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Oil Painting Fundamentals and Beyond on Saturdays with Matilda Michell


Course overview

This Saturday painting class is for adults and senior High School students who would like to learn the fundamentals of oil painting. All levels are welcome in this relaxed and friendly class. Beginners learn step by step and building skills week by week, and those with prior experience are encouraged to extend their skills through a range of structured exercises as well as having the opportunity to work on their own projects.

What to expect

All students will gain a thorough understanding of approaches to oil painting including:

  • learn about composition, tone and colour
  • learn to paint from the still life, nature and figure/portraiture
  • learn a variety of oil painting approaches from the direct “alla prima” method to techniques for building up a painting in layers
  • learn about colour, colour mixing and about about transparent and opaque pigments
  • learn methods of underpainting, glazing and scumbling
  • learn to different approaches to paint application and
  • how create of mood, space and focal points within a painting.

Is this course right for me?*

Matilda welcomes beginners to this class as well as experienced students. High School students in year 10 and above are encouraged to attend this class.

Materials list

Materials are not included in the course fee. All students will need to bring the following:

  • For the first class you will need a canvas about 14"x18". You will need more canvases as the term progresses
  • Brushes | Princeton or art basics are good brands that are not too expensive | 3 or 4 filbert brushes Size 1 | 3 or 4 filbert brushes Size 4 | 3 or 4 filbert brushes Size 8
  • Rags
  • Odourless solvent or a brush cleaner (eg Disolv) for cleanup. Solvents MUST be odourless. Oil painting solvents and mediums must not be tipped down the sinks. You will need to bring jars with lids to take away spent solvents/mediums. Spent solvents/mediums must be taken with you and not left in the studios. You tutor will give you information on reusing and disposing of spent solvents and mediums.
  • Small bottle of ‘Lean’ medium (Art Spectrum or Archival brand ) or odourless solvent and small bottle of stand oil to make your own medium in class.
  • Small palette knife
  • Palette
  • Willow charcoal
  • Any acrylic paints you already have for applying a ground layer (titanium white, yellow ochre, burnt sienna, raw umber are good colours).
  • Oil Paints.* We will discuss materials in the first class, so if you have a decent set of oil paints and brushes you don’t need to buy anything special until then. For anyone who wants or needs to buy additional materials, the list of recommended colours are | Titanium white | Yellow Ochre | Raw Umber | Terra rosa| Indian red | Ivory Black | Bright Red (spectrum red or winsor red depending on brand) | Alizarin Crimson hue or Quinacridone Magenta | Ultramarine Blue | Bright Yellow (spectrum yellow mid or winsor yellow mid depending on brand) | Indian Yellow. Optional oil colours to increase your range: raw sienna | burnt umber | Pthalo blue | prussian blue. We recommend buying ‘artist quality’ paints (Art Spectrum oils are a good, reasonably priced brand) or brands that have a ‘student quality’ (Winsor & Newton)

Maximum of 12 students in all our classes Our class sizes are small, ensuring you receive the individual tuition you need.

Unless otherwise noted, fees for adult classes exclude art materials.Click here to see a list of local art supply retailers.

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This course has no current classes. Please the waiting list.

Course testimonials:

  • I highly recommend this course. Matilda is a fantastic teacher who really knows her stuff, she works with each student at their own pace/skill level to bring out their best.
  • Matilda is a fantastic teacher. You are rewarded by her patience in that she provides a perfect learning experience in regard to techniques, inspiration and encouragement. If you want to learn about oil painting and be supported and encouraged at the same time try to get into her class
  • Everything you wanted to learn at art school with lashings of encouragement in a small, friendly class. Matilda Mitchell is ace!