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Plymouth College of Art - 10 Week Oil Painting for Beginners

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Plymouth College of Art

Tavistock Place



United Kingdom

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Event description


A well-structured and systematic course for those who have never painted before, as well as

for those who want to reinforce their basic skills in oils or to move onto oils having previously

used acrylics or water-based media. Students learn to see colour, shape and tone and relate

all these elements together in various compositions. This course aims to foster self-confidence

and enjoyment of painting in a stimulating environment. There will be an opportunity to work

from a life model as well as working from still life and discovering how to paint a portrait.

Throughout the course students will learn from works of many artists to improve their

development, it culminates in a more sustained painting developing the student’s personal

interests. It is an ideal course for beginners as there is plenty of guidance from the tutor.

Location: Plymouth College of Art, Tavistock Place

Start Time: 18:00

End Time: 21:00

Start Date: 19/09/17

End Date: 28/11/17

Day: Tuesday

Fee: £220

What topics do we cover?

▪ Lay out a basic palette

▪ Working with a limited tonal palette

▪ Handling paint

▪ Laying down a tonal ground

▪ Drawing out and under-painting

▪ Glazing and paint mediums

▪ Understanding colour and mixing

▪ Understanding composition

▪ How to take a painting to completion

By the end of this course you will: ​understand how to use oil paints. Be able to undertake a

painting alone. Understand how to mix colours, and have a good understanding of colour

theory. Have an understanding of tone, composition, handling paint, and more. Have a

number of paintings to take home!

Course Content

Week 1


Working with a limited tonal palette, students will practice handling oil paint. Using still life students will learn how to draw out the form and develop a basic tonal underpainting.

Week 2

Colour Mixing

How to mix colours we will start to understand how to handle colour and basic colour theory.

Week 3

Looking at Portraits

Other Artist Portrait looking at colour mixing in practice students will make a copy of a portrait by another artist.

Week 4

Pick a Partner

Students will partner up and produce a portrait painting using each other as models. A selection of brushes and exercises will be practiced to bring an experimental quality to the work.

Week 5

Texture and Abstraction

Texture - Abstraction working from an elaborate textural still life. We will be using view finders to section areas of interest and have timed studies. We will look at contemporary artist for inspiration.

Week 6

Abstract Composition

Project: Abstract Composition. Using all the accumulated skills students will develop their own painting from a photo. Students should bring with them a selection of images that resonate with

them. These could be photos you have taken, cuttings from magazines or newspapers or photos you have found online. The aim will be to create an abstract painting that is born from the key elements of what excites you about your chosen images.

Week 7

Life model

Starting with a limited palette, students will concentrate on tone and shading, then we will be having a variety of timed exercises, work on freeing up the brush strokes and create interesting studies from the life model.

Week 8

Modern Landscape

Using contemporary landscape artists as inspiration, students will produce their own painting based on the style of their chosen artist.

Week 9

Let Loose

Using all the accumulated skills students will develop their own figurative Painting.

Week 10

You’ve Made It!

Supported self study followed by final touches to artwork, mainly the painting started on week 8. Additional tutorials can be delivered on a one to one or group basis.

Evaluation of course, learner achievement and progression, most importantly… Celebration!

Entry Requirements

None. This course is suitable for both beginners and those looking to 'brush up'.

Materials and Equipment

You may like to bring paints, palettes, brushes and canvases/paper and any art materials you have an interest in experimenting with such as ink, Oil paint, pencil crayons, etc. Some basic materials will be provided to get started.

Please note that all courses are subject to student numbers and will only run if sufficient numbers are achieved. Plymouth College of Art reserves the right to cancel a course if insufficient student numbers are recruited.

Date and Time


Plymouth College of Art

Tavistock Place



United Kingdom

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