Mentorly was Co-founded by artist-entrepreneurs, Ashley Werhun, professional dancer formerly with Les Ballets Jazz de Montréal and Katherine Macnaughton, Filmmaker and Co-founder of Bis Films. Both are working artists with 20 years combined professional experience.
Mentorly is the first online arts mentorship platform providing accessible and engaging opportunities to connect with emerging and professional artists from around the world.
their mission is to empower artists by fostering learning through creative exchanges and to giving back to the community through our InKind Fund.
As working artists, Mentorly’s co-founders united over a common pain point. On one hand, Ashley, would receive hundreds of informal requests for advice that would clog up her Facebook messenger and Instagram inbox. As much as she wanted to help these aspiring dancers, the channel seemed too informal and inefficiently setup for providing thoughtful guidance. She noticed that this happened to the artists around her and wondered if it was a problem that crossed industries - it was.
Katherine, however, experienced the gap from a different perspective. “Founding a video production company right out of school and building it for the following 8 years was extremely rewarding, but also isolating at times. I often felt I missed out on the opportunity to build a network of peers and more importantly, experienced and like-minded professionals that I could look up to for guidance. What I really needed was a mentor.”
Both set out to fill this gap by building a platform that would foster creative exchanges and overall unite and strengthen the art community. After speaking with hundreds of artists who expressed the same pain points, the gap became achingly apparent: artists are hard-pressed to find guidance that can help steer their careers, develop and sharpen skills, and build confidence. This led to an urgent call to action: to provide direct access to mentors in one stroke and Mentorly was the timely solution. Since launch, the feedback has been resoundingly positive with many users asking us why this platform hasn’t existed sooner!
Mentorship is essential to growth, though it is often informal and inaccessible to most. It’s difficult to find a mentor in any profession, not just the arts. Universities feel this gap every day. They have experienced alumni that want to give back to their alma mater and enrolled students but they don’t live in the same city and are most often only solicited for donations. Students, however, attend that school because of their respected programs and resulting successful alumni. They aspire to be like them, but are currently disconnected from past graduates. The task of bringing them together and guiding these young minds is often left to a handful of staff who are already doing a million other things. By streamlining mentorship, Mentorly adds value to any university or organization. Mentorly, most recently is working with MIT!
“Finally something truly helpful in the world of art education and an opening gate & path to realizing a dream for many more creative people! (...) Linking people who want to learn with the people who have paid their dues and achieved a measure of success in their discipline has been rare and often extremely expensive. You are changing that!” - Barbara Rogers
Dr. Elaine Melotti Schmidt spent her work career facilitating the education of younger students. As teacher and administrator she was involved in creating learning environments for students with special learning needs.
Elaine is now spending her time and energy on a number of other projects she holds close to her heart. She lives with her husband, Steven Alan Bennett, in San Antonio, Texas. She and Steven are art collectors who specialize in realist paintings of women by women artists. This undertaking has afforded them the opportunity to create a collection of women experiencing various emotions from all walks of life as well as to meet many creative artists. The couple recently launched The Bennett Prize, designed to propel the careers of women painters who are or seek to become full-time professional painters. Elaine also is one of the curators for “Visions of Venus/Venus’s Visions” at the Zhou B. Center which opens this coming Friday.
Doug Frohman is a contemporary artist working in Chicago. His explorations into painting draw upon minimalist, color-field and architectural influences. Painted primarily in oil and encaustic with a cement trowel, he delivers a richly, sophisticated palette on wood panels. Mr. Frohman's work has been collected and exhibited widely across the US, including at the Trump International Hotel & Tower in Chicago, Eaton Center, Cleveland, OH and the Library of Congress, Washington DC.
Doug is currently represented by 4 Galleries across the US. in New York, Chicago, Atlanta and Columbus, OH. In 2016-17, he exhibited at 6 top US Art Fairs, including CONTEXT New York and Art Basel Miami. He has worked extensively with corporate art consultants, interior designers and architects executing commissions, installations, and sales to private collectors.
Claire Becker, born in Paris, France, grew up in Strasbourg where she studied art, literature, music, theater and dance. At 22, she left France to cross the Atlantic Ocean to Washington DC, and never returned, except to visit and present exhibitions.
She has lived in the United States, a short time in Tokyo in Japan, and presently lives and works in Mexico City.
She dedicated 10 years to dance, and has been a sculptor for the past 20 years. Her camera accompanied her in all of her travels and is a key tool in her creative process. Over the last 4 years, she has shown photography alongside her sculpture work.
Her work has been recognized with several grants and prizes and is part of important private art collections, museums’ collections, and public spaces.
