Interview with Mel Shade manager at Inspiration Station

Hello!!!

I have exciting news today!!!
My friend and manager of art and craft school Inspiration Station Mel agreed to give an interview for my blog!!!
Before I continue with the interview I just want to tell you how I had a busy week.

On Monday I was at the ARTogehter with my art group International Artists Doha  and we were learning new technique of painting using acrylic colors, tissue paper, chalk, our imagination and all of us created such a wonderful paintings. 

Next two days I spent in preparing materials for printing and visited my printing company Blink.

On Saturday I participated in MIA Park Bazaar, my favorite market in Doha. More photos here

 my display at the MIA Park Bazaar 1st March 2014

my display at the MIA Park Bazaar 1st March 2014

And on Sunday I set up display with my work at Inspiration Station.
IS  is a new art and craft school in Doha. When I first found out about it in August 2013, I was still on vacation in Croatia and I was so happy to hear amazing news! I immediately sent message to Mel, manager of the school and asked for a meeting after I come back. From the moment we met I realized how great person she is. We are now working together on collaboration with a group me and my friend Gabi started called QatARTand we have lots of benefits for our members that Mel have provided for us. One of them is a two weeks display with our handmade products at her school. My display will be there from 2nd until 14th March and before you go please check their calendar to see when they are open (when there is a class they are open).

Interview with Mel Shade, an artist, a crafter, a designer, a manager of Inspiration Station, and the list goes on...

1. How did you come up with the idea to start art and craft school in Doha and how long did it take from the idea to the realization? 
The idea for the school came from 2 directions. From the side of Louise, my business partner, was an opportunity to do something new and interesting with space she had in her Pre-school business. She shares my enjoyment of crafting and making things and approached me with the opportunity to use it. From my side I have been a teacher for 8 years. I have always been interested in the crossover between art and craft and had dreams of having an arty/crafty supplies shop that also provided lesson. So, Inspiration Station is the beginning of the dream.

2. Everything from interior design: painted walls, cushions on sofas, furniture, signs to online presence is perfectly coordinated. Who is standing behind the branding of the school? 
I am in charge of and have had a lot of fun working on the branding of the school. The name Inspiration Station came from brainstorming what I thought were the two most important things to communicate - what we are all about and where we are. Al Waab petrol station is our closest landmark and so the idea to 'refuel your creativity' started to form. And as for the coordination of the decoration etc...my starting point is always colour. I think as the most basic building block it helps to unite all design decisions.

3. Who are the people who come to your workshops? 
At the moment I mostly have women attend my classes but I'm hoping that everyone feels welcome to join in on learning something new and creative...women, men, children, teens, ...everyone! I have kids classes and evening sessions on the schedule.

4. You are the manager of the school and the tutor for all the workshops and activities at the moment. How do you manage to organize your time?
How do I manage my time? Well, I live and breath Inspiration Station. It's my baby - I want to see it succeed so it takes a lot (as in ALL) of my time at the moment. It is worth it though!

5. You are known as a very talented person who make all kinds of different art and craft projects. What is your favorite project you have ever done?
My favorite project is really difficult to choose. I have tried so many different things as I love to learn new skills. I guess I always look back fondly on work I did during my first year of my Fine Arts degree. I was making cardboard sculptures, wax casts, string drawings, embroidery, installations and all kinds of things. It was great fun!

6. Give me an interesting fun fact or a few about your school:
I had a lot of fun decorating the space. The feature wall in the cozy room is hand painted and took a total of 28 hours work.
I get a lot of compliments on our large cutting table in the sewing room, that is custom made based on my designs. I had forgotten to consider the width of the door frame and was VERY lucky that it JUST squeezed through!

7. Do you have any advice you would give anyone interested in Art or Craft?
My advice is to always be open to trying new things and be ready to make lots of mistakes. I have found that the best ideas come from the biggest disasters!

Please find more information about Inspiration Station on their web site

Sending you my smile with love,
Dominika