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Wednesday Figure/Portrait Class (Mornings and Afternoons)

Wednesday Figure/Portrait Class (Mornings and Afternoons)

Term 3, 2024: July 17 - September 18 (10 Weeks)

10:00am to 4:15pm


Tutors: Sally Ryan & Ben Ryan


In this class students will paint or draw from the live model, who will hold two five-week poses across the term of ten Wednesdays.


​This class gives students the chance to go through our painting process from start to finish. All steps will be covered, from an initial drawing through to a block-in and then on to a finished piece. Concepts addressed include: drawing, tone, colour, form, edges, anatomy, materials and more.​


Students may focus on painting or drawing, and can work on the whole human figure or the portrait, or any part of the composition that interests them. It is recommended that complete beginners start with just drawing, as good drawing skills are always at the core of good painting.


    Below is our general list of materials. If you’d like to paint but you’re entirely new to it, don’t feel like you have to rush out and buy everything. It might be a good idea to just bring drawing equipment on your first day and we can discuss materials as we go.

    For drawing

    • A2 size cartridge paper
    • Pencil (H, HB or 2B are fine)
    • Kneadable eraser


    For painting:

    • Brushes – we recommend bringing brushes in a range of shapes and sizes. We tend to use primarily hog-hair filbert brushes. We also recommend bringing a few softer brushes for softening edges. It is also useful to have a few flat brushes, as well as some small round brushes for details. A soft fan brush can also be useful for softening edges.

    *Brushes must be in good condition. In terms of brand, for the hog-hair brushes we like the Isabey Hog Series ( though this is not essential.


    • Boards/canvases – students need to bring a new board or canvas each week. Canvases can be stretched but loose pieces of canvas are also fine (they can be pinned to boards that are available at the studio). Some art stores sell canvas off-cuts, and Hamley Studio will have available loose canvas pieces that you can buy.

    *We recommend toning your surface with a mid-tone neutral grey colour (raw umber with white for instance). It must be dry prior to the class. This can be -done with oil paint or, if you’re using an acrylic-primed canvas, acrylic paint. Acrylic paints are not to be used in class though.


    • Palette Knife – Metal, not plastic
    • Wooden Palette (the studio is also able to supply palettes for use during class)
    • Paper towel
    • Rags (old T-shirts etc. are good)



    The colours we use are the following–

    • White (Cremnitz/Lead/Flake OR Titanium)
    • A bright yellow (e.g.Cadmium Yellow, Cad Yellow Pale or Cad Yellow Lemon)
    • Yellow Ochre
    • Cadmium Red Light (or Vermilion)
    • An earth red (e.g. Transparent Red Oxide, Burnt Sienna, Venetian Red, English Red)
    • Alizarin Crimson or Alizarin Claret
    • Raw Umber
    • Ultramarine Blue
    • Ivory Black

    *We mostly use Michael Harding and Old Holland paints but they are expensive because they have higher levels of pigment than student quality paints. Any artist quality paints are acceptable -Windsor & Newton, Gamblin, Rembrandt etc - do not buy oil paint sets.

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