Teach Art To Others | David Miller | Skillshare
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8 Lessons (37m) View My Notes
    • 1. Intro to Teaching Art To Others

      4:31
    • 2. Pleasure of the Process

      4:55
    • 3. Rationale

      6:59
    • 4. Historical Prescedent

      4:36
    • 5. Materials

      6:34
    • 6. Class Structure

      5:39
    • 7. Evaluation

      2:24
    • 8. Project

      1:12

About This Class

I've been both a working artist and educator in the 10+ years since graduating art school, and it's a wonderfully symbiotic relationship- helping others learn about your passions makes the world brighter, your own art better, and can help a non-commercial artist survive in their field.  In Teach Art To OthersI'll teach you what tools I believe are essential for creating your own classes involving any medium of art, be it visual or audio or motion. 

We cover:

  • how to get students passionate about your subject

  • tying in historical precedent,

  • getting the right materials

  • creating a class structure

  • and evaluating student's work

Whether you are teaching art online or in person, this course covers the basics on how to design a course that meets your students' needs!

Transcripts

1. Intro to Teaching Art To Others: friends welcome Teoh this course on teaching art to others. This is a particular subject that I am super super excited to create because I am teaching art to others almost every day. I am David Miller. I'm in Phoenix, Arizona, multimedia artist. I graduated a issue in 2006 with my bachelors of fine arts and photography degree, and shortly after I did that, I realized that there isn't much of a solid career path for an artist. One of the reasons why they don't teach a lot of business and arts in colleges because everybody's path is a little bit different. However, one thing that is common with all the teachers I had a issue is they were all teachers, and one of the main reasons why they were teachers is because they were passionate about their subject matter and they wanted to pay it forward. They wanted to pass it on to the next generation. Also, it was a way for them to maintain a certain level of integrity in their art. They didn't have to do anything commercial. I didn't have to compromise it because mainly their income stream was coming from their artistic knowledge and not from meeting clients, needs doing freelance work now. Of course, I think there's a lot more to teaching art than sort of the selfish reason that we don't want to compromise the art we make, so we might as well make money off ever acknowledged. But the fact of the matter remains, you can make money off your knowledge. You can help other people who are seeking this knowledge, and you can learn a lot as an artist as a human being through the process. So my hope is if you're here to learn how to teach art to others, that your main motivation is because you yourself are seriously passionate about the subject and want to see the love of whatever medium you're working in, grow and affect other people and transform other people and allow them. Teoh love the thing that you love. As I mentioned, I have my bachelors of fine arts in photography with the bachelors degree you're able Teoh teach at the elementary and secondary school level, and you're also able to teach locally at many art centers. So I live in the Phoenix Metro. We have may start Senator Schumer Arts Center Phoenix Center for the Arts. We also have a lot of local recreation programs. Chandler Recreation, Tempe Recreation, Gilbert Recreation. Many outlets for me to teach locally all of these outlets high school, the red programs, the art centers I have taught at for some period of time. I've also been teaching online for a few years now. And of course, if you were to put together any sort of arts course online, nobody is asking you for your degree. Nobody is asking to see your credentials. It's essentially the class presentation and whatever portfolio you have online that corresponds to your course that gets you students that gets you followers. So I'm not here to tell you whether or not you should go to college. And I'm not here to tell you how to get a job in an art center. What I am here to talk to you about is how we present on our course two people in a way that will be meaningful, that will be easily understood in a way that helps them understand the larger ideas around whatever technique we are describing and a way that gets them excited about the art form and isn't just like the kind of stuff they could learn by looking up a three minute YouTube video on how to do a particular technique techniques, creative recipes. These air really easy things to get from a book to get from a YouTube video. But if you are trying to create an art course, you want people to feel they have a deeper understanding of it, that it is relatable to them. They need to know how to troubleshoot things that might come up, and they need to know what materials to buy, where to buy them. Basically, people need to know a lot more than what that three minute tutorial on YouTube is going to give him, and that's what we're going to cover in this course. 