Reading Time | 3 minutes
What do you see as the most beneficial aspect of being in the mentorship program?
JONNY Kyle’s experience not only in the industry, but in life has given me insight into areas that were obscure or unknown to me before the mentorship—like common practices and responsibilities for a working professional. Kyle has given me experience within programs and technical knowledge that I had little understanding of before the mentorship. He’s shown me programs that aren’t offered at my college and how they’re used within the industry. But mainly it’s just been great to collaborate and ideate with a creative professional.
What skills have increased the most as a result of this mentorship?
JONNY Working with Kyle has given me an eye for composition and movement. Kyle has been able to see the potential in my illustrative work and pushed for me to make it move and see where it can go. He’s also given me an appreciation for the professional approach and planning out a path for creative execution.
KYLE I have been constantly challenged by the reintroduction of basic concepts that I take for granted these days. It’s exciting to go back and relearn concepts. Questioning why I do things the way I do is helping me affirm some skills, and improve others. Being a mentor is mutually beneficial for sure.
How often do you communicate and in what way?
JONNY We communicate about every week through texts but also try to have meet ups—either to get coffee and chat, or meet up for a jam session. Kyle has made it work for both of our hectic schedules. It’s been easy for us to start off from where we left off and jump into new areas of interest.
KYLE Structure doesn’t work with my lifestyle, so it’s great that Jon has a similar scenario. I was clear with him from the beginning that I may have weeks, or even months where I can’t meet due to my freelance life. Jon is a full time student, and also has had a job while he is studying. I make sure I am available via text at any time. I also check in with him every few weeks if I have not heard from him. Sometimes we get coffee and just chat, other times we have working sessions, and most recently we have started photography excursions.
Kyle, how do you approach managing your mentorship?
KYLE I think I take a unique approach to mentoring—I build a friendship first, then focus on helping build and develop skills. For me, I feel it is paramount to build trust first, then teach from there. This approach seems to create a sense of responsibility to the relationship. Much like an apprenticeship, a mentorship with me is for life.
When it comes to the mentorship, what do you see as each other’s best attribute?
JONNY From the start Kyle has been straightforward and approachable, that’s something that I really appreciate in person. Kyle is also eager to share his knowledge and experience. He’s been patient while going back to the basics to build a strong foundation in my understanding.
KYLE Jon brings a hunger to learn, explore, listen, and improve. When he first showed me his work, I knew he had potential. His illustrations begged to move, and he just needed some technical skills for movement in order to breathe life into his work. Jon is a self starter, just a little bit of encouragement goes a long way.
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