The Times Are-A-Changing, Keep Up With Tricks of the Trade


NORTH ADAMS, MASS - On Tuesday, Nov. 5, Wednesday, Nov. 6, and Thursday, Nov. 7,  Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts' (MCLA) Berkshire Cultural Resource Center (BCRC) - in partnership with the IS183 Art School and the Pittsfield Office of Cultural Development - will present several Tricks of the Trade seminars that focus on how artists might keep up with the digital era.

"Websites, Social Web, Digital Documenting and Archiving" will answer questions such as: What are the best ways to represent yourself in a rapidly growing, digital world? What skills do you need to set yourself apart from the rest of the art world?

The audience will join guest instructors as they assist attendees in fostering and further enhancing their abilities in a contemporary era where people of all ages perpetually need to adapt in order to keep themselves - and their artwork - relevant.

All Tricks of the Trade workshops and seminars - held in North Adams, Pittsfield and Lenox -  begin at 6 p.m. They are free and open to the public.

On Nov. 5 in MCLA Gallery 51 in North Adams, BCRC Director Jonathan Secor will moderate a panel of guest speakers in a seminar, "Capturing Your Art Today for the Audiences of the Future."

Panelists will include Norton Owen, director of preservation at Jacob's Pillow; Jamie Choquette, owner of Berkshire Sound and Lighting; Colby Dix, sound engineer for Northern Tracks Recording Studio; and Kevin Kennefick of Bella Baby Photography. They will discuss the importance of creating a digital copy of your work to ensure that it is safe, and to stand as a record of one's greater body of work.

On Nov. 6 at the Lichtenstein Center for the Arts, Megan Whilden, director of the Pittsfield Office of Cultural Development, and Joshua Field of Orbit Visual will talk about the importance of utilizing social media to raise greater awareness of artists' work.

Attendees will learn how to use the most popular social networking platforms, and discuss the significance of establishing a presence in a variety of social media, which has growing implications for the success of artists and cultural institutions.

"With so many options available online - from Facebook, Twitter and YouTube to Pinterest, Tumblr, and more - I look forward to exploring how skillfully using these avenues can help further an artist's work without driving them mad," Whilden said.

On Nov. 7 at the IS183 Art School, Field will take participants through the process of furthering their digital leanings by helping them create their own websites in a workshop entitled, "The Art of Creating Your Website."

"It's an interactive world, and there is an expectation that everyone, every artist, will have a usable, informative interactive platform online. With Josh Field, we'll explore what makes a website work - composition, architecture, user expectation," said moderator Hope Sullivan, executive director of IS183 Art School of the Berkshires.

The Tricks of the Trade series runs from September until May, with all sessions starting at 6 p.m.

For more information about this year's Tricks of the Trade series, go to Community/bcrc/tricksofthetrade0809/tricksofthetradeabout/, or call the Berkshire Cultural Resource Center, (413) 664 8718.

Tricks of the Trade is a program produced by the BCRC, in collaboration with the Lichtenstein Center for the Arts and IS183 Art School. The series is sponsored by Appelbaum-Kahn and funded by the Massachusetts Cultural Council.

In its eighth year of serving the creative community of the Berkshires, Tricks of the Trade is a professional development seminar series for artists and other creative workers that gives them the tools and skills they need to grow and sustain their businesses, be that of a independent artist or musician, a non-profit arts institution, or a fast-growing business that depends on creative minds.  

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