10 things a beginner artist needs to know

The beginning of an artist’s journey can be fear-inducing, overwhelming, exciting, inspiring (among many other things)! These ten tips will hopefully help you successfully continue on your creative path, with the knowledge that the journey is just as important (if not more) as the destination.

1. You will really learn how to “see”

Drawing is the foundation of many art practises, and you will most likely find yourself learning how to draw again, and during this period, you will learn (or re-learn) how to “see”.

The moment that lightbulb switches on for a beginner artist is unforgettable. It is when you move away from the way you drew as a child. For example, a nose is not a “nose” anymore – it is made up of many smaller shapes – balls, cylinders and curved lines. You will begin to look at previously mundane objects around you and break them down into parts – analysing the different shapes within shapes; the negative space around them; the graduation of lights and darks. Learning how to draw truly opens up a new way of seeing – and it is so exciting!

2. Always be curious

Have your eyes open. Be observant; look at and be engaged in the physical world around you. It can not only inspire you, it can bring forth those moments of inspiration that wouldn’t normally strike you if you didn’t have your eyes truly open.

3. You are unique

You have a unique way of viewing the world and you have chosen to share this through art. Someone, somewhere will identify with your view and love what you do, and even pay for it. Don’t be scared if your work is different; as we all know, controversial artwork in the past has created art movements.

4. Don’t compare your work to others’

The only work you should be comparing is your new work to you old. Everyone is on a journey, and there will always be someone who is ahead of you. It’s very easy to compare your work to other artists’; however, this is not useful if it is affecting your art practice in a negative way. Learn from others, be inspired by others, and reserve the comparisons for your studio only.

5. Prioritise your creative practise

Create every single day or as often as you can. It’s the only way you will learn, and improve. Overcome your internal resistance; it is important to prioritise time to be creative in your life if you want to grow.

6. Keep learning

You don’t have to attend traditional art school to become an artist, however, taking art classes to improve your skills will help get you there faster. If you’re interested in a certain style – research it. Visit galleries and find art the inspires you – then copy it. Learn how the masters created their work; learn about the mistakes they made, and their successes. Take technical art classes, or engage with your local art scene and join an art community to be in the company of other creatives. And don’t stop learning!

7 Embrace your mistakes

The best thing about making mistakes is that you can learn from them. What you might see as a mistake at first, could be part of the journey to a great piece of art. When you believe you have made a mistake, try and push through and continue working. It is often a blockage, and it takes courage to continue working with it. Or leave the piece of work so you can sit with it for a few days – you will often come up with a solution (and you have learnt so much more than if you destroyed the work).

8. Stop thinking

During the creative process, have you ever experienced what can be described as “flow”, where the concept of time disappears and so does your internal dialogue, and it is just you and your work? It’s hard to switch off your inner critic, or your daily running dialogue, but when you do – magic happens. Sometimes it helps not to have a perceived end-goal, and just create for the sake of being creative. This can also help break the initial mental barrier preventing the physical act of creating – to stop thinking/judging/analysing and put that pencil or brush to paper. See what happens.

9. It takes time

It can be frustrating when you are just starting out and can see a masterpiece in your head, but you don’t yet have the skills to bring it to life. Be kind to yourself and remember that every artist has experienced this part of their journey. It takes a lot of work. Enjoy the journey and the improvements you notice in your work along the way.

10. Believe in yourself

Self-doubt can be your biggest enemy. Until you really believe in yourself, you will not understand the true enormity of this statement. These tips above should help you get some of the way there, however you can only truly know when you believe in yourself. We believe in you!

 At Melbourne Art Class we offer a range of art classes for every step of the artist’s journey. You can view all of our current courses here.

Written by Lauren Ottaway

The clown in the ruins

The clown in the painting was like those I saw at the circus when I was a boy. Except I was standing close to this clown, close enough to see that the seated man dressed as a clown pensive and vulnerable. Behind the clown lay the ruins of Rotterdam; the title told me enough to for me to know that this was Rotterdam in 1940, shortly after the Luftwaffe demolished the historic city centre so as to force the Dutch to capitulate.

Charley Toorop, Clown in the Ruins of Rotterdam, 1940-41, Kröller-Müller Museum, Otterloo

The painting seemed to lack time. As I looked, I struggled to reconcile my knowledge of the bombing of Rotterdam, my historical distance from the event, with an immediacy of human emotion conveyed and the character of the man ‘as a clown’ before me. The painting itself, its handling and the brush marks, seemed to be telling me this was painted a few days ago. It looked fresh; I could have easily believed that this was a recent event and that somewhere in Rotterdam I would find this man, wandering, questioning, somewhere in the ruins. When viewing this painting more than sixty years after the actual event, I had an experience of being for a moment in the midst of a broken man who had witnessed the consequences of shameful crime.

