One advantage of plastering is that is can be repainted as often as you choose.
Mixing skim plaster for the first time is difficult and can cause people problems if they haven't done it before.
Look up the useful sites and Trade Organizations which include a Federation of Plastering and Drywall Contractors.
As soon as you have mixed the plaster you should empty it out of the bucket onto a wet board which should be lifted off the ground high enough to enable you to get your plaster onto your hand board (hawk) easily.
Skimming is the process by which a thin layer of plaster is applied to a wall or ceiling to provide a smooth surface.
Drywall finishing techniques can help you to get a professional finish. They are not as simple as they seem to be on TV or in the DIY's manual.
A highly specialised form of plastering called Venetian Polished Plaster has rapidly grown in popularity.
Always turn off your mains power when plastering anywhere near any electrical socket, switch, light fitting or appliance.
It is important to practice the artex patterns before experimenting on your wall. Take the easy patterns and learn also how to remove Artex or the textured patterns.
Plastering cannot be improvised. You should not try and improve or simplify the processes of plastering demonstrated in your plastering course (at least until you are a true master of the trade).