The Fundamentals of Painting from Life

August 4th-August 18th, 2014

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This class will focus on the creation of what Titian called “poesie:” brief poems of light describing what has been seen and experienced. Working in the morning from the model and in the afternoon in the landscape, the class will cover both the nuts and bolts of mixing, using, and caring for oil painting materials as well as harmonic decisions of composition, value, color statement and form. By separating concepts, studying them independently, re-constructing and combining them, students will acquire an informed perception of the visual experience, cultivating the ability to utilize objective analysis towards the creation of unique and personal work.

During the first week, concepts of accuracy in drawing through the tools of linear perspective will be applied to both the live model and our mind’s understanding of the landscape. Students will be introduced to different approaches through simplified exercise and demonstrations in color, value, and shape. This is a comfortable learning space for all ability levels.

Students will have time, in an atmosphere seeping with history and culture, to synthesize ideas experienced in the field and reinterpret them individually. An aim of the class will be to foster dialogue, and the student will leave with a greater ability to articulate critique and solve issues within a painting. Our course will be enriched by travel to Rome and other excursions, fostering an immersive, enjoyable experience and a contemporary awareness for the ruins of classical space and thought.

Schedule: The class will meet Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday in the morning to work form the model. After a lunch/nap/critique break, the class will resume in the landscape during the afternoon. The group will travel on the train to Rome and participate in all excursions, faculty talks and residency critiques.


  • Students will understand both direct and indirect approaches to painting.
  • Students will be introduced to classical techniques alongside contemporary dialogue. As the class progresses, students will learn to use or abandon these methods as necessary.
  • Students will be exposed to a variety of styles within Italian art.
  • Students will finish the class with strategies to approach the painting process and a larger vocabulary to articulate critique.

Learning outcomes:

  • Students will identity and solve formal and conceptual problems within their work.
  • Students will be capable of a more enriched viewpoint of Italian Art.
  • Students will begin to consider how their personal work fits into a greater dialogue.
  • Students will learn about the use and care of materials
  • Students will expand and enrich their existing portfolio of work.

Click here to download materials list.

Click here to apply.

For more details please email me at