5 Ways the Online Library Can Help You Succeed

written by Editor Georgia Schumacher 14 April 2014

Library Book

Written By Guest Blogger
Audra Deemer, Manager of Library Services

1. Find reputable and scholarly resources. Though you and your art school colleagues can quickly find many resources on the web by using popular search engines like Google, you will often find an overwhelming number of results with no easy way to narrow them down. Most information on the web is not evaluated for accuracy and some sites may even ask you to pay to view the content. The library databases have done the hard part of the research process for you. Only credible sources from trusted publishers are included in the library databases and most are available in full text—all at no charge to you!

2. Receive help from librarians 7 days a week. You can get in contact with the librarians through email, phone, and the Ask Us service. You’ll find the Ask Us tab on the Online Library homepage. Use this service to find answers to frequently asked questions even during the hours librarians are not available. You can also submit your question to be answered by email. We have extended hours to help meet your research needs.

Sunday: 12 PM-2 AM ET
Monday-Thursday: 8 AM-2 AM ET
Friday: 8 AM-11 PM ET
Saturday: 10 AM-11 PM ET

3. Attend live online workshops and set up research consultations. Webinars are held monthly and include information on how to use specific databases, tours of the online library, and research-related topics specific to art school students. If you can’t attend, you can watch the recordings on your own time by going to the Help & Tutorials page of the Online Library. If you need one-on-one time with a librarian, you can find and sign up for open research consultations on the calendar found on the Online Library homepage. You can also contact the librarians directly by email or phone to set up an appointment that fits your schedule. We even use a web conferencing tool to share our screens so you can better see how to use the resources.

4. Access more than just articles and eBooks. Though we have thousands of articles from journals, magazines and newspapers and full text eBooks on a vast number of subjects covered in art schools like ours, we also have resources for software tutorials, career information, videos, fashion reports and trends, company and industry reports, data and specs on materials, and market research! Find databases like Digital Tutors, Stylesight, Learning Express Library, Material ConneXion, and much more on the Industry Info page of the Online Library.

5. Get Modern Language Association (MLA) formatted references. Many library databases provide a citation tool that generates the MLA reference for you. Look for a Cite tool when accessing the databases. Be sure to verify the accuracy of the reference with your MLA guide. If you need help, contact the library!

Contact our Online Librarians at aionlinelibrary@aii.edu and 888-318-3440.

5 Things Store Owners & Entrepreneurial Fashion Designers Should Know about Visual Merchandising

written by Georgia Schumacher 11 April 2014

Storefront

You pored over the clothing and accessory inventory selection for your store, but it's not flying off the shelves like you expected. Visual merchandising is the art and science of displaying your products, from the window displays that get people into your store to the floor plan that keeps them moving around.

Your potential customers quickly form their first impressions of your store primarily based on the visual input they receive. Effective visual merchandising is just as important to your store's success as the inventory itself. Here are a few visual merchandising tips to help your fashion design sensibilities get a business minded focus.

1. Start with a store-wide view

You want a cohesive theme among all of your store displays, so starting with an overall view of your retail floor space helps bring together. In addition, starting with the floor plan allows you to avoid creating displays that are too big for the available space or detract from the store atmosphere.

2. Show an accurate representation

In fashion design, you want your clothes to look as good as they possibly can when the model wears them on the cat walk. The same concept carries over to your store. Select displays that help your customers visualize what the clothes look like on them before they head to the dressing room.

3. Consider ease of access

Balance your floor plan between getting as much merchandise as possible on the floor and making it easy to access everything. You don't want any clothing to be difficult to see or reach, as this drives the customers away from a purchase. When you overload your store with merchandise, you run the risk of your displays being too busy and pulling the customer's attention in too many different directions, resulting in an overwhelming amount of choices.

4. Make sure your store windows impress

Your window displays are the first impression the customer has of you. You want a range of products that shows off exactly what you have to offer. You're not simply putting your best-selling clothes on mannequins and calling it good. You want to tell a story and show the style and theme of your store.

5. Optimize lighting

Your lighting sets the mood and atmosphere of the store. The overall lighting level should be bright enough to clearly see the products, pricing, signs, floor path and other aspects of your store. Use spotlights and track lights to add emphasis to specific products and product displays. Good lighting does more than simply illuminate. It plays off of the texture and features of your clothing, bringing out their best attributes for the customers' eyes.

Interested in a career in fashion design or retail management? Explore our programs today!

Read More

- Silent Selling: Visual Merchandising for Small Retailers
- Visual Merchandising: Back to the Basics with Best Practices 
- The Effect of Visual Merchandising on Fashion Stores

Stay in touch with Alumni Connections

written by Georgia Schumacher 9 April 2014

Alumni ConnectionsGraduating soon? Already a successful alumni? Find out how using The Art Institutes Alumni Connections can benefit you! This is your chance to

• Network with fellow alumni
• Research companies
• Search for job opportunities

Do all this in just one place! Tap into the nationwide network of our art school alums with Alumni Connections, an exclusive, easy-to-use resource that takes just five minutes to join and is available at no charge to you.