In art, we find traces of others that have been left behind, little messages in bottles that for some reason resonate on the shores of our consciousness at the right time for us. In our studio, often, someone who has been working will have left their most recent work which others later notice and comment favourably on. I’ve watched people walk in and upon seeing the new artwork, seem to connect with it momentarily. Having myself been in the studio most of the time between the making and seeing of the artwork, it seems like the artwork has the capacity to hurdle between the time which the work was put down and the time when the viewer sees it.

Despite the appearance of new works, we come back to a studio because it is one of those key places in our lives we keep as a constant. We set the studio up to remain unchanged. Perhaps, in reality, while we are away the dust settles, the paintings dry and the fridge compressor hums in rhythm with a slow dripping of a tap.  When we are not there, the morning light stream in through the window and then shifts shadows across the floor until the light ultimately subsides. The world around the studio moves to a rhythm, but what we ask of the studio is that it remain as it is until we return.

Cyclical movements of growth then decline. The waves of the sea rise, surge forward, swell and then recede, again and again. Tides rise and fall, drawn by the moon, which itself has phases in our sky. Seasons pass, the seasons of the year, the seasons of our lives. At first I was unaware of this passing, but, I have memory of standing at the back of my family home when I was three years old and looking up the sun and realising that I was no longer what I was, I was becoming something different; I was growing. Somewhere, perhaps, reverberates the vibration of our laughter as that three-year-old child, a parent drawing us near and holding us tightly. Somewhere, is our first spouting of intelligent five-year-old rhetoric, a newfound intellectual fluency speaking back into the adult world of logic, reasoning and values.

Our seasons pass. Our seasons such as Spring, when we walked out the school gate for the last time embracing hope and possibility; our bountiful Summer; our Autumn as the time of loss, of being stripped bare; and then our Winter, the time of working and persisting, believing but with no evidence for our faith.

In the midst of our seasons, the studio remains the same, like the womb we can return to so that we can make contact with our craft, with our language, with our selves. So that we can cleave off a material expression which conveys the season we are in. And that expression is timeless and goes out, after being nurtured and raised by us, to inform the consciousness of others. The clown I met, may no longer be sitting in the ruins of Rotterdam, but I am aware that he, or perhaps she, is now sitting in the ruins of another devastated city.

Written  by Marco Corsini

Celebrating autumn through paint

Autumn is one of my four most favourite seasons. It has a definite transience compared to summer just passed; though fleeting it may seem, its transformative impact on the environment around us is powerful.

Autumn may remind us that we are in a constant state of flux; each new moment an opportunity to be reborn, to change. It may open our eyes to see the deep, rich reds, purples and browns again; the vivid oranges and yellows – the spectacle of colour which almost seems surreal. It may enliven our senses after our dry summer; brown leaves and acorn hats crunch underfoot one week, and the next they’ve formed a sodden, musty-smelling part of the path we avoid walking on for fear of slipping.

This wonderful, sensory-overloaded season has been celebrated on artists’ canvases for centuries. Here are just a few which will hopefully inspire you to capture your impression of autumn in your work.

Georgia O’Keeffe, Autumn Leaves, Lake George, oil on canvas, 1924

Georgia O’Keeffe was an American artist and has been often referred as the Mother of American Modernism. Her art career spanned more than 60 years and she is most well-known for her paintings of enlarged, close-ups of flowers, New York and New Mexico landscapes. This painting, Autumn Leaves, forms a body of work she created between 1922 and 1931 whilst visiting Lake George and collecting leaf souvenirs (amongst other organic subject). She created 29 paintings of leaves, revering their varying shapes and colours.

Claude Monet, Autumn Effect at Argenteuil, oil on canvas, 1873

Monet is known for capturing fleeting moments of light – and this painting of the river with Argenteuil slightly off centre on the horizon is a masterful example. Monet has captured the turning of the leaves, using the reflection of the river to enhance the changing colours. The strokes of paint on the river make it look like an autumn palette – with the buildings and clouds mixing with the violet and blues. It has been speculated that Monet most likely painted this image from his studio boat, which he used to row along the river of Argenteuil. This painting was shown in the first Impressionist exhibition in 1874.