She has participated in more than 80 exhibitions and international shows in galleries, art fairs and museums in Mexico, USA, Canada, Chile, Cuba, Australia, Singapore, China, France, Germany and Italy. She has presented more than 20 solo exhibitions in galleries, museums and public spaces, mostly in Mexico, like the Women’s museum (The Table is Set, 2016), the Traeger and Pinto contemporary art gallery (Head in the clouds, 2014), the downtown Plaza Juarez (Bbla, 2012), the Chopo museum (Sweet and Sour, 2007), all in Mexico City; She presented Materia Dispuesta in The Museum of Contemporary Art of Yucatan (MACAY) in the city of Merida, Mexico, in 2013; The moon’s exuberances in The Matthei gallery in Santiago, Chile (2007); Dismantled Reality in the Museum of Anthropology of the City of Xalapa, Mexico, in 2005.
Introducing Breakfast with Sergio. A live video show on social media covering art topics artists need to know about to grow their art career. Listen to episode one in today's podcast.
Within a few short years, following his decision to focus solely on his fine art career, Darryll Schiff became an internationally recognized artist. His work appears in the collections of many private collectors and in leading museums, such as the Art Institute of Chicago, Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York and the Norton Simon Museum in California. Darryll takes the camera well beyond its conventions. He is unique in the poetic and painterly results you see in his art.
Darryll Schiff’s work has been featured in international art fairs in Art Busan South Korea, and Bazaar Art Jakarta Indonesia. He had solo shows at Prak-sis gallery and En Foco Gallery, and more is in the works, including SCOPE Miami Beach and SCOPE New York. Recently, Schiff unveiled his massive 24x56 foot mural "Descending to Heaven" in the famous Wabash Arts Corridor of Chicago.
Laura is also thrilled to share her artistic visions as a choreographer with Still Inspired(?). She independently co-produces Still Inspired(?) and is honored to produce the show’s fourth installment in the beautiful City of Chicago, where she can share artistic visions with other dance and visual creators AND provide opportunities to artists and dancers alike through this incredible project. It is a dream come true!
Alejandra Zermeño conducts studies in Visual Arts Degree with an average position in the High Academic Performance Program at the Academy of San Carlos, UNAM. From 2006 to 2008 she completes her Master studies with honors in the same Institution. Zermeño´s interests have been since her beginners, the human body exploration. Her prolific art production has been present in more than 50 collective exhibitions and National and International Biennale, which include: Latin Views Biennale, Connecticut (2014- 2012-2010). International Tokyo’s Prize, Centro Diffusione Arte, Edizioni e Promozioni Artiche. Italy-Tokyo (2011). Art Women International Encounter, National Polytechnic (2011). Nord Art Busseldorf, Germany (2011). Description of a Journey, US and Canada (2010-2012). XIV Iberoamerican and International Women Arts Encounter, Madrid (2010). Art al Vent VII, Alicante; Spain.
She has 15 solo exhibitions in Mexican galleries and museums, some of them are: “Cellular physiology”, Chavez Morado Gallery, Guanajuato (2015); “Cherchez la Femme”, Women´s Museum (2014) y “BIDA (Internal Biology of Animals)” Chopo´s Museum (2012). Her work belong to José Vasconcelos Public Library, Presidential Project it is called City of Books, Zermeño produced three sculptures which are exhibited in the Castro´s Leal Collection in collaboration with the renown architect Bernardo Gómez-Pimienta. This artwork was commissioner by Consejo Nacional para la Cultura y las Artes in 2012. Her sculptures could be seeing all over the Mexican Republic thanks to Taktile Project in 2016. In 2016 she was invited to the ESSARTS International Sculpture Symposium to produce a public sculpture in Quebec, Canada.
She has received several awards, fellowships and honors, which include: 1er Acquisition Prize V International Biennale Sacred Contemporary Art, Monterrey (2015). International Tokyo´s Prize: To the Master of Arts, Japan (2011). Honorific Mention V National Art Biennale, Yucatán (2011).First prize National paint and sculpture contest, Women in Arts (2009). Acquisition Prize I International Biennale Sacred Contemporary Art (2008) Monterrey. In 2007 won the contest Open art and the Annual Contest organized by Leopoldo Flores University Museum in Mexico State.
Alejandra Zermeño was invited in 2016 to be part of the Arts & Letters Council of the Mexican Museum in San Francisco, CA.
Check out the top 5 most dowloaded episodes of 2017 and find out why they were at the top of the charts. Thanks for an amazing 2017!
Robin Greenwood, founder of Verni, speaks about creating a platform for artists and collectors to meet. Robin Greenwood was born and raised in Berlin, Germany, and had a strong desire to paint throughout his adolescence. Robin chose a career in design, and received a BFA in Communication Design from Parsons in New York. Already during and soon following his studies, he began to freelance as a designer and animator for various advertising agencies, and design/animation/visual effects studios in New York City. His clients include Nike, Coca Cola, Bank of America, Verizon, X-Games, and many more. In 2012, Robin decided to leave the world of advertising behind. He moved back to Berlin, taught himself to code, and started building a platform he wished he had as a painter: Verni. The first prototype was launched in early summer of 2014, and he's been building away at it ever since.
