4 online art resources to get your creativity flowing
As lockdown enters its fourth month, to say that we’ve got itchy feet is an understatement. But while restrictions are slowly beginning to ease, there’s still plenty going on online to keep us creative at home.
Whether you’re a novice who hasn’t picked up a paintbrush since school, or you’re raring to unleash your inner Van Gogh, there are loads of digital art resources to help you to improve your artistic skills, share ideas and connect with the art world, and give you an all-round creative boost in isolation.
Here’s our pick of the best.
Now there are many free collage packs on offer at the moment, but acclaimed illustrator Victoria Topping’s is one of our favourites. If you’ve seen Topping’s work before – vibrant, eye-catching, full of soul – then you’ll share the same excitement as us to join her collage club and get back to primary school art level basics – cutting and sticking! Soon after the lockdown began, Topping put together a free downloadable pack consisting of the striking, graphic motifs used within her own work. Fun for all ages and skillsets, simply print out the collage pack to create your very own ‘jazzy synthesiser’ or ‘portrait of joy’ artwork. There’s also a digital version available to use with Procreate or any similar app on a tablet. Topping has been sharing collages on her website and Instagram, so remember to tag her for your masterpiece to be seen.
If you fancy yourself a dab hand with a camera, how about taking a masterclass with celebrated photographer Annie Leibovitz. She was the first female chief photographer at Rolling Stone, as well the last person ever to take a portrait of John Lennon, and is renowned for her iconic portraits, photographing everyone from Mick Jagger and Meryl Streep to the Queen herself. Plus, who can forget Caitlyn Jenner’s Vanity Fair cover? Hosted by online education platform MasterClass, Leibovitz teaches students how to work with your subject, shooting with natural light and mastering the camera. MasterClass is also home to sessions from the likes of Diane Von Furstenberg (how to build a brand), Frank Gehry (design & architecture), Samuel L. Jackson (acting) and many other recognisable figures.
Access all classes for £14.17 a month.
“We don’t make mistakes. We just have happy accidents.” With his warm, comical guidance and soothing voice, transform your blank canvas into a beautiful landscape painting with the help of the big-haired internet sensation, Bob Ross. Though his instructional art programme ‘The Joy of Painting’ originally aired and rose to fame in the 80’s, it has since had a resurgence, and in our opinion is one of the most therapeutic and joyful ways to learn to paint.
Watch The Joy of Painting on YouTube or BBC iPlayer, and take your first lesson here:
For those looking to brush up on art history, check out London Art Studies. Dubbed as the “modern way to learn about art”, London Art Studies is an award-winning online arts education platform offering short, easy to dip into, video introductions to some of the world’s greatest artworks. Learn about artists including Rembrandt, Richter, Cindy Sherman and Yoko Ono, presented by world-renowned lecturers from the Tate, the National Gallery and The Royal Academy among others. Access London Art Studies for £8.99 a month or grab an annual subscription for £88.
If you missed the Channel 4 lockdown series Grayson’s Art Club, fear not for the entire show is still available on 4OD. Join eclectic Perry, one of Britain’s leading contemporary artists, as he brings the nation together through art, focusing on a different theme each episode – we loved fantasy week. Make some art and take inspiration from featured artists such as Anthony Gormley, with famous faces there to keep us company including Joe Lycett, Harry Hill and Noel Fielding.