Gwen Partin is a graphic design instructor primarily involved in applied visual arts. She began teaching at DCTC in 2002.
Gwen has a Master of Fine Arts degree from the Academy of Art College in San Francisco. She also has her bachelor's in fine arts from Sonoma State University and a certificate in marketing communications from San Jose State.
She has more than 20 years of experience in professional marketing, design, and illustration, having worked in corporate marketing, advertising, and the printing industry. She has worked as a designer, art director, and illustrator for trade associations, financial firms, and ad agencies serving retail and restaurant businesses.
"I teach because it is about giving back," she says, regarding her educational philosophy. "It lets me indulge my generous spirit. Teaching is about imparting knowledge to someone else so they can grow. Teaching is being involved in the community and society.
"The process of teaching is a process of learning and discovery for me. Learning is something I seek continually to improve myself as an artist and to gain greater understanding to be a better teacher.
"Teaching is inspiration. Seeing learning happen is very inspiring, validating, and motivating. The ideas that come from both teaching and observing the learner feed my pool of inspiration.
"Visual communication is a driving force in the evolution of visual culture. Our creativity and what we design from that has great impact on our society and our future. We need to be aware of that and take responsibility as artists and designers to bring high quality into every image and design we create.
"Part of my job as a teacher is to develop the awareness to recognize quality and then show how to create quality imagery through skill building, design principles, and creative problem solving."
Working as a team with fellow faculty as well as interacting with her students are the best parts of her job as a DCTC instructor. "I greatly value meeting new people and having the opportunity to be part of their lives," she says.
"When I'm not teaching, I enjoy working in my studio creating artwork," Gwen says. "I also enjoy going to art museums and galleries, and working toward exhibiting my artwork."
Gwen focuses her artistic talent on printmaking, painting, and drawing. She is also interested in bird watching, hiking, outdoor adventure—anything related to nature, naturalist activities, and gardening.