I love art! My oldest son loves art! Lately he and I really struggle to connect and “agree” on those things that are good. ArtAchieve is an amazing program that has really allowed us to connect and learn together as we create amazing works of art from around the world. There are five levels offered within this program and we were given the opportunity to review the Entire Level IV. What an adventure we are having as we both create and explore the world!
One of the things I really liked about this program was their Tips for Teachers. If I am honest, I tend to be a real stickler for how things are supposed to be done. My son on the other hand is so very creative; who he sees and what I see are so often polar opposites. I get frustrated with him not following the directions; he feels controlled and stifled. It ends badly. So reading over these tips was such a blessing. Because I know that I can be kind of obsessive about things; I want to encourage him. I love seeing him inspired. Art is something I have never truly been able to enjoy because I am so tightly wound but seeing all these reminders to relax was a wonderful way for us to begin this program together. In fact, he happily reminded me of some of these tips as we were going along. 🙂
Each lesson begins with a couple “rules” however these are more to inspire than require. For example, probably my favorite one of them all says:
“There is no right or wrong way to draw. One drawing is not better than another. It’s just different — because the people who are drawing are different.”
This is truly an AMAZING program; very affordable too! You can purchase an entire level for one year; you can also purchase bundles of three lessons or for $6/per lesson you can have access for a year to the specific lessons you are interested in using. And whether you have no artistic experience at all or are advanced and need a challenge they are sure to have projects that will encourage, inspire and exercise your creative abilities.
Each lesson begins with a warm up to print as well as a print out of the drawing you are working on (my kids loved that, especially the younger ones). There is also a powerpoint presentation version of the tutorial as well as a video so you can choose which one you prefer to use. My oldest son really appreciated the videos. You can even try out a couple free lessons to get a feel for the program before you decide. 🙂
I love how detailed these lessons are. My oldest son is quite the perfectionist so it really helps him to do well in these lessons when they are not just taught how to draw the piece but also how to space it (or measure) all out as they go along. Plus this way, I can feel like we are getting some extra math in. 🙂 I also love how as he worked, there were often cross curricular links to help encourage him to learn even more.
For example, as he worked on the Hawaiian Heliconia, he also learned about the climate in Hawaii; other plants that grow in that area and how heliconias are used in everyday life in the tropics. We were surprised by some of the things this was used for too! Lessons also included learning about the color wheel and mathematics in ancient times.
My son spent quite a bit of time on the lesson, Drawing People with Degas. He really enjoys making his own comics right now so having a chance to hone in his skills when it comes to drawing people was something he was really excited about. For this lesson he actually used both the powerpoint and the video tutorials so he could take his time and also continue working on his drawings when he isn’t able to be online (he printed out a number of the slides; not sure I recommend that though).
We really enjoyed the variety of lessons within this program! So many times, art is just art, and you never really see the deeper connection to the world around you. But this program really brings it all to life. You are learning so much more than you can imagine! And what impresses me most about this? My oldest son cannot focus on anything for more than a couple minutes (multi tasking ninja?) but he can sit and complete every one of these lessons (then do them again).
So this is also a wonderfully to encourage him to focus and concentrate on a task. Best of all, he is so pleased with himself (for the most part) when he completes each piece of artwork. I cannot say enough how pleased I am with this program; teaching me how to teach (or at least respond) to him and helping him to learn how to enjoy and expand his abilities in a way that works for him. We definitely recommend these to anyone looking for a fun way to include a bit more artistic expression in your days.
Get creating with ArtAchieve: