Saturday, August 13, 2016

298:Learning Art Online

AS many of you know I've experimented with online learning although the major venue for my videos has been Youtube. I've logged over 1.25 million views and Youtube is primarily responsible for my large internet footprint, for which I'm grateful. But over the years I've been increasingly discontent with their business model and have searched for alternatives.

I have two videos on Vimeo–with an embarrassing 603 views. I tried Gbox but found uploading videos problematic. Although I still supposedly offer content with them a recent visit shows they are specializing in sports videos (as a content provider I received no notice of this shift in focus). I was approached by Teachable but found their pay-to-play business model initially off putting. They have several plans ranging from $40 to $300 a month. They have a free trial option, which is tempting, and if my calculations are correct they waive the monthly fee and charge 14.3% per class (not exactly free). But his option might work and I'm tempted to create a ten lesson course about painting with thick texture in acrylics as a test.

About a year ago I was approached by the online course and gave permission for them to use my Youtube content, add their own course features, and charge for the videos. I was surprised to learn after checking my dashboard that I had earned $250. Not a lot certainly but better than I thought they would ever do as evidenced by my cavalier attitude and not logging in for over a year. Strangely, but apparently par for the course, I have never heard from them since the initial contact.

Teachable claims that content providers can make loads of money, and maybe it's true. But I would love to interview an artist who has actually connected with an audience via Teachable. One of their users, Angela Fehr, claims to have made substantial income via Teachable. The claim seems a bit difficult to believe–a feeling which was not assuaged by a webinar I participated in that seemed a little too hard sell for my tastes (although the moderators seemed affable and sincere). If the claims are correct it would allow content providers a means to substantially up their game and provide superior content for students.

If any of you have had experiences with online learning please let me know and how it compares with the Youtube learning experience. I would love to know what works and what doesn't from both a learner's perspective as well as the perspective of content providers.

Many thanks.

Brad Teare –August 2016


  1. I am curious to see what you learn.

  2. I don't have first-hand experience with many learning platforms, but I so far, I'm very impressed with a few online courses I've followed on Vimeo. One in particular, a hand-lettering course by Joanne Sharpe, is amazing to follow - it tracks lessons that have been completed and makes it easy for students to upload their projects and others to comment. Notifications are sent for every update and one gets a sense of being in an actual classroom. Paul Taggart is now using Vimeo for his teaching modules and the interface is very easy to navigate and interact with, leave comments, etc. I'm certainly not a technical expert, so can only say what works for me.

    1. Thanks for this info, Gayle. I will take a second look at Vimeo as a means of providing content. I have heard they have a few pay-to-play options I will explore.

  3. Took a bunch of head and figure drawing and some painting courses at Watts Atelier. Will be taking more painting classes this fall and winter. Absolutely great material. I think Jeff Watts has put together an excellent program over there and would be worth a look.


Thanks for your comments!


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