Oil Painting Workshop | Still Life in Vibrant Colour with Andrea Huelin Art Est Art School and Gallery

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Oil Painting Workshop | Still Life in Vibrant Colour with Andrea Huelin

Oil Painting Workshop |  Still Life in Vibrant Colour with Andrea Huelin

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

Course overview

This workshop will suit anyone keen to paint in oil to produce paintings that seem fresh and effortless. Award-winning Queensland-based artist Andrea Huelin joins us for this two-day oil painting workshop.   Andrea will challenge your perception of still life painting in oils, and you’ll discover how the everyday object can become a work of art. 

Note for acrylic painters: T_his workshop is geared towards oils. However, while Andrea works in oils and is not that experienced with acrylics, the principles for painting in acrylics are the same. If you are an acrylic painter and keen to do this workshop, Andrea will do her best to provide the equivalent instruction where the processes are different._

Andrea will guide you through a step-by-step process to make your still-life paintings shine. 

If your idea of still life painting is a dark, sombre painting of a pewter jug and some grapes, this workshop will give you a new way to approach still life, as well as some techniques on observation that can be applied to other painting styles too.  

On day 1 students will focus on colour mixing and the importance of tone in still life painting as they begin their own painting from objects they have brought from home.  

On day 2,  students will continue to work on their painting or begin a second study, with Andrea’s instruction.

What to expect

Students will learn about:

  • Composition and subject selection
  • The alla prima oil painting method using mostly big brushes
  • Learn about colour mixing, use of mediums and solvent, how to set up a still life.
  • Students will complete a painting (or close to completed painting) each day, using techniques and ideas to apply to their own painting styles as they wish.

Is this course right for me?

This workshop will suit students with oil painting experience who want to shake up their oil painting skills and learn new approaches to painting the still life in vibrant colour.


Oil paint colours in 40ml tubes or similar.  It is important to have a cool and warm version of each of the primary colours – yellow, red and blue.   A red ochre, yellow ochre and dark grey are handy too.  

These are the colours that Andrea uses:

Titanium white, Lemon yellow, Cadmium yellow medium (or similar hue warm yellow), Yellow ochre, Cad red medium (or similar warm red), Alizarin Crimson (or similar crimson hue), Red Ochre (sometimes called light red), yellow ochre, Ultramarine Blue, Pthalo blue, Raw Umber, Paynes Grey.  Optional colours:  Naples yellow, burnt sienna, burnt umber, viridian green, dioxazine purple

Brushes: Long flat size 10 and 8 (about 2cm and 1.5 cm wide across the top of the brush), Filbert size 3 (about 5mm wide).  Firm synthetic brushes are best.  Andrea uses Neef 95 Flat Stiff Synthetic, or Rosemary & Co Ivory Synthetic long flats.  Good brushes will give you the best results.  

Oil painting medium: Archival brand odourless lean medium (at least 100ml). For your and other students’ comfort, Archival brand is the recommendation as this is the only odourless brand of medium available.  Another option is to use a mixture of linseed or other artist’s oil diluted with solvent. 

ODOURLESS solvent for clean-up and diluting paints and mediums 500ml. Solvent MUST BE ODOURLESS

2 x artist boards or canvases about 9x12inches.  Artist quality canvas or board will yield the best results.  Andrea uses home-made mdf panels primed with sealer, undercoat then gesso, or store-bought ‘Ampersand’ brand pre-primed boards (or similar brand).

  • White Acrylic gesso for priming your boards and canvas
  • Cheap brush or foam roller for applying gesso
  • Soft cotton rags - at least 2 per day
  • Clear or white perspex, melamine or glass, about A3 size to use as a palette, or an A3 sized disposable palette.
  • Masking tape, at least 1 inch wide
  • Cheap box of tissues
  • 2 jam sized glass jars with lids
  • A bottle of baby oil is good for cleaning your hands
  • a roll of paper towels,
  • extra rags or chux wipes

4 smallish items from home to use as subjects for still life (try to choose things that are different tones, eg. one light coloured, one middle and one dark).   Ideas include fruit, cups and jars, utensils, containers, flasks, flowers.  Look for items that have a bit of shine or a nice form - it doesn’t really matter if they go together or not.  

Two cardboard boxes for your still life arrangement, one to place your still life arrangement in (or on) and one to raise your still life box up to eye height, or closer anyway.  Piece of light-coloured fabric big enough to create a backdrop for inside the box.

Still Life Image: Andrea Huelin. Green Glass and Radishes. oil on board. 52.5 x 52.5 cm courtesy Michael Reid Gallery.

About studio classes

Our class sizes are small, ensuring you receive the individual tuition you need. We have a maximum of 12 students per class.

Unless otherwise noted, prices *exclude* art materials. Click here to see a list of local art supply retailers.

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Save on your art class

Art Est accepts Creative Kids vouchers and memberships to help you save on your art class, along with regular discounts for current students. To find out what you are eligible for and how to book with these, visit our special offers and discounts page:

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Course testimonials:

  • Inspiring and beautifully taught course