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After attending a National Portfolio Day and the GIA Career Fair
just recently, I am no closer to deciding what direction I want to
take: a BFA or MFA, or attending a technical school, maybe with some
gemmology studies as well. So I was hoping you all might be able to
I got the impression from the two events that I would either be
preparing myself for an artistic, independent track, or a business &
industry type track. I want the ability to pay my bills, but frankly
I hate business attire, and I don't do well if I'm not personally
enthusiatic about my products. I've done fine selling at boutique
arts and crafts stores (where I was quite enthusiastic about our
creative jewelry by independent artists), but I would be a terrible
fit for a typical fine jewelry store. I would love to make my own
designs and do all of that, but that's a huge investment of time,
money and spirit that I would expect to be risky, sort of
frightening, and I do have to think about that aforementioned paying
When I finish up here in Peru I will have hopefully completed their
technical training program, but I don't know how advanced or
technologically up to date that will be as compared to an American
education... I also never got a BFA, or much art training at all for
that matter, which I feel like I need to improve my skills in the
artistic/design side of things.
When I get back to the states I will have at least a year, more if
the program requires it, and some finances to put towards one or the
other. But I'm also sort of anticipating the possibility that, due
to personal circumstances, I will be on my own and have to figure out
my funding situation after that year, so if I'm still in an expensive
degree program it could become quite an issue.
So other than the time and cost, what are the advantages of doing a
BFA or an MFA versus doing technical training (gemmology included)?
Do you think one's more valuable than the other, or just different
tracks? Especially when it comes to where you'd be employed and
*whether* you'd be employed.
Any help or ideas would be greatly appreciated; thank you!