It is a mixed report. There should be a thumb neither up or down rating. James Victore is a talented, with a big, as in New York metropolitan area big, bold, self-promoting personality who presents a persona that defies conventions and hates rules. That is all fine although I have never worked with or met a designer who has his attitude towards fonts before. Let me warn others studying design that you might not like that attitude. But everything in his world sounds passionate, impulsive and experimental. I think it is a good thing to be introduced to someone who seeks out working outside the box and embracing the counter intuitive. In short he is an artist who relies on the exciting and chaotic flux of inspiration to happens to design for a living. His left, hand-drawn letters are an expression of that, making words into art. He says he primarily wants emotional responses and people to react like they would to poetry. If you are a little more familiar with New Yorkers and the business you will also recognize all of this as his pitch. It is entertaining. And this course is a performance. His wife Laura is his muse.
But this approach will not suit a lot of students here. We are not potential customers hearing a pitch. We are here for educational reasons, mostly practical reasons although he is definitely an inspirational force. And IMO, there are limits to teaching when the instructor is incapable of taking a step back and being objective too. Moreover, he and his wife offer the least of any teachers on CreativeLive that I have seen in terms of sharing in-depth skills and knowledge.
In fact, some members of this class knew more than they did and it was the class that answered many questions that the instructors did not know. Laura in particular who was using the software shared with us that she "is not a Photoshop professional." That is an understatement. It can be tedious watching their trial and error approach. Moreover, neither one could explain the difference or use between JPEG, PDF and PSD files. Yikes and double yikes! They send them out to clients in what sounded like an arbitrarily arrived decision. The class was surprised to also discover that neither knew the distinction between kerning and tracking. Worse is that questions like this, the most simple, fundamental ones seemed to catch them both off guard so they were not prepared with an answer--which astonished me. Furthermore, any discussion of resolution was incoherent. They knew bigger was better so they let others decide for them later. Right. Well maybe they can take a few classes here to learn all of these simple fundamentals before teaching their next class because this was unfair to those who turned in as well as those who bought the class. Incredibly, they were ill prepared to teach this course. The class was very loosely organized, often somewhat chaotic and disappointing a lot of the time. I read that James has taught for 30 years. It makes little sense to me. And not everyone will appreciate his novel approach which apparently has not been sufficient to give his wife what she needs to use, let alone teach Photoshop. If you are here to learn specifics to augment your skills and knowledge, this is probably not the best choice you can make. You might prefer Erica Gamet and Jason Hoppe for Illustrator and anyone else you can find on CreativeLive for Photoshop If you want to see two folks make numerous errors, rely upon heuristics, demonstrate they do not understand or seem to even have any curiosity about what is behind their technical decisions and yet still manage to pul off a a fine looking finished product in the end, then this is for you. You also might be inspired by their passion, enthusiasm and maverick approach seen here. What they share is their process, warts and all but they are creative dynamic duo. I liked them but accept that this is a different kind of course than you usually se here. It all depends upon what you are looking for.
I love that you as a designer, use the no rules apply to you work. Also, I love the fact that you appreciate the art of screen printing you posters. The heart would work great as a distress overlay.