Modern Portrait Painting Techniques Online


Dates & Times:
Wednesdays 7pm – 9pm, starting 22 March 2023

Format: Online / Zoom Course

Media: Oil, Acrylic, Watercolour or Gouache

All too often modern and contemporary artists approach painting from the belief that ‘anything goes.’ Yet, why do some modern art portraits work while others fail?

To answer this question, we need to understand how visual elements and our perceptual system work – whether we’re painting like Rembrandt or Renoir – so that we can control how to alter and innovate our painting methods and techniques in relation to the portrait.

The aim of this 5-week course is to provide the tools necessary for us to make visually (and emotionally) intelligent choices around form, value, colour, texture, design and other pictorial elements, giving us total artistic freedom to push our expression in any direction. This course will provide you with a myriad of ideas, inspiration and technical know-how that you can apply to your own portraits, boosting their originality and maximising self-expression while preserving good artistic judgement.

Over the five weeks, we will examine various stylistic and technical innovations that were made in portrait painting over the last 150 years, as well as how artists have pushed the boundaries in their psychological portrayal of the sitter. You will learn oil painting techniques, artistic principles and strategies, and the evolution of style in portraiture from the 1870s to the present day. Each class will feature many demonstrations and one-to-one support, and you will also receive different weekly assignments followed by detailed feedback. Towards the end of the course, you will be given free rein to produce an original portrait painting, employing the modern painting techniques you have learned.

Please note that there will be a one-week break for Easter during this course (10th-16th April). See full description below.

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