Certificate Course: Contemporary Oils Today

Colour, Mass and Line are the Keys to Painting

Contemporary Oils Today: Three months of exciting contemporary study, from the most exacting and aesthetic disciplines of abstract composition, to the exuberance of mark making by exploiting serendipity and colour. We look at how great contemporary artists are using and reinventing traditional skills to define their style and get their unique look.

A great course if you’re stuck in a rut, think your work is a bit tight or just want an injection of creativity and new ideas

2018 Dates and workshops
  • Workshop One: Effective Abstraction: eliminate detail, find strength and visual unity in your art
  • Workshop Two: Working From Photographic Sources: explore how the lens changes the way we see, and use it to your advantage
  • Workshop Three: Paint & Pixels: we stand at the threshold of a new way of seeing and making pictures, learn how to integrate digital visualising with your painting.

This certificate is a vivd exploration of techniques, starting from a theme such as figures or weather each month, the course will take you on a journey through composition, chance effects, the placement of key colours and gestural mark making, all of which you will have an opportunity to weave into your own works in home study between sessions.

How does it Work?

Based in Norfolk for four days per month for three months this course links practical workshops with structured home assignments to help you learn and develop new contemporary painting skills.

This course is available with inclusive accommodation, subject to availability.

Workshop One: Effective Abstraction

Abstraction lies at the heart of all good painting. From figurative masters such as Caravaggio to abstract pioneers such as Mondrian this course explores how they used visual design  as a basis to give their work inherent visual unity and strength.

Workshop One of Contemporary Painting Today, Effective Abstraction is intended to provide you with the skills you need to make better design decisions when creating new works, because it’s always difficult to paint your way out of a bad concept.

This workshop is also available as a three day stand alone course

Workshop Two: Working From Photographic Sources

The lens always lies, because cameras simply do not see the world, and certainly cannot recall it, as we do.  Yet photography has become so ubiquitous that many artists routinely use it as their starting point for painting.

Working from Photographs will show you that the photographic image can be a good servant rather than a bad master; by showing you how inspirational artists have used photos as creative tools to enable their creativity.  The perfect course if you rely on photos, and feel that their input is effecting your work, or if you simply want to try out new ways of using lens technology in your process.

This workshop is also available as a three day stand alone course

Workshop Three: Paint & Pixels

Digital sketchbooks are opening whole new worlds of possibilities for painters, but while it’s easy to create an amazing image on a tablet- how might it be used with your painting?

Paint and Pixels is a course about creating – and using – digital concepts, We show you how to create exciting painting concepts using tablets, and then methods of using those visuals as starts for creative original paintings.  A good idea is nothing if one can’t act upon it.

Written by Martin – who is a keen user of digital imaging – Paint & Pixels is intended for oil painters, and may be taken either as a stand alone course or as part of our Contemporary Oils Today Certificate Course.

Optional: If you wish to bring a i Phone or iPad to the course, contact the School for an information sheet on our recommended Apps when you book.

This workshop is also available as a three day stand alone course


Full Certificate Course of three four day workshops and structured home study plus School Accommodation from £1750 with our Pay Now pricing (terms and conditions apply)

Full Certificate Course of three four day workshops and structured home study without accommodation from  £1500 with our Pay Now Pricing

Workshops taken as individual stand alone three day courses without accomodation or structured home study from £499 each with our Pay Now Pricing