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Our Family

Wednesday, October 23, 2019

Homeschool Crew Review: Creating a Masterpiece

We were first introduced to Creating a Masterpiece back in 2017 when we were given an opportunity to review their Monthly Plan.  I have never been so impressed with the results of an art program as I was with Creating a Masterpiece.  We created absolutely beautiful artwork and learned so many new techniques.  I was excited to see them on our vendor list again this fall and this time we were able to review their online Drawing Program.

Creating a Masterpiece is an online art program for ages 4 and up taught by master artist Sharon Hofer through streamed video lessons.  This fine arts program was designed to help students create art step by step that will make them proud of their work and feel like a real artist.  They have several different products you can choose from: Drawing Program (which this review will focus on), Core Program( 24 different media with 59 projects in 6 different levels), Unlimited Access(gives access to every video on the website), Art History Program( 3 specialized levels of projects with 16 different projects using 11 unique media), and Books (two series of books are being developed Step by Step: Fine Art for Kids and Exploring the Art of Yesterday..to Create Art Today.)

You can subscribe to the Drawing Program monthly ($19.99) or annually ($199.00.)  Subscription to the program gives you access to all of the levels.  Each of the levels uses pencil, charcoal, and colored pencil.  Levels are not determined by age, but by skill level. Length of time to complete the project will vary depending on the project.

Beginning Drawing: For beginning students or those that need confidence in their drawing abilities.  This level contains 8 projects: Giraffe in Cartoon, Simplicity, Polar Exploration, Hoot Owl, Field of Daisies, Angling for Trout, Moonstruck, Baby Elephant.

Drawing Level 1 :for those who want to grow their drawing skills.  There are 6 projects in this level: Arctic Seal, First Thanksgiving, Ornery Ostrich, Alaskan Wilderness, Penguin Family, Tuckered Out Turtle.

Drawing Level 2 :Designed to grow students who love to draw and continue to advance their skills.  There are 7 projects in this level: Drawing the Egg, The Lion Cub, Dawdling Duck, Polar Bear, Orbiting Saturn, Antique Lantern, and The General's Horse.

Drawing Level 3 : Level 3 will advance your skills to an intermediate level.  This level contains 8 projects: Cunning Wolf, Snowed In, The Rose, Dreaming of Africa, The White Rhinoceros, Prairie Buffalo, Tabby Cat, Rocketing Through Space.

Projects do not need to be completed in any special order.  You can pick and choose which projects you would like to complete.  Once you log in and choose your project you are taken to a screen which gives a project description, links to view supply list or purchase supplies, and a link to click on to go to the lesson.

Clicking on the lesson link will take you to the page that contains the video lessons.  Each project is broken down into several smaller videos.  The videos will give you a good stopping point if you would like to split the project into separate sittings. The Hoot Owl has six separate videos.

This page also has the project supply list, special tips, project images, lesson highlights, and can also show finished works from some of Sharon's students.

Last time we used Creating a Masterpiece, it was during a time of the year where life was not so busy for me and I had an opportunity to sit down and do the lessons with them.  I loved it just as much as the children did.  This time, it has been a very. very busy time for me.  I did not have time to sit down and do the lessons or even think about planning art projects for the children.  I was so glad to have this review opportunity.  The children could sit down and do the projects all on their own. I even could leave an art project for an assignment for them to complete when I had to be out of the house.

 We started with the Beginning Drawing level.  My 10 and 12 year olds mostly used this program but my 8 year old wanted to complete some of the projects and my 14 year old also did a few of the projects.  We wanted to complete at least one project from the three different media used: pencil, charcoal, and colored pencil, but other then that did not go in any particular order when choosing projects.  I just let them choose what they wanted to draw.  Each of the projects they did they finished in one sitting in about an hour.

Here are some examples of their artwork.

In Pencil they did:

Giraffe in Cartoon

Hoot Owl
In Charcoal Lily and Christian did Field Of Daisies

In Colored Pencil Lily and Christian did Moonstruck

One of the things we love about Creating a Masterpiece is the easy to follow step by step instructions.  You can easily pause the video if you need to or back up and watch it again.  Sharon is very encouraging and helps the students strive to do their best work and make their work their own.  I love the variety of lessons and the inclusion of the different skill levels so that as your confidence and experience grows you can move on to a higher level.  Creating a Masterpiece makes it easy for you to purchase your supplies.  You can click on the purchase supplies list for the project and it takes you to an online retailer and adds everything to the cart for you.  They strongly urge you to buy quality supplies as the quality of the supplies will affect the outcome of the artwork.  I already knew this and was reminded of it when the paper we needed for the charcoal project was out of stock and we do not have any art supply stores nearby.  They wanted to do the project anyway and used regular white drawing paper, but it was difficult to erase and did affect the final product and they reminded me to order the correct paper for them. The children were excited to learn new techniques and to be able to not just work with pencil but also colored pencils and charcoal.

We love Creating a Masterpiece and will continue to work on our drawing skills.  I would also love to purchase some of her books in the future. To see what my Crew Mates had to say, stop by the Crew Blog!

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