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How to get kids who love art and technology into digital artmaking

Got kids who love art and technology?

Here are three ways to get your kids excited about digital artmaking!

In a world where electronic devices are seemingly everywhere, including the classroom and at home, technology offers fun and innovative ways for your kids to make art! The wide range of computer platforms, apps, devices, and gadgets available today provides countless resources for artists of all ages to create amazing works.

If your kids love to draw, paint, sketch, and color, they can learn to use digital tools to create an artwork, expressing themselves beyond the limitations of traditional art mediums. In addition to being lots of fun, digital artmaking can enhance educational development for kids in many ways, including increasing their ability to acquire new skills. Below are three ways to get started on making art with your kids on your device!

How to get kids who love art and technology into digital artmaking

(1) Look at work by digital artists together. 

Explore online to see fascinating work by artists and to learn their process of making digital art. Here are two well-known artists who use different tools and platforms to create their art:

@RealCarArtist Daryl Thompson uses an iPad and an Apple Pencil to make his digital automotive paintings
@RealCarArtist Daryl Thompson uses an iPad and an Apple Pencil to make his digital automotive paintings.
  • Daryl Thompson draws his automotive digital art using Procreate on his iPad Pro with his Apple Pencil 2. For his process, Thompson first studies a photo of a car, then he draws it by freehand and colors the lines of the vehicle, one by one, until the final product is a unique work of art. Afterwards, he creates a background to complement the look and feel of the car perfectly. Because he does it digitally, Thompson can videotape his drawing, from start to finish, to share with others later. Each of his pieces takes him from 12-24 hours depending on the detail of the vehicle. View his artwork images and artmaking videos on social media where he is known as @RealCarArtist on TikTok and Instagram or visit www.realcarartist.com.
  • Hal Lasko was an artist who used Microsoft Paint, a digital pen, and his PC computer to craft his complex fine art masterpieces, many of which took him hundreds of hours to complete. Far from cutting edge, the easy interface and pixel precision of the decades-old software program that he used allowed Hal to journey down a new artistic path with a style many consider “retro cool.” As an older artist, he started creating on the computer after his eyesight began to fail, allowing him to continue making art for the rest of his life. Known as “The Pixel Painter,” his work can be found online at https://thepixelpainter.com.
You can even draw digitally using your fingers with some apps and websites
You can even draw digitally using your fingers with some apps and websites!

(2) Experiment by drawing on an online platform. 

Just get comfortable using a computer or tablet to create art. There are lots of fun websites where anyone can easily create artwork. For example, visit www.jacksonpollock.org where you can simply click and scroll with a computer mouse to mimic the trademark colorful paint splatters, drips and splashes for which the famous artist Jackson Pollock is known. No special tools or gadgets are required to draw, and the platform is easy to use and learn.

(3) Try out a few drawing apps. 

Begin by determining the type of device and operating system (PC or Mac) that will be used, what gadgets might be needed to draw like a stylus (some apps let you use your fingers!), and what will be done with the digital artwork (e.g., erase it, save it, share it, or even print it). Here are two popular easy-to-use drawing apps:

  • Procreate is a low-cost, digital illustration app for Mac users to use on an iPhone or an iPad with an Apple Pencil.
Award-winning "Toyota Dream Orchestra Car" was digitally created by 15-year-old Ava Yeh.
The award-winning “Toyota Dream Orchestra Car” was digitally created by 15-year-old Ava Yeh.

Now that your kids are inspired to create digital art, it’s time to practice and add a little imagination — and maybe win a prize. The Toyota Dream Car USA Art Contest now accepts digital drawings and paintings as artwork submissions! Fifteen-year-old Ava Yeh, a previous U.S. winner, digitally sketched and painted her “Toyota Dream Orchestra Car” on her iPad – her artwork went on to win the Grand Prize in the world competition!

Drawings by kids, ages 4-15, can be done digitally or by using traditional mediums such as colored pencils, crayons, markers, ink pens, and paint on paper. Artwork can be submitted online or by mail. To enter this free youth art contest, visit ToyotaDreamCarUSA.com.

NOTE: Written by Melissa Richardson Banks, this article was also distributed through Macaroni KID online at https://national.macaronikid.com/articles/6375449d8fcf726b9c3eb04b.