Art Inspiration: The Greek Gods Distraction on Olympus: The Muses


At the school I work in, I sometimes provide extra classes after school on a variety of interests to the children.  They include Computer classes on PowerPoint and Photoshop, Journalism club, T-ball, softball and Art classes on painting, sculpting but mostly drawing.  I would teach the children how to draw cartoon or comic book characters.

One such class I was teaching them how to draw comic book characters.  Not just the characters themselves, but how to draw and create their own characters, so I taught them the basic skills.  In our last few classes we had to draw a scene with multiple characters and a background based on a theme.  I told them they could decide on what theme they wanted to draw and I would help the group draw it.  One idea was a camping scene the other Harry Potter, but the majority of the group wanted to draw a scene based on the Greek gods.

I told them they had to look up some information on the gods and come up with some ideas, but most of them came up with just Zeus, Poseidon, Aphrodite and Athena.  I told them some of the other gods and they wanted me to draw each one of them as one of the gods.  We started with a pencil drawing but then I drew the final product on the computer to better help them get the lines, shapes and small details they need to add.  The result was inspiring and the children loved it.

In the next few weeks I will post each character and a little about them and what the children liked about it.  This week I am posting the Muses.

The Muses are the children of Zeus and Mnemosyne.  They are the patron goddesses of intellectual and creative pursuits.  Many early Greek writers such as Hesiod or Homer would say they were inspired by the Muses to tell us the tails of the gods and such classic works.   There are nine Muses or children but on many occasions they are shown in threes, usually the first three.  Below is a list of all the Muses:

Calliope, epic poetry

Clio, history

Erato, love poetry

Euterpe, lyric poetry

Melpomene, tragedy

Terpsichore, choral dancing

Polyhymnia, sacred music

Urania, astronomy

Thalia, comedy

(Hesiod, Theogony 75–103, 915–917)

For this piece I used the first three of the Muses and they represent three girls in the class.  From left to right they are Calliope, Clio and Erato.  The three girls asked why I choose them and I said because they are very creative in many different fields.  I thought it would suit the three the best.  They are also friends and all three wanted to be Aphrodite.  I did not want them to have a competition on who would be Aphrodite and then have hurt feelings.  Typical guy thinking, give the girls something different to avoid them getting mad at each other or you.

Anyway they loved it.  I used their different hairstyle to help create the characters.  If you look closely you can see a pin on their dress that is a symbol of the goddess’s patronage.

I hope you enjoy it as much as the children did.


The Muses
From left to right Calliope, Clio and Erato.

  • Introduction to Greek Mythology (
  • The nine canonical Muses. From left to right: ...

    The nine canonical Muses. From left to right: Clio, Thalia, Erato, Euterpe, Polyhymnia, Calliope, Terpsichore, Urania, and Melpomene. Drawing of a sarcophagus at the Louvre Museum. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


6 Responses to Art Inspiration: The Greek Gods Distraction on Olympus: The Muses

  1. Pingback: Introducing the Greek Gods « E-Learning

    • Paul Gauchi says:

      Thanks for the link/ping. I can introduce it to the children as a resource. Hope you enjoyed the Muses and I will be posting more gods and their stories in the next few weeks.

  2. Pingback: Art Inspiration: The Greek Gods Distraction on Olympus: Hermes | Paul Gauchi

  3. Pingback: Art Inspiration: The Greek Gods Distraction on Olympus: Hephaestus | Paul Gauchi

  4. Pingback: Art Inspiration: The Greek Gods Distraction on Olympus: Dionysus | Paul Gauchi

  5. Pingback: Art Inspiration: The Greek Gods Distraction on Olympus: Aphrodite | Paul Gauchi

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