2. Pleasure of the Process: the number. One thing we should be teaching our students is what I call pleasure of the process. And this is the excitement that you, yourself a teacher, has when you are engaged in whatever particular art form you are working with. I feel like this is the number one thing we should be teaching because this is what gets people through all their other creative struggles, all the other problems they encounter when they are trying to do art. Are they having fun with it, or are they feeling mental and sometimes physical anguish? Because they're struggling? I grew up as somebody who load to draw, and as a teenager, when I felt like my drawings were not realistic enough, I felt that kind of despair, that kind of depression. Now that I am not a teenager and I'm an adult, I could not care less if my drawings were realistic. I might want my dry speak better, but the idea that they need to conform to any sort of reality is way in the past. I use cameras and I use digital arts and I use collage when I want to incorporate reality into what I do. But if I am drawn, I'm drawing for myself and drawing for fun. And the drawings were gonna look like what my hand in my brain wants my drawings toe look like. So that is a way that I I became enamored in the pleasure of the drawing process, on my own other ways that I've been able to make a particular process more pleasurable for myself. One. I draw a lot outside, and I draw a lot with my kids and my wife. So we're out in environment, were out in a park or gotta restaurants. I'll have my sketchbook with me. I'll draw there, and all of a sudden it becomes an event that is done with the family going to drawing groups, going to meet up groups, interacting with other people to make your art. This is one way that we boost the pleasure of the process. Most of people I've ever taught in person where people have regular 9 to 5 jobs, and they felt like they had to do something creative with their time or they were gonna go crazy. Their soul was not being satisfied by working 9 to 5 coming home eating dinner and watching TV in those cases. Pleasure. The process is helping somebody achieve their hobby. Helping somebody achieves something that's entertaining to them. Maybe there's some further meaning to it. Like teaching. Photography allows people to take better family photos, which allows them to have better memories and allows them to go on adventures that are based around their hobby. The way we teach the pleasure of the process is number one. If we stay up be we stay positive, even in the face of our students. Despair. So if you have a student who has a drawing, they say, this drawing socks, I am gonna throw in the trash. They want to crumple up the papers. This is when you can bust out. Artists of the past who are famous were well known who might even be really wealthy. And their drawings, by any measure of standards, suck. Someone's a musician, and they cannot play as technical of somebody like Eddie Van Halen. There are way more people who are not Eddie Van Halen than people who are at even hailing on. If you were to ask me, I cannot stand Eddie Van Halen. I cannot stand Michael Bay films thes are technically perfect. Creations that to me or missing that human element, they're missing the mistakes. They're missing the rough edges. There is no precedent for things being perfect. There is no reason for things to be perfect in art. Nobody is judging your creations. Nobody is judging your art style. Nobody is your harsher critic than yourself. So teaching pleasure. The process ultimately is learning to accept ourselves. You can help your students facilitate that by being a positive mentor and figuring what their goals are, helping them achieve those specific goals. 3. Rationale: Now let's talk about the rationale of art. This is something that, much like the pleasure. The process will help students understand why they're doing what they're doing and give them a path forward in their art. Because students generally start out without a path, they might have a path if they have a particular mentor hero that they like to emulate, that they think they can copy that path and and sort of make their own path after they've copied the mentor for a while. But the rationale is both about what we're doing in the process, why we put these lines on this paper, why we use this kind of paint instead of this kind of pain. It's also why good composition is better than bad composition. There's a lot of things that rationale covers. Essentially, it's the reason why we're doing the thing. Why am I teaching this instead of that in cartooning comics, I teach the students to thumbnail out what they want on a small piece of paper. Do it super fast. You stick figures. I teach them to draw the panel borders and leave space in between the panels, which are called gutters. I teach the students to then use a six age pencil to draw their figure working. And then they think it. They put the heavy lines down. They put the marker lines down. Many of the young students I have want to go straight to that last step. They want to draw the figure work because that is the most exciting part of drawing for them. They want to do everything with a to H pencil, a mechanical pencil, a hard pencil. They don't want to use the six H skins. They want to do everything with a to B pencil or something that has a really hard, thick line. They don't want to draw the borders of the comic. They don't want to leave space in between the borders. My job as a teacher is to establish a rational for everyone of those steps that I taught them before they put the thick lines down. So we're gonna thumbnail we want on the page right away. We're gonna stick figures. All you need to know is what the story is on that page. If you don't dry it out and you go straight to the thick