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Firstlight Arts Academy

Firstlight Arts Academy

(615) 678-6745

1710 General George Patton Dr #108, Brentwood, TN 37027

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Personalized Art Lessons Just For You!

We know people who love to create art, so we wanted to make a nurturing, encouraging, fun and exciting place for artists of all ages to come learn how to make some really cool stuff!

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Firstlight Arts Academy

(615) 678-6745

1710 General George Patton Dr #108, Brentwood, TN 37027

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We want classes full of students, and the very best way to get that is if people talk about their own experiences. So I'm hoping that you will tell folks about Firstlight. Everyone knows someone who loves to draw and paint. Here's the good part. If you refer a new family, and they sign up for an art class for the year, we'll give you $100 off your tuition! And that's $100 for EACH new student you refer. There is one requirement. With our expanding student enrollements, and my diminishing mental capacities, it is up to you to bring the rererral to my attention and claim your free month. Send an email with your name and the name of the student you referred. *Ah, rules. Love 'em or hate 'em, here they are: Basically, we're giving $100 in tuition for each art student you bring in. That means that If you are already an art student family yourself, and refer a family that signs up say... 3 art students, or you refer 3 families with one student each, then you get $300 off your tuition. If you bring in one student, you get $100 off. It's pretty simple. The considerations are: 1) It's $100 per student, even if the new student takes more than one class, 2) There's no limit of discounts you can get until your tuition is completely paid for, 3) The referral student must sign up for the rest of the school year and 4) the new student can't have already contacted us about classes in any way. Offer good at least until the end of whatever year it is, and probably longer. (subject to change), Void where prohibited, but since no one knows where that is, who cares?

We want classes full of students, and the very best way to get that is if people talk about their own experiences. So I'm hoping that you will tell folks about Firstlight. Everyone knows someone who loves to draw and paint. Here's the good part. If you refer a new family, and they sign up for an art class for the year, we'll give you $100 off your tuition! And that's $100 for EACH new student you refer. There is one requirement. With our expanding student enrollements, and my diminishing mental capacities, it is up to you to bring the rererral to my attention and claim your free month. Send an email with your name and the name of the student you referred. *Ah, rules. Love 'em or hate 'em, here they are: Basically, we're giving $100 in tuition for each art student you bring in. That means that If you are already an art student family yourself, and refer a family that signs up say... 3 art students, or you refer 3 families with one student each, then you get $300 off your tuition. If you bring in one student, you get $100 off. It's pretty simple. The considerations are: 1) It's $100 per student, even if the new student takes more than one class, 2) There's no limit of discounts you can get until your tuition is completely paid for, 3) The referral student must sign up for the rest of the school year and 4) the new student can't have already contacted us about classes in any way. Offer good at least until the end of whatever year it is, and probably longer. (subject to change), Void where prohibited, but since no one knows where that is, who cares?

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We have a modest space but we really love it. There are no hallways or even a proper entrance. While it's not exactly optimal when people walk through the classrooms, it does keep us all in touch and hasn't been a problem. We have space for keeping some of the bigger pads and all of the artboards so that only the art cases are required to be toted back and forth. Parents are encouraged to hang out in our (admittedly tiny) library while kids are in class. We have free wifi. Just ask for the password. You can also sit in a class any time. We only ask that you pretend to be invisible, and that non-student siblings are not present within the classrooms while we are teaching. We have all the resources a student needs in each room. Reference, materials, tools and more. If you forget something, even all of your supplies, you can just use ours and remember to bring it next time.

We have a modest space but we really love it. There are no hallways or even a proper entrance. While it's not exactly optimal when people walk through the classrooms, it does keep us all in touch and hasn't been a problem. We have space for keeping some of the bigger pads and all of the artboards so that only the art cases are required to be toted back and forth. Parents are encouraged to hang out in our (admittedly tiny) library while kids are in class. We have free wifi. Just ask for the password. You can also sit in a class any time. We only ask that you pretend to be invisible, and that non-student siblings are not present within the classrooms while we are teaching. We have all the resources a student needs in each room. Reference, materials, tools and more. If you forget something, even all of your supplies, you can just use ours and remember to bring it next time.

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We know people who love to create art, so we wanted to make a nurturing, encouraging, fun and exciting place for artists of all ages to come learn how to make some really cool stuff!

We know people who love to create art, so we wanted to make a nurturing, encouraging, fun and exciting place for artists of all ages to come learn how to make some really cool stuff!

