(Eleanor and I)
I can only go by my experience at the classes I attended and the few I walked by, but there's something I found a little frustrating at the Australian Machine Quilting Festival, and it was nothing to do with the organisation.
(Where I skied at 115.1kph)
It's this. While it was wonderful to see the huge numbers attending classes by some of teachers who are currently the it-names in social media, it was really disappointing that there weren't so often the same numbers in the classes of some of the really experienced teachers. Because, frankly, I felt that's where the real value of AMQF was.
(Me in James' sunnies)
Don't get me wrong, all the teachers were good, but some were simply brilliant. There's art in quilting and there's an art to teaching.
(While I'm on it; we quilters are generally a nice bunch, so for anyone teaching - don't just ask for positive feedback! Constructive criticism can be incredibly beneficial, especially at an event such as AMQF where students are exposed to multiple teachers over a short space of time and are likely to be well-placed to explain how a class might be improved.)
Maybe it was unnecessary on my part, but I felt bad for them that the student numbers weren't there. And sorry for the students that didn't know what (and who) they were missing out on.
Every 2 years when AMQF comes around, there are usually a few specific international instructors who I've been wanting to take classes with who come out, and they're always at the top of my list; I tend to be fairly selective with my classes, but I do have a good look through all the offerings.
All the teachers get excellent and comprehensive writeups on the Festival website and are well promoted on the AMQF blog. And I admit I'm likely to stick to those I'm already keen to learn from. But over the years I have built up a pretty broad awareness of teachers in the quilting industry, and usually I know at least a bit about all of them.
(Simon & Eleanor)
I don't know what the solution is. Except next time, I'm going to be singing some praises in advance - after I've registered for all the classes I want, just to be safe!
In summary - fabulous festival and fabulous skiing and I can't wait until next time for either!