The MCA Denver Creators Studio Program is a collaborative, 8-week, paid internship experience for young adults ages 18-26.
This is a cohort-based program that brings together professional artists and young creators to build community and connections within the Denver art scene. All participants will receive creative training, entrepreneurial development, and mentorship from some of the city’s leading creatives. Additional discipline-specific training will also be provided in one of two learning tracks: Fashion Exploration or Creative Exploration. At the end of the program, participants will engage in a public forum to present what they learned as a final creative pitch.
Participants will meet on Saturdays from 9AM-5PM at the Holiday Theater. Breakfast and lunch will be provided.
Creators Studio has been made possible through the generous support of Amie Knox and Jim Kelley.
Description of Tracks
The Fashion Exploration Track is a unique approach for aspiring fashion entrepreneurs who are interested in understanding what’s currently happening in the fashion world from street fashion to high fashion and the multitude of possibilities of working in the fashion world. It will include understanding how what you currently do as a creative will ultimately define your work, your designs and your brand. You will visit a design studio and will be introduced to other fashion creatives to help you define your fashion future.
The Creative Exploration Track is a cross-disciplinary opportunity for young creatives who are interested in defining their practice, exploring creative career paths, and connecting with other creative working professionals.
Both tracks will receive entrepreneurial development training, which includes business modeling, strategic management, principles of accounting, marketing, promotion, and pitching.
Applications open from March 1 through April 2, 2023
Dates of Internship
- June 3
- June 10
- June 17
- June 24
- July 8
- July 15
- July 22 (Presentation Day)
- July 29 (Presentation Day)
Typical Day Schedule
- 9AM–12PM: Entrepreneurial Development
- 12–1PM: Lunch
- 1–2PM: Small group mentoring session
- 2–5PM: Individual track breakout
Creators Studio Applicants must:
- Be a Denver resident (Adams, Arapahoe, Broomfield, Denver, Douglas, and Jefferson counties)
- Be between the ages of 18–26
- Have a high school diploma/GED (2023 graduating seniors are eligible as this is a summer program)
- Be interested in exploring fashion or the creative space in general
- Be available for all of the internship dates and final presentation
- Applicants will apply through the MCA Denver website
- Once applications close, they will be reviewed.
- After review, select applicants will be asked to do a brief virtual interview members of MCA Denver
Artists/mentors for the 2023 program
Mona Lucero (Fashion Track)
Award-winning designer Mona Lucero has a love for both fashion and art. This results in clothing that is often whimsical, frequently elegant, and always unexpected. She believes her mission is to help each person find their personal expression through fashion. Mona’s first memory is of drawing her grandmother’s portrait on the side of a shoebox with a crayon. She thought the drawing captured her grandmother perfectly and at that moment, her dream was to be an artist.
Born in San Francisco and growing up in Grand Junction, Colorado, she moved to Denver to start art school and graduated from the University of Colorado with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree. While there, she was inspired by soft sculpture and wearable art and began avidly reading fashion magazines. All the while dressing as eccentrically as she could think she found a new love in fashion design.
Mona believes in the importance of community and heads the Fashion Association of Denver, an organization she founded to help the fashion professionals of Denver. She has served on the Blue Ribbon Commission of Denver’s Arts & Venues Imagine 2020 Arts Initiative and has been a cultural advisor to Denver Architectural Foundation in conjunction with Doors Open Denver and curated a fashion exhibition for Denver Botanic Gardens. Most recently, she was the costume consultant for the film “Talent Keyhole”.
Castle Searcy (Creative Exploration Track)
Castle Searcy is essentially a Colorado native with time spent in San Francisco and the Deep South. She lives between NYC and Denver while running creative strategy, design and art consulting for her own firm, Castle Productions. Searcy is the co-founder of Denver's award-winning Tootsies the Nail Shoppe (2006-2021). She serves as the founding Design Track Chair and Creative Director for Denver Startup Week (2010-Current) and recently produced Between Us: The Downtown Denver Alleyways Project. Searcy specializes in creative strategy for brands and organizations working at the intersection of design, art, branding, content and storytelling.
Michael Bevis (Entrepreneurial Training)
Michael Bevis is an entrepreneur and business professional who is driven to help others reach their full potential. His talents and experiences are unique, encompassing the areas of business marketing, leadership, personal branding, and higher education. Bevis is an industrial and organizational psychologist with additional graduate degrees in finance and marketing. Bevis currently manages all things related to entrepreneurship and innovation for the city and county of Denver. He also is the founder and CEO of KoolSkinz, a pet product company specializing in pet performance wear. Bevis has started three non-profits and serves as a board member for several others.
MEET THE CREATORS STUDIO PARTICIPANTS
We launched Creators Studio in 2022 with 20 incredible participants!