If you want to learn art skills in the comfort of your home, then you might check out the fun professional art lessons for all ages from ARTistic Pursuits, Inc. Everyone can learn art skills.
Our family recently reviewed one of their art curriculum products called Art for Children, Building a Visual Vocabulary, which is volume 1 of the 6 part series called ARTistic Pursuits Art Instruction Books with DVD and Blu-Ray.
Art for Children, Building a Visual Vocabulary
Colorful Step By Step Illustrations
6 Video Lessons
6 Video Lessons
Cost $39.99 on sale for $33.99
Each field of study has it’s own vocabulary and the field of “Art” is no different. In this curriculum, over the course of 18 lessons and hands on activities, students learn vocabulary words that artists use and much more. They will learn about famous artists and their artworks, experiment with art supplies and various art techniques that will communicate ideas and develop skills too.
ARTistic Pursuits, Inc. curriculum is created by art instructor and author Brenda Ellis. She has an extensive background as an artist, teacher, and author. With her latest curriculum series for grades K-3, she wants to encourage your kids to develop a solid, hands on, “visual vocabulary” because it is the first step in learning about art.
Visual vocabulary words in this curriculum:
- art materials
- still life
- and much more
Famous Art in this curriculum:
- The Courtyard of a House in Delft by Pieter Hooch, 1658-1660
- The Birthday by Mark Chagall, 1915
- In Flander’s Field – Where Soldiers Sleep and Poppies Grow by Robert Vonnoh, 1890
- THe Christening Feast by Jan Steen, 1664
- Flower Day by Diego Rivera, 1925
- Boy with bagpipes and young bear by Artist Unknown, 20th CE
- The Sunflower by Gustav Klimt, 1906-1907
- Monte Sainte-Victore above the Tholonet Road, 1896-1898
- Still Life with Coffeepot by Vincent Van Gogh, 1888
- Sentinel of the Plains, by William Herbert Dunton, 1910
- Blue Dancers by Edgar Degas, 1898
- Henry VIII by Holbein The Younger, 1540
Lessons in this curriculum:
All of the lessons are professionally illustrated and contain step by step instructions. Six of the lessons are described in greater audio visual detail on the DVD’s. You can chose to play the lesson either on the regular DVD or Blu-Ray DVD. The DVD’s make you feel like the teacher is right there in the same room with you and they are very easy to understand. With DVD’s you have the freedom to pause or rewind if needed, or hear them again and again.
The 18 Lessons in the book with 6 lessons on DVD/Blu-Ray include:
- Watercolor Crayons (full lesson also on DVD)
- Artists Compose
- Artists Imagine
- Identify and Mix Colors (also on DVD)
- Artists Observe
- Artists Communicate
- Contruction Paper: Cut (also on video)
- Artists See Shapes
- Construction Paper: Fold (also on video)
- Artists See Form
- Oil Pastels: (also on video)
- Artists See Texture
- Artists See Landscapes
- Artists See Still Lifes
- Artists Draw Shapes (also on video)
- Artists See Animals
- Artists See Figures
- Artists See Portraits
The Instruction Book also contains additional chapter resources on:
- Materials List
- Teaching Simply
- Welcome To The World Of Art
- Objectives (specific learning goals for each lesson)
- Learning Shapes Templates
Video explaining K-3 Art Instruction Books With DVD and Blu-Ray and a sample lesson:
The Homeschool Review Crew had the opportunity to chose 1 of 4 of the 6 Books with DVD’s in this newest K-3 curriculum series called ARTistic Pursuits Art Instruction Books with DVD and Blu-Ray. Be sure to check the Homeschool Review Crew link a the bottom of this post to read what other families thought about these products.
Art for Children, Building a Visual Vocabulary (Volume 1)
Art of the Ancients (Volume 2)
Art of the Middle Ages (Volume 3)
Artists that Shaped the Italian Renaissance (Volume 4)
With this newest series of products, getting started learning about Art from a professional art instructor in the comfort of your home is easy. Once you have your instruction Book with DVD’s and have collected your materials, you can choose your own schedule and learn at a pace that meets your needs. Plan what day of the week you want to begin, get out your book and DVD of choice, and immediately start learning about famous works of art in history, art vocabulary, famous artists, and then imitate their techniques to create your own masterpieces.
A fine arts education is easy with curriculum from ARTistic Pursuits, Inc. because they incorporate art instruction, art appreciation, and art history together in text and video lessons for seamless learning and mastery of skills.
With ARTistic Pursuits, Inc. curriculum, students will:
- Develop observational skills.
- Develop creativity skills.
- Practice skills and techniques of famous artists.
- Participate as a budding artist creating their own one of a kind masterpieces.