inclines, you might forget an element of the story. Also, drug stick figures doesn't take a long time. It might take you one minute to lay out a whole page with stick figures. It might take you five minutes if you're really thinking about it. But most important of all is that we get a little bit of energy moving towards our goal, and we aren't going to just jump straight to the goal. But we're increasing our energy. Were increasing your commitment to what the page itself is supposed to look like. Page of comic art is supposed to tell a story. It's not supposed to be a super cool drawing. We draw the boxes out because different sized boxes represent different things. To a reader, a large box represents either a long period of time or establishing a new scene or like a climactic scene right when Superman punches doomsday and knocks him out, that needs to be a very large panel. It can't be a teeny tiny panel because the teeny tiny panels basically illustrate either small slices of time, small details or things that are a sequence like a person takes a dish out of a dishwasher and then they put it back in the cupboard in the next small panel. What a student understands the rationale of that stuff. They do it and they do it happily because they know it's helping them achieve their greater goal of the finalized drawing when I teach them that there needs to be gutters in between the panels. Ah, lot of kids don't want to do that because that means you have to draw extra lines. But guess what? If you don't draw those extra lines, something happens in Panel A. And something happens in Panel B are no longer separate actions. They merge, and it often is really, really hard to tell. What is happening on your page. You're drawing gets messed up. If you don't draw things in six h pencil and you go to erase it, it's probably not gonna erase very well. If you're using it to be or something that is really heavy, thick line and you mess up, you will not have the opportunity to erase it. All this prep work actually saves you time. In the end, I don't know how many students I've had who have come through said. I don't want to do the prep work. I want to jump right in with a Sharpie and then they make a mistake and they say, How do I fix this mistake? Well, since it's already inks, we can use white out. We can use liquid paper to correct it. They put that down, and it's like a cascading snowball of anger and fury that now the page doesn't look right. If they had done the prep work, if they'd separate the panels, drew panels out that would have solved a lot of the problems and made their life a lot easier and actually made the process of drawing a lot quicker. Now, everything I just said about drawing comics pages is something that I absolutely have to teach to the students, while I'm teaching them how you do. The comics pages need to include the rationale in my demo. It did them no good if I withheld the reasons why we do these things until they've already started putting marks on the page and already made their mistakes. Does everybody listen to me when I give them the rational? No, of course not. Do Ah lot of the students have to make their own mistakes to learn how to do it in a way that isn't problematic. Do they have to figure out on their own? Oh, yeah, That's why he said we should do it this way. Yes, A lot of students air like that, But you is a teacher, then have that opportunity to say, Remember when I talked about this? This is why. And that reinforces good art habits within the students. If you don't tell them ahead of time and they make a mistake and you say, Well, you know, you should do this this that because this you know, they actually resent you for withholding information and withholding rationales. There should always be in a rational attached to whatever you are teaching your art students. And it doesn't matter what kind of art you're doing if it's photography. And you say, if you overexpose when you're taking pictures that when you put them in the computer, there's no data there, you can't recover that detail. And if you print it out, it's not gonna put ink on the paper. You know, students who were listening to you will pick that up and not overexposed, and the ones you forget about it or don't listen. You know, that's an extra teaching opportunity, and you can remind reinforced something you've already said. 4. Historical Prescedent: Let's talk about historical precedent in art. Many of the other teachers I've encountered who teach to Children and adults in workshop settings overlook the historical precedent of whatever art form their teaching. And of course, a lot of workshops have limited time. They are just basically there to teach you a technique or to give you a little boost in your art career. But whatever I teach, I think it really is important to say there are famous artists of the past who either established this technique made good use of this technique, and this technique maybe fits into this particular art movement. This is the other things that were happening in culture at the time. So if we're talking about black and white photography and we are talking about street photography, we absolutely have to talk about Dan Arbess. We absolutely have to talk about the Great Street photographers of the 19 sixties Garry Winogrand, and it's helpful that we establish that most of those photographers were in major cities with a lot of pedestrian traffic, and they're utilizing cameras that they didn't have to hold up to their face. They were using