Details

Learning the Fundamentals of Visual Art at Firstlight Academy in Cool Springs

A common misconception that accompanies the world of art is that only certain people, born with an innate gift, can learn artistic expression. Many feel that talented artists were born with a pencil in their hand, immediately able to sketch beautiful designs with no training. While an innate skill is certainly helpful to creating artwork, passion for this artistic mode of expression combined with the proper training can transform anyone into an artist.

At Firstlight Academy , we provide a unique structure of courses for patrons who are serious about learning the fundamentals of visual art. Our Foundations Program features lessons that span a two-year cycle, so interested parties can sign up at any given point during the year. With an understanding that much of our artistic expression and ability to improve corresponds to our social environments, we group classes by both age and learning style.

A traditional art training course, the Foundations Program at Firstlight Academy meets an artist at their current level of progress, and provides the tools necessary to empower each student. Each class is highly personalized, offering individualized attention to help assess a student’s strengths and navigate artistic roadblocks.

Ordinary art classes focus on one specific style of visual expression, without teaching the fundamental techniques that allow an artist to find their own vision. With our Foundations class in Middle Tennessee , we equip artists with a broad approach to visual art, so that mastering the basics can yield a successful foray into enhanced self-expression.

It is impossible for an untrained artist to sit down and create a masterful piece of abstract work without first gaining an expert understanding of techniques. At Firstlight Academy, our Foundations lessons are threefold: we teach proper technique in a variety of mediums, insights into color theory and drawing precision, and self-expression. Often, an artist may realize that they do not enjoy working within a particular medium simply because they have not yet mastered the basic techniques that promote quality work.

Our goal is to help students reach the pinnacle of their own creative expression, through learning and incorporating a broad scope of techniques into their visual work.

For more information on the courses we offer, give us a call today.

Phone Number: 615.202.6426

Website: firstlightaa.org


Summer CAMPClasses at Firstlight Arts Academy!

At Firstlight Arts Academy we know it’s important to keep your young artist’s mind active year-round—not just when school is in session. That’s why we have a variety of summer classes and programs for you to take advantage of throughout the coming months!

Our Summer CAMPClasses are aptly named because they are part camp, and part class. They have all the fun of a typical summer camp plus the hands-on instruction and one-on-one supervision of an ideal classroom setting. Our 4/5 and 6/7 CAMPClasses have two instructors for ten to eleven children, allowing for detailed and customized guidance from the teachers. And even our CAMPClasses for older children still maintain an instructor for every twelve students. This is because we value the effective education of our children and know that it’s not good for anyone when a student is left on their own to try and complete a task while a teacher wrangles thirty others who also all have their own projects going on.

We also have a CAMPClass combo deal, where your child can attend a Summer CAMPClass in the morning, and the Summer Art Buffet in the afternoon, with an hour for games and a sack lunch in between, every day for a week! It’s a great opportunity to keep their creative sensibilities sharp and ensure they have a wonderful summer honing their creative abilities.

Reservation for these events is highly encouraged, since last year we filled up quickly! But there is usually an opportunity for last-minute registration as well, so call us today to find out about our available CAMPClasses, or visit o ur website .


How to Develop a Summer Art Program for Your Child

It’s almost time for the kids to explode from the doors of their school and into your home all day. Every day. For the entire Summer!

What can you do to keep them busy?

Well, if you have outdoorsy kids, then you will find many wonderful options for camps and play times at parks and the zoo. These kids will also be happy just running out the door for a day of play with friends. But what do you do if you have a young person in your family who is less interested in jumping and climbing, than in sitting, and simply creating artwork? These kids are looking for a different kind of fun. While sometimes they are fine if there is a stack of paper, markers, scissors and tape, there are times when they run out of ideas. They can get stuck.

“Mom! I’m bored. There’s nothing to do!”

We’re here to help. You are not alone. We have art camps and drop-in classes, as well as plenty of ideas for you to use at home too! Check out a few of our favorites.

Summer Art Project Ideas from Firstlight Arts Academy

First of all, you need a few simple materials - preferably in endless supply. I recommend finding the cheapest copy paper and buying it in bulk. Then make sure the markers have backups—at least two extra sets. The Crayola brand Super Tip marker packages are a great marker and a great value. They come in sets of twenty and fifty, and the tips are pointed but on an angle so you can also make wide lines, hence the “super” title.

Have some watercolors and for older kids, acrylic paints (acrylics do not wash out, so have old clothes and a protected work area). Some nylon brushes can be purchased inexpensively and are much better than the brushes that come with paint sets or are made from animal hair. Animal brushes are no good at all unless they are very expensive, and cheap brushes can make painting less fun than going to the dentist. Really.

TIP: We keep markers, brushes, and other art things in cleaned-out, used plastic tubs. Those large yogurt or cottage cheese plastic containers are great for it. You can also save the soup tubs from takeout restaurants. Keep some extras too, because kids can use them for water when painting.

