We got acquainted with the Florissima school several years ago by accident. On the Internet, we came across a very original appeal, to which we simply had no right not to respond. This is how we first got to Florissima. From the very first meeting, the business relationship grew into real friendship. It just couldn't be otherwise! The warmth, sincerity and extraordinary openness of these people captivates and captivates from the first minutes of communication. With pleasure they teach the floristic skills of others and constantly strive for new knowledge themselves; always full of new plans, but not forgetting old projects - they live here 25 hours a day and regret that the day is so short. The heart and soul of the Florissima school is its leader - Inna Makeeva. Despite his fantastic busyness,Inna Sergeevna found time to give an interview to our portal.
Corr.: What does Florissima School of Flower Art offer its listeners today?
IM: Today, the Florissima school offers a lot not only to students who come to school to learn and master the basics of the work and creativity of a florist, but also to employers who send their employees to us, and to those who, having already become professionals, yearn exchange of information and experience, as well as our suppliers. And not only from Moscow. Our doors are open to everyone who wants to know and those who want to share their knowledge and experience. People come to us from everywhere: Vladivostok, Norilsk, Tomsk, Arkhangelsk, Kaliningrad, Vladikavkaz. All geography of Russia and the CIS. By the way, we even had a listener from Cyprus, and many of our listeners leave to work abroad. In fact, we have developed a club system of communication for the entire floristic community: florist sellers, owners of flower shops and studios,professional florists and suppliers of flowers and accessories.
But let's start all over again, with training courses. Many years of experience in training specialists in floristry allowed us to create our own training system:
1. Basic courses for those who are just starting to learn the basics of floristry. These courses are built on a modular basis, where each module, each course is self-contained and complete. There is a course on making bouquets, compositions, collages, etc. Completeness and self-sufficiency of a separate course means that at the end of each course, the student receives the maximum of practical and theoretical knowledge on the topic. For example, at the end of the course on the Bouquet program, the listener can independently receive and process flowers, make simple, but well-designed bouquets, treat the customer correctly, i.e. a person can already work in a flower shop, which many of our listeners do. And so that our graduates can feel confident in the workplace, we offer them a free internship in our studio,which, along with practical work in the classroom, allows them to gain confidence in their abilities, to get acquainted with the widest range of flowers, including tropical and other unusual flowers. In addition, modularity provides our students with complete freedom of choice: if they want, a person immediately goes to the second course, for example, "Composition", or gets a job (we also help with choosing a place of work) and gains practical experience, and the next course will come when internally "ripe". In addition to the above, you can choose the course "Floristic collage", "Wedding floristry", "Packing flowers and gifts", etc. All basic courses use an individual approach, ie. we recruit no more than five people in groups. At the same time, the most experienced teachers, professional florists,among which there are even members of the Union of Artists of UNESCO.
2. The second stage of training is already improvement courses. These courses are for those who have already become a professional and want to learn some specific areas of floristry or, for example, take a floristry course dedicated to a specific topic: New Year, Valentine's Day, Mother's Day, etc. At least 10 people are already going to these courses, classes can be taught by both our teachers and foreign specialists.
3. The third step is the “never-ending” step in mastery training, this step is for professionals who one fine day did not decide for themselves that they have already reached the most important peaks of knowledge in floristry. These are master - classes conducted by outstanding masters of floristry from Russia or other countries.
As for employers and suppliers, we are an intermediate information link for both. Many employers, salon owners suffer from a lack of information about new trends in floristry, new trends, new varieties of flowers, and accessories. It is not for nothing that such a wide assortment of flowers is presented in our studio - from a fragrant rose grown, by the way, in Russia, to “moon” carnations … Very often, shop owners and managers just come to us to learn about new products and exchange news. And suppliers from us are the first to learn about what customers need.
Corr.: What advice could you give to those who today decide to study the art of flower arrangement?
IM: To learn to read nature, to see beauty in the flight of falling leaves in the fall, and always believe that spring will come again. This is creativity where it is impossible to create without understanding nature …
Corr.: Is the profession of a florist difficult or not very?
IM: It all depends on the way of thinking, on the person himself. The main thing is that a person is interested in doing this, so that this profession enthralls so that one thinks not only about the money that he will earn by selling this or that bouquet (although this is also important), but also about that, and maybe mainly about how he will delight the one to whom this bouquet is intended.
Corr.: What qualities should a person have when choosing this profession?