Range finder cameras they're using medium format cameras that you look down into and you look through the ground glass and they were doing things that did not call attention to themselves the way that a modern photographer with a DSLR on the street would do. We can also talk about contemporary street photographers and the challenges they face, because nowadays having a lot more people are a lot more sensitive about getting their picture taken on the street. What are these photos for? And that's simply because everybody has a smartphone and we know there's a lot more manipulation you can do with photos. There's a lot more misuse of photography that maybe there was in the 19 sixties. Same goes for any kind of art if you're teaching illustration name. Some illustrators of the past who used this particular technique show their work. One of the greatest issues in our modern society is, I think, Ah, lot of the lower tier artists are not celebrated. They're not known by the general public in the way that even musicians and film actors that we don't like. We know who they are, and we know what they make. Many of my photography classes I go Can you guys name a photographer off the top of your head? Somebody could be somebody you know, could be somebody famous. Oftentimes I'll get Ansel Adams because he's the most famous photographer of all time. Occasionally I'll get Annie Liebowitz or an Gettys, and then some people who are little more instagram savvy my name of fashion photographer or humans of New York or something that's relatively big over there. But often they just say homey and they don't even know the guy's name. I want people to love the art that we're making. I want them to love the process. I want them to know the names of people who are associated with this art form. And I know I have gotten a lot further in my own art career because I had heroes, head photography, heroes, comic artist, heroes, filmmaker heroes, and I could always look to them and say, What did you guys do to overcome this problem that I'm currently facing another great example of historical precedent and how it might relate to what your students are learning ? Vincent Van Gogh. These are in the late 18 hundreds, and this was a time when there was a cultural exchange between Japan, which was formerly known as the Hermit Kingdom. It was a place that a lot of other countries didn't have contact with. Stuff from Japan was getting out and the world was discovering it. So Vincent Van Gogh, in a lot of his artworks, actually incorporated Japanese patterns. Japanese designs. This is something that you might not think about or know about when you are looking at a regular Vincent Van Gogh peace and have no extra information about it. But you as a teacher should no extra information. And you can say, You know, Impressionism isn't just limited to these tiny little brush strokes, and it isn't just limited to utilizing pastel colors or pastoral scenes. Impressionism incorporated other things that were happening culturally at the time. 5. Materials: At this point, I want to talk to you about art materials for the classes you are teaching. Art materials are omnipresent. You can go in any store and find something even local drugstore, your grocery store, WalMart and so on. The good art materials that people should be learning on are not in every store there in the exclusive arms stores. Yes, there are many artists who make wonderful stuff out of recycled and repurposed materials. When you are teaching people, I feel like we're devaluing them if we are limiting our materials to what's cheap and what's available. So getting materials to your students can go in a couple different ways. One. You can create a supply list for them prior to the class. If you do that, make sure you include where you get the supplies. Andi. Uh, if there's a substitution, that's OK, then put substitution is okay. If you make a supply, listen, you don't tell them where to get it. They're gonna show up, but the wrong thing usually what I do for my own classes is I have the supplies and I charge them a supply fee. In the case of some of My photographic transfer, of course, is, um I will buy a chemical will, not by a chemical. For every single student. It's a chemical that's gonna be big enough for if I have to students or if I have 25 students, I charge the same supply fee for everything. So if you're looking at it from a nuts and bolts money perspective, the supply fees air helpful when you are teaching. But they also ensure that you have the right materials for the students to learn what you want them to know when we're teaching online. I don't have supplies for you guys. Unfortunately, ah, lot of great art classes that are using something that involves a template will attach the file so that could be considered an art supply. They'll attach a demo when I teach my character animation classes. The program character animator actually has demo files already within the program, so I don't feel the need to attach those there. But I might tell somebody, you know, this is where you find the demo file to utilize in your project one of the life lessons that has been rammed home to me over and over and over again is that the kind of materials that I like to use are not the same thing that other people like to use? I have had students in a charcoal class when they touched charcoal or when they touch oil pastel, one of the other. They have a knack, jewel adverse tattle reaction to it. They do not like the touch of this material. This