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Art Adventures in Narnia 2 CD-ROM Review by Brandie Tesreau

By Sharon Jeffus
Art Adventures in Narnia 2 CD-ROM

Art is always a subject that is quite difficult for me to include in our homeschool studies. Our elective spots usually get filled with interests such as Latin or Nutrition--subjects that are easier for me to teach. I love art, but I am much better at admiring it than actually doing it! Art Adventures in Narnia caught my eye, though, since my third grader recently began reading C.S. Lewis's Narnia classics.

Sharon Jeffus has created more than just an art book. Her goal is for students to use their imaginations and be inspired to create their own "Narnias." Children will not only be taught how to draw but how to create their very own stories. This 73-page CD-ROM is divided into two main categories: "Creating a Setting" and "Creating a Character." In "Creating a Setting," many different topics are covered such as:

•  Drawing with vertical and diagonal lines

•  Atmospheric perspective

•  Shading

•  Creating props

•  Designing maps

•  Drawing sea monsters and tall ships

•  Making a sculpture

In "Creating a Character," topics covered include:

•  Drawing dragons

•  How to draw characters in motion

•  Color wheel

•  Drawing different animals

•  Body and face proportions

•  How to draw using a grid

Some of the concepts covered in "Creating a Setting" are also mentioned again in "Creating a Character." In both categories there are plenty of illustrations, including famous paintings. Studying art in ancient history in order to create a fantastical, visual story is a point that is emphasized. Also, several websites are mentioned throughout to encourage further study.

Overall, I like the Art Adventures in Narnia 2 CD, but I wish the basic art instruction was more detailed. The CD is pretty inexpensive at just $12.00, though I would prefer to have the actual book version. It costs a few dollars more but would be more accessible to my kids. Because I love Narnia and my kids could use more art in their homeschooling, I am thinking about purchasing the first Art Adventures in Narnia book to complete the set.

I recommend Art Adventures in Narnia 2 to students who enjoy art and literature, especially fantasy. It provides great supplemental activities for children who are reading The Chronicles of Narnia or for children who like to write and create their own stories. I look forward to seeing my children's imaginations soar!

Product review by Brandi Tesreau, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC, November 2010