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Art Basics for Children / Master Drawing / Drawing, Painting and Sculpting Horses Review by Lisa Barthuly

By Rich and Sharon Jeffus
Art Basics for Children / Master Drawing / Drawing, Painting and Sculpting Horses

Sculpting Horses

Art Basics for Children ($9.95) is a WINNER! This book shows even the youngest (or oldest!) member of the family how to draw just about anything. The Jeffus' explain, in detail, the different mediums used in producing a work of art and how these can work to the artist's advantage. Children work with pencil, oil pastels, tempura paints, watercolor, chalk pastels--even clay. They start with basic shapes and lines, then show us how to use them in drawing. A color wheel is included in this book and explains primary, secondary and complementary colors -- they even offer many recipes for creating your own clays with which it sculpt. They truly cover the basics (hence the name, Art Basics for Children) before ever introducing a lesson! This book is a soft-cover binder style manual done in black and white that includes 26 lessons (and much more!). Tutorials are then based on the alphabet - A for apple, for example - and give out just enough information to get you into the lesson allowing the child's creativity to take over. The following lesson gets a bit more detailed, and so on, as you make your way through the alphabet. These aren't kiddie-coloring books or connect the dots and color it in exercises. This is a true art program for beginning students of all ages. I think that what I truly enjoyed most is the doors these lessons open for those teachable moments.

Master Drawing ($14.95) builds on the basic concepts taught in Art Basics for Children, but goes into great detail, so this is definitely for the older student. This almost 100-page, soft-cover binder style book is AMAZING! The lessons give the artist a great base of information, while encouraging creativity and one's own ideas. Techniques taught are Shading, Creativity, Grids, Perspective, Still Life, Faces, Animals--and SO MUCH MORE! There are 10 lessons in all, and these are not just art lessons--they open the door for many discussions and further learning in creation, history, math, nature, architecture and how God's hand is present everywhere and in everything! Lessons have them working in many mediums, with art by Van Gogh, Michelangelo--even creating their own cartoons and caricatures. I love the use of Scripture throughout this book and the encouragement given to embrace individuality.

Drawing, Painting and Sculpting Horses ($17.95) is a BEAUTIFUL book! If you have a horse lover in the family, this book is for them. It can be used with all ages (My five- year-old got a hold of it and has been making “sculptures” of horses with play-doh!). This is a soft-bound book, which includes 85 pages of great horse-art activities - everything from drawing a horse with pencil and painting in watercolor to sculpting - even creating your own comic strip. It could very well be a unit study all of its own. Lessons may be simplified for the younger set, but go into fine detail for the most advanced student. Included are beautiful works by Remington and Russell, bronze sculptures, and a rich history of the horse. This will be used in our family for many years to come. Once again, the Jeffus' have created a wonderful art book with great detail, yet have an amazing way of leading the student to use their God-given talents and imaginations to create their own unique masterpieces!

-- Product Review by: Lisa Barthuly, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine