Sarah Monteleone – Fast Forward to the Past Few Weeks

Since coming here, the most asked question has been “why intern instead of just taking classes?” For me personally, I always knew I wanted to study abroad. Lots of my friends have studied abroad during the school year, and they all said it was the best choice they ever made. I realized very early on that if I wanted to graduate early, I did not have time during the semester to go abroad and the only time I could go would be the summer. This made me a little nervous, because I knew at this point in my academic career, I really should be interning somewhere. When I started looking at my options, I had no idea interning abroad was even an option. Long story short, I chose this over taking classes because it looks killer on a resume and even during this short amount of time, I have learned so much. Fast forward to the past few weeks.

I have been very busy at my internship. A few weeks ago we had an artist who did a workshop on paper clay. For those of you who don’t know what that is, it is essentially clay mixed with toilet paper and water. When it is fired, the paper burns off and the piece is durable, yet light weight. Don’t believe me?

So that was an interesting workshop… Other than that it has been pretty quiet.  I’ve been helping out with the kids classes every Monday and Wednesday.  The kids are absolutely adorable and their work is really good!  They’re leaving for vacation soon, so they did not come to class this week and I don’t think they’ll be back until next Wednesday.  I don’t have any pictures of them or their work because I feel like that is kind of a privacy issue, but I did help out with the adult classes a few times and got some good shots there!

I love watching them work.  Right now, they are all working on such different projects.  Two women are working on the wheel, one is working in porcelain, and the last one is currently working on a very fragile clay sphere.  Whenever they work, the room is abuzz with a combination of lively chatter and extreme focus.

When I’m not helping out with classes, I am have been doing a variety of different things.  Last week myself and a few of the other interns worked from Paolo’s recipe book to make test glazes.  We felt like mad scientists.  No big deal.  I’m actually really interested to see how they turn out though.  I’ll definitely take before and after pictures.  Right now we are waiting on more shelves for the kiln before we fire them.  Stay tuned.

I have also been working on the July calendar of events for the studio, which proved to be a bit more difficult than I was expecting.  There was a lot of photoshop involved… I have very little idea how to use photoshop, so that was a learning experience.  When I showed it to my boss she said there were a lot of events missing because the calendar she sent me was out of date, so I have to re-do a lot of it which is kind of frustrating.

As frustrating as that ordeal was, yesterday was actually really fun.  One of the other programs was having a ceramics aperitivo, so I helped make dinner for them and set everything up.  During the actual aperitivo me and the other intern got to eat and talk with the group.  Then I finally got to paint my own mug! Wahooo!

Overall, the past few weeks have been quite interesting, and I look forward to seeing how the my last few weeks turn out.  One of my bosses said next week I would be focusing more on the blog and twitter, both of which I am eager to keep working on.  Thus far, I can say one big thing I have learned is how to work with a variety of different people.  Both of my bosses have very different management styles, so for now I’m just trying to please both of them and make sure they are happy with my work!