Art School is in Session

Art School is in Session

Olivia has always been interested in art. Since she was a toddler, she walked around with fists full of broken crayons, ready to pounce on any sheet of paper lying around. To this day, she is always within arm’s reach of something that allows her to be creative when the moment strikes.

Olivia & her dog
Olivia with her drawing partner, Madeline
Nature drawing
No better time to draw then when on a rock
Drawing is dangerous
Safety first. Ironic since it looks like Miles is about to chow down on a marker cap

She finds solace in drawing and can be found daily at the kitchen table doodling of some sort. As a parent, it’s wonderful to see that she has an outlet when she needs it. It’s also been wonderful to see how her art has matured through the years. Some of it is so precious that it has to be shared so she has her own Instagram account, obeardraws, where she selects the pieces she wants to share with others. My favorite pieces are the ones that involve wine. These will surely come back to haunt us one day.

We often draw together and I’ve noticed that she has started taking interest in how-to books–often taking my beloved Ed Emberley books from the shelf and trying her hand at the lessons inside. I’ve been looking for classes and other tools that we can take together, as a way to share in a hobby that we both enjoy, and in my search, discovered Creativebug.

Creativebug is an online creative destination that offers arts and crafts workshops via online videos, all of which are taught by seasoned professionals in their designated fields. For a nominal monthly fee, you can take as many classes as you want and have the freedom to take them whenever and from wherever is convenient for you.

Drawing 7

I discovered a basic line drawing class that is taught by one of my favorite present day artists, Lisa Congdon, and after reviewing the materials and the class description, thought it would be a perfect introduction course for Olivia to attempt.

Of course, a true artist needs real artist tools so we visited our local art supply store, Way Up Art & Frame and stocked up on Micron pens and fresh tablets of paper. Naturally, Olivia had to have the pink and purple jelly pens that were displayed on the checkout counter.

Once home, we set up shop at the kitchen table and embarked on our first drawing lesson. This particular line drawing class is a part of a series of classes so we agreed just to attempt the first class that day.

The class itself is super approachable, very easy to follow along and certainly kept us engaged. We often paused the video so Olivia had a chance to catch up but never did she feel like the class was beyond her ability. The class focused on drawing flowers which fortunately for us, is a topic Olivia is very interested in.

Olivia learning line drawing

Drawing Leaves
Drawing leaves
Learning different ways to draw the same flower
Learning the many ways to draw a Tulip

We learned about composition and negative space which are terms Liv uses frequently now and we learned how to approach art in a not so intimidating way–by just breaking down our subjects into simple shapes and lines. We drew various flowers of varying sizes and shapes and discussed how we can make our drawings more interesting by adding subtle and simple details.

Adding details
Adding details
Drawing succulents
Drawing succulents


Overall, I was very pleased with the overall experience: Lisa was an excellent teacher and provided a lesson that I felt was extremely easy to follow and incredibly inspiring. I wasn’t sure how Liv was going to respond to a video tutorial so I was pleasantly surprised to see her engaged and producing pretty awesome art. Of course, I am somewhat biased. Upon finishing the class, Olivia asked if we could go on a walk so she could find more items to practice her newfound skills with. Clearly, she was a happy customer.

Satisfied student

I look forward to continuing with the other classes in the series and have even started poking around in the other categories to see what else we can attempt over the course of the summer. If you or someone you know is interested in these types of classes, I highly recommend checking Creativebug out.

A few of the finished pieces:

Multi-petal flower

Have you taken an online design class? If so, which ones and what were your thoughts on the classes?

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