Category Archives: Art

Raising an Artist

I know, I know – it should be “Rearing an Artist” but it just sounded too weird to make it the title…

Monkey (age 12) LOVES drawing.  She’s loved it for as long as I can remember.  Even when she was 4, she would practice fingers and hands for hours on end.  I am definitely raising an artist.  This presents special needs in planning her school curriculum.  I know that there are certain skills she needs as an adult, but I really want to just let her loose on her passions.  Won’t she learn math with her sewing that she wants to learn or with her music that she learns on her own?

One thing that I insist on her studying though is Art – doesn’t that seem odd that I insist on the one subject she loves?  Well, the thing is that she has self taught herself so much that, quite frankly, it’s hard for her to believe that the exercises in the book are going to do her any good.  But, she’s coming around – thank goodness – because I can see that it does help her even if she can’t yet. Her real love is Manga  (which sadly is not represented in any of the master’s work lol) The attached photos are of two of her original characters she has designed.

I know that I am completely biased (and what mother isn’t?!?), but she has such a talent that I wanted to make sure that we chose a program that would both challenge her AND keep her attention.  Most programs I found were just too basic, but I finally found what I was looking for and exactly what we needed.

The Art Curriculum that she’s using now is God and the History of Art. We began using this program last year and it has been absolutely wonderful – which is a good thing since you have to buy both books together  :-)

The reasons that I love this program:

  • Copy the Masters (very Charlotte Mason concept)
  • Samples that are chosen are tasteful ie no nudes (although nudes are discussed at an age appropriate level for the 10 and up crowd)
  • Lessons focus in on basics – shading, color mixing, etc… using colored pencils, paints, and markers
  • Teaches the HISTORY of art (as well as artists) intermixed within the lessons themselves
  • Comes with Postcard Sized duplications Paintings
  • After learning the bio of an artist, then they typically look at several of that artist’s works
  • Samples of work by other students (and Moms) included throughout the book
  • Both books could easily last 4 years (doing 2 assignments a week)

All in all, this is a great program that is challenging enough for the artistically talented – while also taking the information step by step for those who may not be so inclined (yours truly included in that list.)  We only do 2 assignments a week because I don’t want to rob her of the joy that is her art – but, I do think that she is learning the tools that will allow her to SOAR with her talent.

As an extra note: How Great Thou Art Publications publishes books for all ages and they have many different choices available!  This is a top notch company that puts out a quality product.

YOUR TURNWhat talents are you trying to nurture and what programs have fit the bill – or are you still looking for that perfect fit?