Wednesday, June 5, 2013

See the Light art class Pointillism (Fruit?)

We have enjoyed using See the Light in the past, and I was very pleased that we were able to review another Art Project. This time it was 4 lessons on Pointillism (Fruit) in the style of George Seurat. Each lesson runs between 20-30 minutes or so, and additional time is required in order to do the actual painting, so each lesson ideally will last about an hour.

I decided that we would ALL complete a project, and it was very interesting to see what happened.

My 5 year old decided to paint some wooden fruit.

The classes are very thorough and step-by-step, so that as you can see above, my 5 year old was able to come up with a very nice piece of art, even when following along with a class intended for 10+. He didn't get into the shading, highlighting and shadows that were in the later lessons, but I was very pleased with the outcome. 

My 12 year old started out thinking he would paint some sports balls, 
but ended up going ahead with the fruit instructions.
He began to be very impatient with his drawing ability, but as you can see, by the time he was finished, his fortitude bore fruit... (Pardon the pun...8^D ).

My 15 year old wanted to try out a floral painting, 
so she pulled together some flowers from a couple of photographs.
Not precisely following directions, 
But hey, she's 15, and she's old enough to experiment on her own...
more on that a little further on. :) 
  • First lesson~ Color Theory and Initial Drawing
  • Second lesson~ Lay Down Base Color with Dots
  • Third lesson~ Optical Color Mixing with More Dots
  • Fourth lesson~ Highlights and Shadows for Finished Still Life 

(she got the highlights, but there were no shadows in those photos~ she also used a deep purple tulip from our yard, in place of the white one in the photo)

I opted to follow suit and do a floral as well, rebel that I am... 
(and because my 12 year old didn't want me to do a fruit still life to compare with his ;)).
I didn't do the fun "play with the flowers in the app" bit that my eldest did, I was just experimenting some on my own as well. :) 

We all appreciated hearing about Georges Seraut, and the science of color and light that he studied as he played with tiny points of paint. I was less excited with the concept of using only the 6 primary and secondary colors, as I was totally unable to even slightly represent that vivid magenta color in the primroses~ I'm guessing that occasionally the Impressionists mixed a few pigments to help them approximate some of God's amazing coloring... ;)

The photo to the left is evidence that once again the 15 year old didn't strictly follow directions, and opted to use a palette, rather than waxy paper plates (that was more a function of economics~ we had the palette in house, but no paper plates...), but... isn't it pretty? And a bit of an accidental study in complimentary colors, too!

The whole art history (and science) lesson was very intriguing, and eldest and I  both learned a bit more about the color wheel than we knew before. We are both interested in experimenting and finding out more about how colors work next to one another.

Eldest decided to take on a landscape from one of our vacation photos~ 
rather fun~ still a work in progress ~ 

As a parent, I love that the class is taught *for* me~ and I enjoyed painting along with the kids. I also love that Scripture is woven throughout the lessons, because God is the ultimate artist, and His character is shown in so many ways. 

As a teacher, I appreciate that things are set up the way they are for a purpose. Because I had children who didn't want to follow the lesson to a "T" we had a little bit more frustration. In hindsight, I can clearly see that there is a reason that this lesson is painting fruit~ generally apples, oranges, pears, and bananas are fairly uniform in color, which makes for a simpler first try with pointillism, rather than attempting to figure out more complex colors and shading (even though a fruit, the mango was a bit tricky~ note that it wasn't one of those suggested!). 

As Students, my children generally enjoyed Pat Knepley's lessons, but the older ones certainly didn't always like to follow the directions, even when they were to their benefit. However, as can be clearly seen by my daughter's continuing interest, the lessons ARE engaging and instructive. 

This is also a great exercise in focus and patience ~ particularly if your child is more of a Jackson Pollock type of artist. 

Side note~ the supply list notes 50 cotton swabs~ you might require more than that if you have more than a couple of people doing the project... so plan that trip to the drugstore accordingly! 

Not So Nutty Nitty Gritty 
An ideal set-up would allow for 1/week, which means that taken with the other See the Light Art Projects, you could have a year+ worth of art lessons, right from the comfort of your own home. Please click the banner below to visit the TOS Review Crew to see the experiences of the rest of the Crew as they explored this art project as well as many others!  As always, I hope that this review was useful to you as you choose where best to spend your homeschool budget.



  1. I love how creative your children were with this project! We tossed around the ideas of doing something else but stuck with the fruit. We were going through seeing how other's pointillism projects turned out. I think a few of mine might expand on this now that they saw the flowers and landscape. Nice job!

    Amy from Mason Moments :)

  2. Thanks for popping by, Amy! We checked out a bunch of the pointillism posts that were posted before ours~ so missed yours~
    Loved your step-by-step photos! :)


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