Art Lessons - Frequently Asked Questions
Please do not hesitate to call me to discuss anything about how the lessons run. However, here are a few of the more common questions I am asked.
Do I have to commit to a course of lessons?
No - it is pay as you go. There is no minimum commitment.
What about if I go away for a while?
If you are away for a period you just come back to class when you return. Your place will not be lost.
Is there a fixed course content?
No. Each student has their own ideas on what they want to achieve, and I tailor their work program according to those wishes, and their skill development.
Do I need lots of expensive equipment to get started?
No. For the first few weeks I supply drawing paper, pencils and charcoal as I like all beginners to learn the basics of drawing before moving onto painting. Once you have decided to want to continue I will advise you on what to buy to get you started. For example you only need eight colours (I’ll tell you which ones), and I’ll explain how to choose the right sort of paper and brushes. Please do not buy any of these things in advance as I have seen so many students turn up with poor quality equipment which they have soon discovered is unusable.
Do you supply materials?
When needed I supply materials for new students to get them going for the first two or three weeks. However, as I am not in a position to carry large stocks, thereafter students buy their own. I can recommend where to go.
Do I have to use watercolour?
Not at all. Watercolour is a very beautiful but difficult medium as it relies on transparency and lightness of touch. I have plenty for you to try before you buy. Pastel is my preferred next step because although it’s messy, it’s easier to correct mistakes and most people grow to love its blendable qualities. Magical stuff!
What about acrylics and oils?
Acrylics and oils require very different techniques but once you’re hooked – you’re hooked. There’s nothing like the silky smoothness of oil and the smell of turps and linseed oil used for mixing, thinning and brush cleaning. You can now buy water mixable oils which are not bad. You can mix the colours, wash the brushes and thin the paints with water, which makes them more acceptable if you have to share your painting space with other members of the family! They are a compromise and the results, whilst not quite as sparkling, are a close second.
Acrylic paints can be used thinly like watercolour or thickly like oil paint. The drawback is they dry very fast and you can’t remove them, or blend them easily. They rely on transparent layers of paint being laid one over the other so the undercolours show through. The results are usually less subtle than oils but it is possible to buy small fairly inexpensive sets to see if they suit you.
If you do buy oils and acrylics, resist the urge to purchase mounted oil canvases. In the first weeks or months you will probably not produce masterpieces and it’s better to buy pads of oil or acrylic paper. Otherwise you end up with a stack of canvases to store instead of a drawer full of experiments.
Please to not hesitate to contact me. My contact details are on the 'Contact Me' link.