Watercolours & Pastels (about)
Watercolour and pastel classes are structured to take you stage by stage from blank paper to a completed picture.
Anyone can be taught to paint. I don't believe painting is a gift, however, like anything we do we have to work at it. Many people have a go at painting a picture, they are not happy with the results and just say "well, I always knew I couldn't paint". All we need is a little good basic instruction and the rest is up to us - it's called practice!
Remember when you learned to ride a bike or roller skate or drive a car? Everything seemed so impossible to start with, then after a great deal of practice you could do the task without thinking. Painting is no different, once you know the tools required and some basic techniques you will be able to paint - yes really!
When I started to paint, especially in watercolours, I searched the libraries and bookshops for an artist whose work I admired. I then studied the books written by this particular artist in order to learn the basic techniques. If you read too many different books to start with you will become totally confused as every artist will recommend a different set of brushes, paints, paper etc. When you begin to feel confident with your work, then move on and read books by other artists, picking up little hints and ideas from each as you go.
My classes are designed to guide both the beginner and the more advanced watercolour artist. Information about different manufacturers' paints and watercolour paper will be available,the use of good quality brushes is also covered in detail. There are many many different brushes on the market, most of these are not necessary if you have a good basic set. Brushes are like washing machine programmes - you have a choice of many but usually only use three or four at the most!
We will supply
- Drawing Boards
- Water Pots
- Any watercolour paints and brushes you already have
- Some watercolour paper to practice on
- Old cloth or paper towels
When we talk about using pastels we use the term 'paint'. So to make a pastel picture is to 'paint' a pastel picture. I should mention here that there are different types of pastel: soft pastel, hard pastel, pastel pencils and oil pastels. This may sound confusing but the first three (soft, hard & pencil) are all used together. They come under the heading of soft or chalk pastels. Some are just made to a more soft or hard consistency than others. Oil pastels however are completely different and will not be covered on this website. Like watercolours, when you enter an art shop you are confronted with an enormous display of colours - literally hundreds. If you are just starting to paint with pastels you only require about twenty at the most. The colour range will depend on what you are painting. A colour range for landscapes & seascapes will be different from a colour range for flowers and different again from a colour range for animal portraits.
My classes will cover landscape, seascape and animal portraits. I shall give you advice about your choice of pastel colours and pastel painting surfaces, these again are varied ranging from velvety surfaces to fine sandpaper.
Pastels are very forgiving and because we mix the colours on the paper we can remove, change or go over any area as many times as we like. The results can be stunning, once you have tried them you will be hooked!.
We will supply
- Drawing Boards
- Any soft pastels and pastel paper you already have
- An old cloth or paper towels for your hands
- An old towel to cover your lap or the floor in front of your easel to catch pastel dust
Class dates can be found on the Class Dates & Travel Directions page
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