The CCE visual arts program offers interactive courses for the budding to experienced artists, from classic to modern techniques, in the areas of: photography, drawing, painting, woodwork, steelwork, ceramics, textiles and more.

Thu 25 Jul 2019 - Thu 24 Oct 2019

13:30 - 16:30

12 Sessions
10 spots remaining.

Teacher: Michael Winters

This course will look at our domestic world. A coffee to start the day, a bit of toast, out the door, kids to school then work. Home again rustling up a meal, dishes to do, then slump in front of the telly. Then, the weekend, gardening, washing the car & a myriad of other things.

To help us artistically explore our domestic world we will look at the 2 English artists Stanley Spencer & Anthony Green. Both these artists expressed in much of their work the ordinary almost humdrum events of a day around the house. However, both artists applied great creative skills to their work, in Spencer, we see family members, mum, dad & the kids in a tight embrace, all wearing heavily patterned clothing. With both the patterned clothing & his rhythmic distortion of the embrace, we see paintings that are unique in their description of domestic life.

Green also offers us a very unique description of life around the house, he goes one step further in some of his work, in these works, the vantage point he uses, is above the room looking down on what is happening, creating the most unique perspective in what he is artistically allowing us to see in his domestic world.

So, with these 2 artists as “creative role models” will artistically explore “A Day Around The House” both through a series of compositional drawings & from these a series of paintings will be undertaken.

Wed 17 Jul 2019 - Wed 21 Aug 2019

18:30 - 21:30

6 Sessions
14 spots remaining.

Learn about all aspects of watercolour technique – colour mixes, intensity and washes, composition and drawing – by creating small, simple paintings. Experiment with materials and the medium, in this fun and easy going class.

Watercolour is a lifelong creative medium, as you can find endless new ways to use it. The perplexities of watercolour are best understood by knowing its fundamentals. The most captivating and intricate watercolour is composed of few simple techniques.

With many demonstrations and hands-on exercises, you will gain a wider appreciation and understanding of the medium of watercolour which will help you build your confidence to proceed to the next level. Following the fundamental skills you will learn four critical aspects of the watercolourist: Planning, Drawing, Timing and incorporating Figures into Landscapes.

During each session, a small painting will be completed. You will be guided through a demonstration of painting techniques. An explanation will be given of the first washes and as these dry, you will attempt you own first washes. The tutor then continues to demonstrate the painting, stopping at each stage allowing you to catch up and provide help.

Course outline

  • Topic1: Introduction to Watercolour Materials
  • Topic 2: Properties of Colour
  • Topic 3: Washes
  • Topic 4: Tonal Values
  • Topic 5: Watercolour Techniques
  • Topic 6: Planning and Design

Learning outcomes

At the end of this course,  you should:

  • Become familiar with the medium and watercolour techniques
  • Be able to plan an approach and method to complete a painting
  • Learn different subjects
  • Create fresh and lively paintings
  • Obtain a series of paintings at the end of the course.

Who should enrol

The beginner watercolourist.


For those not already equipped with their own kit, we make the following suggestions:  Purchase "artist quality" pigments as cheap paints have much less intensity or colour and you end up using more paint.


  • At least one of each of the bright primary colours of red, yellow and blue (eg permanent crimson or bright red, cad yellow or gamboge, cobalt or ultramarine)
  • At least two of more earth colours, especially Venetian (or light Indian), red, raw sienna and burnt sienna


  • Rag paper (cotton derived and acid-free) is a must - the tougher the better. Best values is to buy full-size sheets (not blocks or pads)
  • If you have 300gsm paper, a 1/4 or 1/8 sheet can be edge-taped to a board using a good quality masking tape such as sellotape
  • Bring along loose 1/4 sheets if you wish to copy any drawings (tracing over a light box)
  • Purchase both rough and smooth paper as this will provide for the different paintings you will create


  • You need large soft brushes - a 2" goat hair hake and a sharp no. 12
  • A range of other brushes will be available for you to use
  • If you wish to purchase further brushes, the longer the hair the better as it holds more paint


  • The larger the palette the better. Square shapes with many compartments are ideal. A few spares will be available until you are able to purchase your own

Thu 25 Jul 2019 - Thu 05 Sep 2019

18:30 - 21:30

7 Sessions
13 spots remaining.

Presenter: John Vance

Learn different oil painting techniques and concepts, including colour mixing and composition while exploring a range of themes such as still life, landscape and portrait painting as you’re exposed to works of artists from the 19th, 20th and 21st centuries.

Course outline

  • Topic 1: General introduction: you will be introduced to the important technical information of oil painting and the relevant drawing techniques. You will work on still life painting teaching important techniques of painting models and learning to develop accuracy
  • Topic 2: Still life and colour: you will once again work on a still life project, but this time focussing on colour. You will learn to understand tertiary colour and how to colour match.
  • Topic 3: Landscape painting: you will learn about and to paint 'alla prima'. You will learn to develop an understanding of how colours mix naturally when painting onto a wet ground. You will also discover to paint quickly without worrying about accuracy and preliminary drawing.
  • Topic 4: Portrait painting: you will paint directly from a model learning the develop the techniques of Stanley Spencer and Lucien Freud. You will be shown how to mix flesh tones and colour match against the model. Different approaches to composition will be discussed.

