I’ve always loved to draw. Somewhere along the way, I decided I wasn’t good at it because I couldn’t do very realistic drawings or draw people that looked like the people I was trying to draw, so I quit. Homeschooling my children has given me a great opportunity to try different art forms and get back into art. One art program I was given the opportunity to review lately is Beyond the Stick Figure by Sally Stansfield.
The creators of Beyond the Stick Figure believes that every child is an art genius. I’m sure you’ve noticed how much young children love to create. I see this is true with my little girl. I love seeing her enthusiasm for drawing and creating. Is it any wonder? We are all made in the image and likeness of God, the ultimate Creator.
As people get older, however, they often stop making art. They look at art as a gift that they have or don’t. They go through life thinking they just aren’t artists. They want to create something beautiful, but feel defeated that they don’t have that gift. However, art is a skill that can be learned just like any other skill.
How does Beyond the Stick Figure work?
Beyond the Stick Figure is a full-year art program that is available on Teachable. When you enroll, you receive life-time access to the videos. It is self-paced so you can do the lessons whenever they fit into your schedule.
Each of the lessons builds upon the previous lessons. No previous art experience is needed. The lessons begin very simply by pointing out the different shapes used in drawing and sending you on shape scavenger hunts. Then the lessons use these shapes in creating drawings.
There are a few art supplies that are recommended to buy including a Strathmore sketch book and Prismacolor markers. I think high quality art materials can make a huge difference in your art experience. We’ve loved using the Prismacolor colored pencils and look forward to using the markers in the future, but I didn’t buy them for the projects we’ve completed so far. If I didn’t feel like I had already spent my art budget lately, I would have definitely bought the supplies. As it is, we made due with what we had.
Reasons I would Recommend the Program
- The lessons are set up to do daily. They are short so it’s easy to fit them into your day.
- The program can be used by the whole family. I’ve enjoyed sitting around the table with my four-year-old and my eleven-year-old working through these lessons, together. (There is no reason that you need to be present for the lessons, though.) My four-year-old daughter is so excited to be creating art together. She’s a little below the target age for this program, but she has been following along with the lessons. She loves to ask me if we can do art.
- The projects also have been simple enough not to discourage my eleven-year-old son, who has always struggled with fine motor skills and needs confidence in the area of art.
- Beyond the Stick Figure makes art truly open-and-go. I enjoy knowing what to teach for art and not guessing what to teach next. I’m looking forward to continuing this program with my children this coming year knowing that I have art covered.
We’ve only had the chance to review the first part of the course. There are more lessons being released that will cover watercolor, acrylic, 3D and more.
Beyond the Stick Figure is a program built by homeschool moms, just like you, who want the best for their families but know how hard it is to do it all. Learn more about the full course here. You can also see the other courses that are available here.
Or enjoy free weekly art lessons sent to your inbox with Teatime with Sally.
Hi, I’ve been looking at the Beyond the Stick Figure website, and it’s so bare-bones that I’m seeking assurance that it’s legit. Your review is pretty convincing :). I watched the intro video and the concept seems wonderful! But the site is lacking a lot of information I would expect such as how long the program has existed, portfolio examples from students, teaser videos of different projects throughout the length of the course, and even a “contact us” form or email address. (Or maybe I missed it!) When I googled for reviews, your blog popped up. I noticed all the reviews I saw are from this year, so I’m thinking maybe it’s just a really new curriculum that hasn’t had all the bugs ironed out. Could you offer any additional information such as your experience communicating with Sally and if you know whether it’s a brand new course/website? Thanks! Also, did you pay for any course you took from this site? If not, have you heard the experience of anyone who did?
The coarse is new so I would guess there isn’t much information out on it. The art course is actually being released this year so all of the lessons aren’t published yet. I contacted the author with some of the same questions you asked and here is what she said,
“There will be a lesson for each day. The whole program is for any age. Around five is about the start age but a younger child could do it. My goal is to have everyone no matter what age begin at level one. When level one is completed they move on. Older children can work more independently and put more time in or the whole family together. I know that we all have different schedules and what is comfortable for you is what will work.
There is a list on the course of how it will progress. The project lessons will be revealed in more detail as the course progresses. As this is an incremental course we are building on the previous lesson. I do not want any student to feel intimidated by seeing what we are aiming at. They will be amazed by what they produce but if they see the finished piece months or even weeks before they get to it they will not approach this the same way. I have seen this in my classes. The best way to teach is to blinker students. They focus on the task at hand not what it will become.
I am so excited that you like the course so far. If you have any more questions please do not hesitate to message me.”
If you are on Facebook, there is also a Facebook page where you can ask Sally questions and I’m sure you’ll get a prompt answer. I could mention to her that someone was looking for contact information on the website and couldn’t find it. If you are not on Facebook, I could get you her contact information.
They also post deals on their Facebook page where you can try some of the lessons for cheap or free. I just checked and found this coarse that was just posted for free: https://beyond-the-stick-figure.teachable.com/p/beyond-the-stick-figure-family-drawing-class?affcode=372542_–i7g-p3
I received a free copy of the coarse in exchange for a review, so I didn’t pay for the coarse. I don’t know of anyone who did. I understand that it is a lot of money to pay out for not more information that is provided. Maybe as time goes on they will add to their webpage.
Thank you! It is encouraging to know that you were able to contact Sally and to receive her response. Knowing that the course is indeed in its infancy also provides some explanation for the spartan website. I am eager to try the free class and hope that the full course will realistically fit into my family’s life sometime soon. Thanks again for your quick reply.