Quattro Stagioni: Autunno 1993-5 Cy Twombly 1928-2011 

Cy Twombly’s work is based on two components – paint and line. The line in his later years took on the form of text and indecipherable scribbles. The energy of his paintings is created with smears, daubs and drips and this painting in particular, Quattro Stagioni: Autunno, is one of a series of four paintings depicting the seasons. The idea for this body of work was inspired by Autumn, during the wine harvest in Italy, where he spent most of his life. Measuring over three metres in height and more than two metres in width, light is the principal theme, with the prominent use of white. Twombly pinned the four pieces to the wall and applied colours individually, and let them drip down the canvases. Autunno is the most vivid of the four paintings, with deep, rich reds, greens and purples.

Arthur Streeton, Autumn Day, oil on canvas, 1891

Arthur Streeton was a key figure in landscape painting and The Heidelberg School (Australian Impressionism) in Australia. Streeton did not have any formal training, and only after he became friends with artist Tom Roberts did his career develop. He worked en plein air, and painted the light, heat, distance, and space of the country. One of Streeton’s main influences was Willian Turner, which can be observed in the work above. The striking, golden leaves celebrate Autumn in this beautiful snapshot in time captured on Streeton’s canvas.

Written by Lauren Ottaway.

Learning to Fly – Marco Corsini’s upcoming exhibition

Exhibition dates: 4 – 17 April

Opening: 6 April 6pm – 9pm

Location: Brunswick Street Gallery

I began to reflect on the King River as a source. Its river stone beds and shallow streams, sometimes bubbling around arrangements of boulders, sometimes disappearing into deep, dark, still waters, which had never been beautiful to me when growing up and I had never thought of its significance in our lives beyond its supply of water. The river as a source which had branded a primordial sense of dependency and intimacy within me over my half lifetime. The river that constantly flowed, had always flowed, will always flow. The river that bound us around itself and preserved us. I slowly connected to the idea of source and slowly felt that my own dependency on this source was being revealed. That I had felt a need for years now, to constantly return to this source. I began to connect with the notion of origin and that just as I sat on the banks of this river or swam or drank from it, all I could ever do was draw close to it, to be within in, return to it. I had to return to this river. I have always returned to the King River.

From, Returning to the river, Marco Corsini, 2016

Marco Corsini’s paintings feature the landscape and his immediate environment. Using shifts in viewpoint and perspective and often painted over extended periods of time, the works explore perception and the nature of painting as a recorder of experience rather than as a representative tool. Alongside a phenomenological interest in consciousness and experience, Corsini’s work also incorporates personal motifs such as the horse, indicating the artist’s own presence. The paintings explore perception and subjectivity, asking us to go beyond everyday discourse into deeper engagement with the nature of our existence.

Originally published on Thursday, 29 March, 2018 by Marco Corsini

Getting the attention of your crush in 1908

As February is the month of love, we thought it would be appropriate to feature one of the most romantic and sensual paintings in history – The Kiss (Lovers), by Gustav Klimt.

Before Klimt’s gold period (during which The Kiss was painted), Klimt painted for the State, with his work being hugely acclaimed by officialdom. These works were academic and traditional in style. One of his most famous earlier works is the ceiling painting in the Burgtheater in Vienna. Measuring 7.5m by 4m, this incredible work depicts the Greek theatre in Taormina. Everything in this painting is meticulously described and observed; the majestic building forms the backdrop to the foreground where a woman is performing. Klimt, in partnership with his brother Ernst and their friend Franz Match (eventually disbanded), decorated theatres throughout the Austro-Hungarian Empire, and much of their work can still be seen today.

Theater in Taormina, Gustav Klimt, oil on marble, 1886-8

In his 30s he was cast out as a rebel after the scandal surrounding his paintings for the University of Vienna; large-scale ceiling paintings including motifs of Medicine, Jurisprudence, and Philosophy. Klimt did not adhere to his conservative-historical painting style and was asked repeatedly to rework the paintings. He liked to quote the poet, Friedrich Von Schiller (1759-1805), “If you cannot please everyone through your actions or your artwork, then please the few. To please the multitude is bad.”  Unfortunately, together with many other works by Klimt, the paintings were destroyed in a fire set by the retreating German army during the last days of war.

During this period, Klimt’s reputation transformed and his artistic person reinvented. He became the first President of the Vienna Succession, also known as the Union of Austrian Artists, with a vision to end the the distinctions in considering some art to be superior to others.

