Never let any doubts stand in your (or your kids’) way… to creativity. Schools teach our kids that there are right and wrong ways of doing things. That’s true and valid – but not when it comes to art. Unfortunately, may teachers (and students) do not see the difference and feel that they are bad at painting because they cannot replicate the picture their friend did. That is not art. That is not creativity… and it is certainly not an easy to express yourself when you constantly fear failure.
Do not praise your kids for the picture they did. Praise their effort, the colors they selected or the time they spent working on it. If you say: It is the best picture ever! Why would they try to beat it? It may make them feel like the bar is so high they will never reach it again, so why bother…? Try saying: I love the colors you selected. Those are really long lines. Wow, your brushstrokes are full of energy… and see if it frees them to express their creativity in new ways. It certainly can’t hurt it.