Learning outcomes

At the end of this course, students should:

  • understand key technical aspects of oil painting including: modelling paint, value and saturation, colour matching, types of mediums, painting surfaces, types of brushes and storing paint
  • understand the different ways in which oil paint can be applied including: painting in sections, painting 'alla prima', repainting sections of a painting once those sections are dry
  • understand key aspects of art theory including:
    • the concept of context - discussing the work of Carl Andre and Eduard Manet
    • the idea of modernism and how it was put visually into practice by a range of painters form the 19th and 20thC's.
    • the subjective nature of taste and how this is shaped by different external influences.

Who should enrol

This course is open to beginners who want to learn oil painting.

Materials List

Please bring the following items along to the class on your first night: 

  • colours: You can use either conventional oil paint or water mixable oil paint - magenta (rose madder for conventional oil paint or permanent rose for water mixable oil paint), pthalo blue, lemon yellow, titanium or zinc white and any series 1 black. It is important that you buy the right type of magenta, otherwise you will not be able to mix colours accurately. It is recommend you get the Rowney Georgian Rose Madder
  • brushes: no need to purchase any for the 1st class
  • equipment: alfoil, rags, apron, HB pencil, eraser, pencil sharpener, A3 oil sketch paper

Thu 25 Jul 2019 - Thu 24 Oct 2019

09:30 - 12:30

12 Sessions
2 spots remaining.

Teacher: Michael Winters

Landscape, the most painted of all subjects! In this class, we will look at 3 artists who have painted the landscape in the most diverse of ways.

Picasso gave us “Cubism”, where he took form, fractured it & then reassembled it into abstract forms & shapes. Using his “creative principals” we will do this with the landscape.

Cubism saw the landscape as a series of geometric forms, cones, spheres, cylinders & triangles. Using this principle, we do a series of drawings to experiment with the idea, then produce paintings based on the drawings.

In the case of Derain (as with his contemporary, Matisse) powerful, emotional & vibrant colour was at the base of his treatment of landscape. We will look at his work to understand how he employed such heightened colours & then do a series of small paintings & from these select one work to further develop into a larger work.

With Clarice Beckett, we see her using the principal of “Tonal Realism” The main exponent of this was Max Meldrum& Beckett was a student of his. Tonal realism, reduces everything to the tonal sensation of light & dark, the edges a blurred & a sense the vague suggestion of form is paramount. Beckett, produced work that was both atmospheric & sensitive. We will undertake a series of charcoal drawings, in which we will “suggest” form rather than being overly descriptive. From these drawings, will do 2 large paintings.

So, the aim of the class is to produce work inspired by the 3 artists & to show students can see how “creatively diverse” landscape painting can be.

Thu 01 Aug 2019 - Thu 05 Sep 2019

18:30 - 21:30

6 Sessions
14 spots remaining.

If you have worked with watercolours and enjoy the challenge of producing loose, bold and free watercolours, then this is for you. Learn how to create depth, incorporate figures, connect shapes, and control edges as you discover how to exploit the medium to create wonderful atmospheric effects such as mists, rain and fog.

Course outline

These workshops will suit students who have been exposed to the medium of watercolour and want to extend their knowledge to the next level.  If you enjoy the challenge of producing loose, bold and free watercolours, then this is for you. Each week we will complete a painting from start to finish. The course will begin with simple subjects and proceed to more challenging subjects. Each week students will be taken through the stages of design, drawing and painting in an easy follow step-by-step process. We will be tackling a wide variety of subjects from rural landscapes, urban cityscapes to coastal seascapes.

Chan will dispel myths in watercolour and share his valuable insights and experiences. Each student will receive personal attention and encouragement.

Topic covered may include: 

