Instructor Spotlight: Ellen Oster

Ellen Oster

Professor Oster has been teaching Textile Design for over 25 years at the Fashion Institute of Technology. She says “I taught the first computer graphics class in FIT, boy have things changed since then!”  She has also been freelancing in the industry for as many years. As a graduate of the Textile Surface Design Department, she is proud to be teaching in that department since her graduation. Prof. Oster received her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from the College of Ceramics at Alfred University.

Professor Oster teaches HTS 173 Designing with Pattern    

Teaching Philosophy:
The most important thing to me is that a student progresses.  I do not believe that there is perfection, if so, life would be stagnant.  I know that we all have the ability to develop skills we need in order to visualize our thoughts.  We just need to remember that improvement takes practice and practice takes time.  In that light, I hope that my students find their voice and enjoy the process of growth and results.

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Artwork by Ellen Oster

On Precollege Programs:
I have been fortunate to teach a number of Precollege programs, both on Saturdays and in the summer.  WOW is all I can say.

I see such bright eyes and minds ready to explore and work hard.  You know this is not like going to camp. Usually it is the student’s decision to focus on what they are interested in, or have decided their career path and are starting young.  So impressive!

Industry Experience/Recent Exhibitions:

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Artwork by Ellen Oster

I have designed bedding for Springs Industry, both for their contract bedding division and their juvenile bedding division  I designed licensed graphics such as Superman, Yako, Waco and Dot, Strawberry Shortcake, Clifford the big red dog, I designed infant bedding as well for another company.   I also designed computer graphics for Macy’s and Federal Express. Most recent, my work has been designing prints for companies such as Talbots, a private label for Macy’s and a private label bedding company.

In my spare time, I train artists on using Photoshop for textile design and pattern through on-site classes or webinars, I wrote a book on the same topic, teach yoga and have two patents for a yoga mat I designed.

Work by Professor Oster:
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Instructor Spotlight: Caitlyn McCabe

McCabe(5)Prof. McCabe is children’s and lifestyle photographer based in NYC and California. Inspired by the adventures of Indiana Jones and the smell of developer at her grandparents one-hour photo store, Prof. McCabe passion for travel and photography goes back as far as she can remember.  After graduating from Fashion Institute of Technology with a bachelors degree in photojournalism, she spent 2 years in Louisiana working as an Americorps teacher and volunteering for numerous other non-profit organizations.  With the eye of a photojournalist Prof. McCabe aims to pull out the details that can often go overlooked. Real, raw moments is what she shoots for and the result is often a strikingly honest reflection of the people, places and things she photographs.  Prof. McCabe is a contributing photographer for Mother Image.

Professor McCabe teaches Middle School Workshops:
JSX 006 Basic Digital Photography: Portraits 
JSX 007 Basic Digital Photography: Environments
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Photo by Caitlyn McCabe

Teaching Philosophy:
I encourage my students to relax and have fun, we all see the world differently which is why photography is so much fun. On the first day, I encourage all of the students to photograph the exact same thing, the magic with this project is that each student will come away with a different photograph, I love seeing the surprise on their faces when we look through all of the creative ways something can be looked at. It is the clearest indication of the wonder and joy that is photography.

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Photo by Caitlyn McCabe


On Precollege Programs:

I love this program, its so exciting to be working with such young minds and seeing the passion that they share for my field. I remember being in middle school and high school learning about photography and those are the mentors I will never forget, I love being a part of their journey.

Industry Experience/Recent Exhibitions:
Mother Image, Getty Images, Corbis Images, Microsoft, Men’s Health, Cafe Mom, The School at Columbia University

 

Work by Professor Caitlyn McCabe:

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Instructor Spotlight: Kenneth Krug

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Professor Kenneth Krug has been teaching in both the Communications Design Department and the Textile / Surface Design Department of FIT since 2007. Some of the courses he has taught through Precollege Programs include HTS 163 Designing Your Space: Home Décor and HAD 109 Drawing in Adobe Illustrator.  Prof. Krug has a BFA from The San Francisco Art Institute.
Website: www.kenkrug.com

 
Ken Krug’s author page: authors.simonandschuster.com/Ken-Krug

Professor Krug teaches HAD 154 55A Tell Me a Story >>> Register HERE

Professor Krug’s Teaching Philosophy:
I don’t think teaching or learning is a “one size fits all” proposition. In addition to lectures and demonstrations, I talk to each student individually in every class. It is important to me that each student’s needs, strength and weakness are taken into account in the learning process. The thing I look for most in students is growth from one project to the next throughout the semester. I also make a point of bringing examples from my own work to the class to demonstrate how the skills I am teaching work in the world outside of the classroom.

On Precollege Programs:
I find teaching in the precollege program extremely rewarding. I am continuously impressed with the level of commitment, skill and creativity that the high school students bring to the classroom. In addition I find that the high school students are eager to learn new techniques and ideas. I take great pleasure in being able to facilitate this process.

When I’m not teaching, I work as a designer, writer, illustrator and fine artist. I have created textile designs for the apparel and home furnishing market. I have illustrated a variety of books including cookbooks, gardening books, and children’s books. My paintings have been exhibited in solo and group exhibitions. In addition I wrote and illustrated a picture book, No, Silly! published by Simon & Schuster this February.

