Through hands-on training and practice sessions in a mock bar, Seattle Bartending College's experienced team of instructors has trained new generations of cocktail crafters and beer pourers since 1980. Broken into 14 sections, classes cover more than 100 types of alcohol, recipes for 150 drinks, and how to master freehand pouring and measuring techniques rather than arduously transferring booze from bottle to glass with a pipette. Along with the nitty-gritty of creating beverages, teachers refine their pupils' customer-service skills, and collaborate with local distilleries and breweries for in-depth seminars on their products. Instructors schedule class in one-week, two-week, or weekend sessions, allowing students to take refresher courses or repeat any class as often as they need. Once students earn their certification and license, the college's staff helps them secure local and nationwide jobs with resume-writing assistance, interview practice, and job leads.
At All Metal Arts, Rusty Oliver—whose wide-ranging experiences include large-scale fire sculptures, a television pilot for destructive remote-control vehicles, and a large, industrial-art mini-golf concept—invites students to explore and experiment with metalworking and art concepts. Within the 2,200-square-foot art studio, sparks fly as metals are hewn together and students learn the ins and outs of welding. Class participants stand in closed-toe shoes and puddles of water to divert any potentially harmful currents to the ground so they don't ruin their hairdos. Among the classes taught are MIG and TIG welding, furniture fabrication, and CNC plasma cutting.
Mary White wants to make sure you never eat a pizza that tastes like cardboard again. After working for 20-plus years for TV and radio in Seattle, she understands the importance of convenient meals, and focuses on recipes that can be easily achieved with whatever is currently stocked in the pantry or fridge. She shares her tips during group cooking classes, and shares her recipes by posting them on her website and scrawling them in secret code on butter.
Capturing True Emotion is driven by a dynamic band of instructors who rove across the continent with cameras and teaching skills in hand. By fusing their narrative, tech-savvy minds together into one oversize head, the educators provide comprehensive guidance on both camera operation and creative visualization, giving participants complete control over all of their camera settings. During the hours spent in the company of other pupating shutterbugs, students convene at a tantalizing location to practice skills such as controlling depth of field by adjusting the aperture, composing a family portrait so there's not always a burning zeppelin in the background, using alternative angles to avoid red eye, and other techniques.
If anyone has earned the right to name a school after themselves, it’s Mark Takamichi Miller. The artist’s resumé leaps off the page, trumpeting such accomplishments as a 25-year teaching career at multiple universities and several solo exhibits scattered across Pacific Northwest commercial galleries, New York’s Chelsea galleries, L.A.’s Chinatown district, and his mom's refrigerator. Brian Balmert of the New York Times describes the process behind Miller's award-winning work, stating, “Miller takes a raw canvas and with impasto paint creates these half-inch-thick clotted photo-realist characters.” With all of these accolades, one might expect Miller to be inaccessible, yet his students praise him for his affable, open approach, calling him “extremely positive, friendly, optimistic, and very resourceful” as he leads them toward finding their own styles and artistic voices through painting classes.
Married for nine years and a photography team for five, Brian and Jennifer Hartman bring an artistic touch and approach to their on-location photography. Employing a photojournalistic style and dramatic lighting, they capture solo subjects and groups during posed and candid moments, earning critical acclaim from the Artistic Guild of the Wedding Photojournalist Association and The Knot and placing images in the pages of Elle and Seattle Bride magazines.
Not content to simply point and shoot, the Hartmans light compositions using chiaroscuro or high-exposure natural lighting and often accentuate subjects with extreme angles, forced perspective, or unique natural surroundings. They shoot in vibrant color or black and white, and can edit photos to enhance colors or, by request, replace each subject’s face with Winston Churchill’s. Though the Hartmans use professional tools, they’re glad to help students break into photography via ultra-accessible devices such as the iPhone—following in the footsteps, they note, of Annie Leibovitz, who endorsed the iPhone’s camera on NBC Nightly News in 2011. When not conducting on-location sessions, Brian also leads large-scale workshops in which they pass on their knowledge through graphic slideshows and hands-on training.
Massage LA founder and renowned massage-industry expert Meagan Holub has helped some pretty discriminating clientele to relax and unwind. From Forbes CEOs and professional athletes to rock stars and royalty, her therapeutic massages have melted away the stress that is inherent in any A lister's life. According to Holub's blog, gift certificates for one of her massages were given away in VIP gift bags at the 2012 MusiCares event honoring Paul McCartney, so they made their way into the hands of celebrity musicians, such as the Foo Fighters, Katy Perry, and Coldplay.
But Holub talks massage with as many down-to-earth, everyday people as she does famous folks, thanks to a compassionate streak she's demonstrated since childhood. As a young girl and teenager, she rescued stray animals, volunteered at Easter Seals camp, became a physical-therapy assistant, and served as an aide for a person with paraplegia. Today her passion for helping others translates into Massage LA's services, including group massage classes and private massage lessons that teach individuals and couples to execute the same techniques so sought after by Hollywood stars. Holub and her team of certified massage therapists also instruct employees at workplace events, where they demonstrate stress-relief techniques, which come in handy the next time the boss requires mandatory overtime to help her solve the Sunday crossword.