ARTistic Pursuits, Inc. has lots of curriculum products available. They are well known and loved by many families in the homeschool community. On their website, you can find something for all ages Pre-K through 12th grade and even adults can learn easily with their curriculum. This newest K-3 series that contains the hardback Instruction Books with DVD lessons replaces the 2013 spiral bound K-3 curriculum editions.
Video about ARTistic Pursuits, Inc:
We chose Art for Children, Building a Visual Vocabulary Instruction Book and DVD set for the purpose of this review. It came with a hardback Instruction Book, a DVD, and Blu-Ray.
My kids ages 6, 9, and 10 work on this curriculum together. They really enjoyed this learning experience. I also had their older brothers join them for part of the learning experience too. I just love homeschooling and having the freedom to adapt learning programs to the needs of our family!
It only takes about 10 to 15 minutes to explain a lesson (or watch a video), and then your student can work on recreating the project independently. All of my kids enjoyed these lessons. On the days we all did them together, several sat on the couch and we pulled up additional chairs to use as tables, a folding table, and another sat at a workbench etc. We had a living room full of young artists!
On other days, it was just the three younger kids learning or perhaps one older brother would join in when his own school lessons were finished. For a few of the lessons, my 9 year old son or my 10 year old daughter worked on a lesson by themselves. Out of all the younger kids, it was my 10 year old daughter who loved this curriculum the most and she wanted to work on it as often as she could. She often chose to repeat a lesson several times, just enjoying the process of learning and practicing her skills.
Below are just a few of the lessons we have worked on over the course of a couple of months. We tried to maintain a plan of 1 or 2 lessons a week. We are about 1/2 way through.
I had some art supplies on hand to use when the book first arrived. The items that I didn’t have, I ordered at a discount online through ebay. ARTistic Pursuits, Inc. also sells art supply kits on their website too. You can also find most of the items at a local retail store near you if you don’t want to order items online. We used a combination of watercolor crayons, oil pastels, watercolor pencils, ebony pencils, art paper, construction paper, tape, glue, and various props to do these lessons. Also my youngest son also wanted to use his watercolor paints for one of the lessons too.
Lesson 1: Watercolor Crayons
Using watercolor crayons and watercolor pencils was a new experience for us.
Son age 9:
Son age 6:
Daughter age 10:
Lesson 5: Artists Observe
My 13 year old son wanted to observe, draw, and color a pine cone on a tree branch. He did an amazing job on the details.
He recently did a Davy Crocket unit study and a Pine Tree unit study, and he is currently taking a survival skills course that involves skills such as learning to identify resources from different kinds of trees. This opportunity to learn observation and practice techniques from ARTistic Pursuits was a perfect match for him and fun for the younger kids to see how these skills can be useful and put into practice for more than just art enjoyment. Being observant and knowing what things in nature actually look like could help you find resources that your survival might depend on someday.
Lesson 9: Construction Paper- Fold (Construction Paper Folded Animals part 1)
The kids created 3D animals from construction paper. In this lesson they learned to draw, cut, fold, and make a bear that stands up and is looking toward you.
Lesson 10: Artists See Form (Construction Paper Folded Animals part 2)
Big brother helped two younger brothers create 3D animals from construction paper.
They created the side profile of horses.
Sister made a dog and a lion from this lesson too.
Lesson 11: Oil Pastels
We learned it is hard to color and make fine details on pictures with oil pastels! They smear and smudge easily. But with perseverance, it can be done.
The task was to watch a video lesson, gather objects from around the house, then draw and color them using techniques from the video using oil pastels.
My daughter age 10 created a picture of a tea set using oil pastels.
My son age 6, started out wanting to make his picture of a sea shell, but later he changed his mind and wanted to create a picture of his toy wooden airplane.
My son age 9 wanted to make his picture of different houses.
My son age 17 wanted to create his picture of various colored beads. He loves geometric shapes and patterns.
My son age 15 wanted to create his picture of a toy tractor and include it in a farm scene.
Lesson 13: Artists See Landscapes
We enjoyed learning to make trees and landscapes in this lesson. We recently reviewed a T is for Tree Bible ABC book and learning to make trees fit in perfectly with the focus of that book too.
Materials: watercolor crayons, paper, brush, water, and paper towels. My youngest son’s picture is at the top of the photo below and he wanted to use his watercolor paints instead of his watercolor crayons. The picture below his in the same photo was done by my 10 year old daughter with her watercolor crayons.
I tried my hand with this lesson too and learned how to make landscapes and trees. I made the picture posted below with watercolor crayons, but had not gone over it yet with a water brush to smooth out and blend the colors when I took this picture of it. But I love how it turned out anyway. I have 0 art skills, but somehow, it came out despite my lack of skills.