IM: First of all, you always want a person to have the best qualities that God endowed him with, but, possessing them, he generously showed them. In the florist profession, as in any other creative profession, it is impossible to create if you are fake from the inside. In such cases, only pretense is possible. It's important to be kind and open minded. Speaking professionally, you need to be sociable, patient and attentive to customers … The profession itself cannot paint a person, just the opposite.
Corr.: "Florissima" is the organizer of the all-Russian creative exhibition of florists - collage artists "Floristic studies." And this year, in mid-November, Moscow will host the fourth exhibition. How did it all begin, and what awaits the exhibition in the future?
IM: The idea of creating the exhibition "Floristic Sketches" came from the desire to show all the diversity of floristic collage, from the desire to unite many established masters who have their own creative discoveries and work in various techniques in one exhibition. That is why our exhibitions are very interesting both for the viewer and for the masters themselves, since here there is an exchange of creative experience, mutual enrichment of authors.
The first exhibition "Floristic sketches" took place in 2004, and this year the fourth exhibition will take place. The goals and objectives of the exhibition remained the same: to show the viewer all the variety of floral collage performed by already known masters, as well as to discover and present to the viewer and the professional community new promising names. It is important that not only Muscovites, but also authors from other regions: Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk, Tomsk, Norilsk, Vladimir, Yaroslavl, Yerevan, etc. took part in our exhibition.
The success of our exhibition prompted us to think about organizing visiting, or, as we call them, traveling exhibitions "Floristic etudes". It is clear that not everyone can come to Moscow and see the exhibition. This year we have already begun to implement this idea and organized the first traveling exhibition “Floristic sketches. Myshkin ". For us, it was an invaluable experience in organizing a traveling exhibition, and plus, a lot of warm emotions from meeting spectators in the city of Myshkin and its numerous tourists. Our exhibition was highly appreciated there, and we immediately received invitations to organize "Floristic studies" in other cities. And right after the "Etudes" in Moscow we are going to Kostroma.
Corr.: You are the President of the Club “International Creative Association of Phyto-Collage Artists.” What are the goals and objectives of this association?
IM: After last year's November "Studies" we were offered to hold the same exhibition in the palace of culture "On Petrovsky Lines". But we do not like to repeat ourselves, and therefore we urgently gathered the most active masters and brainstormed a new exhibition called The Queen of Spades. It was not just an exhibition - it was an action, a performance. We have always had an interesting presentation of exhibitions. But in "The Queen of Spades" everything, from the presentation to the collages themselves, was devoted to the main theme - the Woman. The exhibition was prepared in just a month and was held at the highest level. This was the beginning of the creation of the "International Creative Association of Phyto-collage Artists", which is based on the active masters of "Etudes". Since then, not only our Florissima school has been participating in the organization of our exhibitions, but also "International Creative Association of Phyto-Collage Artists ".
Moreover, since the Queen of Spades, all our exhibitions have acquired a thematic color, i.e. it is not just an exhibition of floral collage, but also an exhibition that reveals a certain plot. For example, the exhibition in Myshkin was also thematic, it was dedicated to the anniversary of the Myshkinsky district, and therefore Myshka Myshkinsky was the main one in our exhibition. Likewise, our future main exhibition "Floristic Studies" will be devoted to the history of the appearance of the flower "Ivan da Marya" based on a very beautiful ancient Slavic legend.
As for the goals and objectives of the "International Creative Association of Phyto-Collage Artists", its creation is not an end in itself, but the promotion of the popularization of floristry and floral collage not formally, not on paper, but in reality, in work.
Corr.: In your opinion, today's Russian floristry is just following the fashion dictated by Dutch flower arrangers, or is it still making its own way in this art?
IM: Of course, the influence of the Dutch school is noticeable, especially when you consider that this influence is supported by the supply of flowers and a huge number of floral accessories, which mostly go through Holland. In Russia, this industry is not developed at all, or, shall we say, very poorly developed. But, nevertheless, I think that Russian floristry has made a big step forward in recent years, especially in such a creative direction as collage. In my opinion, we are gradually going through the process of self-identification in the world of floristry and more and more declare ourselves. I think we are at the foot of the mountain, and we are going to go up, and not walk around the bush. Most likely, we will go up the spiral …
Corr.: To what extent do you think ordinary Russian flower shops provide customers with quality services today?
