What do you remember about school? Maybe the part that made an impression on you wasn’t necessarily the book-learnin’ — maybe it was the art teacher who took you on a field trip to a museum where you got to meet the curator behind-the-scenes, or the play-doh brain you made for a science fair. I’m a firm believer that real-life, hands-on experience should be integrated into education.
Today, I’m excited to announce that we’ve been working with art schools to bring Etsy into the classroom. We think of Etsy as a community of curious minds: This is where many sellers learn how to run an online business and shoppers learn about the value of handmade and vintage goods. Last year, we released our API to the developer community, so that they can create innovative tools using the Etsy platform. Our work with art schools is another way to engage with learners and makers — in this case, students of art, web design, and marketing. We want to offer students the chance to engage with a professional platform, and see what kind of fresh perspectives they can lend.
Professor Jason Corace at MICA (Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore) leads one such group of students for his Advanced Web Design class. The class is entirely based on the students creating mock-ups and prototypes for Etsy site features. I’ve been working with the class, giving them research questions, critiques in the Virtual Labs, and hosting them for a meeting at the Etsy office. Now, these students want to share their prototypes with you, the Etsy community. They want to hear your suggestions and constructive criticism.
Here’s Jason, who is pictured above in the lower left hand corner:
“Students from the graphic and interaction design departments have worked with Etsy to come up with speculative designs addressing some of the community’s most requested features. Over the next few weeks, the students will be revising their designs and would love to hear the community’s feedback on their initial proposals.”
Review the students’ work on this website they’ve put together. You can comment directly on each project there.
And in anticipation of this question — “Will Etsy be using these designs and releasing these site features?” — the purpose of this class is to give students real life experience, and your feedback is part of that! Etsy’s Product and Engineering Teams, as well as members of our Marketing, Support and Community Teams, will also be critiquing the work. While the student projects won’t be implemented at Etsy.com, we believe the sharing of ideas benefits everyone in the Etsy community.
Interested in Etsy’s work with schools and museums? Read about Etsy’s collaboration with PNCA, the Portland Etsy Team, and the Museum of Contemporary Craft — I Heart Art: Portland.
Browse some of the students’ shops in the Related Items below.