Moving away from Realism in Still Life – Watercolours

‘Daff’s’ Watercolour – Jason Skill

This course is designed to help you make still life images that are modern, colourful, playful and inventive.

Length of the course10 weeks

Starts   15th September 2017

Costs  £120

Refreshments – tea and coffee is included.

Level  – suited to those who have some experience of watercolour painting . Not recommended for total beginners

Time –  Fridays from 10:00 till 12:00  

Dates to attend:

15th, 22nd September 2017

6th, 13th and 20th October 2017

Please note:  no classes on 29th September or at half term, the 27th Oct 2017

3rd, 10th, 17th and 24th November 2017

1st December 2017

‘Tulips and Stars’ – Watercolour – Jason Skill

Why does Jason think this course would be of value to you as a watercolour painter ?

In my own early experiments with more abstracted watercolours, it was great fun to experiment with off the wall ideas when making the paintings, but more difficult to get others to take the paintings seriously. My accurately rendered traditional style painting was almost always seen as ‘better ‘ than the  ‘modern’ stuff. Times have changed. Now colourful abstracted art is now seen as acceptable and even desirable by a mainstream audience. Consequently the interest in making modern, colourful watercolours has increased enormously in the last few years. But, for anyone wanting to modernise their art where do you start ?

The answer is simple; still life. With still life you can move the reference material about, become the set designer, place objects and colours where you want them. This perhaps explains why  some of the most adventurous and inspiring watercolour painting in the last few years has been produced in the field of still life by artists such as Shirley Trevena, Paul Riley and Ann Blockley.  Their use of collage to help think through abstracted compositions, playful paint effects, plus virtuoso brush work, have wowed watercolour painters all over the globe. So many artists I talk to want to paint something new and exciting emulating their style. But many find it’s sometimes difficult to move away from realism on their own, as they lose confidence in the more abstract ideas and inevitably drift back into traditional realistic imagery when rendering the materials in front of them.

This course aims to build up your confidence to explore more adventurous interpretations of still life material, by promoting an environment of adventure, where experimentation with compositions and colour are encouraged and undertaken by all, so that traditional realism becomes the exception to the rule.  So, if you are willing to risk moving your art away from realism for ten weeks of fun experimentation, then this is the course for you.

Recommended reading:

Ann Blockley – Experimental flowers with watercolour

Shirley Trevena – Taking risks with watercolour

Paul Riley – The magic of watercolour flowers


The location:

St Gabriel’s church Heaton

This location offers easy parking, a large work space that is well lit and a kitchen next to the work space. The entrance to the art room is at the right hand side of the church in the above photograph.

( Room set out for childrens play )

How would you get there ?

By bus – Bus stops are directly outside the side entrance to the church on Heaton road.

Chillingham road, which is a short walk from Heaton road, also has bus stops

Click on the map below for details.

What will you do on the course ?

It is planned that over the ten weeks you will explore the following:

Become more aware of traditional compositions used in still life painting

Explore using a dark box to control the light on still life objects

Consider how to re-think composing a still life image by working with collage

Explore making the backdrops for your pictures by thinking like a set designer

Try working creatively with stencils, stickers and masking fluid to enhance the level of pattern in your art

Developing your own motifs to personalise your art through the creation of your own stencil shapes

Dare to use a broader range of tones and strong colours

Make dramatic modern still life watercolour paintings

‘Stars in a Vase’ – Watercolour.

What will you need to bring ?

Your watercolour painting kit including: drawing paper, drawing board, palette, water pots, paints, brushes, masking tape, kitchen roll and a pencil and pen.

In the first class we will need to bring two apples and two pears.

Jason will advise you each week about the materials you will need for the following session. Anyone unable to attend a lesson should contact him by email and he will advise them on the materials needed for the following class.

Email contact

How can you book a place on the course ?

By clicking on the BUY IT NOW  button below and following the payment procedures you will book your place on the course.

If you are unable to purchase the course online then please send a cheque for £120, made payable to:

Painting with Skill LTD

…to Jason Skill, Sikehead, Woodside Lane, Ryton, Tyne and Wear NE403ND

Places will be allocated on a first come first served basis. To avoid disappointment – book early.

Painting With Skill Limited, Company No. 5763767, a company registered in England and Wales.

Registered address: Sikehead, Woodside Lane, Ryton, Tyne and Wear, NE40 3ND