IM: At first glance, it seems that (if we talk about flower shops, and not about tents) the situation seems to be quite safe. Let's say there are quite decent salons in Moscow, especially in the center. But as soon as you leave Moscow, the situation changes very, very much. There is a lack of trained personnel, the bouquets are sometimes made simply illiterately, without observing any rules at all. They say it's all about the price. I don't think it is. After all, quality is not necessarily a high price. It is important to create real Beauty from a minimum of material. And for this you need a master! And the fact that even from a scrap of a flower you can make beautiful compositions, many do not even imagine. Of course, there is a lack of knowledge, although much has been done in this direction in recent years.
On the other hand, take the "super salons" in the center of Moscow. This is not always a quality, but almost always an overpriced. A kind of payment for the "center" of the metropolis.
Corr.: What is the peculiarity of flower gifts: not only bouquets, but also compositions and other floristic creations offered in creative flower studios ?
IM: Nowadays it is already difficult to surprise with just flowers or just a bouquet. In order to surprise a person, you need to know the features of his character, his habits and affections, temperament. In a word, a gift, and not only a floral one, should emphasize a person's individuality and be addressed specifically to her. Most often, you can find out about this from those who are going to make a gift. Well, for example, an adult already man of "Indians" collects and he has a birthday. Relatives want to pleasantly surprise him. But how to surprise a person who has everything? And we make another “Indian” for him, but only a flower one. A floristic composition that depicts how an "Indian" on a pie swims across the lake, and even with full combat gear! The birthday boy was happy with this gift like a child! We received great feedback from the customer.We are now talking not just about floral dolls and toys, but about a whole composition in miniature. Although we, of course, make flower elephants, dogs, hippos, and even all sorts of cars. But the most amazing thing is that these toys are intended not only for children, but also for adults.
Before starting work, we try to find out from the customer everything about the person for whom the gift is intended. Sometimes we even need a photo. For example, when our textile doll maker starts working, she tries to give the doll the character traits of a specific person - its future owner. As a result, the doll really becomes like the one to whom it is intended.
Or another example, when you need a photo and close communication with the customer. To order, we make antique floral postcards. This is a gold-plated open book with aged leaves, entirely made in our studio. On the right page there is usually a poetic congratulation, specially written by us for this person, and on the left one can be placed a photograph of this person and a floral composition. Everything, from the font of the text to the floral composition itself, is discussed with the customer.
We always use this approach, whether it is the design of a corporate event or wedding, or just drawing up a small bouquet. What is important is that the customer becomes an active participant in the creative process.
Actually, this is the main feature of floral gifts and compositions created in studios to order - these floral works are personalized, i.e. are performed for a specific person.
Corr.: Inna Sergeevna, do you have any favorite flowers? Why do you love them?
IM: Probably, if I say that I have favorite flowers, I should explain to myself why I do not like others? Aren't all flowers beautiful, you just have to look at them! Each flower has its own merits, not to mention the beneficial properties. I love all flowers! Potted, field, garden, greenhouse …..
But … still I love more than a rose! Perhaps only in a rose I see the character of a real woman. For all centuries, for all technological transformations, for all the time of genomodification, it retains its beauty, grace, tenderness, freshness of a petal, independence and greatness.
What do I dislike? I don't like when flowers are abused, when a solution is poured into them to get the right color before selling, etc.
Corr.: Member of the Moscow Union of Designers, Member of the International Union of Designers, President of the Autonomous Nonprofit Organization "School of Flower Art" Florissima ", President of the" International Creative Association of Phyto-collageists ", Master of Beauty - do you have your own secrets of" lengthening "twenty-four hours a day?
IM: Of course there is! But this answer is exclusively for you! Promise not to divulge this secret!
Corr.: We'll have to promise! I will share your secret method only with our readers!
IM: More often than not, you just have to stay awake for a day, work tirelessly and still watch, as if someone stole this additional 25th hour. They also gave me a watch with a reverse run, and now I look at them and at the watch with the correct run, and it seems to me that time is compressed between them, it becomes denser, more tangible or something, and it becomes easier to save.
Corr.: Your life, by virtue of your profession, is connected with flowers every day, and your loved ones give you flowers or prefer other signs of attention?
IM: Of course! They give both flowers and other signs of attention. But many friends, knowing what I am doing, are at a loss as to what bouquet to surprise me with. Although, as I already said, the most important thing in a bouquet is what a person wants to express to you with these flowers.