What’s in it for you

• Connect with alumni in creative professions across the country and stay in touch with fellow grads from your art school

• Post your resume and search for resumes added by other alumni

• Keep informed of alumni news and events

• Research employers looking for our art school grads and find job openings in creative fields

• Share your story. Tell us how you’ve used your creativity in your personal and professional life since graduating from art school. Let us know what you’re excited about in your career and your profession at-large. We can share your story many different ways - our national alumni e-newsletter - our national website - and to students locally, but you have to tell it!

• Access a variety of career resources and tools, including a resume builder, interview preparation, industry news, company profiles, career advice, our Alumni Lunch Chat Archive, and more!

Sign up today

Are you a graduate (or will be soon) of one of our art schools? Register now at www.alumniconnections.com/ArtInstitutes – it takes five minutes for a lifetime of valuable connections!

Join us for these April events!

written by Georgia Schumacher 2 April 2014

Calendar iconYou might guess that as an art school offering fully online programs we wouldn’t have many events, but in reality we have a full calendar this month! Driven by our active student and faculty community, April brings yet another month of exciting events for our art school students at The Art Institute of Pittsburgh – Online Division. Register for events and stay in the know with what’s happening by checking the Events calendar in Campus Common!

Here’s a quick look at what’s on the schedule this month!

Graphic Design Career Series, Starting 4/3/14

This is our seventh annual Graphic Design Career Series. This year, the series features 5 top industry professionals and designers discussing critical industry topics as well as their creative inspiration. The discourse provides students with valuable insight to contemporary professional practice and career preparation. Read more >

IGDA Meetings, Tuesdays & Thursdays

Our student chapter of the International Game Developers Association (IGDA) typically meets twice a week and is a great opportunity for students interested in game design and development. Learn more about our group and discover 10 reasons why you should join in this post from September!

Orientation Class – Live Webinar, Weekly in April

Take part in a meet and greet webinar for the Orientation Class. This session will be used to introduce your facilitator and demonstrate classroom navigation functions and features of the Campus Common.

Learn to Draw: Perspective Drawing, 4/8

This event is recommended for students in FND113 Perspective Drawing and FND110 Drawing. Watch demos and get your questions answered about one, two, and three-point perspective, as well as other perspective drawing techniques.

Illustrator Bootcamp I: Basic Designing, 4/14

This event is recommended for students in FND111 Color Theory and FND112 Fundamentals of Design. Topics include basic workflow, creating and editing basic shapes, and an introduction to color, fills, and strokes.

Online Tutoring Services Introduction, 4/22

This brief webinar will introduce students to our on-demand, online tutoring options. We will demonstrate how students can access our online tutoring, discuss the different tutoring categories available, and cover other important details about this convenient, complimentary resource.

To register or view our full calendar, current students can visit the Events page in the Campus Common today! (From your Campus Common home page, select Events in the Campus Life dropdown menu.)

Interested in attending an art school and taking classes from your own home? Learn more information about The Art Institute of Pittsburgh – Online Division today.

Quick Tips for Outdoor Photography

written by Georgia Schumacher 1 April 2014

PhotographyIf you love being in the great outdoors, then taking a nature or landscape photography class might be right up your alley. While it might seem like an easy specialty to master, there's more to it than meets the eye. However, it's possible to improve your skills, if you're willing to put in a little time and effort. These quick tips will have your photographs looking professional in no time.

Early to Bed, Early to Rise

While natural lighting is always preferable, not all light is created equal. The light around the middle of the day is too harsh and won't show your subjects to their best advantage. The light just before sunrise and just after sunset is the best for getting great shots of landscapes and nature, but be quick as it will soon get too light or too dark.

Horizon Horrors

This might go without saying, but in photos, the horizon should be, well, horizontal. One of the common problems in outdoor photography is forgetting to keep your horizon straight. Take that extra moment to make sure that you're shooting level and your photos will thank you for it.

Shutter Speeds

Think about the optimum shutter speed for your subject. If you're tackling landscape photography then a longer shutter speed is generally best. However, if you're looking to get some great wildlife shots, then you'll want a fast shutter speed, especially if you want to catch animals in motion. For longer shutter speeds, it's more or less vital that you use a tripod to keep your camera still and ensure your photos don't come out blurred.

Preparation, Preparation, Preparation

Nothing shines through in outdoor photography more than a true passion for nature. However, it's still important to prepare and do your research. If you're trying to capture a particular species (be it animal or vegetable), make sure that you'll be able to find it in the area you're photographing at the time of year you're going. It's also a good idea to thoroughly explore the place where you're shooting, especially if you're looking for great landscape photographs. Taking this extra time will help you to get amazing shots that really have that wow factor.

Get Serious about Your Photography

If you’re interested in pursuing a career in photography, consider taking photography classes at The Art Institute of Pittsburgh – Online Division. We have several photography programs available online, and our photography classes are designed to allow you to explore the elements of image production and manipulation, learn how to use a wide range of professional camera and lighting equipment, and gain the ability to capture a moment through your lens that evokes emotion.

Read More

- http://photography.nationalgeographic.com/photography/photo-tips/landscape-quick-tips/
- http://www.digitalcameraworld.com/2010/09/08/10-quick-wildlife-photography-tips/