Domestika: The Solution to Quarantine’s Boredom


Maria Garces

One of the website’s most popular courses directed by well-known Spanish artist Alejandro Casanova. During this course, users are able to understand how to sketch out the basic proportions of the human head, as well as the different things to have in mind when using watercolor.

Maria Garces, Visual Photography Editor

As the long days of lockdown passed and I waited for my ‘go-to’ YouTube video to load, an ad commercial started playing on my screen.  The bright red commercial advertised an artistic anatomy course. The realistic graphite drawings and oil painting immediately got my attention and made me wonder if I could end up acquiring such abilities. This is how I ended up purchasing my first Domestika course without hesitation. Domestika is an online-based learning platform that offers all kinds of creative courses, from illustration to marketing. The platform gives curious creatives the opportunity to develop new techniques, concepts, and abilities from professionals who are involved in the artistic and design world.

The website offers different categories, such as illustration, photography, video, marketing, business, design, animation, technology,  and typography. Each category has about 60 or more different courses, all taught by professionals from a particular creative career. When I first went into the website, I was amazed by all the different courses and how each one could help me evolve as an amateur artist. I also enjoyed watching all of the course description videos, which helped me get an idea of what I would be doing throughout the entire course. Even though other servers, such as YouTube offer the same information for free they don’t verify the quality content and explanations, meaning some of these videos might not end up being as reliable or helpful in comparison to Domestika’s expert explanations.

After purchasing a course, you can start it whenever you want and work on it at your own pace. The class dynamic is asynchronous, where you are responsible for following the different activities in your own time. This one is also divided into different classes that will help you create your final project. During these periods, you will find video explanations created by your instructor. When finishing an exercise, you must take a picture of your work and post it into the class blog where the teacher will be able to see your work and comment on it as well as other users. At first, the idea of asking questions and communicating with my instructor through a public chat seemed both intimidating and confusing. In a regular zoom-based class, you do receive more face-to-face time with your instructor and have the opportunity to ask questions in a less complex way than in Domestika. However, the idea of managing my own time, gave me the freedom to enjoy my creative process and practices, even more, as I didn’t feel the pressure of following a specific curriculum or the obligation to connect to class at a specific time of the day. 

 The course prices depend on the type of medium you are practicing, due to the equipment or materials required. Almost all courses are from 120.000 to 180.000 pesos. However, the platform is constantly offering multiple discounts, which lower the original prices from 50% to 78%, making it more affordable. Even though you might find similar and more information on websites such as Pinterest for free, you can end up investing most of your time just searching for the “good” tutorials. Meanwhile, Domestika’s course already has a plan for you to learn and develop new skills.

Course instructors are professional artists, creatives, or illustrators. As the course begins, each instructor has the chance to introduce themselves, what they do for a living, and their personal artistic style. After learning more about my instructor, I got very excited. The fact that I was learning new skills from experienced members of the art community motivated me regarding how much I could learn and grow. In regular classes or teaching establishments, you don’t get to learn more about the art and design industries themselves. In other words, outside of Domestika you don’t get to know and understand how industries work and how you as an artist can adapt in order to become a member of such communities. However, this positive experience might be different depending on your teacher.

The course’s content is great, as well as the idea of being taught by professional artists and creative minds. Even though it might be awkward at first to share your work in a public blog, I still encourage you to purchase or at least check out one of the platform’s courses. At the end of the day, this is a great way to invest your free time and have fun during COVID-19 times.