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ArtistWorks Review

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No matter how passionate you are about playing music, becoming a better musician isn’t something that happens overnight. It takes consistent practice, tons of dedication, and a variety of capable instructors. 

ArtistWorks aims to provide exceptional-quality online lessons for musicians of all types and learning levels. If you’re serious about improving your guitar skills, or interested in learning a new style, you may want to consider enrolling in an ArtistWorks course.

I don't recommend ArtistWorks. You can receive a free trial to the guitar course that I highly recommend. Learn to play guitar quick with the Guitar Tricks program. Check out the free trial here.

What to Consider Before Purchasing Guitar Lessons Online

Learning how to play an instrument can do amazing things for your brain. When a novice guitarist is figuring out the essential chords to play, how to slide from one chord to another, they’re gradually developing better hand-eye coordination. But motor skills aren’t the only benefits of playing music. 

man sitting on his couch playing guitar no socks in living room.

Exercising your brain isn’t nearly as visually obvious as exercising your arms or legs. But when you’re playing an instrument, you’re doing a physical activity that activates several major areas of the brain and the central nervous system. Playing music is essentially equivalent to doing mental squats and push-ups. 

But learning new techniques, songs, and styles can be a challenge without proper guidance. Still, it’s not always possible to schedule in-person lessons. Aspiring artists that have access to an internet connection don’t have to struggle with scheduling. They can perfect their skills from the comfort of home by enrolling in an online course.

Online music courses are a fantastic option for beginners and advanced players alike. Whether you’re looking to learn basic piano playing techniques or study jazzy guitar riffs, there’s an online option that’s right for you. Still, there are a few crucial factors to consider when choosing an online guitar lesson. 

Prospective students should contemplate:

  • Pre-recorded lessons vs. live video conferencing
  • Interactivity between teacher and student
  • Affordability and plan pricing
  • Range of available lessons

ArtistWorks Guitar Lessons

ArtistWorks offers students several different guitar courses. These range from a one-month beginner’s course to year-long dobro class. Classes are available for viewing at any time while the student’s account is active, allowing for mobile learning. 

One of the most interesting aspects of the ArtistWorks system is its interactivity. Students can upload videos and receive personalized feedback from their instructor. This is a fantastic resource for students of all levels and ensures that encouragement and advice are only a video away.

While budding and practiced guitarists can benefit from enrolling in an ArtistWorks course, this service may not be well-suited for those who lack a passion for making music. Still, anyone with a guitar and a little curiosity could enjoy and learn from the beginner’s course.

Pros

  • All students have unlimited access to lesson videos
  • All students can interact with the Music Theory Workshop
  • All students have multiple opportunities to upload videos for instructor feedback
  • ArtistWorks offers a variety of lessons for multiple skill levels

Cons

  • Price plans can be restrictive for those seeking an affordable option
  • Lessons are primarily designed for adult audiences
  • System lacks helpful tools

Notable Features

Before committing to any online lessons, it’s crucial to explore everything those lessons have to offer. It’s also important to consider ease of use, as some online platforms use complicated user interfaces that can be difficult to navigate. Let’s take a closer look at exactly what ArtistWorks has to offer its students:

Ease of Use

When students first enroll in an ArtistWorks course, they’re granted access to a dashboard page that displays all of the lessons included in their chosen course. These lessons are organized from beginner level to advanced, ensuring that students of all skill levels can work at their own pace. Each video lesson is completely accessible at any time. However, smartphone users are likely to feel a small pang of disappointment at the lack of an ArtistWorks iOS or Android app. 

ArtistWorks allows students to record and upload videos of their practice sessions. Though there isn’t an ArtistWorks app, students can record and post their videos from their phones, laptops, or desktop computers. This process is incredibly straightforward and uncomplicated, and technical help is available by phone or email at almost any time.

Navigating the ArtistWorks site takes very little time, as all of the content is well organized and accessible via large tabs. Lessons can be viewed at any time, from any place, and they can even be slowed down for clarity. The Video Exchange archive is always just a click away and offers students the chance to learn from hundreds of helpful student-led lessons.

Video Exchange Archive

Depending on the plan the student has chosen for themselves, they will either have a limited amount of video submissions or an unlimited amount. Each submission is reviewed by an instructor, who leaves comments for the student. Still, that’s not all the Video Exchange is good for. 

Students who can no longer submit videos are free to browse the archive for helpful tips and tricks that may improve their playing ability. However, guitarists that rely on consistent feedback may want to invest in a course plan that lasts a full year, rather than going for the shorter 3-month option. Doing so will ensure that the student has unlimited submission potential, which can translate into unlimited learning potential.

