It shouldn't surprise you that the best way to teach art to children and beginners of any age is the most simple way. This method emphasizes painting from the soul after being taught the absolute basics of art.
I believe Painting from the Soul is the future of art given that digital art programs can now simulate images that look like human-painted masterpieces.
This fact alone turns the art world on its head and raises authentic, expressionist "hand-hewn" painting to new heights because computer art cannot do that. Furthermore digital artists are also impaired from creating from source because the computer itself is a firewall to connecting to source.
Enter a whole new future art-world where futuristic art technologies go to die.
Knowing how to teach art becomes so crucial in this hot digital climate.
So, how do I teach art in this day and age?
Here are some guidelines:
Starting with the DO's...
Every child and beginner needs to learn the absolute basics of color, drawing, perspective, light, composition, and anatomy BEFORE they purposefully deviate from the basic rules of art in order to create their own unique style of art.
Starting every art lesson with a free-expression segment in any medium, a "play" time if you will, sets the tone for spontaneity. It allows the students to get familiarized with their art materials, other students and their teacher. It is important for the teacher to build relationships of trust with their students if their students are going to be asked to pour out their heart and souls through their art when it comes to the canvas grand-finale part of this curriculum, where kids are taught how to paint from the soul.
Every student needs to be taught a healthy dose of inspiration methods, which I go into more on my You Tube channel, (still very much in its infancy, please subscribe!) It is also a great idea to begin each lesson with a creative meditation. I have one here for the younger kids, you get the idea! Just get everyone in the mood to be their most creative self.
It is paramount to nurture and encourage every student at every step lest they determine for themselves that they are not artistic. The truth is that we are all born creatives. The future of humanity depends on our ability to create. Possessing healthy, functioning imaginations is itself intrinsically connected at an early age to art. Art is one of our earliest experiences with being a sovereign creator.
How NOT to teach art...The DON'TS...
Art teachers must refrain from deciding which art is good or bad in their estimation. Any negativity expressed has long-lasting effects on the student as they are so young and impressionable.
Never have students copy anything.
All work should be original.
The reproduction of two-dimensional images serves no purpose and eliminates all other dimensions that could come into play.
Refrain from making any student's art an example. If it is lauded as a "good" example the students will usually try to mimic it to curry favor from the teacher, thus abandoning their own original way of expression.
If the work is shown as a "bad" example, the student locks up their creativity.
Every child that progresses through the art lessons should be awarded a certificate of completion and NOT a grade.
An artist receiving an "F" is unlikely to pursue their creative talents. This is harmful in the future because later the ability to apply one's imagination to any discipline is stunted because the creative process has been impaired with negativity. When a teacher dishes out low grades it lets the artist know that subconsciously going out on a limb to express oneself is embedded in the psyche as a place to stay away from.
It tells them the wetter the noodle the better the doodle! Ha ha does that even make sense? I think you get what I mean, if you stay in the gray area you are safe!
I know an aspiring artist who was crushed when she got a low grade for copying a color too light. This draconian way of teaching art is psychologically damaging and unnecessary to creativity.
When it comes to human artistry we need to be most vigilant! We could lose so much in just one generation as most technology is so revered in our lives and allows life to be so much easier. But when it comes to art the sacred act of creating will never be surpassed by artificial intelligence or advanced digital art programs. Art is art, and we must know how to teach it. It is like giving a child a map to the Holy Grail. Creative spirits are far less likely to become zombies in society.
About Jane Evershed;
Evershed taught her first art class to Zulu children in South Africa in 1982 and her most recent student in Bali Indonesia in 2019. Evershed was invited to be on the New Earth University Art Faculty in 2019. As a young mother Jane found herself with no support so she turned to her art to make a living for her and her children way back in1986. By the age of 30 she purchased their first home with the money she made from reproducing her art. Jane has been painting for forty years and is now ready to share her painting secrets, teachings and art philosophy. You can see her art here.