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It’s More than Just Painting!

Discover the artist within you in small, inspirational and carefully structured classes.

Every single person has the ability to create art and under the guidance of a skilled and attentive teacher, your talent can flourish.

Master Artist Marcel Desbiens has years of experience teaching students to find their own artistic voice and to gain and strengthen their technical skills. Hear what past and current what our students say about us.

Our award-winning guest artists have courses and workshops for all skill levels in oil painting, acrylics, watercolour, drawing, pastels; and in different areas of interest such as clouds, skin texture, water, landscapes and so on. We also have private lessons for intensive training in any technical area you need.

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      • Foundations in Oils

        Anyone can paint if they are given the right instructions." - Marcel Desbiens, Master Artist and Principal Tutor

        If you have never picked up a paintbrush before, this course will give you the technical skills and knowledge to help fast track your painting process and produce stunning works of art of your own. All in a friendly and supportive environment.

        The Course has been designed by Marcel Desbiens and has been developed over the years by the team including Ai Shah and Catherine Aboud.

        All materials are included. All you need to do is turn up!

        What will I learn?

        • how to set up your work station to minimise mess and maximise your painting time
        • understand basic principal of colour mixing and paint consistency
        • learn how to control tone to create the optical illusion of reality
        • how to choose the right brushes and develop effective brush techniques
        • how to clean and care for your brushes
        • learn to paint in the traditional glazing techniques of the old masters

        Class sizes are kept to a maximum of 12 students so that you will receive personal attention.

        In each class, your tutor will give a step-by-step demonstration, and then it’s your turn for “hands – on” painting exercises. Each exercise builds on the previous one so that each week your skills and confidence will grow a little more.

        By the end of week 4 you will have created this!

        {image name:“Apple_StudentExample” align:“centre” caption:“Cinnamon Eacott, Foundation in Oils Student”}

        Who is this course suitable for?

        This foundation course is perfect for absolute beginners or for those who want to brush up on the fundamental techniques of oil painting. 90% of students who enrol in this course either have never picked up a paintbrush or have minimal painting experience. However, others who have painted before have also come along and found that they learned so much more about oil painting techniques.

        The Foundation in Oils course is a prerequisite for the Gain Confidence in Oils course.

        What do I need to bring?

        A notebook and pen is optional for note taking

        What is provided

        All the materials you will need for this course will be provided, including:
        • prepared gesso boards for painting exercises 
        • PDF booklet, packed with painting tips and tricks
        • all the paints and brushes you will need.
        • Access to reference photos to practice at home.
        • table, chairs, easels, aprons
        • tea, coffee and biscuits (bring your own mug)
        • a friendly and supportive environment
        • connection to the Brisbane Painting Classes art community.

        Receive a FREE GIFT PACK of 5 Schmincke professional quality oil colours!

        And if you would like to practise your new skills at home, we have Oil Painting Starter Kits available for purchase, which contain everything you need for creating your own painting set up at home, and save you the time and money of sourcing everything yourself.

        What Our Students Say About Foundations in Oils

        "A great art course! Highly recommended for beginners or those that want to learn more skills. I did the 8 week oil paining course and was surprised on the quality produced by the class (including myself : ). Marcel is a great teacher. Well paced and a good atmosphere. Paint on!"

        • Mark Allen Brisbane Painting Classes regular student

        {image name:“GalleryImage_FoundationsInOils” align:“centre” caption:“Images from previous Foundations In Oils Courses”}

      • Be Brave and Have Fun | Herman Pekel

        Join our world class award contemporary impressionist artist Herman Pekel.

        Unearth fresh and honest art inside yourself and learn to capture it with watercolour or acrylic.

        Herman Pekel, you will explore landscapes, seascapes and streetscapes and use a variety of watercolour techniques, to create an impressionist painting you never thought possible with watercolour.

        Workshops with Herman are inspiring and very productive. Expect to be challenged, to be brave, and to have fun!

        What will I learn?

        Herman will guide you through his step by step process – beginning with a fast foundation painting and ending with a range of final approach options that are easy to learn and thought provoking. Most importantly, Herman will work with you to articulate your own vision and find solutions to your own challenges.
        Herman will teach you to find originality in your own work and to get started with new ideas in a way that is fast and fun!

        Through demonstrations of various techniques and lots of individual instruction, you will learn about a range of topics including:
        • colour mixing
        • glazes
        • composition
        • drying time
        • thickness and edges.

        Who is this workshop suitable for?

        This workshop is suitable for people with basic knowledge in watercolour or acrylics.

        Ask our friendly team for advice if you are not sure if this workshop is for you.

        What do I need to bring?


        • Bring your lunch and snacks or you can purchase from cafes close by. We do have a fridge and microwave at the studio for your convenience.

        • Bring your painting gear and as many questions as you wish to ask.

        What is provided

        • tea, coffee and biscuits (please bring your own cup)
        • a friendly, supportive and encouraging learning environment
        • connection to the Brisbane Painting Classes art community

      • Landscape in Oils Demo | Herman Pekel

        About this event

        Be entertained with one of the world’s best landscape master painters, as he creates a landscape painting before your very eyes with his bold and confident brush strokes. Herman is an expressionist painter, a passionate painter and paints with energy and enthusiasm. He is a spontaneous and intuitive painter and has travelled all over the world with his exhibitions and painting workshops.

        “If in doubt of where to start, start with the focal point.” "Colour will never give you an image, but tone will."

        Who is this workshop suitable for?

        Everyone is welcome!

        What do I need to bring?

        Nothing at all.

        What is provided?

        • Cheese and wine included
        • a friendly, supportive and encouraging learning environment
        • connection to the Brisbane Painting Classes art community

        About the artist

        Herman Pekel was born to Dutch parents in Melbourne, Victoria in 1956. Herman was the winner of the Camberwell Rotary Watercolour prize in 1993 and was previously three times a finalist in Camberwell’s Travel Scholarship Award, winner of the 1989 Camberwell Watercolour Prize and also the Travel Study Scholarship in 1989. He has also won many other awards, including the Camberwell Rotary Art Show’s Best Oil in 2004, the Camberwell Rotary Watercolour prize in 1989, 1993, 1995 and 2006, the Camberwell Rotary Travel Scholarship in 1989, and in 1989 and 1993 he won the Alice Bale Award. In 1994 the National Taiwan Art Institute asked Herman to participate in a book and travelling exhibition with selected artists from Australia, USA and Taiwan.

        Herman exhibits his work regularly in the USA.

        His works are featured in the books “Australian Impressionist and Realist Artists” which features Australian Artists and was compiled by Tom Roberts, “120 Years of Watercolourists”, by the Australian Realist Artists, “Artists and Galleries of Australia and New Zealand” by Max Germaine and “Profile on Contemporary Watercolours”.

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Marcel Desbiens | Master Artist | Principal Tutor