Roi A. Shapira


June 16th – 30th, 2014

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This 2-week session of observational painting and drawing is built upon emphasizing the basics of pictorial language in landscape and still life.  Students at various levels of accomplishment are welcome – beginning students and practicing artists seeking to research the fundamental idea of painting and drawing at its core and those wishing to deepen their basic or advanced technique level.

The vast wealth of Italian art history and the famed landscape surrounding Civita Castellana will serve as our inspiration and backdrop.

The Course:

Rather than following a prescribed approach, we will address the issues raised in the works.  The emphasis will always be on sorting through visual experience and contending with the dual challenge of depiction and composition – as the title of the course implies.  Through repeated exposure and practice, students will refine their understanding of the nature of perception and the importance of seeing color relationships, tonal value relationships, volume in this context, and geometry in drawing and painting.

We will consider basic pictorial and compositional ideas.  What makes a good painting?  Beyond composition – “the spirit of art” and “the painter’s eye”.  What else contributes to a good work of art?  What is technique and what do we mean by “the absence of technique” in the practice of painting and drawing?  We will look at and discuss images of work produced by recognized masters of the genre, analyzing factors involved in the creation of these revered paintings.

Mornings of landscape and still life will be followed by afternoons free for independent work, most likely centered around the celebrated landscape of Civita Castellana. One-on-one consultations and critiques will be available upon request in the afternoons.  We will have the use of a studio classroom for our sessions for those who wish to work indoors.

A Subtle Note for Newcomers:

Please do not be intimidated by the amount of words describing this course.  Painting and drawing will always be based primarily on the acts of seeing and doing. In order to paint and draw words will never suffice.  “Painting is basically drawing with colors.”


Monday-Wednesday-Friday:  4-hour morning session.

Lunch break

Afternoons:  free for independent work or pre-scheduled consultation.

Included in this Course:

Thursdays we will join all participants in JSS in Civita for an exciting bus excursion  one of Italy’s important  art centers.  Students are welcome to sit in on Master Class critiques where they can see Master Class student work and listen to discussion, as well as attend weekly faculty and resident artist slide lectures.  Monday evenings we will join the entire JSS in Civita group for a communal meal at one of the local restaurants.  Students will be part of the exciting JSS in Civita artistic community, engaging in the exchange of ideas and sharing of work which makes this experience so uniquely stimulating.

You are welcome to mail me with any questions at:

Click here to download materials list.

For course prices see TUITION & FEES in the left hand menu.

Click here to apply