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Introduction to Acrylics for Young Artists: Unleashing Creativity in Goleta and Santa Barbara

Leopard Acrylic Art Club Painting Lisa Chadwick

In the vibrant communities of Goleta and Santa Barbara, where creativity blooms like the abundant local flora, introducing young minds to the world of art is a journey filled with discovery and joy. Among the myriad artistic mediums available, acrylic painting stands out as a versatile and forgiving option for budding artists. Here’s why acrylics are a fantastic choice for young creators and how parents can support their children's artistic adventures in Santa Barbara and Goleta.

What Makes Acrylics Ideal for Young Artists?

1. Versatility: Acrylic paints can mimic the qualities of both watercolors and oils, making them perfect for experimenting with various styles and techniques. This flexibility allows young artists in Santa Barbara and Goleta to explore their creativity without limits.

2. Quick Drying: Unlike oils, acrylics dry quickly, which is ideal for the fast-paced excitement young artists often bring to their work. This feature also makes it easier to layer colors without lengthy waiting times.

3. Easy Cleanup: Acrylics are water-soluble, meaning they can be easily washed off brushes and out of clothes with water, a feature that parents in Santa Barbara and Goleta will undoubtedly appreciate.

4. Bright and Lasting Colors: Acrylic paints are known for their vibrant colors that stay bright and resist fading over time. This ensures that the masterpieces created by our young artists will remain as vivid as the day they were painted.

Getting Started with Acrylics

Choosing the Right Supplies: Start with a basic set of acrylic paints, a variety of brush sizes, and canvas or acrylic paper. Local art stores in Santa Barbara and Goleta offer great options for beginners. I would suggest starting with: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, purple, brown, black and white. For brushes a few sizes of rounds, square, and chisel are perfect for versatile use.

Creating a Dedicated Space: Set up a space where your young artist can paint freely. Cover surfaces to protect them from spills and splatters, and ensure there’s plenty of light. plus wall space to display masterpieces.

Experimenting with Techniques: Encourage your child to try different brush strokes, blending techniques, and color mixing. Acrylics are forgiving, making them ideal for experimentation.

Incorporating Art Education: Consider enrolling your child in an art class designed for young artists. Santa Barbara and Goleta boast a variety of programs that offer expert guidance and introduce children to the fundamentals of acrylic painting, along with other artistic mediums. Artistic Horizons' acrylic painting courses are taught by a professional oil painter and Goleta Union School District Art teacher, Lisa Chadwick. Find her work at

Nurturing Artistic Growth

Encouragement and Praise: Celebrate your child’s artistic efforts and encourage them to keep experimenting. Positive reinforcement boosts confidence and creativity.

Showcasing Their Art: Display their artwork at home or consider submitting it to local art shows for children in Santa Barbara and Goleta. This not only validates their hard work but also connects them with the local art community.

Exploring Art Together: Visit museums, galleries, and art fairs in Santa Barbara and Goleta. Seeing professional artwork can inspire young artists and spark new ideas for their creations.


Introducing your child to acrylic painting opens up a world of color, expression, and creativity. With the right tools, encouragement, and opportunities to learn and grow, young artists in Santa Barbara and Goleta can develop not only their artistic skills but also a lifelong appreciation for art. Embark on this colorful journey together, and watch as their creativity takes flight.

Here is some Acrylic Painting From Ms. Chadwick's Art Club, done by Kellogg Elementary Art Students from 1st to 6th Grade.

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