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How to Oil Paint Basics: Still Life Painting

Adria W.
Average rating:4.9Number of reviews:(316)
In this semester art course, young artists will learn the fundamentals of oil painting, including brushstrokes and mark-making skills, basic color theory, color mixing and matching, various oil painting techniques, composition and more!

Class experience

  • Lesson 1: Materials, Set-Up, Clean-up o Know what supplies are needed to do oil painting o Know how to read a paint tube o Know the different shapes and sizes of brushes o Know what oil paint is and how it is made o Know how to set-up a proper painting place o Know how to clean up area Lesson 2: Drawing Fundamentals o Understand how drawing is an important part of painting o Know 5 different ways to vary line o Practice observational skills o Practice line drawing skills o Know how to draw simple forms (cylinders, boxes, spheres) o Learn how to shade objects o Practice basic drawing skills through an object study Lesson 3: Basic Brushstrokes & Mark-Making o Review how to read a paint tube o Review brush shapes o Review proper workspace set-up and clean-up o Learn how to create nine different brush strokes including: flat stroke, edge of brush stroke, impasto, flip-flop, stipple, dry brush, scumbling, inky strokes, and sgraffito o Learn how to use a palette knife o Create a reference sheet for different brushstrokes Lesson 4: Basic Color Theory & Palette Set-up o Review & become familiar with our paint colors and their CIN’s o Learn to read a color wheel o Learn important color vocabulary, such as hue, chroma, value, gamut, primary, secondary, tertiary, warm, and cool o Set up a Split-Primary palette o Paint with a color family Lesson 5: Color Mixing Strategies o Review how to set up a split-primary palette o Review how to read a color wheel o Learn how to use a color wheel to predict what will happen when mixing colors o Paint a color wheel o Learn to visualize the value of a color o Practice changing value of a color without changing chroma o Create seven value scales with at least six values Lesson 6: Mixing Blacks, Changing Chroma, Matching Colors o Review how to set up a Split Primary Color Palette o Review how to read a color wheel o Learn to “Find, Match, Add” to mix colors while changing chroma, without changing value o Find, Match, Add at least four colors o Learn to mix interesting grays and blacks o Match at least four colors of objects Lesson 7: Macro-Abstract Painting o Learn about macro-abstract painting o Learn four different oil painting techniques: glazing, underpainting, alla prima, and impasto o Paint four macro-abstract paintings using each different technique Lesson 8: Orange Painting o Paint a round form o Apply oil painting knowledge and techniques from previous lessons o Render painting with accuracy o Match colors of object o Include distinct shadows o Ensure painting has both “hard” and “soft” edges o Practice measuring proportions Lesson 9: Mug Painting o Paint cylindrical forms o Apply oil painting knowledge and techniques from previous lessons o Render painting with accuracy o Match colors of object o Include distinct shadows o Ensure painting has both “hard” and “soft” edges o Give distinction between the inside and outside of the vessel o Practice measuring proportions Lesson 10: Book Stack Painting o Paint boxy forms o Apply oil painting knowledge and techniques from previous lessons o Render painting with accuracy o Match colors of object o Include distinct shadows o Ensure painting has both “hard” and “soft” edges o Practice measuring proportions Lesson 11: Glass & Metal Objects o Paint objects with difficult textures Lesson 12: Basic Composition o Understand basic composition questions, orientation and frame (open v. closed) o Know the importance of “3” o Know the 8 elements of composition o Complete at least four composition sketches Lesson 13: Practice Still Life o Practice painting a still life o Be comfortable with the steps and process of oil painting Lessons 14 & 15: The Final Still Life o Complete a five object, themed still life
I am delighted to be able to offer classes that emphasize fine art techniques through the lens of observational drawing. Observational art is a method of learning to draw with three principles in mind: understanding of the subject, building looking skills, and practice of artistic technique. Through this method and practice, learners can draw anything. Completion of my courses will result in a learner who is engaged with art and understands basic art technique. Even students who are not aspiring artists have much to gain from drawing, including improvement of hand-eye coordination and hand dexterity skills.