I tried to make three different types of trees with mountains and a stream, and show the light shining on the trees from the right side and made the trees get darker further down on their left side and back side of the mountains. This was my first time to use the watercolor crayons. See I told you adults (even with no previous art experience) can learn from these books too!
Lesson 14: Artists See Still Lifes
The task here was to collect three items to use as a “still life” and draw and color with watercolor crayons. My six year old son collected three objects he wanted in his still life picture: a starfish, a clam shell, and a fish. But part way through, he changed his mind, flipped to a new blank page, and wanted to create a still life picture of his boot! His BOOT!!!
After coloring with the watercolor crayons, the technique is to take a brush and plain water and paint water over what you have colored and it blends together to look like watercolor paint. He loves these crayons!
Lesson 16: Artists See Animals
My thirteen year old son loves to create, draw, paint, color, etc. He is a budding artist. He ventured further ahead and did this lesson. He has more experience drawing and is also using the ARTistic Pursuits Middle School Book One: The Elements of Art and Composition that is all about sketching and drawing.
The younger kids have not completed this lesson yet. The task is to look at a picture of an animal of your choice (such as a horse) and draw and color it.
Lesson 18: Artists See Portraits
The task in this lesson is to use oil pastels, ruler, construction paper, tissue, and a mirror to create a self portrait. My 10 year old daughter learned to make a self portrait and then she made a portrait similar to an example of a girl in the textbook lesson.
She did very well for her first time ever! It is amazing how well these lessons communicate the ideas so that kids can understand the task and create their own masterpieces.
It is about mid June now, and we are finishing our school year, but I am sure the kids will want to finish this course and then repeat all of these lessons again and practice these new skills they have learned during the hot summer days ahead too. They have really enjoyed this curriculum.
This Instructional Book and DVD set contains 18 Professional Art Lessons at a reasonable cost, for about $2.22 per lesson. If you are like me and have multiple students using this curriculum, then the cost for each lesson is even less. For example, in our homeschool, we have six kids plus myself using this material, so that is $40 Book with DVDs / 18 Lessons = $2.22 per lesson / 7 art students = $0.32 per lesson per person for our family. That is a budget friendly deal for professional art lessons!
Art is a subject we are expected to teach and learn about in education. I have used products from ARTistic Pursuits and other companies for our homeschool Art curriculum. However, to be honest, I have been hesitant over the years to jump into “ART” curriculum for a good reason! I have learned to approach using art lessons with my kids with prayer and from a biblical worldview. I am cautious because I do not want to violate my faith in the art projects we create including the art lessons on creating a “graven” (carved) image. We trust in Father God, our Creator, and one of the 10 Commandments (rules to live by) that Father God gave his followers is:
“You are not to make for yourselves a graven (carved) image or any kind of representation of anything in heaven above, on the earth beneath or in the water below the shoreline.” Exodus 20:4
Father God himself made the image of mankind from his own image and breathed into it:
“Then Adonai, God, formed man (mankind) from the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, so that he became a living being.” Genesis 2:7
As I wrestled with this rule, I met others along the way who took it very seriously and I met others who didn’t care at all. One town I lived in previously had stone / concrete statues that were hand painted placed up and down the sidewalks on every street corner. I have also met people with statues in their homes and yards, government buildings, market places, and church buildings, where they had statues of angels, statues of dead people (heros and saints), statues of gods and goddesses, and parts of their bodies like the huge phallus that is on the grounds of many public buildings, and statues of animals, and birds too. One man I used to know gave us a huge wooden statue of an eagle he had outside along the pathway near the garden. It was hand carved and abeautiful. However, we knew after he gave it to us that it was wrong to have such a piece of “art”. Some people I have known lined their “knickknack” shelves in their homes with carved images because they enjoyed collecting them as a hobby. I’ve met people who pray to statues either at home or in religious buildings, and people who place their trust in statues to protect them too. I have also met people who have a carved image of a man crucified on a cross and hang it in their homes or next to their beds or around their neck and they believe the carved image has power to protect them. We are instructed in the scriptures not to do this. I had a roommate in college from Tiawan who prayed to pictures of dead relatives and burned incense to them believing they had power to protect her. I had friends from Japan and China who also believed this way. I had Hindu friends from India and Pakistan who had images and figurine statues of various “gods” they prayed to daily and placed red colored stickers or a dot of face paint or stuck red gem stones onto their foreheads. I had another Christian friend in college attending graduate school who had grown up in India and prayed to religious statues in church and at her private religious school. I also had an older Christian friend from the USA who sat beside the grave of her dead son and dead husband next to their gravestones and she would pray and also talk to them about current issues in her life and seek their spirit as well as pray to statues at her church where she prayed each Sunday to protect and guide her. I have been to modern museums where there are waxed sculptures of well known people and animals, and museums that have human looking robots who speak and move and tell stories. I have also met people and spent time in their homes who are on the other extreme too such as the old order Amish who wouldn’t have any statues of any kind either outside in their yard or inside their homes, or around their neck or wrist and would not even get their picture taken or have any pictures in their homes at all. I have met people from around the world who were in between these extremes too.
