periscope and every Friday I hear a little ship whistle on my phone letting me know she's broadcasting live. If I'm free, I open Periscope and click on her broadcast. I can type in questions and comments as she does things like demo tools, open shipments from suppliers, tour the studio, offer tips and tricks or discuss trends. If you have a Twitter account it's easy to sign in. I can tweet out to my network and invite them to attend the session too.
Carrie Story, who works with Prometheus Clay, also launched last week on Periscope and she expects to broadcast monthly. At Kate's suggestion I also follow Francesca Watson, but have yet to catch one of her broadcasts. Hopefully, later this year, once I've launched my own web site, I'll also launch regular Periscope broadcasts. Oh, and don't worry if you miss the live broadcast - Kate archives hers on her You Tube channel.
Let me know your favourite online resources in the comments section and tell me why you prefer one over another, perhaps? Let's ride the wave of learning on your time in combination with live classes and keep growing on our creative journey!