Photo caption: Online art courses require you to set up your own studio space. Image by press 👍 and ⭐ from Pixabay
Online art courses allow art lovers to refine their art skills and to overcome any artistic blocks they might have and to do so in the comfort of their own home. However, for all of the positives that come with online painting and drawing classes, there are also elements of online study that students may not anticipate.
Studying art online (or any subject for that matter) requires discipline, perseverance and conviction. That said, the rewards are too great to overlook the benefits that students get from these classes. Often the difference between excelling in these courses or not comes down to knowing how to prepare.
We can help with that. If you’re about to start your Mastery Program (or any online art course), then here are five tips to keep in mind as you move forward. If you follow them, getting acclimated to the online class environment should be a lot easier for you, which in turn means success will come more easily for you, too.
Like any other online course, an online art course requires students to have certain types of equipment and supplies. Sometimes, new students will ask if they need to buy certain items, because they are unfamiliar with what’s being required or they have some concerns about keeping the cost for the class down.
The short answer is yes, students should purchase the supplies that the instructors require. Learning new subjects requires more than just learning the knowledge. It also requires that students learn how to use new tools and materials. If students already know how to do what the course teaches, then the online art course becomes unnecessary.
In light of that, students are asked to purchase the materials, because doing so will help them be successful in their new course. In our case, some of the techniques we teach in programs like our Mastery Program or our Master’s Series, Vol. 1 aren’t taught in other art schools and therefore the supplies on our list can be very specific and important to a student getting everything from the course.
Additionally, students in online painting and drawing classes will need some equipment that will help them support their studies.
Below, we’ve compiled a list of items that, if you have them, will help you be more successful in your online classes.
Camera: Students will want to have a camera so that they can photograph their artwork, which they’ll share on our school’s Facebook forums (and with their art coaches and mentors if they’ve signed up for those options). The camera on their phone is fine, though some students also like to have an actual camera.
Internet connection and a way to access the Internet: Given that you’ll be taking online classes, having an Internet connection is critical. You’ll also need to have a way to access the Internet, like your smartphone, a tablet, a laptop or a desktop computer.
Art supplies: At Milan Art Institute, we provide our students with a syllabus, which lists the supplies they will need to finish courses, like the Mastery Program. These supplies range from various painting media to canvases to spray paint and art papers. We also provide students with a digital copy of their textbooks.
Easel: MAI student orientation materials include instructions for making an easel. That said, if your space is limited, you can still take the Mastery Program. You may need to be creative with your home studio space, but you can work with a smaller easel and work space.
For those who have gone to traditional art schools, work space, including large easels, is often provided for you. Taking art classes online requires you to supply these tools for yourself.
Many first-time online students find that they have trouble managing their time. This is because the online setup sometimes “tricks” you into thinking that you have more time to work on your school work than you actually do.
In order to help our students better manage their time, we suggest that they put aside at least 20 hours a week for their school work (if they are in the Mastery Program, which is a college-level art program).
Greatness requires hard work and drive and a whole lot of persistence. Our programs are designed to push you to become your best artist self, which means that you’ll be uncomfortable sometimes as you learn new skills and work with new art materials.
Sometimes, it’s only your sense of discipline and persistence that gets you through. There’s a bright side to all of this, however. If you learn to be persistent now, it’ll be easier to persist in your art career as you continue to move to new heights!
It’s safe to say that life has no shortage of things to distract us: video games, texts from friends, TV, you name it. It can be doubly true for those who study online. Our homes are typically filled with distractions, including a close proximity to our rooms and a quick nap!
Setting up a dedicated studio space, if you can, does help, because you can close yourself off from some of the distractions by simply closing the door to the space you’re working in.
If you don’t have a dedicated room for your school work, you may find it helpful to partition off your workspace by putting items like bookcases between your workspace and the rest of the room. Dressing screens also work nicely for this. In other words, you can use your furniture as room dividers.
While you’re taking your online painting and drawing classes, you’ll have plenty of opportunities to interact with other online art students, which includes opportunities to share photos of your work and to get feedback.
Doing this allows you to develop friendships and to feel like you’re a part of the online community of artists. It also cuts down on the feelings of loneliness that sometimes come with online studies. Fortunately, our online students are a robust and enthusiastic group, so they make interacting online really fun!
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