Next, collect some clean garbage. An artist can go crazy if only they have a few simple materials. Cardboard, plastic bottles, wires, pieces of scrap wood—these are all worthy of artistic attention. Make sure you also have things to combine and attach, such as tape and glue. Keep in mind that duct tape is fun and colorful, but it will not hold anything that is paper, wood, or cardboard. For that you need sturdy packing tape. Never use regular wrapping tape for anything but paper.

If an artist is stuck, sometimes they need to solve a problem. Here is a handy list of problems you can give them to work on. Add some of your own and pull one out when you sense a lull in the flow of creative energy.

Make a time-travel device that is also beautiful to look at.

Make a treasure box out of an old cardboard box.

Puppets are always fun.

Make them from paper bags, socks, or something unusual.Get some friends together and have an art show.

Make invitations for an art show - how could it be unusual and get attention?

Have an art day for several friends. Set up some stations outside on a nice day and have projects like

- paper cutting and tape to make little sculptures

- markers for coloring with pages to color or some copy paper to draw on

- Paper towel center tubes and paints for making funny characters

- Frames and other dollar items that are paintable from the local art/craft store

You can also bring your kids to Firstlight’s Summer Art Buffet and we’ll have all kinds of activities like these for them to do. You can drop in any weekday afternoon from June 2 to the end of July, starting at 1:00PM and continuing to 3:30PM. (it’s a good idea to make a reservation the morning you plan to come. Text 615-202-6426 to make reservations and check availability for the day). Plan on having about two hours of art time, since the first thirty minutes takes time to get everyone set up.

The cost is $30 and includes individual instruction as you work, and supplies for a few of the projects. Larger projects or more of them in one day will cost a bit extra for supplies. Usually it’s around $3 to $5.

We have one room for 6, 7 and 8 year olds, and another for age 9 and up. We have teenagers and even adults sometimes. There are many levels of art projects to choose from that are good for a wide range of abilities, from marker drawing all the way up something as challenging as painting a self portrait on a stretched canvas. Larger projects can be spread out for as many days as you need to finish them.

Finally, there are our week-long camps/classes. We call them that because we only have 10 or 11 students with 2 instructors for the youngest ages. We begin with Art Garden for 4 and 5 year-olds, and Art Bugs for 6 and 7. Then we have Color Camp and Toon Camp for older kids. Check out all of the schedules and info on these at our website: firstlightart.org .


How to Solve Artist’s Block for Kids

Children don’t start out being critical of their own work. For the first part of their young lives, they think everything they make is the Mona Lisa, which is why if you have small children your refrigerator is probably covered with drawings top to bottom! But along the way, usually between the ages of 7 and a half and 8 and a half, they learn to reflect on their own work—and they don’t always like what they see. For some kids, their hand-eye coordination isn’t as developed as their artistic sensibilities, and they can’t make themselves draw what they see in a way that is satisfactory to them. This can be extremely frustrating. Even for kids who keep working at it, they can begin to question the idea that they are a “real artist” and some contemplate giving up altogether. What we’ve seen is that artists are more likely to notice this change, because they can see it more clearly. That’s why it is essential during this crucial time of development for a young artist to be encouraged and guided along the path so that they don’t get stuck. Artist’s block at this age is a big deal. But with guidance and education, children are able to be fulfilled in their creative endeavors for years to come!

If you have a child in your care who loves art, but is struggling to accept their own work, here are a few practical steps you can take to help them on their journey to enjoying art their whole lives.

1) Encouragement! This cannot be stressed enough. When a child is dissatisfied with their own artwork, it can be extremely discouraging to them. The best thing you can do is assure them that this is normal for all artists. Not one single famous artist was born painting that way. Nope, there has never been a famous artist who was a baby. Most of them practiced and kept after it until they got to where they were—doesn’t that make sense? Besides, the very fact that you can recognize that a piece of art needs a little work, means you’re an artist! Someone who’s not an artist wouldn’t be able to see that.

2) Guidance! Encouragement without practical guidance will not be helpful in the long term. Show them a few tips and tricks of the trade—“If you close one eye, you might be able to focus on what you see better”—or purchase them some nicer colored pencils or paintbrushes. Having good supplies can make all the difference and can be a great source of inspiration for new works of art.

3) Education! You don’t have to do this all on your own. At Firstlight Arts Academy, we have classes in all kinds of different creative mediums in a state of the art facility with instructors who love kids and desire to see them live up to their full artistic potential. And if you get jealous of all the progress your child is making, we have classes for adults as well! Oftentimes creative energy is waiting just below the surface to be tapped, and we love to help people access it for themselves and truly begin to think of themselves as artists in their own right.