Kilmt travelled to Ravenna in 1903 and saw the Byzantine mosaics in the Basilica of San Vital for the first time. Witnessing the rich, vivid mosaics and the power of their beauty was a turning point in Klimt’s art practice, and saw the creation of The Kiss.

It has been speculated that this masterpiece had a personal agenda for the artist. It is claimed that the woman featured is Emilie Floge, fashion entrepreneur, long-time friend of Klimt’s and his sister-in-law. A sketchbook was discovered in 1917 containing preparatory sketches of The Kiss, with “Emilie” written in big letters beside them. There was controversy surrounding the platonic nature of their relationship, as Klimt kept his personal life out of the public eye. When he collapsed, suffering a stroke (which led to his death) in 1918, his first words were “Fetch Midi” (his name for Emily).

This incredibly beautiful painting, at 180cm x 180cm, shows their intense love transporting them into their own world, oblivious of their surroundings. The woman, beautiful, serene and passive, like most women in Klimt’s work, softly touches the hand that is embracing her so lovingly. This painting is unlike his many erotic drawings and paintings of couples; the embrace is much more loving than overtly sensual.

The Kiss (Lovers), Gustav Klimt, oil and gold leaf on canvas, 1907–1908


Written by Lauren Ottaway

Managing stress through mindfulness and art therapy

A workshop for living

There are different types of stress that can affect the body in profound ways. Mindfulness, which has long been practised in the East, is making a positive impact on the Western world by helping us stop and tune into our body. Our lives are increasingly jam-packed, with many people feeling like they are chasing their life, rather than living it. It doesn’t have to be like this! This is where mindfulness and art therapy play an important role.

Through the creative process, we will look at where you are now and explore new insights and strategies for living. These art processes give you a chance to experiment with changes you may like to make in 2018 before trying them out in real life.

Sometimes we may really want to try something new, but there are blocks or things stopping us from trying (fear, anxiety, perfectionism, money); the art therapy can look at these and help problem solve so you can move forward if you choose to.

Art therapy is for self-exploration, as no-one else can interpret your artwork; only you know what you think and feel and express through the art. There is the opportunity to share and gain new understanding through the verbal process if you choose to.

No artistic ability is needed as the art is an expression of your thoughts and feelings through colour, shapes and symbols using various art mediums. Some of the mediums we will use are collage, acrylic paints, and pastels.

Join us and learn the benefits that mindfulness can have on your everyday life.

Workshop details

  • Dates: Saturdays, 24-Feb
  • Location: Enderby Studio, 314 Church Street, Richmond
  • Time: 1:00pm – 4:00pm
  • Materials: All materials included
  • Course fee: $114 incl. GST
  • Enrolments: https://melbourneartclass.com/art-therapy/

An open letter to Australia.

Dearest Australia,

This Australia Day I am going draw your landscape.

I’m not trying to make a political statement here, nor deny the significance and the impact of Australia day being on January 26th. On that point, I’ll just give my opinion and get it out of the way; I believe that the celebration of “all the things we love about Australia”* on the date of January 26th, is not going to enable all Australians to celebrate, no matter how much we would like them to. Once you understand the trauma from colonisation, you understand.

You will have to excuse my excesses with opinion and I should clarify that I have seen over four decades of life with you, Australia, in which time you have changed and so have I. I have loved you and at times have left you, but I remain utterly convinced that I belong to you.

I grew up as an Italian immigrant boy in country Victoria, speaking only Italian until I went to school. My mother did her best to connect me to you Australia, her new land. I remember when I was little, her encouraging me to collect images of the royals and paste them in a scrapbook. But it was not the royals, or when you were settled by Europeans, or even how big a figure Prime Minister Malcolm Fraser played in my father’s political narrative that formed my sense of belonging to you. OK, being invited to Canberra at the age of twelve to see Malcolm Fraser launch a book of Australian children’s cartoons, which included my cartoon, did have some impact on my sense of belonging, I admit, but now I am name dropping.