Lessons and Courses

The lesson videos are typically fairly short, which is great for those who find themselves easily overwhelmed by excess information. Guitarists enrolled in an ArtistWorks course will spend a dedicated amount of time mastering each 5-minute or 10-minute lesson before moving on to the next one, and this ensures that skills build upon each other.

No matter which course students choose to pursue, the lesson arrangement tends to follow the same progression. First, students can begin with introductory videos that ease them into new styles or techniques. For example, guitarists interested in mastering the blues start with a massive foundational section that includes almost 30 videos to help students master the fundamentals of the genre.

When students feel that they’ve learned all they can from these introductory sections, they’re free to explore the intermediate and advanced lesson groups. Of course, there’s no need for enrolled musicians to view every beginner’s video before watching the more advanced ones. Each student moves along in the course at their own pace.

However, the fun doesn’t stop there. In addition to featuring lessons perfect for all three skill levels, ArtistWorks courses also have a nifty technique/style section that can help artists learn more about subgenres, different playing and plucking styles, and advanced techniques. Truly, every course caters to nearly every need a learner might have while progressing from the basics to the expert-level material.

Plans and Payment

With the exception of the Beginner’s Acoustic course, each ArtistWorks course is available as one of three distinct plans. Prospective students can choose to take a 3-month long course, a 6-month course, or a year-long course. Naturally, no matter the duration chosen, students will be able to work at their own pace and view the videos that match their interests and skill level. However, video submissions and resources do differ from plan to plan.

The 3-month option allows students to make up to five Video Exchange submissions to instructors, while the 6-month plan allows up to twelve submissions. The year-long option features unlimited submissions, so those looking for consistent professional feedback may want to invest in the 12-month plan.

Though ArtistWorks courses can be a bit pricey, especially the year-long course plans, there’s plenty of sales and discounts that students can take advantage of throughout the year. In addition, the higher-priced plans tend to feature greater resources and assistance than the lower-priced ones, so struggling musicians are likely to find greater success by spending a little extra money.

ArtistWorks For Beginners

ArtistWorks courses are appropriate for guitarists of all skill levels, including beginners. Each course features an in-depth fundamentals or beginner’s section to help facilitate quick and easy learning. Still, it can feel overwhelming to try and master a particular style of playing before you’ve even learned how to switch between chords or strum.

Consequently, ArtistWorks offers a dedicated Beginner’s Acoustic Guitar course that is designed to instill confidence in any student. If you’re just starting out with guitar, this option may be the best one for you. Firstly, it’s only about $20 (or even less with a coupon or discount offer).

Secondly, the Beginner’s Acoustic course addresses everything that beginning students need to know. Basic music theory, tuning tips, and positioning are covered in this course. You may not know how to hold a guitar before starting the Beginner’s Acoustic course, but by the time you finish it, you’ll know how to play all of the most popular chords, play single-note tunes, and much more. 

This course also introduces students to several genres of music, including traditional, rock, blues, and country. This is a great way for any guitarist (beginner or not) to explore different genres. When students complete this 1-month course, they’ll have a much better understanding of the guitar, and they’ll have a good idea as to what genre they’d like to explore in more depth.

Another great course option for beginners is Fender Play - see the review here

Learning New Styles

Guitarists of all styles can choose to either master their preferred style, or learn a new one. For example, most students begin their learning process by mastering basic chords, progressions, positions, and strumming techniques. Music theory is a significant portion of this early learning curve, but multiple genres typically aren’t.

That’s where ArtistWorks steps in. Students enrolled in an ArtistWorks course can explore their chosen genre in stunning depth. And, there’s quite a few genres from which to choose. Prospective students can investigate blues guitar, or electric rock guitar, or even the often ignored dobro. And because each genre-based course has lessons for beginners, intermediate students, and advanced learners, no one is excluded from exploring their favorite type of music.

Instructors

One of the most alluring aspects of ArtistWorks is its instructors. We’re talking big-name, rock n’ roll legends and prodigious acoustic geniuses. To give you a better idea of the kinds of teachers ArtistWorks employs, let’s take a brief look at three of their guitar instructors.

Firstly, there’s Paul Gilbert, who currently teaches the Electric Rock Guitar course. Gilbert has been playing music since he was five years old, and he’s been a member of two hit rock groups: Mr. Big and Racer X. He’s been shredding guitars for more than three decades, and it shows in his teaching. There’s no better way to learn rock music than to learn it from a rock n’ roll aficionados like Gilbert.

Secondly, we have Bryan Sutton, the American king of Flatpicking. Sutton is a talented musician who can play multiple instruments, including the mandolin, banjo, and ukulele. His all-natural, acoustic sound attracts many bluegrass fans and his depth of Flatpicking knowledge is unrivaled. He’s been playing for more than 30 years and it’s likely that even the most advanced Flatpickers have something to learn from this master. Learn more about holding your guitar pick here if you're interested!

