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 30 Aug 2018 - Thu 25 Oct 2018

18:30 - 21:30

7 Sessions
9 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 26 Jul 2018 - Thu 30 Aug 2018

18:30 - 21:30

6 Sessions
12 spots remaining.

Teacher - Chan Dissanayake

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

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)

Wed 25 Jul 2018 - Wed 29 Aug 2018

18:30 - 21:30

6 Sessions
13 spots remaining.

Teacher - Chan Dissanayake

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.

Thu 26 Jul 2018 - Thu 13 Sep 2018

18:30 - 21:30

7 Sessions
14 spots remaining.

Presenter: Malcolm Utley

Extend your love of painting in this course set to take your painting skills to the next level. After selecting a project and medium, a set of exercises will challenge your perception and techniques to help discover the artist within.

Course outline

  • Developing your chosen subject matter will form the basis of learning. 
  • Student reflections and revelations are shared with the group as an exciting way of learning from each other.
  • Discussions on art theory and perception.
  • Expand and refine your unique way of mark making, and their ability to manage hue, value, tints, shades and saturation.
  • Develop compositional skills.
  • Develop the conceptual underpinning of your art.

Learning outcomes

At the end of this course, you should have expanded your existing painting skills and have a greater understanding where to focus your painting practice.

Who should enrol

This course is suitable for all levels and anyone interested in developing their painting skills and knowledge in a studio environment of like-minded artists.