Art Lessons for Children DVDs

If you'd like your children to be able to take art lessons but don't have an art co-op or an artsy friend, and if you don't have the time to sit down and lead an art lesson yourself, you might check these out. Each of these DVDs features 3-4 complete art lessons taught by art teacher Donna Hugh. Volumes 1 and 3 of the DVDs focus exclusively on watercolor, while Easy Art Projects introduces oil pastels, foil art, and printmaking. It would be most helpful to watch a lesson (or lesson portion) and then let students do their own, or have them do their own while watching the lesson again. Donna is a very warm and encouraging art teacher, and she is always reminding viewers that their art does not have to look like her example and that there is no one way to do the project. She often shows examples of students' work along with her own examples. In my sample of Easy Watercolor Techniques, I was impressed at how all of the projects are designed to let children explore the joy of using watercolors and are simple to complete. They seem to always turn out well, regardless of "talent" or age. In the first project, you begin by making freeform blotches of bright watercolor paints all over your paper, filling in with darker greens and blues. When the paint has dried, you can go over the blotches with a felt-tip pen and turn them into a bouquet of flowers! What starts out looking like random painting turns into something very special. The lesson order does not rely upon skill progression, so you can feel free to visit them in any order. The lessons are also fairly freeform, so they would work well even for a group of students at different ages, and I could see returning to them maybe once a year, so students could try them again when slightly older. Another bonus is that the materials for each project are relatively few, so you won't need to spend a lot of time gathering supplies. Required materials are listed below each DVD. - Jess

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