Education

Learn new skills without leaving your home

11:40 AM

Have you ever heard the saying : "You can't teach an old dog new tricks"?

I bet you have, we probably all heard it as kids, from parents, relatives and teachers to tell us that we kids should know better than try to sneakily trick them.
You probably also heard it being uttered by someone who decided they were too old to learn anything new.

Fess up! Either you or a loved one has at least uttered a "I'm too old, to learn this crap". I'm too old to learn how to use.... (Insert random skill or technology). I'm too old to start...(insert random activity).

And let's be frank here, this notion of being too old to try something, or learn something has to just go out of the window, down the drain or in the trash. The only thing saying "I'm too old" achieve is to hold you drowning in a pool of mediocrity in the long run.

It becomes even more dangerous when as a professional you decide that you DON'T need to learn new skills, or that you know everything you need to know. That you are old enough to command respect and have your probably outdated knowledge challenged or questionned.

It's time, not age that is the problem

You are never to old to keep yourself current on your skills, you are never too old to try something new, you are certainly never too old to learn a few more tricks.

The REAL problem is that as we age, and get burdened with more and more adult responsibilities, family obligations and the like it becomes a bit harder to make TIME to attend a class. 

See the problem is going to a school, or class across the city when you have a full time job (and I am counting Homemaker as a job) is often hard and comes with schedule and time constraints. 


Fortunately there is a way around it, more than one way in fact, thanks to this thing called the Internet. 

Internet has opened a whole new dimension in the field of education and skill learning, be it from free YouTube videos, online courses you can complete in as much time you need. Or paid online portals like Skillshare

The link above is an Skillshare Affiliate link, this means if you enroll as a paid member, I get paid a commission. 
I have been using Skillshare for years, first as a free membership user, and later as a paid membership, I can totally vouch for it. 


This is how I keep myself current

As a work from home, freelance artist and designer, it would be easy for me to just fall into a routine, do the same old thing, without bothering to update my skills. 
For a while, I would be in trend, and then persisting into doing things the old way, I would probably fall into the "League of obsolete creatives". 
It happens all the time, it certainly happened through the ages before. If we dare to be realistic, if people stuck to cave painting we would never have had the Sistine Chapel. 

And if people never challenged the Renaissance painting style and continued doing the same old boring thing, we would never have seen the impressionist movement, Pablo Picasso's cubism, or Andy Warhol's pop art. 


Ok but what has Skillshare anything to do with it?

If I had gotten stuck in my ways thinking art is a thing that does stay on paper, I would never have learned how to digitise my artwork and sell it for a start. 

Granted I have browsed the internet to figure it out for a while, the one class that made it simpler to understand was this AMAZING "From Paper to screen" class by Cat Coq which is just one of the many classes I have taken on Skillshare. 

Those red fans in the picture above? They are the result of me taking another Cat Coq class where she shares her watercolor painting tips and techniques

I've been painting for years, with both Acrylic paint and watercolor, I learned it eons ago in school, and then art school. 
So why did I take that class? You'd think that as a seasoned painter as I am and an artist I would not get any benefit from taking such a class. 

WRONG! 

Her class teaches us about MODERN watercolor, the kind that is very high in demand on sites like Society6

For a professional keeping current on trends and skills, this is called "learning as you go" 

Ok, but is there a time limit? 

Simply put, NO

That is the beauty of it, you can pause the video as many times as you need, come back to it later, or re-watch it as often as you need. 
You can watch it in the middle of the night, during your lunch break, while your kids nap. The classes on Skillshare aren't live classes. 

You have access to all the courses for as long as you are a member. The only difference is that if you membership is the free type, you only can access small selection of videos. To get more, you can move to a paid membership. 

Isn't that costly?

You'd think so, but NOPE, it really isn't. 

I am a premium membership user, and it cost me 800 rupees a month. I can watch unlimited videos, whether I watch one or a million the price will be the same. It works just the same as your cable subscription, Netflix, or magazine subscription in that regard.

Compare it to taking a one time class with a physical teacher and it becomes really cheap. Most workshops in Mumbai are in the 1000 to 2000 rupees a session, where you learn a few things in the span of one hour or two, and then it's done. 

Skillshare offers you the possibility to not only watch the video countless time (think more of it as a paid YouTube for learning skills) it also offers you access to class discussions, where you can post a question about the class project. Often the teacher replies to the comments offering you extra insights and help. 
For the price, you also get to share your projects on the class project page and get insights on it. 

What's more, if you enroll using my affiliate links, you get the first two months of premium membership FREE. If you don't like it, you can stop it before you begin being charged for it. You can also choose to discontinue your membership at any time in the future, but once you cancel it, your access to the premium content goes with it. 

Is it just for artists or there are other classes? 

No, there are classes in the field of business, technology and lifestyle (think recipes and DIY) on top of creative classes, so there is really something for everyone. 
It's just that as an artist, I obviously will not try to promote Skillshare and its merit telling you about a great Accounting class I never took, or how awesome an app coding class is. I can still access these class with my membership though, so if at any point I need to hone some techie skills, I can do it there. 

Any other options? 

There are options a plenty on the web these days, it just so happen I love Skillshare, and use it more than other video portals to learn thing. 
But if it is not your thing, YouTube has a lot of skill learning videos as well. And if videos aren't your thing, there are paid membership websites for students, free ones, and still the good old Google searches. 
The only thing you need to learn from the comfort of your home is being self disciplined and eager to do so. 


Learn on Skillshare

0 comments

Blog Archive