My little cartoon, in the wake of an Australian meat substitution scandal

It was the way you embraced my mother that first gave me a sense of belonging. My mother, taking my newborn sister to the health nurse when I was seven was the first time I remember feeling cared for by you. I think somewhere in my mind, I was aware that my mother had lost four siblings during their childhood, when growing up in Sicily. It seemed like people here in Australia, checked my sister at the health clinic, because they cared. My mother immigrated here as a young woman because her work as a seamstress in her Sicilian town would often go unpaid. She told me that after she began working for Zara Holt, Harold’s wife who ran a fashion label out of Toorak, she was delighted to receive a regular payslip. Growing up in your schools, or getting work often spoke of fairness and equity to me. Despite what I sometimes have perceived as a lack of empathy, I have generally experienced your laws and administration as fair. (I won’t mention much about your failings here, as I too have a responsibility to fix these.)

In primary school they taught us songs like ‘Kookaburra’ and read Dorothea Mackellar’s, ‘My Country’. I cannot forget her words or the images they evoked. Later your painters filled my mind with images of the bush. Tom Roberts, Frederick McCubbin and Arthur Streeton painted at Mentone, near where over a century later I lived and spent the morning of my wedding day swimming alone. I have flown over your incomprehensible distances, driven through you and stood at the edge of the world where the Nullarboor Plain meets the Indian ocean. I have ridden my bicycle across you like Sydney Nolan whose work told me that I could feel irrational in the face of your space. Then there’s Fred Williams, what can I say; his work told me I could be a painter and that I could paint the landscape again. Albert Tucker, who I met in the ‘bargain basement’ of Myer told me to keep painting, ‘paint, paint, paint’, he said. Oh, and Gordon Bennett who spoke of silence through his work and his life, and has now fallen silent. It is not just the space you have to be aware of here, but watch for the silence also.

Marco Corsini, Where I stand, 2010, oil on canvas, 100 cm. x 100 cm. Private collection

Your harshness, your heat, Australia, your vague horizons. My memory soaked with the landscape I grew up within. After seeing his father go broke growing tobacco on the harsh ground of Eldorado, my father retreated into town to work as a diesel mechanic, but many weekends and even some weeknights were spent on my families’ tobacco farms, where, he really wanted to be. He didn’t say much, but he once mentioned what it was like to be up through the night running the irrigation for the tobacco. He mentioned the stars. It must have looked like a William Robinson night sky. I worked on the land seasonally from the age of twelve; tobacco, hoe rasping dry earth and the end of the row quivering in the distance. Later, graduating to fruit picking and eventually to working for the state power company, all in the same district. I now count myself very fortunate that I was able to be so immersed in your land.

Your space and your silence. I am seeking the consciousness of Midnight Oil to rage for your heart and to echo your haunting beauty like young Iva Davies’, ‘Great Southern Land’. I belong to you Australia; I have to admit, I don’t think I completely understand you, but as I draw, I will try to.

Written by Marco Corsini

* https://www.australiaday.org.au/about-australia-day/

Seeing but seeing.

André who has been attending my Studio Art class this term spent an entire session drawing a Protea. A charming older man who is always brimming with encouraging and engaging energy; he turned to me and exclaimed in his beautiful French accent, ‘I see, but I don’t see.’ For he had been drawing the complex flower for about two hours, only to come to the realisation that after drawing what he thought he had seen, he found himself coming back to see that what he had drawn didn’t really correspond with a deeper understanding he was gaining of the flower.

I had understood what he meant. After all, my own journey as an artist and in many respects as a person has been one of seeing, only to realise what I thought I saw was not the actual reality, but an approximate reality. I’m sure we can all relate to this.

After having thought about the comment he had made, I raised the topic at our next class. André responded by describing his own journey of realising how preconceived notions can get in the way of real perception. He said he had realized this when undertaking studies in philosophy. He spoke of his realisation that to understand what one is looking at, one has to become, in his words, ‘nothing’. I took this to mean that one has to suspend all judgement. It almost seems a little absurd that one would have to suspend judgment when encountering something as simple as a flower. But even in encountering a Protea, to have to quieten ourselves and observe, then observe again, we realize that we really don’t have the capacity to comprehend what is ultimately infinite in its nature. With the perceiving of all things, especially other people, we comprehend but we cannot ever fully grasp.

André, pencil on paper, 2017

Above: André’s drawing of the Protea on the left which he theatrically signed off at the bottom announcing, ‘Remember that name’.

The conversation with André reminded me of some comments a friend who works as a counsellor made to me recently. He said that the most powerful thing anyone can do for somebody who is seeking counsel is to listen without judgement. According to my friend, this is very difficult for most of us to do. I have since been trying to suspend judgement and am resisting the habit I have of giving advice when in conversations. I’ve resisted the urge to judge what was being said, included asking leading questions based on my own assumptions and internal reactions. I would have to say that to be listened to seems to be helpful for other people, so I have tried it again and again. Perhaps making art stems from the desire to be heard with the process of manipulating materials giving artists, for a period, the ability to speak without being interrupted. What does all this say about us, this hunger to be heard, to be understood?

