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For those who may have missed the other announcements, the final picture study aid for this year’s Ambleside Online artist study rotation is done! Today I’m offering you the 2018-2019 third term artist: John William Waterhouse. This was yet another artist I knew very little about going into this picture study aid. While I wasn’t able to do as much research into him and his association with the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood (a group with which he is often associated, though ended prior to his painting career really taking off) as I would’ve liked, I still very much enjoyed writing this one as I think his art is beautiful. Regardless of what style or movement he falls into, he was overwhelmingly talented and his work deserves more in-depth study.
This picture study aid differs somewhat from others in that it is primarily about the stories behind the pieces he painted. I always try to include this type of information with each aid I make, however, this one lent itself so much more to that as all of the pieces chosen were based on stories, poetry, people, or ancient writings which allows, I think, a deeper experience of the paintings themselves.
I do not have a resources section for Waterhouse primarily because finding quality books about him was not easy. The most helpful volume that I used as my primary source was J. W. Waterhouse: The Modern Pre-Raphaelite by Peter Trippi et al. This is a beautiful book that contains synopses on the majority, if not all, of his paintings. However, I would not recommend it for students as his art often contained nudity and/or underlying adult themes.
This 31-page picture study aid includes a brief summary of Waterhouse’s childhood and artistic beginnings (from The Magazine of Art, Volume 9 ), key topics about six of his paintings, and six printable versions of the paintings (without artist names or titles) at the end. If you would like the pieces with titles and dates, you can download that file here.
This is by no means an exhaustive analysis or study of each piece, and that is intentional. I tried to keep it all very simple in the spirit of there being, “no talk about schools of painting, little about style; consideration of these matters comes in later life, the first and most important thing is to know the pictures themselves. As in a worthy book we leave the author to tell his own tale, so do we trust a picture to tell its tale through the medium the artist gave it. In the region of art as else-where we shut out the middleman.” (vol 6 pg 216)
Also, please keep in mind that I’m not even close to being a Charlotte Mason expert! And though I do have a BA in art history, I’m definitely not an expert in that area either. 🙂
For enjoying art with children in general, I also included a page of art sources that I’ve found particularly good:
Online Art Collections
For younger children, I highly recommend the Mini-Master series by Julie Merberg and Suzanne Bober. Also, the Touch The Art series by Julie Appel and Amy Guglielmo.
For both younger and older children, the Come Look With Me series by Gladys S. Blizzard is excellent.
You may download it below for personal use in your own homeschool (Ambleside Online, another Charlotte Mason curriculum, or otherwise). I will be offering a printed version of this aid eventually. If you’d like to be notified when it’s available, drop me a line. And as always, if you have any feedback or suggestions, I would love for you to fill out my feedback form!
(if you are downloading the picture study aid, you do not need to download the artwork file – they are included in the picture study aid)