Along with my bachelor’s degree in art history and studio art from a premier liberal arts institution in Ohio, I also have been teaching since 2016. My online teaching career began on Outschool in 2017. I have taught homeschoolers, unschoolers, and undergraduate students of all ages. My background in art history means that my classes are created with an understanding of historical precedence- I’m teaching what I know works! Many of my classes include examples of important artworks from masters for students to examine and learn skills from. In addition, my many years of teaching art have helped me curate concise and logical drawing curriculum that young artists can easily pick up and apply to their work. Every art class I teach hopes to provide learners with all the knowledge and support they need to grow as an artist.
Homework Offered
While I will not be assigning homework in this course, young artists may find that they need to spend time outside of class in order to complete their exercises and paintings. This will be entirely dependent on the speed at which the artist paints- everyone is different. But, it would be wise to set aside an hour or so each week to complete work and practice painting. After all, practice makes progress!
0 - 1 hours per week outside of class
Assessments Offered
To remove the stress of what is sometimes a very daunting course of study, your learners will not have tests, quizzes, or formal grades in the class. Instead, I utilize positive verbal critiques to provide feedback and encourage improvement. However, if grades are requested I will provide them via rubrics that will suggest a grade. Learners progress will be gauged by the completion of their assignments, execution of techniques, contributions in critique sessions, and their class presence (being on-time, listening when I am speaking, and how they communicate with peers).
Grades Offered
 5 files available upon enrollment
Oil painting is an expensive pursuit. While each of the materials purchased will likely last well beyond the scope of this course, the upfront cost may be intimidating. You can expect to spend between $60.00 - $100.00 USD on art supplies depending on what your young artist already has available, the quality and quantity of the items you purchase, and where you purchase them at. I strongly recommend looking for student grade materials, store brand materials, small or sample sizes, and investigating prices across stores to get the best prices. MATERIALS: Oil Paints - Tradtional or Water-Mixable/Soluble (~$35.00 - $50.00 USD) o Lemon Yellow Hue, PY3 o Cadmium Yellow, PY35 o Cadmium Red, PR108 o Alizarin Crimson, PR83 o Ultramarine Blue, PB29 o Phthalo Blue, PB15 o Phthalo Green, PG7 o Yellow Ochre, PY43 o Burnt Sienna, PR101 o Burnt Umber, PBr7 o Raw Sienna, PBr7 o Titanium White, PW6 o Optional other colors (purples, oranges, and warm greens make nice additions!) Suggested Synthetic or hogs hair/boars Bristle Brushes (~$8.00 -$15.00 USD) o Round 4 o Round 6 o Flat 6 o Filbert 4 o Mottler 8+ o Optional other shapes /sizes Mediums, if using traditional oil paint (~$10.00 USD) o Gamsol or other odorless mineral spirit AND o Refined linseed oil AND/OR o Solvent-Free Gel Mediums, if using water-mixable oils (~$5.00 USD) o Water o Solvent-Free Gel Surfaces o Pack of Oil Painting Paper (at least 7” x 10”) (~$10.00- $15.00 USD) o 2x Primed Canvas board (at least 8” x 8”) (~$5.00- $15.00 USD) Other Supplies o Graphite Pencils o Erasers o Drawing paper o Paint Palette (~$7.00 USD) o Palette Knives (~$5.00 USD) o Brush tank (~$10.00 USD) o Old fabric cloths and /or Paper towels o Surface Cleaner Optional Supplies o Paint Saver Keys o Jars for storing mediums o Palette Scraper/Razor o Gesso + Sandpaper (Only necessary if buying unprimed canvas) o Easel o Painter’s Tape Learners will receive several PDF's upon enrollment, including a syllabus with full lesson plans, an oil painting materials guide, worksheets, and a policy packet. How to Oil Paint Basics.pdf (263 KB) OilPaintingMaterialsGuide.pdf (211 KB) OilPaintingWksts.pdf (3 MB) PoliciesandRequirements2023.pdf (110 KB) Glossary2024.pdf (110 KB)
Joined April, 2018
Hello and welcome to my teacher profile!

My name is Adria, I am a life-long mixed-media artist with a bachelor’s in art history and studio art. I am an observational and free-hand artist. Observational art is an artistic process that emphasizes... 
Group Class


weekly or $450 for 15 classes
1x per week, 15 weeks
105 min

Live video meetings
Ages: 14-17
3-6 learners per class

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