Instructor Spotlight: Isolina Perez

finalsmallIsolina Perez is the Department/Industry Project Coordinator for the Jewelry Design department at the Fashion Institute of Technology. She also teaches part time through the school’s Center for Professional Studies and the Precollege Program. She is a frequent guest artist at the Guilded Lynx Studio in Connecticut and offers private workshops at Studio 134 in NYC.

Isolina is also a jewelry and mixed-media artist who likes to bend the rules and push the envelope when creating innovative pieces. Why not think outside the box and re-purpose a device that embosses paper or utilize ordinary items like paper clips to texture metal? She uses these techniques and a variety of others to create her concepts in resin, metal, paper, and enamel.

Classes Taught:
HSX 010: Beaded and Wire-wrapped Jewelry Design
JSX 070 Jewelry Design: Wire-Forming and Beaded Techniques
JSX 071 Jewelry Design: Metal Jewelry Techniques
JSX 072 Jewelry Design: Clay, Resin and Polymer Techniques

On Precollege Programs:
The Precollege Program is a wonderful opportunity for middle school and high students to take a class they love in a college setting. It’s most rewarding when the students complete a piece above and beyond their expectations.

Teaching Philosophy:
Whether someone is a  novice or experienced jewelry designer, I remind them that making jewelry should be fun.  I encourage students to ask as many questions as possible, it doesn’t matter how many times I repeat myself as long as they get the concept.  I tell the students they are only limited by their imagination, and by the end of the class they will be walking out with as many pieces of jewelry as they have created.  That’s Priceless!

Industry Experience:
Isolina has been featured in several issues of Stampington Magazine, Just Steampunk Magazine and in the Lark book “Showcase 500 Beaded Jewelry.”

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Instructor Spotlight: Steven Cutting

Steven Cutting (final small)Steven Cutting is a Professor in the Fashion Design Art Department in the School of Art and Design at the Fashion Institute of Technology. Professor Cutting has taught at FIT since 1996  and received AAS and BFA degrees in Fashion Design from FIT. Currently he is working on his MA in Adult Development. Master at his craft, designer of Innovative style not only in NY, but in Europe, Asia, and the Caribbean he has worked as a Design Director, Fashion Designer, in both garments  and accessories.

Classes Taught:
HAR016 Creating the Fashion Figure
HAR089 Fashion Design Portfolio III

Professor Cutting’s Teaching Philosophy:
Innovative and Relevant techniques, which consistently evolve as the times change!

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On Precollege Programs:
I get great satisfaction from teaching, knowing I made a difference! Its important I provide a welcoming environment….

Additional Comments/Advice:
Constantly research to fulfill your desire for Fashion! Understand how to blend your appetite for fashion with business for success…LIVE IT, BE IT and REMAIN IN IT!!!!!

Industry Experience:
Kenneth Cole, Perry Ellis, Larry Levine, Anna Scipioni, Krizia, Philippe Monet, Doneger Trends Consultant, Beyoncé’s House of Dereon/Dereon, Komocean, Fashion Show Producer

Harvey’s Bristol Crème Award for Most Promising Designer
Children of Promise Mentor
Shabeau Magazine Award Winner
Council for Leather Exports Presenter: India/New York
Leather Trend Specialist: China/Miami
Caribbean World Fashion Presenter/Instructor: Barbados/Guyana/St. Kitts
International Guest Professor: ZST University -Hangzhou China

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Upcoming News:
▪ Website coming…
▪ FASHION DESIGN BOOK in works coming soon…
▪ Fashion Show with Kenneth Cole/Kota Alliance/Stand for Education May 2016

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Instructor Spotlight: Michelle Wenz

164723_612017570075_5287360_nMichelle Wenz born and raised in Queens, NYC, found her love of the arts, mainly photography while she was in high school. She became President of the Art Club her Senior Year and decided to focus on Photography in college. After she attended a Summer Live class at FIT and knew this was her college of choice. Her senior year at FIT, she found an internship at ROCK 101.9 RXP and later was hired as part of their digital team. For the next three years there, she photographed some of the most famous rock ‘n roll artists to date. After ROCK 101.9 went off the air she started working at local printers, freelancing, and then teaching art in high schools and elementary schools. She is currently teaching art, kindergarten to eighth grade.
Michelle Wenz teaches HPH 159  Digital Camera Use and Photography for the Beginner  
Teaching tumblr_nj67ozKtTi1qgeys5o1_1280Philosophy:
Everyone, inherently, can create art. It’s the first and ultimate form of non-verbal communication. By showing kids and young adults the path to success in creating original art work, you open the door to a world of possibilities and expression. Through photography, you can capture life moments, create original visions, and express oneself through the still image.
On Precollege Programs:
I attended a Precollege Program while I was a senior in high school. I absolutely loved it. It helped me make the decision to step into the art world and make it a career. It opened my eyes to all the roads I could go down and that the possibilities are endless. I’m glad I stuck with it and attended FIT after my summer program was over. I got a feel, not only for the classes, but the campus, the people, and found confidence in myself right away.
Freelance & Published Works Featured On:

Smithsonian Rock & Roll:
John Varvados
New York Market Radio Events:
Riverside Church, Weekday School Web Site
The Road Recovery Foundation
Long Island Roller Rebels
Cover of Radio Ink Magazine, 2012

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The Blue Rainbow

Well, here’s my last blog of the season, *sigh,* it went by so quickly, a reminder to me that life goes pretty darn fast and you shouldn’t take ANYTHING for granted. Enjoy every second of it. 