  • Topic 1: Beach Scene. Paint a simple beach scene, exploiting the medium of watercolour using wet-into-wet technique using a limited palette.  We’ll incorporate a few figures to this subject to add vitality and energy.
  • Topic 2: Panoramic Landscape. Tackle the challenge of painting a panoramic Australian landscape.  The success of this painting will be based on the most important technique in watercolour, the graded wash. The controlling the consistency of water to paint and gravity washes will be discussed and demonstrated in detail.
  • Topic 3: Snow Scene. Paint a snow scene, by using the technique of negative painting, leaving the white of the paper and painting around to create the mid and dark tones.
  • Topic 4:  Boat Scene. Boats and water are excellent subjects for portraying the subtleties in watercolour. We will discuss how to create depth in water and techniques in anchoring boats to water surfaces. The demonstration will also cover how to create reflections in water.
  • Topic 5: Misty Gum Trees. Watercolour is best exploited in creating atmospheric effects. We will paint a misty landscape with gum trees using the wet-into-wet technique using a paper that is pre-wetted with water. As the paper dries we will work from the background to the foreground by exploiting various edge controls from soft uncontrolled, soft controlled to hard edges.
  • Topic 6: Streetscape. We’ll tackle an urban streetscape with a single point perspective incorporating cars and figures. We’ll learn how to observe proportions by using constructive lines and gestured mark makings to suggest moving cars and figures.
  • Topic 7: Waterlilies. We will learn how to paint a scene containing waterlilies on still water. A full demonstration will include how to simplify a complex scene and achieve a fresh spontaneous looking painting using two washes.
  • Topic 8: Sky and Cloud Scene. Painting clouds in watercolour can be most enjoyable and rewarding.  We will learn how to paint various types of clouds using all the techniques learnt so far. The translucency of the clouds can be best expressed in subtle washes using the damp paper.
  • Topic 9: Rainy Scene A wet rainy scene can provide the watercolour artist with excellent subject matter.  Heavy atmospheric scenes such as rain suppress colour and introduce subtle tonal ranges. We will tackle the challenge of painting a rainy scene using the various stages of wetness of the paper from wet, moist, damp to dry.
  • Topic 10: Render the Human figure in watercolour. The final week we will paint a nude study in watercolour. We’ll discuss various colour mixes for producing different types of skin complexions. How to use alternating grades of warm and cool colours in revealing the human figure in watercolour. A photo reference will be provided.

Learning outcomes

By the end of this course, you should walk away with a sound understanding of the medium of watercolour and gain practical insights into the intuitive use of watercolour to express yourself.

Who should enrol

This course is best suited to intermediate to advanced students.

Course materials

Please bring the following materials with you to your first class:

Paper: Saunders Waterford 300gsm rough surface or Arches 300gsm rough or medium texture.

Brushes: Medium size squirrel mop brush with a sharp point (Size 8 to 12). A good quality brush will hold lot of pigment and present a sharp point when fully loaded. Artist quality brushes will make a significant difference to your work

  • Essential brushes
    • Medium Size squirrel hair or natural hair Mop brush ( Size 8 to 12)
    • Size 12 round Brush with sharp point (Synthetic or Natural hair)
    • Size 8 Round with sharp point (Synthetic or Natural hair)
    • Size 0 or 1 Rigger (Synthetic)
  • Extra brushes (optional)
    • Size 6 Dagger, also known as a "sword brush" (natural hair)
    • 1" inch flat brush (synthetic)
    • 2" inch hake (natural hair)
No dates are currently scheduled.

Teacher: Kirrily Humphries

Learn the techniques of contemporary watercolour! This class presents a broad range of subjects and techniques aimed to build your proficiency and confidence with watercolour through a variety of projects including still life, portrait and landscape subjects. Classes will cover a broad range of watercolour techniques with reference to appropriate contemporary and historical artists.

Each week you will be presented with a new approach to watercolour, covering everything from bold loose applications, to highly detailed miniatures and monotypes.

Gain confidence in watercolour, while receiving practical guidance that responds to your interests and encourages the development of a personal painting language.

Course outline

  • Week 1: Introduction to Materials and Colour Theory (Still Life)
  • Week 2: Colour Mixing, Washes and Tonal Values (Urban Landscape)
  • Week 3: Composition, Drawing Skills and Painting from Life (Still Life)
  • Week 4: Brush Techniques and Photographic Technologies (Miniature Painting)
  • Week 5: Mixing Skin Tones and Portrait Painting (Portrait)
  • Week 6: Experimental techniques (Abstraction and Monotype)

Learning outcomes

At the completion of this course you should:

  • have an expanded knowledge of watercolour materials, techniques and processes
  • have a greater appreciation of contemporary watercolour artists and their historical contexts
  • have increased confidence to produce their own works independently
  • have greater proficiency in colour mixing, building compositions, establishing tonal values and drawing from life.

Who should enrol

This course is open to all skill levels.



Artist quality pigments are preferable, otherwise good quality student pigments are okay (e.g. Winsor & Newton Cotman). I also recommend watercolour tubes over pans as these will be more versatile.

  • Warm (Cadmium Yellow) and cool (Cadmium Lemon) yellows
  • Warm (Cadmium Red) and cool (Permanent Alizarin Crimson) reds
  • Warm (Ultramarine) and cool (Cerulean) blues
  • Earthy hues such as Raw Sienna, Raw Umber, Burnt Sienna and Burnt Umber


  • A range of soft watercolour brushes, mostly rounds and a few flat - natural fibres are best, followed by good quality synthetics
  • One small round brush with a fine point


  • Five sheets of A3 cotton rag watercolour paper - 140lb/300gsm or heavier (rough and hot press (smooth))


  • Lead pencils, sharpener, ruler, eraser, watercolour pencil (pale blue or grey)
  • Paper towel
  • Reusable water container
  • Reusable or disposable palette
  • Spray bottle