A foundation in the elements of visual art – Introduction to oil painting

For beginners or advanced artists with gaps in their skills set.

Friday mornings 9.30am-12.30pm

Spring Term 10th January – 3rd April
Half term 21st February

  • Learn to paint in oils from the beginning
  • Understand the mechanics of oil paint
  • Discover ways of looking that lead to successful images
  • Embrace your own visual language in this powerful medium

Having completed the Essentials of Drawing students move on to this course where we learn the mechanics of working with oil paint and explore our visual perception.

We will be following a path well trodden, even if, in this age of Instagram and high concepts, it is over-covered in leafmould and moss.

Ruskin, who by coincidence lived very near our studio, outlined the elements of drawing in “Three Letters to Beginners“. He saw the development of perception as the most important skill and all of the practical tasks he suggests go towards this greater objective.

Our course draws on his approach beginning with the most basic mark making, the vowels and consonants of the visual language. It proceeds through all of the elements towards complete fluency in image making.

We will be working mostly from observation so this will include still life and 2d reference in a studio setting. You will be challenged but you may progress at your own pace: there will be agreed way marks, when you arrive at them is up to you.

Simon Dunstan is a founder of the Dulwich Art Group and School who after a career innovating in digital image making fell back in love with analogue media. He now spends much of his time painting and running DAGAS. (Dulwich Art Group And School)

Alice by Simon Dunstan, Oil on Canvas

He is a respected oil painter and has extensive knowledge about the methodology of image making. He will direct the course with support from other professional artists where appropriate.

Course fees

12 weeks £350

Registration & Payment

You can secure your place on the course by completing the booking process below and paying the course fee. On completion of the registration process you will receive an email confirmation with details of your course booking.