Before class, I was sitting outside near the Haft Auditorium entrance in the metal high chairs and tables. I felt a little sad knowing it was my last class, but when I looked across the way, I saw something that caught my attention. There was a blue arch that formed part of the design of the outside of the building, and it looked like a “rainbow” hovering over the entrance. The blue of the “rainbow” matched my mood at that moment, but it also inspired me and seemed to say, “Miranda! Get it together! It won’t be the last time you’ll be at FIT!” (Ooh… foreshadowing, perhaps?)


To wrap things up, we’ve been drawing the face – here’s my last homework assignment for FIT:


It looked more like me at the time.

Of course, we also did some drawings (um, it’s a drawing class), but the best part of it for me was the critique. A critique is where everyone lays out three to five pieces of their best artwork and the class walks around and gives constructive criticism. So that means people say “I think you did this really well, but I think you could have incorporated more of that,” or “I like this technique you used, but it could use more ____,” and so on. This process always intrigues me because it lets me have a chance to look at art through someone else’s eyes. It always makes me feel better about the world to see other young people who have an interest in something and are committed to learning more about it.



Quick two minute pose.

Thank you all for taking the time out of your day to read my blog posts. I hope you enjoyed reading about my new experiences as much as I enjoyed writing about them. It’s official – I completed my first precollege drawing class. Stay tuned – I hope to write more blogs in the fall when I take another FIT class!


Until next time,


All Good Things Must Come To An End…(Until next semester)

Hey Precollegers!

Sadly, this will be my last blog post for the semester :(. Today I’m going to focus on my final project and portfolio review! For my photography class last week we had to submit our portfolios with 5 darkroom images, 4 aperture, 4 studio, and 5 images for our final on the theme of our choice. We had to submit prints of these in our portfolios, and also as .jpegs on a flashdrive as well.  My favorite images were definitely my studio shots and my final. This week, we got our portfolios back, and had to hang and display our finals on the walls around the classroom. We then spent the class each presenting our final, talking about our technique, theme, message we wanted to convey, style, lighting, and any other side notes or specifications. It was very cool to see everyone’s work because throughout the past 11(ish) weeks, we have all worked together, yet we really haven’t seen anyone’s images, unless you got to glance at their prints in the darkroom. It was exciting to see how everyone’s subject matter and styles varied, and I was blown away by how talented some of my classmates are! I have definitely grasped onto some inspiration after watching everyone present their finals. The concept of my final was to focus on the the pains that humans (specifically women) go through in order to be deemed acceptable and beautiful by society. This isn’t the most unique concept, but I believe that my way of approaching the subject was creative. Instead of using mirrors, makeup, and measuring tapes, I used glitter. Silver glitter. Silver glitter masking my model’s face in a public coffee shop and in a bathtub. She was not wearing any makeup or had anything done to her hair in order to not distract my audience from anything but the glitter. I chose glitter because it is a texture that catches people’s’ eyes, and glitter is a pretty thing. I wanted a pretty thing to represent an ugly subject. On the surface, glitter is beautiful and glamorous, but in reality, the glitter was making my model uncomfortable and even unhappy at times from how long she had to be plastered with it. In the 2 images of her in public, she looks uncomfortable and upset–even though in these images she is stereotypically the ‘most’ beautiful. She averts eye contact with the camera, either looking down or to the side, showing the  humiliation and insecurities that she possesses as she feels vulnerable, even though she is the most covered in these images. My next 2 are of my model in a bathtub in only lingerie, removing the glitter from her face and rinsing off in the shower. In my third image, she is making direct eye contact with the camera, defying her insecurities and finally taking hold of herself and taking charge of her body and beauty. I loved the colors and lighting in these two images, and someone in my class even commented that the one of her in the shower looks like a movie still (a huge compliment to me!). My last image is of my model in a glass room, still in her lingerie, but with her glitter cleaned and her face bare. She is at her most vulnerable state here–half naked in a room with a towel on her head and no glitter mask to hide her flaws and face. But if you look at her body language and facial expression, it is clear to see that she is her most comfortable here. Although her eyes are closed and she can’t make eye contact with the camera, I wanted her eyes closed to show that she is finally in touch with herself, alone in her head and in her body, and comfortable. At the end of the day, we as humans, expose ourselves and our flaws, and we need to learn to accept ourselves. Even without glitter on her face, my model is still beautiful, even more so than with the mask. True comfort should be seeked from within ourselves, and we cannot rely on outside factors to help radiate our internal beauty to our outside.

Overall I am extremely satisfied with my final, and I received nothing but good vibes and comments from my classmates and professor. Looking at my portfolio, it is amazing to see how much my art and technique have changed and improved in under three months. I am so grateful for my experience in this Precollege FIT course, and I am already looking forward to next semester.

Have a wonderful summer, and I hope to write again soon!


My final exhibition in my classroom

My final exhibition in my classroom

Final 1

Final 1

Final 2

Final 2

Final 3

Final 3

Final 4

Final 4

Final 5

Final 5