Valastro International Academy's staff of experienced law-enforcement officials teaches visitors responsible firearms operation and safe handling inside a private training facility. Classes acquaint clients—from everyday citizens to experienced security guards—in defensive tactics, such as retaining a firearm during a confrontation and defusing an altercation with observational humor. Beyond teaching humans how to defend themselves, Valastro's instructors also include canine trainers who lead basic obedience and housebreaking classes and teach dogs advanced skills such as search-and-rescue and narcotics detection.
The accomplished and diverse faculty of The Teaching Studios of Art hones students' latent artistic gifts during hands-on classes. Sessions change monthly, with October offerings including Old Master Copy helmed by Adam Miller and second-chaired by a paintbrush-wielding pumpkin. Students study historical painting techniques in the three-hour time slot, plucking a classic work of art to emulate while the instructor leads them through the reproduction process. Kristin Künc's The Alla Prima Portrait class initiates pupils in the ways of portraiture through line drawings and discussions of portrait masters such as Sargent, Eakins, and Sears Portrait Studio. In addition to learning principles of proportion, contour, and structure, budding artists absorb fundamentals of traditional art that have gone largely untaught since Modernist styles became dominant.
At 3rd Ward, Brooklyn's brightest and boldest creative professionals come together for an array of gallery openings, performances, and other showcases of right-brain brilliance. The center hosts more than 100 classes and courses in a myriad of mediums, with curriculum available for budding Botticellis, Brontës, and Brett Ratners alike. Push your picture taker to new artistic heights with Learn Your Digital Camera ($65 for non-members), give lonely members of the Apoidea family a couch to crash on with Rooftop Beekeeping 101 ($100 for non-members), or turn your next tailgate party into a tasting with the beer brewing class ($35 for non-members, with no additional materials fee). Other classes cover writing, sculpture, filmmaking, bicycle mechanics, and how to make a piñata with scrap metal, among numerous other topics. The value of this Groupon can be applied toward the value of 3rd Ward's more intensive courses, as well.
Throughout his 20-year career, professional welder Scott Behr has heard people tell him how much they'd love to learn to work with metal, as if it were merely a pipe dream. Thanks to Behr's Metal Shop Fantasy Camp, those dreams can become a reality. Even if a student has never held a power tool or learned how to telepathically commune with metal, they'll soon be welding, grinding, polishing, and sawing with the pros. During the studio's signature "How to Make a Cube" class, they'll turn a 20-foot length of tube into a 6-inch square cube. Along the way, they'll be stockpiling basic skills that they can then apply to any number of projects, which they can craft on site by reserving blocks of studio time.