material will never work for them because they honestly react to it so poorly. The first time I used oil paint and I found out how long it takes to dry, that material did not work for me at all. A watercolor which is chaotic and runs all over the place really work for me because I found that I could pick up the watercolor that I didn't like. I found out how to block the watercolor, and I kind of like chaotic art. I like things that are not perfect on water colors, a lot more suitable towards that. Oil painters like the control they have for the fact this thing doesn't dry over a long period time. They like the ability to blend and get very realistic tones. So depending on what your art goals are. You'll like different materials. I can only recommend materials for the classes I teach, though. And if I'm not teaching painting classes, I'm not teaching oil painting. I'm not teaching realistic drawing. The kind materials that I recommend are actually geared towards Theis aesthetic that I like surreal pop Anwar Graphic design. Those are the four things. If you come to me as a teacher, you're probably gonna like that kind of stuff. These are things that people will come to me to learn and realism mirroring reality through street photography or completely realistic painting. They shouldn't be coming to me for that kind of lesson. And I'm not going to recommend materials that are like that. If you're in a live teaching setting, though the best way to showcase materials and let students understand the rationale for those materials is for you to allow them to utilize the ones that you use. You do a demo, you have the materials present and you don't say students. You can't touch my stuff. No. You have a set of materials that the students can pick up and test out and try out and not feel the pain of the investment or realize they have to make a drive to the store, that they have to make a credit card order amazon dot com for these materials and wait. It's instant gratification and I'll tell you, and you and I are probably no different from that. When I go to the art store and they have a pad out that you can try out the markers, I try him out and the ones I don't like I don't buy and the ones that I like that I think I can work with, I try and the ones that I do like in that I think you're gonna work for a project that I have an idea for. I'm buying those things, and I'm not gonna sit around and wait for it like the things already in my hand. I already tried it. I already got some pleasure out of it. I'm taking it home. So if you are teaching in a life scenario, I absolutely encourage you to have a set of materials that are like the classroom versions . We have a few samples of this kind of paper. We have a few samples of these kind of markers. Ah, highly encourage you to buy your own, but here's the ones that you can try out and find out if this is something worth your time with your money. I know for certain most of the adults that I've had in my classes, they have the same set of questions. Where's the materials list? Do you have one print out is absolutely on the list of questions I get asked Every class, every project has its materials list. Make sure this is printed out, something that's available to people. Don't just say, I'll email it to you. Have it ready because absolute people are gonna ask. And when you have prepared for their questions, they're happier students, believe me. 6. Class Structure: So at this point, we're gonna put it all together, and we're gonna talk about ah, structure of a class and hopefully one that would work well for whatever you intend to teach. First thing we introduced the project, we lay out the historical precedent for the project. So if there's artists of the past who were successful in whatever kind of theme or technique you're introducing, you bring them up. You do a quick slide show you do a demo, have the students out of their chairs. If you're in person, have them come close, have them stand because people are sitting at their desks and they're far away. They're not really interacting with you in the same sense that they would if they were forced to stand there and look at what you're doing. And, uh, take questions from them during this demo process. If it is a long process. For example, sculpture is something where you work with the clay or the plaster. But you also have other parts of the process that need to happen. After that, Claire plaster is fired. Perhaps you do you just one step today and you do the second step tomorrow or you already have a fired piece ready to show them that finalized part of process. But whatever demo you're doing, it can't be such a lengthy one that it eats up all the time. Students don't like having their time monopolized like that. They are there to make art themselves, not just to watch you do what you're doing. So figure out how to give a very brief dembo that incorporates the rationale of whatever it is you're doing. So there's historical precedent. There is rationale way need. Teoh have guided group work, which is let's all practice this skill together, some component of what you're doing. Maybe it's a quick warmup sketch, something that works really well when I have drawing classes are one minute gesture drawings where I pose for the students in getting warmed up, and then it is students work time, and during that work time, I would give them a maybe 5 to 10 minutes on their own before getting up and circumnavigating the room and checking on how everybody's doing because