For the whole weekend we are bringing you one of the most recognized and loved floral school in the United States, the Floral Design Institute! Floral.today is starting off the weekend with the directors, Leanne Kesler AIFD, PFCI, FDI and David Kesler AIFD, PFCI, FDI and then featuring all their amazing educators throughout Sunday. So sit back and enjoy the passion these wonderful educators have to share with you for Floral Education Month!
YOU CAN FIND ALL THE CONTACT INFORMATION FOR THE FLORAL DESIGN INSTITUTE AT THE END OF THE ARTICLE
What defines a Floral Design Institute educator?
A Floral Design Institute educator is a talented designer with the ability to verbalize articulately the techniques, mechanics, elements and principles of design. They also have a deep understanding of learning styles and how to teach to each successfully.
What has been one of the most interesting floral topics you have taught so far in your career?
I would have to say the Wedding Floral Specialist Course is a favorite but, the Designing for Evaluation and Competition has been the most interesting by far. Designed for skilled floral artists, this class brings an amazing creative energy to the Learning Center. Every time I have taught this class I have come away with a new thought, concept or technique to add to my own skill library and pass on to future students.
Do you have a philosophy when it comes to floral education?
I believe floral education must be presented in three ways – students must hear the lesson, read the lesson and see the lesson demonstrated. Understanding and mastery of the skill is achieved when the student is able to finish the cycle by presenting the material to the instructor in all three formats – explaining the concept verbally, writing out the information and creating the design.
On a deeper note: I believe floral education begins at an early age with the first blooming weed pulled from the garden and continues through life. Floral education ends when the soul begins to die.
With our ever-changing industry, where do you see floral education heading in the next 10-15 years?
I see the need for focused, intense instruction on a precise need. It may be simply hand tied bouquets mastered by the street corner or grocery store florist or focused instruction on the hand work of corsages and boutonnieres. As with all things, specialization has become the key to success.
I also see the need for on-demand, specialized, on-line education. We have addressed this with our Flower Lovers Club. These members have 24-7 access to five private educational libraries and streamlined access to a Floral Design Institute floral specialist when they have a question.
What floral topics do you think are over taught or not taught enough in the floral industry?
I don’t think anything is over-taught in our industry. There really can’t be too much education. Under-taught would have to be the basics – it breaks my heart to see fabulous creative designs fail due to poor mechanics and/or poor care and handling practices.
What difficulties do floral institutes face that floral shops and companies don’t face?
That would have to be government regulations. Meeting the requirements of the Department of Education within the realm of servicing the needs of our floral industry can be quite challenging and an exercise in patience.
What advice do you have for designers looking to become a floral educator or presenter?
Attend every seminar and school you possibly can. Determine what is missing and what you can do better… then do it! When preparing to be a school owner, I visited European schools, studied with many floral artists and read every book I could get my hands on. Then, when I saw what areas were not being fully provided for, that is where we focused. I can confidently say, our Basic and Advanced programs to become a Certified Floral Designer are the best in the world.
On a side note, as you prepare to teach, it helps to verbalize what you are doing as you create an arrangement. Your co-workers may think you are a little weird but…oh, well!
What do you think are some of the top floral educational advancements that have helped progress the industry?
Technology is king. We now have access to information from anywhere in the world at anytime. Second would be the ease of transportation. Flowers come to you from anywhere and you can go to flowers anywhere. That means you can go study anywhere – How cool is that?!?!?!
How do you believe the US could increase it’s industry awareness to attract younger designers?
Go to them. Don’t wait for them to come to you. Reach out in both the physical and virtual worlds. Visit their studios and celebrate their successes. Join them in the social world and see what has them excited.
In your personal opinion what are some of the shortcomings in floral education that the industry should strive towards working on?
The biggest shortcoming in our industry is not just education but the industry as a whole. We’ve forgotten how fun it is to be a florist. We’ve forgotten to focus on what we can do. We’ve forgotten we are in charge of our business. We’ve forgotten to put ourselves first. We have become an industry of reaction rather than taking proactive steps forward.
Open your eyes to all there is. Choose to set your boundaries and enjoy the privilege of working with fresh cut flowers every day.
Floral Design Institute Website: www.floraldesigninstitute.com Phone: 1-800-819-8089 1-503-223-8089 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Social Media Facebook Twitter Pinterest Instagram Youtube Course Schedule
Huge thanks to Leanne for taking the time to share her passion for floral education with us and all the Floral Design Institute educators that have yet to come. Make sure to stop by the Floral Design Institute both at this years AIFD Symposium Partners Expo and to check out all the fantastic floral courses they offer.
Till Next Time,