 

Some recent illustration work includes:

  • No, Silly! — Text and illustrations, Simon & Schuster, Spring 2015
  • Go, Train, Go! — Illustrations, Highlights Press, Fall 2014
  • American Grown: The Story of the White House Kitchen Garden and Gardens Across America by Michelle Obama, illustrations, end papers, hand lettering, The Crown Publishing Group, Fall 2012

Some recent exhibitions:

  • 2011: The Rose Algrant Art Show, Cornwall, CT, group exhibition
  • 2007: Book Paintings, The Free Library, Cornwall, CT, solo exhibition
  • 2003: Subway Portraits, The National Arts Club, New York, NY, a multimedia collaboration with Susan Charlotte with performers included Ally Sheedy, Kathleen Turner, John Shea, and Treat Williams
  • 2001: Thistles, Walt Meade Gallery, Roxbury, NY, solo exhibition

Awards and Featured Work:

  • Original textile designs used in the MTV series, Skins
  • Paintings featured on the set of the film, You Can Count on Me
  • Certificate of Merit from The Society of Illustrators
  • Certificate of Merit from The Society of Illustrators of Los Angeles

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Instructor Spotlight: Sara Radin

SARASara Radin is a concept designer and fashion trend forecaster. Her internships and work experience span Polo Ralph Lauren, Coach, Converse and most recently The Doneger Group. Sara also runs her own passion project, cultureisland, an online platform for sharing inspiring content as well as interviews with a wide range of creative individuals. She has curated and planned several pop up events including art shows and charity parties. You can learn more about it at www.cultureisland.com.

 

Professor Radin teaches HSX 99: A Week in the Life of a Concept Designer
Do you enjoy fashion that tells a story? Do you like making moodboards? Do you find images inspiring? In this class, Sara will train you to be a more conceptual and mindful designer. She will also introduce you to other industry professionals who create innovative designs using conceptual thinking.
Register HERE for Spring

 

Teaching Philosophy:
To train students to see inspiration everywhere and to approach their work thoughtfully and intuitively as a way to bring depth to their designs

 

On Precollege Programs:
I participated in the FIT Saturday Live program when I was in high school. It was wonderful exposure to college life and each week I enjoyed the independence I felt taking the train from New Jersey into Manhattan with my high school art posse. I’m excited to be back at FIT working with students around the same age I was then. I enjoy mentoring and look forward to showing students the lessons I’ve learned as a young person in the fashion design industry.

 

Industry Experience:
-Apparel Intern, Polo Ralph Lauren
-Design Intern, Coach
-Assistant + Associate Concept Designer, Converse
-Associate Trend Analyst, The Doneger Group

 

Advice for Students:
-Soak up knowledge like a sponge. Approach every interaction and experience as a learning opportunity. Speak up for what you believe in and the right people will listen. Do one bold thing everyday.
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Instructor Spotlight: Josh Tierney

JoshTierneyJosh Tierney is a multidisciplinary designer and creative director. His diverse background and understanding of fashion, styling, visual merchandising, theater, fashion, graphics, interiors, food, and art have provided him with a unique point of view for planning and designing unique events.  Josh has worked on events of all sizes and scope, in venues in the New York area and beyond.  His work has been featured in Biz Bash, the leading event planning news magazine, as well as Edible, the Knot, Brides, Hamptons Cottages & Gardens, and Town & Country.  Josh is an FIT alumnus, with degrees in Display & Exhibit Design, and Fabric Styling.

Professor Tierney teaches: HSX 067: Fashionable Affairs: Events Made Easy
Do you love parties? Do you love design?  Whether you’re a socialite or a budding event planner, this course will teach you everything you need to know about the basics of planning and designing a memorable party.  Fun, collaborative, and interactive – you’ll design tabletops, centerpieces, mood boards, and more.  Make your next event unique, stylish and unforgettable using china, glassware, linens, and décor in creative ways. .  Learn the ins and outs of event design from an industry pro.
Register HERE

Teaching Philosophy:
Teaching Precollege is all about exploration; enlightening students to new ways of thinking, and exposing them to possibilities for their future.  My class is all about giving students a taste of event planning and design, and the students’ individual journeys in figuring out what want to know more about.  My goal in teaching Precollege is really to spark passion, and the first step for students defining their passion is figuring out what they really love.  I apply my professional experience, education, and knowledge to teaching the class, calling on real-world industry contacts to share their experiences with the students, providing three-dimensional field trips and lectures.

On Precollege Programs:
Having attended FIT’s Precollege programs myself over a decade ago, I remember the impact the courses had on my life at that time, and how Precollege ultimately set a course for my educational and professional career.  Precollege provided both a creative outlet as well as insights into the fashion and related industries.  I ultimately attended FIT for college.  The class I teach, Fashionable Affairs, meets in the same classroom where I attended Precollege as a 16 year old, and my Precollege instructor, now a colleague, teaches a class across the hall.  The transition from student to instructor has been a surreal experience, but is characteristically unique to the FIT experience.

Industry Experience:
Executive Creative Director at Great Performances

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