Third, there’s Keith Wyatt. While many of ArtistWorks instructors have been playing music nearly all of their life, not all of them have been teaching for just as long. Wyatt is the exception to that unwritten rule. He’s been teaching electric guitar skills since the late 1980s, and his abilities as a teacher have improved since the days of his A Flock of Seagulls haircut. 

No matter which course may catch your eye, the instructor teaching is sure to be a certified expert in their field. That’s hugely different from many other online guitar lessons, where the teacher may be an uncertified and unprofessional musician who is still in the process of mastering their instrument themselves!

Forum-Based Community

While students won’t be able to view recent uploads by fellow students on the Video Exchange, they can communicate with other guitarists and musicians via the ArtistWorks Forum. While instructors generally maintain that the best place to ask questions is the Video Exchange, depending on the course package that you select, you may have a limited amount of video submissions.

Any questions that may arise after reaching this submission limit can easily and quickly get posted on the corresponding ArtistWork forum page. For example, students enrolled in the Beginner’s Acoustic course will have access to the Beginner’s Acoustic forum. From there, they can send questions and view the most recent Video Exchange videos posted in that class!

This tool is an excellent way for students of all types to seek and gain some answers as they learn. In addition, users can access communication to every ArtistWork school. So, if a guitarist is considering taking voice lessons, they can ask a few questions to help them determine what course may be right for them. Overall, the forums are a great safety net for students. 

Further Reading: Explore Singing and Playing Guitar Simultaneously

The Reviews Are In

I searched high and low across the vast plains of the internet and found some incredibly positive ArtistWorks reviews. To be honest, it wasn’t hard to do. Many students have reported their satisfaction with the lessons system, the instructors, and the site’s easy-to-use design. Check out what students like you had to say about ArtistWorks!

Alternative Options

Freedom of choice can only occur when you have options. Before making a final decision, it’s vital to compare and contrast different kinds of online courses. Doing so ensures that you’ll end up with a lesson plan that fits your skill level, budget, and interests. 

Here are a few popular alternatives to ArtistWorks that you may want to consider.

Guitar Tricks

Unlike ArtistWorks, Guitar Tricks offers lessons primarily for guitarists. They offer two different membership options, although the free membership is incredibly limited. Still, even the year-long Guitar Tricks full access membership is about $100 less than an equivalent ArtistWorks lesson plan.

In addition, Guitar Tricks is home to over 40 instructors and 11,000 popular songs. That’s a huge difference from ArtistWorks, which focuses far more on traditional techniques and music. Guitar Tricks offers lessons for beginners, intermediate learners, and advanced students. There’s also a handy Guitar Tricks app for musicians on the go. There’s no such thing for ArtistWorks.

If you’d like to quickly learn hit songs and improve your overall technique, Guitar Tricks may be the best option for you. Their free membership is a fantastic way to test the waters, and it only takes second to sign-up!

For more on Guitar Tricks, see my full review.

JamPlay

JamPlay stands out because of its affordability, helpful tools, high-quality videos, and instructor variation. Students can focus on lessons for beginners, study 20 different genres of music, learn popular songs, and watch more than 100 different instructors teach more than 400 courses.

JamPlay does offer some free material, but the cost for an annual membership is very reasonable. Besides, thanks to the helpful chord charts, music libraries, and toolkits, learning new techniques and mastering guitar challenges has never been more rewarding. Check out JamPlay today and take advantage of their free 30-day trial.

For more on JamPlay, see my full review

TrueFire

While ArtistWorks offers a wide range of lessons for all types of skill levels, TrueFire is better suited to intermediate or advanced guitarists. It’s also potentially the most expensive option, with TrueFire’s lifetime membership costing over $2,000. 

Still, TrueFire uploads new courses every week and currently has a course library nearing a half million videos. While it’s lessons and content aren’t catered toward beginners, it does offer advanced guitarists the chance to explore over 30,000 tabs (learn more about guitar tabs here) and 20,000 tracks. That’s a lifetime of material to learn and enjoy. And, like JamPlay, TrueFire offers students a nifty 30-day trial. 

Can you get your TrueFire burning?

For more on Truefire, see my full review

Final Thoughts

Finding a guitar tutor or teacher is a challenging task, especially for those with hectic schedules or remote lifestyles. But this challenge shouldn’t stop you from exploring and developing your musical passions. Learning an instrument is a fantastic way to relieve stress, and it can help keep your brain active and healthy.  

ArtistWorks offers several virtual guitar courses. There is a beginner’s course, courses for electric guitar enthusiasts, classical acoustic guitar lessons, and much more. Students have several different plans from which to choose, and the beginner’s course is incredibly affordable. No matter what time of day, or where the student happens to be, as long as they have an internet connection, they have access to ArtistWorks.

Check out what ArtistWorks has to offer today!

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