"Create" - An Arts Curriculum for Children

    The curriculum aims to teach children ages eight to fourteen about Visual Arts, Photography, and Comic Book making (Illustration). Each section contains six practical and instructional lessons; each lesson also introduces the students to famous artists whose work is relevant to the topic at hand. The curriculum takes the perspective of creativity being an attribute with roots in divine nature -- that if our world was made by a creator, and we are in the image of that creator, then we should learn to create as well.

    The overall direction for the curriculum's design and key art followed a bright and vibrant color scheme, clean and airy layouts with object lesson photos and illustrations being in limbo (to highlight the art created), plenty of hand-drawn pieces done in a simplistic fashion so as to encourage the students, and the theme of a continuing line that runs through the elements of the book to abstractly demonstrate the continual, unfolding process of creation.
  • The book opens with a series of spreads visually depicting the traditional story of creation. All of the spreads were done by hand - containing hand-illustrated components, in white, overlaying vibrant and colorful pieces of digital art that were custom creations using digital oil painting techniques.
  • The book then moves into the first of the three sections for students: Visual Arts. Shown below is the section header design, as well as the first lesson of the book (the design and layout of which all the subsequent lessons follow, but with their own custom imagery).
  • For the first lesson, this key art of papercraft flowers falling down and blending with natural flowers visualizes the nature of progression - the progression of the pieces that we create, as well as our own progression as artists as we grow in our craft.
  • Every lesson in the book concludes with a short biography on a famous artist whose work relates to the topic of the chapter. A custom pen and ink illustration was done for all of the artists featured to grab their attention and encourage them to learn about those who have come before them.
  • The section header designs for the second and third chapters: Photography, and Comic Book (illustration).
  • Interview shorts were produced for each of the three sections of the book to allow an interactive component in which kids could go online and hear artists share their stories and passions for what they do.

    Interviews by: Jeff Shinabarger
    Director/DP/Editor/Illustrator: Russell Shaw
    FX Designer: Jonathan Bostic
    Special Thanks: Gisele Nelson
  • After each section header, a spread highlighting the artists in the videos is presented to the students, with pull-out quotes from the shorts and links to watch the interviews online.
  • A simple website was also created to provide an online store for the curriculum's purchase, a way for teachers to download a custom-designed Leaders' Guide to assist in helping the students through the book, showcase the video interviews with modern artists, teach the students further about the artists presented in the book, and allow them to upload their own creations as they progress through the book (as well as look at a gallery of other students' creations).

    Website Design: Russell Shaw
    Website Development: Christopher Covington
    Copywriter: Lesley Carter
    Creative Director: Jeff Shinabarger
    Art Director, Designer: Russell Shaw
    Copywriters: Leslie Slade & Lesley Carter
    Project Manager: Gisele Nelson
    Comic Book Artist: B. Robert Bell
    AYP Project Managers: Richard Franklin & Rick Ross

    Lauren Amos
    David Plyler
    Larry Teem
    Richard Franklin
    B. Robert Bell
    Millie Turner

    Wesleyan School
    Dr. John H. Peed
    B. Robert Bell
    Betsy Canas-Garmon
    Chris Cohoon
    Jeannie Ross
    Joanna DeWolf
    Lauren Warren
    Manel Selfridge
    Mart Martin
    Michelle Clark Jenkins
    Jeff Angelo
    Rebecca Peed
    Richard Franklin
    Shane Grammer
    Shelly Franklin
    Witt Teem

    Geinene Carson
    Steve Penley
    Jeremy Cowart
    Sergio Cariello
    Unree Thompson
    Bryson & Susan Leach
    Kyle Taubken
    Andrew Thomas Lee