My seven and five-year-old children helped me do a product review by doing art lessons with the book and DVD set, Art for Children, Building a Visual Vocabulary; which is part of the ARTistic Pursuits Art Instruction Books with DVD and Blu-Ray™ series from ARTistic Pursuits Inc.
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[ctt template=”4″ link=”b7oK1″ via=”yes” ]My 7 and 5 year old children helped me do a product review of one of the ARTistic Pursuits Art Instruction Books with DVD and Blu-Ray™ series.[/ctt]
Product Review of ARTistic Pursuits
The curriculum consists of a physical book and two DVDs that are right inside the book cover. I am impressed that it came with both a regular DVD and a Blu-ray™ one. It's nice to have both of them.
This program has no formal exercises that do not make a connection to real world experiences. ARTistic Pursuits develops experiences in the visual arts that allow children to create original works of art. This happens when children learn from direct observation of source materials, so they can choose the subjects that matter to them. It is a family business that is run by a married couple, Daniel and Brenda Ellis. Their daughter, Ariel N. Holcomb, speaks at conventions on topics that help moms put art into their homeschools and appears in the newest videos, like this one I found on their website…
Their son, Nate Ellis, works behind the scenes in sound tech, producing, and selecting background music for videos. He also handles shipping and manufacturing of the products. Our product arrived quickly and was well-packaged. We should know, we have been selling items online for almost 20 years!
I am an artist and haven't had any trouble teaching my children art because I love it so much. I do have homeschool mom friends that have expressed to me that they don't teach their children art. It is not required by our state and they feel it is too hard, takes too much time or is too messy! This makes me sad. I have always hoped they would find something that would be easy for them to use as a homeschool teacher so their kids could give it a try.
I have finally found it with this book and video set! It is made for grades K – 3, but it is so simple to use and they have products for a variety of ages. Even my toddler wanted to try!
But even when a book may be for younger children, as this one is, sometimes the older ones still want to give it a try. Check out the photo below, where my teen daughter is in the background, with a clipboard using the oil pastels and a tissue to give it a try!
How to use it
Before you gather the kids, you look at the lesson for the day and gather the materials needed. Then you gather the kids and read the lesson with them. It takes less than 10 minutes to read the lesson to your child and ask them questions about what they learned, which are provided in many of the lessons, such as “How is this form different from a painting?” (from Lesson 10 “Artists See Form”). Some lessons have video demonstrations, so your children sit and watch the video. Next, you apply the lesson by doing the art described in the book or on the video. Do you see how this can fit nicely into a homeschool day? They have made it so simple!
Using physical objects
In Lesson 15 (and Video #6), we learned how to draw with using a variety of simple building blocks as their guide. We chose to use plastic pattern blocks. I love to let my kids be creative and don't expect a certain type of outcome or perfection. I found this sentence in the book, “Your art project will be unique as you apply the methods shown in the video to your own ideas.” That perfectly describes how I feel about my children's art, “art project will be unique as you apply the methods.” I have just never been able to put it to words, but that is how I have been teaching my kids. I teach them methods and let them be unique. This has paid off with blue ribbons and sometimes merits at our local County Fair.
The drawing Mason ended up with after many drafts of shape drawing that he was not happy with is this one. He is really proud of it!
In Lesson 17, we learned how artists see figures. We learned that when we draw a figure, we need to include the head, neck, torso, hips, legs, arms, hands and feet. And that we can bend the parts to show movement. We are taught to draw the clothing while we think about the shapes that clothing covers up.
My kids didn't do every body part and did not make them bend or move, but I like what they made.
Drawing Self Portraits
In Lesson 18, we learn how artists see portraits and were taught how to draw a self portrait with oil pastels. It was recommended to use construction paper for this lesson, but I did not have any in the house and wanted to do the lesson anyway. Miranda really enjoyed this exercise and used a mirror to help get her features right. She was especially proud to show everyone her new pink glasses in the picture that she had just received a few days prior. She worried over her hair because “it is both blond and brown”.
“I loved watching the videos so I could see how to do it better than the lessons that don't have a video. It was fun and I know how to use oil pastels now.”
“Yeah, I like drawing pictures the best.”
I really enjoy this program because I know the producers feel the same as I do, that the kids can express themselves in a unique way. I love how they show art tips in the video, like how to keep the tips of your oil pastels clean with a tissue after coloring on top of another color. There are many more useful tips that any age of an artist would enjoy knowing. I love that both the standard and Blu-ray™ discs are included. The book shows beautiful examples of art projects in full color so you can clearly see examples and that the lessons are not too long for little ones.
You may be thinking, “Oh, Amy, it sounds expensive!” It's really not. You get 18 quality book lessons and 6 amazing video lessons to go with the book for that price. You can add more to the cost and get all the required materials plus a teal (my favorite color) cotton tote bag. The materials will not be “used up” by these 18 lessons, so you can use them for other books with videos from their company or for other art projects.
How To Find Them:
The Old Schoolhouse Homeschool Review Crew has a great team of people that have also used and reviewed this book with DVD set as well as others (including Art of the Middle Ages, Art of the Ancients, and more) from ARTistic Pursuits so click the banner below to see all the reviews:
Thanks for stopping by! I look forward to sharing more great curriculum reviews throughout the coming year.
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