FAQ's

Q: Why is it important to do the relaxation exercise?ArtAchieve relaxation exercise
  • It is useful for quieting our mind, shifting out of analytical thought and into visual/spatial thought, and more, but to get the full exaplanation, please click here.

 

Q: Why should I use black magic markers for a drawing lesson?
  • Using a permanent marker does two things for the beginning artist.
  • It will teach you to draw bold lines, and to commit to those lines instead of erasing them.
  • The permanent marker doesn’t bleed when you use washable markers or other water-based media to color the drawing later.


Q: Which art lesson should I start with?

  • If you are just beginning our program, no matter what your age, we suggest you begin with Lesson I-1 Simple Lines (It’s free!).  It will introduce you to our approach to drawing, which to see the simple lines that we find in the world around us, and to use them to draw complex objects. 
  • Then try The Czech Cat, another free lesson in Level I, to see how the lessons work.  When you feel ready to advance to a more challenging level, do so.


Q: What order or sequence must I follow if I am using several art lessons?

  • Begin with Lesson I-1 Simple Lines for an introduction to our system.  If you are a beginner at drawing, proceed to Lesson I-2 The Czech Cat.  After that,
    • Look at the age levels suggested in the lesson descriptions to check grade appropriateness, and
    • Consider how much challenge you or your student are ready for.  If Level II provides a suitable challenge, stay in that level until you are ready to advance.
    • Last of all, if the level of difficulty is appropriate, choose lessons related to other subjects you are studying

 

Q: What level of art lessons should my grade level or age of student be using?

  • Learning to draw is like learning a new language.  If you have no background in drawing, begin with Level I, whether you are a 1st grader, an 8th grader, or an adult. 
  • When you are more confident, feel free to advance to a more challenging level.  Secondly, use the Lesson Descriptions to help you choose lessons appropriate to your grade.


Q: Must I use the materials that are specified in the art lesson?

  • For best results, use the materials that are specified. 
  • However, if you do not have the materials on hand and need to substitute, feel free to do so.  Of course, your finished artwork will look different from the examples shown, but if you are happy with the results, so are we!


Q: Where can I get art supplies?

  • A list of supplies can be found if you click on the SUPPLIES tab.
  • For ordinary paper and laser gloss printing paper, go to your local office supply company. 
  • For all other art supplies, we have made it convenient and economical for you to learn about art materials and order from Amazon.com.  Of course, if you prefer a local supplier for your art supplies, use the local supplier.  


Q: What music should I use for these art lessons?

  • Use quiet music that remains fairly consistent in volume and tempo is best for keeping students’ minds focused on the lesson. 
  • It is also best to use music without vocals, since language, spoken or sung, tends to distract us from the drawing process. 
  • Music that has these qualities and that has been specially composed for these lessons is available on the site.  Click on the SUPPLIES tab to find the music.


Q: How much time does it take to complete a lesson?

  • The estimated time it will take to complete a lesson can be found on the Lesson Description page for each lesson.  Lessons are divided into parts so that you can complete part of a lesson at a time.  For example, you might end at the guided drawing on one day, and in the next lesson, you could add add coloring.


Q: What if the time for a lesson is over, and a student is not finished?

  • Not all students will complete work at the same time.  If some students need more time, give them the opportunity to continue working at another time.


Q: Are there special techniques to follow when teaching an art lesson?

  • Yes, there are, but they aren’t difficult!  We’ve put together a list of tips on a separate page called “Tips for Teachers.”


Q: What can I do to prevent students from breaking down and crying over their work?

  • Here are some things you can do:
    • Some students are very concerned that their work “looks right.”  Spend time to review the “Rules for Drawing” that are found near the beginning of each lesson. 
    • Explain as you begin the lesson that everyone’s work will look different from the work on the screen and from each other. 
    • Take a tour of the classroom when the guided drawing is finished to celebrate the many ways people have drawn the subject.  Remind students that art is as much about how things could be as it about how thing are.


Q: How should I evaluate or respond to my students’ work?

  • Here are few DO’s and DON’Ts
    • DO tell them what you see in order to affirm their work. For example, say, “You are using a lot of grey,” or “You use jagged lines to decorate the fish,” or “Your picture is turning out very bright (or very dark),” or “You put your cat on a pillow.” 
    • DO NOT make negative comments about their work.  For example, do not say, “You used too much orange,” or “Your insect doesn’t look right.”
    • DO ask questions about their work. For example, ask, “Can you tell me about your picture?” or “Do you want to add anything to the picture?”
    • DO NOT ask questions that sound negative.  For example, do not ask, “What is that?”