Below is a couple of options if your student/child as a special interest and talent in the visual arts.
Give them a sketchbook!
You may already have drawing materials coming out of your ears, but a special book to record the work of your child will give them a consistent work area, as well as giving him/her (and you!) a chance to see how much he has grown. It can be a lot of fun to compare the first 5 drawings with the last 5!
Drawing is the foundation of art. Even in technical fields (such as graphic design or architecture), drawing is an irreplaceable skill that most art directors and contractors are looking for.
Explore different Media
Media (or medium) is the artist tool—such as paint, pencils, pastels, ect. There are often kits with different options at your local craft store. If you notice that your child has not explored one, encourage them to give it a try!
Take a Class
Many community centers offer art classes for a variety of age groups. These are great opportunities for your student to learn from a different teacher with a variety of media. The class sizes are also much smaller, and each student has a passion for the arts and wants to be there—the perfect environment for learning!
Please note: The links below are different examples that can be found in most communities (I researched the Southfield area). I am relatively new to the area and have not had any personal experience at any of the following locations.
- City of Southfield (under Parks & Recreation)
- Birmingham Bloomfield Art Center (I believe membership is required)
- RoseArt School of Creativity
- Cranbrook Art (high school level, but something to keep in mind for the future)
- “Drawing Textbook” (purchase here) by Bruce NcIntyre. This is the book that taught me how to draw! It’s not very fun at first, so you will need to encourage/force your student to press on—but this helped me more than anything else through early drawing.
- “Drawing with Children” by Mona Brookes. She includes a lot of her teaching philosophy, which is not necessariarly important at this time, but some of the exercises are good and she introduces the idea of using your mistakes, rather than starting over or giving up.
- “Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain” by Betty Edwards. Really, really great book. The SCS high school teacher and I both work out of this book as we strive to create a consistent program. Much of this book will be too advanced for my students, but again, great exercises, and just a good one to have on hand as they grow in their abilities.