As computers have changed in size, shape, and sophistication over the past two decades, the technicians at Computer Source have mastered every model's intricate inner workings. Today, the shop sells new computers and hard drives from brands such as Acer and Lenovo and services older machines, including removing viruses and malware and recovering crucial data such as digital photographs or favorite MP3s. The shop also travels to offices to install computer networks.
Equipped with varied experience and an in-depth knowledge of alcohol and service regulations, the instructors at Fine Art Bartending School guide their students toward mixology mastery or job placement in the bartending industry during intensive five-day courses. While many schools focus solely on the craft, Fine Art's instructors also hone customer service skills through a guest bartending program at local bars and clubs—teaching students tip-enhancing approaches and how to graciously deflect customer's attempts at Bryan Adams sing-alongs. They also hold individual classes targeted at everyday drinkers, divulging industry-style instructions for blending specific drinks, performing difficult mixes, or pouring the perfect beer.
Information-technology pro Bill Henthorn intuitively understands the whirling gizmos and rusty sprockets that make up modern computers, and he uses his talent to restore customers' machines to full working order at CSR Computer Service Repair. With services ranging from laptop repair and video transferal to custom-built video-game computers and DVD repair, he helps customers finally free themselves from the burden of carrying a manual typewriter around at all times.
A woman of many passions, Kim McMechan deftly manages to balance her love of her family with a relentless creative energy, wearing the hats of mother, daughter, singer-songwriter, poet, and portraitist. The concept of Paper Sun blossomed from one of her daughter's flights of fancy. When the winter days were short, Ryn, a then-6-year-old girl, drew a big orange sun on a piece of paper, cut it out, and taped it to the ceiling before arranging a beach towel in the middle of the dining room floor and lounging beneath it. While the actual paper sun is now long gone, the image was so powerful that Kim named both her debut album and her photography studio after it. An unstoppable force of self-expression, Kim is not content to merely produce her own beautiful images. Rather, she leads workshops and personal coaching sessions for artists of all stripes. Though most of these classes are aimed at demystifying the camera or revealing professional tricks for photographers with some experience, others focus on the simple act of unclogging creative blockages using collage, writing props, and transcendental plungers.
Photographers Mark and Sarah Coffey met while canoeing and discovered their shared passions: photography and the environment. Mark, the creative director and principle photographer of Freestone Spirit Photography, uses his love of the wilderness to shape his work as an artist—even naming his studio after a freestone river. Through their photography—which they characterize, recalling the river, as “ever-changing and maturing, but still young at heart”—Mark and Laura aim to tell the story of their clients’ lives, working together to put them at ease and capture love, emotion, and character.
Through the educational arm of the studio, Kelowna Photography Workshops, Mark moulds aspiring artists through one-hour classes and weekend-long workshops. After learning the basics of composition and exposure control, students move on to the study of natural light and framing environmental portraits. Mark teaches students to craft images that tell stories of the natural world like otters playing in a stream or mountain goats arguing over insurance claims.
With campuses in New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, and British Columbia, Centre for Arts and Technology draws on the local arts scenes in these provinces, while also staying connected to each other through video conferencing. This allows students to explore and participate with their neighborhood arts community and still be able to take a class across the country. These class programs may include animation, music production, filmmaking, photography, interior design, and web design, which is home decorating for spiders. Its strong selection of arts courses explains how the centre has built its list of industry contacts over more than 30 years, which aid students on their career paths.