An artist’s block can be a frustrating time for a young child, but it doesn’t have to stay that way! Foster their creative sensibilities through positive encouragement, practical guidance and hands-on education, and they are guaranteed to break through in no time.

We have personalized Art lessons just for you.


About Us

- Small classes of 12 students or less with one-on-one training in the class.

- Classes for all ages: 4 & up, teens and adults.

- Encouraging environment. Very encouraging!

- 1 hour & 45 minute classes, once a week

- 30 classes to choose from.

- Simple to understand lessons teach core concepts that all artists should know.

- Long-term training gets you to a place where you can become the artist you've dreamed of being.

"The art class is the high point of my week. Dennas is great at helping us each at our level of experience. We have lots of fun, and try all different types of projects. It is a very encouraging atmosphere"

Fall Registration is in full swing! We are filling up classes quickly, so scroll down to see our school-year program details. (Also use the ON-GOING CLASSES & OVERVIEW links).

Click here to go to our SUMMER page , with camps, drop-in classes, and workshops for all ages, from July 9 - Aug 1'


Artists love to draw & paint

That's why we began Firstlight. We know people who love to create art, so we wanted to make a nurturing, encouraging, fun and exciting place for artists of all ages to come learn how to do what they want, and make some really cool stuff.

'Registration is always on-going. Check our schedules of classes for this year and next here . You may join a class at any time if there is room - & without missing any of our lessons!

This year still has some room in classes.

- Drawing & painting (Foundations & Expressions classes)

- Cartooning (cartoon is currently full)

Seniors classes

Call for availability. Tap here to sign up for quarterly email updates .


Personalized' art instruction for kids, teens and adults.

1st year 7-year old

Here's the deal. If you're an artist, you want a private art lesson. You want a mentor. Someone who will tell you the things you want to know. Private lessons, however, are not only expensive, but also leave a lot of downtime for the teacher while the student works.

In a room with only 10 students, you can have that same one-on-one connection. There is time for personalized lessons, and time for artists to work in-between the instruction. Our teachers visit each student while they work, and get to know what they're doing. We answer the questions that lead to self expression and to greater confidence. You also get to make some friends!


Why our students love it

1. Encouragement, not criticism

2. Freedom - flexible, self-expressive classes

3. Long-term, on-going approach

4. Serious training with questions answered

'1. Foremost, we encourage artists. We do this to the point where we have actually eliminated the words, mistake, correct, right & wrong, in the classroom. Encouragement, however, is not just saying good things; it is saying good things that are absolutely true. We only speak truth when we praise, and we work with students to improve their work when they ask for help. This is encouraging to them.'

5th year teen

2. Freedom to express and choose your way of doing things is critical to enjoying art. If you don't enjoy it, then you won't continue. It's pretty simple really, but many art courses are actually designed to be discouraging. Others are focused on making a quick picture to take home. Neither approach creates confident artists.

1st year 8 yr old

3. We have always believed that art training should be big-picture oriented, long-term, and all about the artist - as opposed to all about the teaching. Most art instruction has been set up as short courses. Each class teaches one thing, like drawing or watercolor. After the class, you're on your own. Our vision, however, is to walk along side of artists and work with you; providing the real-world practical instruction that leads to awesome self-expression.

3rd year 9 yr old

4. That's why we offer small, on-going classes that are student focused, with the goal of long-term personal development. Our 3-D learning model lets students express themselves, and develop their own unique style, as they discover new ideas, learn specific techniques, and gain time-saving insights. Our classes are really fun too!

"I realized not only that she was being taught the same things I learned in art school, but that she was getting it - at only age 9."'Shea Williams

4th year Adult

6 year old & Preschool class project


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Rave Reviews

Our students and parents are our best salespeople!

Quotes from our parents:

"Thank you and she LOVES her class with Betsy."

"Art class is the highlight of his week and I'm grateful that he has the opportunity to be a part of Firstlight Art Academy."

"your art classes are amazing!"

"When I pick her up from class, she asks me if she can have art class every day after school! Ms. Betsy is so wonderful and it's great to see that she is learning new things."

"Love the class she is in. The teacher is very sweet, encouraging, and kind. I like the new Art concepts she is learning. Thank you for the opportunity you are giving my daughter."

"The art class is the high point of my week. Dennas is great at helping us each at our level of experience. We have lots of fun, and try all different types of projects. It is a very encouraging atmosphere"

"We're so glad we found you guys we've set aside the money for the next two years of art classes!"A mom - 4 weeks after her son, who has ADHD and dyslexia, began classes.

 

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