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LESSON PLANS SPRING TERM 2024 (1st half) Lesson 3: A very negotiable medium.

In this lesson I'm asking my students to work one more session with a small still-life but this time to use a medium with which they can negotiate the image to its conclusion (i.e. the ability to put light paint on dark, which isn't possible with watercolour alone). Above, over two hours I worked with acrylic paint to create this painting. I want to stress that the painting can be worked even while the paint is still wet!

Spring Term 1st half 2024 – Lesson 3. A very negotiable medium with which to paint (or pastel) a still life.


·         Choose your medium (acrylic, oils, pastels, mixed media inc. watercolours&pastel etc.)

·         You can set out a new still life or work from lesson 1’s drawing.

·         If using acrylics or oils, paint your canvas/paper a colour (your choice of colour). Even before this layer is dry, start to negotiate your image very loosely. Move the paint around to create the early shapes which will become the final shapes.

·         Make the changes which become clearly needed as you work. The further on you get with the painting, the smaller the changes become.

·         If using pastel, use your pastels on their sides and block the main shapes, including and as importantly, the in-between shapes. Look for larger simpler and more loosely placed shapes to start with. Gradually you’ll understand the negotiations to be made and the corrections corrected. Leave your lightest tones until last, picking up the highlights and very light shapes with a white or nearly white pastel at the end.

·         If using mixed media, think about how you’re planning to put the different media together. Which will come first? How will one medium negotiate with, and correct another medium?

Next lesson: Drawing with pencils. Bring sketch books, a good selection of pencils (2B to 8B) and a good eraser.


About this site...
I am an art teacher living and working in Dorset.  I have taught for the Adult Education Service and the University of Bath, plus some supply teaching in my local schools but now I run all my classes and courses privately. This site is intended as an addition to my teaching, primarily for any student who in the week misses a class and wants to catch up.
The lessons are also available for any one anywhere who would like some ideas on what to teach, what to learn or is just interested in seeing what we do.
I'm afraid I won't be able to answer emails asking for comments on anyone's work (other than for currently enrolled students).
I teach three weekly art classes in halls in and around Blandford in Dorset and every six weeks or so I run a Sunday workshop in a village hall on the outskirts of Blandford. I also run a vibrant five-day summer school.. Other than that I spend every available moment in my studio or drawing and painting elsewhere.
I studied for four years at The Slade School of Fine Art where I was awarded The Slade Prize on graduation. I went on to travel and study further finally doing a P.G.C.E at Exeter University with Ted Wragg as my mentor. It was a wonderful year of education which set me in good stead for my years of teaching since then.



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