SDMA Art Tutorials

SDMA Art Tutorials are a series of instructional videos that demonstrate a new art skill, technique, or material inspired by works of art in the Museum’s permanent collection. Whether you’re a beginner or a master artist, come learn from Museum educators with SDMA Art Tutorials!

We invite you to explore creating in all-new ways and to share your work on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter using the hashtag #SDMAtutorial.

Clay Techniques with Fernando Casasempere

Learn how to make basic pinch and coil pots, clay flowers, and beads with Chilean sculptor Fernando Casasempere! Be inspired by his work on view in TERRA: Fernando Casasempere.

Recommended for all artists ages five and up.

Optical Art Illusions

Get inspired by works of art by the legendary Op Art artist Viktor Vasarely and create your own optical art box using a cardboard box, white colored-pencil, and a white acrylic paint pen.

Recommended for all artists ages five and up.

Night Skyscape

Learn how to create your very own night skyscape inspired by Ana de Alvear’s galaxy diptych, on view in the exhibition Everything You See Could Be a Lie: Photorealistic Drawings by Ana de Alvear.

Recommended for all artists ages seven and up.

Meditation Drawing

Join us to tour works in the SDMA collection where artists were inspired by meditation and then embark on a meditative drawing of your own with guidance from Museum Educator Sheena Dowling.

Recommended for all artists ages seven and up.

How to Create White Paint from Oyster Shell Pigment

How did artists in 19th century Japan create such pure warm white tones with a pearly sheen in their paintings? Join Education Coordinator Lucas Perez for another SDMA Tutorial to learn how to make traditional white paint from oyster shell pigment called “gofun” used for centuries in traditional Japanese Nihonga paintings.

Recommended for all artists ages fourteen and up.

Pattern and Radial Symmetry

Try a new art technique and really focus on the details. Explore radial design, balance, symmetry, and color in this Virtual SDMA Art Tutorial inspired by Persian tile artwork from the Museum’s collection.

Recommended for all artists ages seven and up.

Self Portrait: A Drawing Activity Using Etching Techniques

Put your favorite selfie to use the old fashioned way with your very own self portrait drawing inspired by Rembrandt’s etchings.

Recommended for beginners, families, and kids ages seven to twelve.

Still Life Stories

Be inspired and hear how artists use the still life genre to practice and express themselves.

Recommended for beginners, families, and kids ages five and up.

How to Make & Use Gold Paint

Feed your curiosity and be soothed while learning how ancient artists achieved lustrous metallic paints as opposed to the glittery yellow store-bought paint of today.

Recommended for advanced art students, high school to adult.

How to Write “Dragon” in Japanese Calligraphy

Learn about the traditional Japanese calligraphy style known as “Grass Script” or “cursive” script, a kind of calligraphy known for its expressive brushwork meant to look like leaves of grass swaying in the wind.

Recommended for intermediate to advanced art students, high school to adult.

Looking for more to explore? Try at-home activities for emerging and established art students of all ages with SDMA at Play. Enjoy art activities, crafts, writing prompts, videos, podcasts, and more inspired by the Museum’s collections.

Featured: Winslow Homer. Art–Students and Copyists in the Louvre Gallery, Paris, January 11, 1868. Engraving. Bequest of Myra Gentner. 2001.77.