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Monday, November 4, 2013

See The Light- Art Project DVD Review

If you've been a reader of my blog for a while, you may remember that I have reviewed See the Light before.  In that case, the DVD I was given was the same one anyone could request for free and was a sample of their Art Classes DVDs.  This time, See The Light offered us the chance to choose any of their 9 Art Projects DVD Volumes to review, so I encourage you to read on, even if you read the other review as well.

So what is See The Light?  See The Light DVDs are basically art classes taught by Master Artist Pat Knepley.  Each DVD, or volume, covers one particular topic and is divided into 4 lessons.  The Art Classes cover the fundamentals of art.  The Art Projects are "ideal for High School Fine Art credit" (although my 8 1/2 year old "tagged along" and only needed a little help-she just obviously didn't absorb a great amount of the teaching).  Since the Art Projects DVDs are what we received, that's what this review will cover.

Each Art Project DVD covers a specific artist and style:

  • Poppy Collage in the style of Georgia O'Keeffe
  • Pointillism Fruit in the style of Georges Seurat
  • Repeated Sweets in the style of Wayne Thiebaud
  • Dreams of Joseph in the style of Marc Chagall
  • Peaceful Seas in the style of Winslow Homer
  • Horsin' Around in the style of Edgar Degas
  • Sunflowers in the style of Van Gogh
  • Paper Jungle in the style of Henri Rousseau
  • Tiffany Window in the style of Louis Comfort Tiffany
The DVDs offers 120 minutes of instruction, and the project will take another 120 minutes.  If you were to do all 9 DVDs, plus their Cartooning Basics, and the Bible Stories DVDs that they offer, you would have more than enough legitimate credit hours for half a credit in Fine Arts.  If you augmented your DVDs with trips to museums and performances, researched each artist further and did a report on each, and maybe visiting with a local artist, etc. you could certainly find a way to develop a whole credit hour class in Fine Arts built around See The Light.  

We chose to review Peaceful Seas, as I felt like watercolor was one area of art that my 14 year old daughter had not explored much.  Here are a few pictures of her work in progress:

 So this was after lessons 1 and 2.  I took a picture after lesson one.  I pinky swear.  But it's gone missing.  The plastic bag in the picture above gave texture to the rock as seen in the picture below.

This was after lesson 3.  It's coming together more and more.  

 Above and below are the completed pictures.  Sadly, the girls did not use watercolor paper (did I mention my artsy girl isn't so detail oriented as to care about which paper she used?), so it's a little wrinkly.  The below picture is backlit, which I quite like.

The next ones are by my younger daughter:

8 1/2 year old's picture after lesson one.  Sorry it's sideways.  I can't seem to convince Blogger that it shouldn't be.

Here's hers after lesson 2.

And her finished work.  Not too shabby.  And certainly not markedly behind her older sibling's.  That one thing I really love about See The Light.  Kids at multiple age levels can all produce really remarkable art work.

The pros:  Pat's instruction is very easy to follow.  And she knows all about art, so I don't have to :-).  She talks the kids through each step of the process, and gives tons of background on the artist and what influenced them to created their work(s).  So it's really an in depth lesson.   I love that she weaves scripture into the lesson as well, as it pertains to the project. My 14 year old preferred to watch the whole video and then recreate the steps afterward.  My younger daughter painted with the video, although we would have to pause it.  That helped compensate for her shorter memory span.  Well, that and her sister or I helper her a bit.  But really, hers is turning out quite pretty as well. 

The cons:  None...there than the fact that I really would love to own the whole set, which just isn't do-able right now with moving, LOL.

The bottom line:  See The Light is solid art instruction.  While the students are taught how to complete one specific project, the skills they learn are applicable to all art in general. In Peaceful Seas, some of those skills involved the rule of thirds, foreground and background, color wash, loading the brush, fine details, and more.   And they are learning about the history of great artists too.  I'd definitely recommend See The Light DVDs to anyone looking for quality art instruction for their children, especially older children looking to satisfy high school credit.

Each See The Light Art Projects DVD can be purchased for $14.99, or there is a DVD of the month club that reduces the price to $12.50 each.  Or, for the best value, you can buy them as a boxed set of $99.99 for all 9 DVDs.  They are all available for purchase from See The Light.  Or you can find See the Light on Facebook.  

To see what other members of Mosaic Reviews had to say, go to the Mosaic reviews blog.

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