However, I share all of this personal information to say that we need to be careful to obey the commands Father God gave us to “love and obey Father God with all your heart”, “have no other gods”, “do not make a graven image”, “do not create idols”, etc. as well as obey the commands his son gave us to “love Father God with all our heart, and also love your neighbor as yourself” and do not cause any child to stumble by what you teach them because the kingdom of God belongs to them. The scriptures say that it would be better for a millstone to be hung around your neck and be cast into the sea than for you to cause a little one to stumble and fall away from Father God. WOW! This is serious!
“He called a child to him, stood him among them, and said, “Yes! I tell you that unless you change and become like little children, you won’t even enter the Kingdom of Heaven! So the greatest in the Kingdom is whoever makes himself as humble as this child. Whoever welcomes one such child in my name welcomes me; and whoever ensnares one of these little ones who trust me, it would be better for him to have a millstone hung around his neck and be drowned in the open sea! Woe to the world because of snares! For there must be snares, but woe to the person who sets the snare! So if your hand or foot becomes a snare for you, cut it off and throw it away! Better that you should be maimed or crippled and obtain eternal life than keep both hands or both feet and be thrown into everlasting fire!” Matthew 18:2-8
Art (as well as many other things) can easily lead us to break these commands and lead us or our children down the wrong path. I do not believe that having your picture taken or making a drawing or painting is the same as creating a graven image. I could be wrong about pictures and my Amish friends could be right. So my advice is to pray about it and trust Father God to show you the truth. For me, over the years I have come to understand the difference between an image and a graven image as two different things though they can be one and the same. I believe a graven image to mean any “carved image” made of stone, wood, or metals that represents something that is dead (no breath in it) but is in the image of something that could be alive or have lived (such as people, birds, land animals, water animals), or possessed by a demon spirit, and any idols or images you might be tempted to place your trust in (such as angels, heros, saints, sun, moon, stars, planets, gods, demigods, demons, fairies, elves, wizards, witches, gargoyles, dragons, talismans, charms, serpents, trees or plants). Father God made mankind in his image and gave us the breath of life. We choose to place our trust in him and obey him. We are set apart and He has forbidden us to make graven images.
I understand that sculptures and carved images are part of learning about art history, religions, empires, governments, fame, and fortunes, and these images are all around us in this world. However, for my family, though we can learn who made them and why they made them as part of learning about history, and we obviously observe their existence in every culture today, we believe we have been warned by Father God in the scriptures not to create these images ourselves, not to have or posses these images, and also not to place our trust in them.
We are to be “set apart” to bring Father God glory. We are to love others, but we do not follow them and their traditions. This makes us different from the rest of the world (you are in the world but not “of” the world) because we trust in Father God and obey the 10 commandments He gave us and ask his forgiveness when we have disobeyed, and we believe He sent his only begotten son who perfectly obeyed Him, to die in our place and purchase back our lives to save us from the eternal death and destruction that will come upon this world for rejecting Father God and breaking those commands. This is serious!
“did not turn from what they had made with their own hands — they did not stop worshipping demons and idols made of gold, silver, bronze, stone and wood, which cannot see or hear or walk. Nor did they turn from their murdering, their involvement with the occult and with drugs, their sexual immorality or their stealing.” Revelation 9:20-21
Creating graven images isn’t the only concern with products marketed to children. There are many things that could have spiritual consequences. I would encourage homeschool families who desire to obey Father God, to pray about the art products and curriculum they use and ask Father God to show them what He wants them to teach their children about art and any other subject.
Thankfully, ARTistic Pursuits, Inc has curriculum that meets different families needs, and is flexible, and has several art lesson options to choose from that don’t violate our faith, or we can avoid certain lessons if needed. These flexible options have helped us learn about art, art history, and practice art techniques that don’t involve carving images into graven image sculptures. We mainly chose to focus on the lessons that involve drawing, sketching, making crafts, coloring, and painting for our hands on portion of the curriculum and avoid lessons that pertain to carving sculptures. ARTistic Pursuits, Inc. has a huge variety of products from the toddler-preschool ages all the way through senior year in highschool that can help prepare students to take art courses at the college level too.
Be sure to check out ARTistic Pursuits, Inc on their social media links for all the latest news and product updates.
Homeschool Review Crew
Be sure to check out what others on the Homeschool Review Crew had to say about using ARTistic Pursuits, Inc products in their home.