ARTistic Pursuits Beginner Level, Art Core 1 Review

I received this complimentary product through the Homeschool Review Crew.

I am not qualified to teach my kids art. I still have my HS "masterpiece" hiding in my closet. It's a bug-human-mountain hybrid oil painting that scares my kids. So, how does one who wants their kids to learn art go about getting that instruction for them? We tried out the ARTistic Pursuits Beginner Level, Art Core I course this past month, and I think we found our solution. This is not the first time we have tried things from ARTistic Pursuits, so I should not have been surprised at the quality.

Here's more on what we loved about this offering in our review below. 

What is the ARTistic Pursuits Beginner Level, Art Core I?

This program is a graphite pencil course. It teaches kids in grades 4th grade to adult what they need to know about pencil hardness, sketching, technique, shading, and so much more. The course is offered through 3 learning modes: The textbook, the online video course, and the DVDs included in the textbook. For this review, I had my 7th and 9th-grade sons sit and learn with the online videos, and I left the book nearby for them to reference for the other lessons. (Not all of the lessons are on video, so you'll need the book, too.)

What does the course cover?

The videos cover 36 lessons, including an introduction and some background on art and why it matters. The first few courses are actually "get to know me" classes that help the kids warm up to their video instructor Brenda Ellis and then goes right into drawing from observation and why it is important. The kids get a chance to pick objects from around the house and begin drawing right away. Nine of the drawing lessons are done via video, and the rest are exercises that can be done with help from the book instruction.

The teacher also includes several "helps" along the way, such as how to keep from drawing too small, something both of my boys struggle with.

How did we use the course?

Since we usually do art only one day a week, we normally would do this just on Fridays. Since we wanted to get a full idea of the course, we did one video lesson and two text lessons a week. With this schedule, you could get through in just around 12 weeks, but they are marketed as 18-week courses. This would make a really fun semester course, or something to do over the summer!

We used this course as a completely independent study unit for my two boys. I really wasn't involved in any way, aside from reminding them it was art day and making sure they had the supplies they needed. My boys really did look forward to their art time, and it was something they enjoyed doing together. I heard more than a few giggles and laughs from the boys as they "critiqued" each other's work. 

They actually had a good time looking at what they ended up with and seeing what they could do better. It was all in good fun, and they really learned quite a bit about art principles. (Better yet, I felt it brought my boys closer together.)

What will you need?

Since I have several artists in the home, we had everything on hand for taking this course, including the recommended pencils and sketch pad. You will need pencils of varying hardness, a sketch or drawing pad, and an eraser. The rest of the things you will find around your house. We used everything from toys to tools to collectible to complete the lessons. If you use online videos, you'll need a high-speed internet connection, as well.

ARTistic Pursuits Beginner Level, Art Core I Review Summary

Art is sadly an overlooked subject in schools, but homeschool parents don't have to let it slide. This is a truly plug-and-play art solution that only requires you to have a few basic and affordable art supplies, along with a willingness to learn. The teacher is patient, pleasant, and encouraging. Even kids who are a bit shy or reluctant to give art a try will find the confidence to move forward with their art skills. And while I love that this course can be an independent study that parents don't need to monitor, it's designed for adults to use, too. Who knows? Maybe it will become a family activity in your home. 

Learn more:

You can get the details about this course, as well as all the course offerings from ARTistic Pursuits at their website or social channels below:

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