Eleven Chicago artists talk about what’s exciting and challenging about being an artist. Part 2
In this episode, gallery owner and curator Anca Negescu talks about opening an art gallery in Romania. Artfooly, The Slice of Art Gallery is located in the center of Bucharest, Romania and it shows mainly Romanian contemporary artists, both established and emerging
John Feustel, Founder and CEO of Artwork Archive talks about tools to organize your art career.
Nicole Berry talks about behind the scenes of an international art fair. Nicole is Deputy Director for Expo Chicago. She has been actively involved in the international art world for over a decade. She is an art historian, art writer, curator and former art adviser. First gaining experience in the Contemporary Department at Sotheby's in London, she subsequently worked in New York City at a number of secondary market galleries. In addition to her gallery work, Berry created her own company, Accessible Art, in 2006. Incorporating advising and organized tours through the often intimidating gallery and museum scene, the main focus of Accessible Art was a monthly newsletter she wrote that reviewed exhibitions and provided information about global art events. She has also written articles for BBC Travel. Berry has curated numerous exhibitions as a freelancer as well as in her gallery positions. She has been a member of panels at various art fairs and has given lectures throughout New York on topics ranging from how to begin a collection to navigating fine art museums.
Chicago artists talk about what's exciting and challenging about being an artist. Part 1
Jamey Garza talks about Garza Marfa line of furniture & textiles. Jamey Garza is originally from Austin, Texas.He received his BFA in painting from the University of Texas at Austin in 1986 and his MFA in painting from the San Francisco Art Institute in 1990. Constance Holt-Garza is originally from San Francisco, California. She owned and operated Salon de The, a boutique clothing store in San Francisco, from 1993-1998, and designed a line of clothing sold exclusively through the store.
Art Engineer Luis Martin talks about finding success and his NYC projects
Chicago-based artist Patty Carroll talks about the success of her Anonymous Women Series and her experience with bringing the exhibition to China.
Dr. Rachel Lindsey talks about the mind-body-spirit relationship
Carl Atiya Swanson is Springboard for the Arts' Director of Movement Building, working on Creative Exchange, a national hub for stories and toolkits for artists and organizations to solve local challenges and create new opportunities. Swanson previously worked at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts and founded Crown & Sparrow, a boutique communications consulting firm specializing in work with artists. He is a theater maker with Savage Umbrella, a company dedicated to creating new, relevant works of theater, and is on the board of the Young Nonprofit Professionals Network Twin Cities. Swanson holds a BA in Studio Art from the University of Southern California and an MBA from the University of St. Thomas Opus College of Business.
Artist Allison Luce shares valuable information about art residencies. Allison explores the ephemeral nature of existence and the mystery of eternity through her ceramic sculptures and monoprints. Luce graduated with dual BFA degrees in Painting and Art History from Ohio University and her MFA from Hunter College, City University of New York. She currently lives in Charlotte, North Carolina where she is a studio artist and an adjunct art instructor. She has shown her work in solo and group exhibitions internationally and her work is included in private collections. She has been a resident artist at the International Ceramic Research Center in Skaelskør, Denmark, the Zentrum für Keramik-Berlin in Germany, and the Shaw International Centre for Contemporary Ceramics at the Medalta International Artists in Residence in Medicine Hat, Alberta, Canada. In 2012, her work has reviewed in The Charlotte Observer and she was awarded a Regional Artist Project Grant from the Arts and Science Council of Charlotte.
In this episode, artist Faheem Majeed talks about his exhibition at MCA Chicago. Faheem is a resident of the South Shore neighborhood in Chicago, Faheem often looks to the material makeup of his neighborhood and surrounding areas as an entry point into larger questions around civic-mindedness, community activism, and institutional racism. As part of his studio practice, the artist transforms materials such as particle board, scrap metal, wood, discarded signs and billboard remnants, breathing new life into these often overlooked and devalued materials. His broader engagement with the arts also involves arts administration, curation, and community facilitation, all which feed into his larger practice.
Faheem’s solo exhibition at the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago runs from March 10 to August 16, 2015.
Serena Kovalosky is a sculptor, curator, cultural project developer and owner of Artful Vagabond Productions whose mission is to celebrate the creativity and inspiration that artists bring to this world and to promote the arts as a viable and valuable commodity in today's society.
Serena began her career in the travel industry. After 18 years, she traded her suitcase for an artist’s loft in Montreal, Canada to pursue her talents as a professional artist. Returning to the U.S., she began transferring her project management skills to the art world and co-founded the juried biennial Open Studios of Washington County which to date has brought over $200,000 in art revenue as well as increased tourism to this rural New York community.
In 2014, Serena curated and produced the five-month Slate as Muse National Art Exhibition at the Slate Valley Museum and was recently invited to speak at the Museum Association of New York's Annual Conference about the exhibition's success.
Serena has exhibited her work widely. She has appeared on the television programs, done numerous interviews on print and radio, and has written hundreds of articles on artists from around the world for the Artful Vagabond art blogsite.
In this episode, Life & Wellness Coach Lara Tallman talks about the benefits of a healthy lifestyle
Publisher & curator Noor Blazekovic talks about IRREVERSIBLE International Projects