The courses and workshops we teach focus on the fundamentals of art practice. Interestingly in an age where there is a multiplicity of art practices, most people that come to MAC want to draw and paint. Most people have tried and are seeking to deepen their understanding of these art disciplines. We live with abundant possibilities available to us, including almost infinite access to images, yet for many of us there stirs within us a desire to do something as simple as draw. Perhaps this shouldn’t be a surprise; drawing is one of the few key ways in which we encounter the world and translate it. Drawing, mathematics, language, and music are some key ways in which we encounter, understand and manipulate the world. Drawing is the most direct way of perceiving the world in a spatial way, so we shouldn’t be surprised at its popularity. Perhaps, we should be asking instead why we dismiss drawing so soon after early childhood, when it is so fundamental to perception. By focusing on the foundational aspects of drawing and painting, I’ve been able to appreciate that skills we once presumed were gifts are actually very similar to mathematics, or music, or language, in that they can be learnt through good training.

André’s declaration of seeing but not seeing indicates that at the heart of good training in drawing and painting is the setting aside of all assumptions. To start with, setting aside self-judgement about our ability to draw or paint. Then setting aside of other assumptions about the subject we are encountering. Often, we have spent a lifetime representing our subject using a formula which has more to do with the iconographic type of language than real perception. Think here of ancient Egyptian hieroglyphics. So much of how we teach centres upon introducing tools and techniques that enable people to see rather than reverting to a set visual language.

We see this setting aside of assumptions in great achievements such as in the architecture of Antoni Gaudi. I recently had the opportunity to return to see the Sagrada Famiglia Basilica in Barcelona. Designed by Gaudi, it has been under construction since 1882. He oversaw its construction from 1883 until his death in 1926. It quite literally is the fruit of a lifetime of dedication and study, encapsulating a vision which is unlike any other. Nothing can describe this Basilica adequately; the scale and intensity of a lifetime’s work condensed into one massive sacred building. I have never come close to tears in front of a building but this one caught me unawares. Gaudi not only redefined the aesthetics of architecture by studying nature and carrying across many organic aspects, he redefined the very mechanical nature of construction with that same study. The brilliance of the Sagrada Famiglia is that it not only looks organic, it is in many ways structurally organic, its engineering being based upon the structures Gaudi saw in nature.

Columns from the Sagrada Famiglia which contain within them several different mechanical elements which are copied directly from nature.

An experience of great art is an experience of seeing, of seeing reality, often all at once, as an intense surge of truth. And it is, exhilarating. Whilst we perceive the inherent fidelity almost instantaneously, it has been for the artist, a lifetime’s journey in learning to see and subsequently translate. We as the viewer are struck by the distilled truthfulness which has been translated from long experience and work. I think this is what drives me as an artist. It is the quest for the unreachable infinite which received one grain at a time through labour, then imbues all things with meaning. If a Protea can be infinite, complex and beautiful, then how much more then, our lives.

Written by Marco Corsini

Inside Marco’s Drawing in Nature class

Marco normally ventures out into the bush to draw and paint solo. However, he has been very generous this year and has given us the opportunity to draw under his tutelage in the environment which inspires him the most: nature. Take a look at his first class and the wonderful work they produced.

Marco will be running another 5-week course in February and also a speciality workshop – Drawing the Australian Landscape – over the Australia Day weekend


Alyssa DN copy
Alyssa, pencil on paper
Drawing along the Yarra in Kew
Don’s drawing
Don’s drawing (close-up)

Students’ work from our Abstract Painting Workshop

Marco ran an Abstract Painting Course over the long weekend.

Over seven hours, students explored colour theory, conceptual elements, tone, colour and composition in an artwork.

Students were given a number of ways to approach abstraction by looking for compositional ideas and manipulate shapes and forms. They began by creating collages using images from magazines, cut up paper, or by drawing from life using Still Life. These collages were then used to create the composition on their canvas.

This course provided a unique opportunity to explore abstraction and different compositional elements of an artwork. Take a look below at the incredible work that was produced during the workshop!

Below are the initial abstract concepts:

And here are the final works:

If you would like to join our next Abstract Painting Workshop, visit our course page and join our waiting list!