Deborah Swanson - Painting - Dennis Swanson - Architectural Photography - Atascadero Art Association - Mid State Fair Fine Art Winners
 It is always exciting to see your name in print – unless you are wanted by the law I suppose.

Today both Dennis and I were recognized for artwork that we produced this past year. The Atascadero Art Association's September Newsletter graciously announced our wins at the California Mid-State Fair this past summer.

You can read their newsletter here: Atascadero Art Association Newsletter

We count it a privilege to be a part of our local art association and to be involved in our local community events as much as possible.

Deborah Swanson is a graphic designer, art teacher, and the author of Drawing on History - an interactive art history curriculum for Jr. High and High School students. Dennis Swanson is a full-time photographer dividing his time between portraiture, weddings, and architectural photography. Both Dennis and Deborah own Studio 101 West and KnoodleU in Atascadero, CA.


Art and World History - Art Curriculum for Homeschooler - Drawing on History

It is very typical that the non-art parent is struggling to teach art to their children and Drawing on History takes the struggle away, by simply explaining the history and the process. Using these art lessons it is possible to supply the art materials, hand the book to your student, and let them go. However, I must warn you that you may be tempted to join in.

I am so thankful to our distributors and the hard work they do to move my book into the hands of the customer. I just love this Drawing on History review by Janice (“not-particularly-an-art-person”) at Rainbow Resource Center and wanted to share it with you.

Rainbow Resource Center - Drawing on History - Art Lessons
“Just so you know – I’m not particularly an art person. However, I do like to understand the interrelationships between historical events and culture. This book bridges an amazing gap – historical events and art history. Designed to be a brief survey of art (from 1830 to 1970) and a parallel study with Beautiful Feet’s U.S. and World History program, it functions as an art history, an art appreciation, and an art techniques (doing art) course. Not to mention the insights it provides into the people and places covered in the history course. This not-particularly-an-art-person is totally impressed!

Each of the 16 lessons covers an art history period – romanticism through psychedelic art and tie dye – with impressionism, expressionism, modernism, and surrealism among others in between. Each lesson starts with an overview of the history and art of the time period. The succinct coverage is augmented by suggested web links/books/videos but there are also full-color reproductions (in various sizes) of period works included in the book. Sidebar information includes research questions and learning objectives rounding out the instruction. The lesson then moves into the doing art portion with clearly stated assignments, lists of needed supplies, student and author examples, and step-by-step illustrations. For instance, Lesson 5 is Art Nouveau and Symbolism (an ism I missed earlier) which is coordinated with the BF lessons on The Jungle and teaches us that Art Nouveau was an attempt to apply a new look to all of the applied arts while Symbolism was dramatically different – artists defining their art with dramatic emotions rather than story telling. Among the developments of the period; posters became a fine art medium for the first time. The activity for this lesson is designing a decorative initial in the Art Nouveau style.

Help is available for the young artist (and/or his teacher). The KnoodleU.com website (book purchaser is entitled to access) contains tutorials, resources, and tips to help with the assignments. Use of the DK book, Art, is suggested to augment the lessons and provide additional visuals (there’s some nudity in the DK book and the author addresses this question helpfully and cautiously). A very helpful timeline that includes world events, art events, art projects and the BF book list is provided.
Easily a stand-alone art class – or more by just adding the BF books as read alongs, this a perfect complement to the entire Beautiful Feet course and will provide the student with an excellently rounded-out history/humanities course.”  ~ Janice

Rainbow Resource carries ALL kinds of quality educational products in all subject areas, including Drawing on History!


Art Lessons for Teens - Atascadero - Intermediate Art

Gearing up for the school year always excites me. Ever since I was a kid I loved getting new school supplies, shoes, clothes, and a perfect metal lunch box! Now, I get to do that for my kids and I still love it. As an art teacher, I also get the privilege of planning classes and ordering supplies -- I really do think this is my favorite time of year.

Art Curriculum for homeschool - teen art lessons - atascaderoThis semester I have cut my teaching schedule way down and am only offering one class for teens. I enjoyed all my teenagers last year and hope that many of them will return for more great skill building and advanced techniques.
Charcoal art - Atascadero Art Classes - Drawing on History

Here's the class info for Fall 2013:
Intermediate Drawing
7th - 12th grade
Geared towards the artistic student who wants to improve their drawing abilities (and if we have time we might even do some painting).

Registration closes September 16th so please don't delay to save your spot.

Day: Thursdays (Starting September 26)
Time: 3:30 - 5:00
Cost: $120 + $25 material fee ($145 total)
Where: Studio 101 West, 5920 El Camino Real, Atascadero, CA
Online Registration: REGISTRATION

Instructor: Deborah Swanson

About the Instructor:
Deborah Swanson holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Otis Art Institute in Los Angeles, California, where she completed majors in Communication Design and Illustration in 1986. She and her husband currently own and operate Studio 101 West, an award winning photography and graphic design studio in Atascadero, California. Deborah has been teaching art to young and old for the past 25 years and is the author of Drawing on History, an interactive high school art curriculum. When she is not teaching, running her business, or writing, she loves to paint landscapes and still-lifes and to spend time with her husband and their two children (now young adults) in the great outdoors.


I love discovering a review on Drawing on History! Tabitha and her 15 year old son used our homeschool art curriculum and wrote a review on how it went.

You can read her review here:
The Happy Housewife - Where Martha Meets Real Life

High School Art Curriculum Review - homeschool art lessons

Thanks Tabitha! Glad you and your son enjoyed it.