that 5 10 minutes of their own time is when they sort of pick out in their brain what they want to actually do, and you don't want to interrupt that process because that is part of them engaging in the pleasure of the process. Know how this all breaks down in a class structure. It kind of depends on what your assignment is, but I personally like to give a ratio of 50% instruction, 50% work time and in the cases of like a long term photographic projects something that's two weeks long. We'll have classes that are 100% work days. But even in those I have to check in with students at the beginning, maybe I show them something of interest that's related to what we're working on so I can show them examples from past projects. I can show them examples of how some famous artist did something. You know, if we're deep in a project, it might even be something topical or humorous. Have you find out the Internet just to make them feel like they're acknowledged because who likes to show up to the classics you paid for or that you signed up for? And then it says Work day and the teacher never talks to you. I mean, I I would feel neglected if I was a student in that class. In general, though, when I do a workshop in the workshop is a one day thing. It's gonna be maybe two hours long we're gonna have on our for. The instructor is giving direct instruction, establishing historical precedent, rationales, doing a demo on a guide of activity and one hour of the student working on the project on their own, with me occasionally popping by to see how it's going. 50 50 split. Always have a little bit of a wrap up at the end, whether it's everybody laying there, work out on a table and you circumnavigate around and see what other people did. Maybe you have a quick Q and A in the last five minutes. These are things you can do to reestablish themes that historical precedent techniques get it fixed in people's brains because in most creative practices you come up with a better idea when you're not in class, when you're not asked to have an idea on the spot, you come up with a better idea when you're walking the dog, taking a shower, driving around on the freeway, listening to your music and you think, Oh, I should have done this in the class. And then you try and recall. How did you do this technique again? How did other people do it in the past? If you reminded them at the end of your class at the end of your workshop, then that is going to be more firmly lodged in their brain than if you only talked about the beginning and then never talked about it again. 7. Evaluation: So, lastly, we need to talk about a rubric. This is how you grade somebody, how you evaluate the work if you don't have to give upgrades. Most people when they take a workshop, a class, of course, they want feedback from the instructor on how they did, if there's any way they can improve and they want an opportunity to ask questions when something wasn't addressed, that they feel like should have been addressed in the course. So my method for evaluating how somebody did is basically broken down into three components . One is how creative they were, with whatever was discussed or assigned. And generally creativity means going above and beyond. What was assigned meeting the standards of what was assigned or discussed is professionalism, so professionalism can incorporate turning the work in on time. Having it be in the right format when I taught high school is very common for people to not put their names on their work, as if I could tell who did it just based on their handwriting or their presentation. Professionalism is incredibly important in the real world. I have known a lot of super creative students who couldn't turn the working on time or in a way that was asked. And so you know, that doesn't help them get a job making any money in the real world. And then lastly, we have the technical craftsmanship side of things. If this is a photograph, is it well exposed or does it have areas of severe under exposure over exposure? If this is anatomy drawing class, are there areas where the anatomy is weak? Things like that are what I would qualify as craftsmanship. I feel like those three areas are how the wider world views are are generally if you go in a museum, they will showcase things that are both creative and well crafted and not get so much into the professionalism. But I'm telling you, if you want to make any sort of living as an artist, those professional skills are incredibly, incredibly, incredibly important. 8. Project: so thank you for sticking with this class. I hope you got a lot of value out of it. If you create any sort of lesson plan or online tutorial based on the stuff that we talked about in this class, I would love to see it. Please email me at info at prime original creative dot com or through this particular teaching site. A good project for you to do would be to assemble your own lesson plan based on whatever skill you're most passionate about, and just make it one sheet of paper. But fulfill the needs of showcasing another artist of the past who has worked in this field . Maybe some reasons why you do the things you dio in your technique and what sort of guided activity you could do with your students before you set them free on their own independent work. I'm also interested in seeing what kind of rubric you would come up with, how you would evaluate any finished work that they do. Thanks for watching. Check out the rest of my tutorials on the staging channel. Talk to you next time