What’s the best age to get serious?
“I’d love to say as young as possible. I wish more art took place in primary schools, just so people see it as something that can seriously enhance [children’s] educational experience and enjoyment,” says Knight. For Yinjie, it’s important that it’s the kids deciding to take his courses, rather than their parents deciding for them.
He agrees with the younger the better, partly because drawing can give children a different way to express themselves when they are young. “Plus, studying drawing will help kids understand how to self-discipline themselves,” he adds.
What’s the experience like for the parent and child?
“Parents often say art has a calming effect on children,” says Marshall. “The process of sitting down and becoming materially and mentally absorbed by the techniques of art seems to push out all other thoughts and worries. For the duration of their art time they slow down to its slow, attentive pace.”
Where can I get the best kit?
The best brands for good pencils and paintbrushes include Blackwing, Caran D’Ache, Blockx, Daler Rowney and Winsor & Newton, while Etchr and Khadi make wonderful sketchbooks and paper for painting. A good digital camera and a computer with a good processing ability and a large memory are both useful for GCSE and A level work. Nothing beats a good Mac, says Marshall.
What do the former child prodigies say now?
“For me, the best feeling is finishing a piece so people can see what I was thinking about. I hope to start my own interior design company,” says Dagbasi.
How much does it cost?
Bonas Macfarlane charges £1,000 to £1,300 per month for art mentoring, and around £85 per hour for art tuition. A one-to-one art consultation meeting is £1,000. At Sunny Art Centre, a premium course of 60 lessons, each lasting two hours, is normally £1,800 but is currently on offer for £1,302. Termly fees for 2020/2021 at Bryanston are £13,231. A 13-inch Macbook Pro with 512GB storage is £1,499.
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