Intensive Skills Workshop

Course Details

DateWed 6th Feb 2019
Duration4 Days
Pay Now Price £545.00
Like so many others before me, I am over the moon with what I learnt on the course last week.  I was in a deep rut and could not see a way out of it – painting had become boring and there was nobody locally who was able to help.  From the moment Martin began to teach and I saw the way the course was run ,  I was hooked.  The artistic adrenalin began to flow once again.  
Welcome to Intensive Oils 
If you already paint regularly in Oils are considering the Norfolk Painting School Diploma or just want to be taught from the ground up by Martin Kinnear then our Intensive Skills Workshop is for you.

In Brief

    “I have to say that everything exceeded my expectations and I have returned home with my head fizzing with ideas for improving my painting and I can see lots of leads off for extrapolating from the possibilities, which keep occurring to me.
    Clearly Martin is an exceptional teacher and it was a privilege to spend some time with him and certainly” Tom M Intensive Skills July 2018

  • 4 days of structured oil tuition under professional artist and recognised expert in traditional oils techniques, Martin Kinnear
  • Written for practicing artists and experienced painters
  • All materials included on and for the course, plus key notes, refreshments and light lunches
  • Learn all three of our proven oil techniques (glaze and grisaille, ébauche, direct)
  • Learn traditional techniques such as glazing, scumbling, oiling out, imprimatura, colour beginnings, grisaille etc
  • Learn how to choose between traditional and modern oil mediums and solvents including hard and soft resins,synthetic resins, bodied oils,  and soft encaustic
  • Learn how to make traditional and modern gesso for short grounds
  • Learn subtractive and optical colour mixing
  • Learn how to use dry pigments and calcites
  • Learn how choose and use tempera and distemper – traditional and modern
  • For a less challenging course choose Simply Oils
  • For a more challenging course enquire about our Diploma

Starting with a brief look at Martin’s structured approach to painting as taught on Simply Oils (colour mixing, gesso and grounds, key materials, processes and concepts), the intensive skills Workshop quickly moves on to four energising days, each devoted to a particular skill or artistic approach. As each class is different, each course is unique, however a typical workshop includes:

Indirect Painting

Glaze and Grisaille, with an emphasis on either Chiaroscuro or the more luminous Italianate style . Martin will teach you the traditional use of tempera, grounds and the mediums used in conjunction with them to create either of the styles in a study after a master such as Cuyp, Claude or Turner.

Norfolk Painting school study after Aivazovsky
Glazing and Indirect painting are core skills on Martin’s courses such as this study after Aivazovsky which often features on Martin’s courses
Just to let you know that I really enjoyed the Norfolk Painting experience, every detail was covered and Martin was amazing in getting a full schedule of painting  across in the five days.
I must say this is the first course I have been on that I came away full of new skills and an excitement to continue the  painting journey.
All in all its a 10 from me. 

Direct Painting 

Helping you to create pure, strong predictable and controlled colour mixes lies at the heart of Martin’s Direct painting tuition. Whether he chooses to teach you in an Impressionist, Expressionist or Contemporary style you will learn to place good brushmarks, create rapidly drying oils and avoid the characteristic grey mud of poor colour control.

Norfolk Painting School The author working on a piece for his 2016 show, 'the painted garden'. Oil on board 8 x 5ft
Martin Kinnear working on a piece for his 2016 show, ‘The Painted Garden’, as featured in The Artist Magazine (July ’16)


Combining the subtlety of Indirect oils with the spontaneity and passion of alla prima, Martin’s signature method is Ébauche, so it will certainly be taught on your course. Corot is a favourite starting point, but Martin often turns to masters as diverse as Turner, Degas, Constable or Sargent to meet the learning needs of his students.

Norfolk Painting School head tutor Martin Kinnear specialises in Corot
Norfolk Painting School head tutor Martin Kinnear specialises in Corot’s methods. demo from a course 2015.

Studio Craft

Woven into and throughout every course is Martin’s enthusiasm for and encyclopaedic working knowledge of materials. Whether it’s traditional gesso, bole, resinous mediums, soft encaustic, oiling in or glaze planning with turbid media, your course will be loaded with practical, technical skills and processes. Because the intensive skills workshop is part of his Academy Program, Martin will be happy to get into the technical detail of managing oils to a professional standard.

Norfolk Painting School
From making gesso to using dry pigment, Martin is a master of practical Studio Craft

Taking Part

Intensive Skills is open to everybody, although we generally advise it as a first course for fairly experienced oil painters who wish to undertake a structured program with the School. Most new oil painters find that Simply Oils provides them with the confidence and skills they need to step up to, and get the most benefit from, this kind of intensive professional tuition.  The intensive skills course is also the best way to get a feel for the kind of tuition you can expect on Our One Year Diploma.

Norfolk Painting School
Learn practical skills to enable your creativity


Course only £545, with our pay now pricing, as a stand alone 4 day workshop.

This course includes all materials used on and for the workshop (just bring yourself!), plus a light lunch, notes, refreshments and tuition by one of our trained tutors, plus a  full time studio assistant so you don’t need to set up or scrub down.

“Thank you and everybody at the school for making me feel so welcome. What Martin gave me was priceless – with this knowledge I can achieve so much. I suspect many art school graduates are not as well prepared with the underlying techniques of painting and knowledge of colour theory as we were in this five day course”