The basic subjects for our homeschool are easy to cover. They make an appearance in our schedules daily. My problem is doing all the other things that are also important, just not required subjects. Such is the case with art. I know I need to introduce art instruction to my kids, but as a non-artist I find art extremely intimidating. So I was thankful when I got to review Creating a Masterpiece with my middle son, Connor, who enjoys drawing and painting.
Creating a Masterpiece offers online art classes taught by artist Sharon Hofer. We reviewed the Monthly Plan option and have access to all the classes at every level. Projects are from Beginner level through Level 5 as well as a new section called “Art in History.” Each level includes classes for many types of art media such as acrylics, soft pastels, pencil, sculpture, silk painting, and more.
The classes are broken up into several mini sessions so each project can be done a little at a time or all at once. We set up a card table in our living room and put the videos up on the TV.
There is a sample project to try out that uses soft pastels. Here is Connor’s sample:
Pastels are very messy to work with and I tried sealing my picture and ended up ruining it. We kept baby wipes handy and paper towels to dry off. I really liked working with the pastels and was pleased with my amateur results. Both of these projects are from Level 1.
Connor also did a watercolor from the Beginner Level. The trees are made by blowing the paint with a coffee stir stick. He had a difficult time getting his colors to be as bright as shown in the lesson but I think that is because we used mid-quality watercolors instead of artist quality.
He also did a colored pencil drawing of a clown fish.
But Connor’s favorite project was the lighthouse done in acrylic paint from Level 1.
I have to say that the quality of the art supplies makes a HUGE difference! We already had artist quality acrylic paint and brushes so that project worked out well, but even though I got mid-quality watercolors and pastels, they were a struggle to work with. Art supplies can get very expensive so I recommend focusing on one art medium at a time and buy the best quality if the budget is tight. I also recommend pausing frequently and rewinding the videos as needed and have paper towels and baby wipes on hand for messes. Art is messy, there’s just no getting around it.
The Creating a Masterpiece site is easy to navigate and you can search projects by level or by medium. Each project has a list of supplies in pdf format and links to all the supplies needed for that project from a quality art supplier making ordering supplies super easy if you don’t have an art store nearby. A monthly membership would make a great gift for an artistic child or would be a fun activity for the summer. I really like that the projects look like real art, not just craft-type projects.
The website says that the Level 1 projects can be done by children as young as 4 but these projects are challenging enough for adults. I’m looking forward to doing all the rest of the soft pastel projects (there are 5 more) and Connor wants to do more with acrylics.
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