Introduction to drawing and painting with pattern with Annabel Tilley

Mixed and other media Drawing

Ref: S1D11864

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About this course

This mixed media drawing and painting course uses the motifs and patterns found in our everyday environment as a starting point for a series of drawn, painted or collaged abstract or semi-abstract works.

Course Description

You will be introduced to the various ways that pattern can add variety to transform a drawing or painting. Through a series of exercises you will look at how pattern can be used as substitution, enhancement, decoration or ornamentation. You will experiment with the way pattern can be applied to enhance or disrupt the background or foreground of a picture.

You will draw inspiration from patterns found in the everyday urban and natural world as well as the artistic imagination. You will have the opportunity to try out different mediums and papers.

There are different types of pattern. In this introductory course we will be concentrating on irregular pattern. Being irregular it is easy to create by hand, and does not have to conform to set rules. This style is easy to recognise in artists like: Paul Klee, Sophie Tauber-Arp, Anni Albers, Van Gogh and Gustav Klimt.

By the end of the course, you will have been introduced to the work of artists who use pattern; and you will leave the workshop with new experimental work and ideas about how pattern can transform your drawing and painting.


Timetable for one day courses

Students should arrive by 9am for registration.

Classes are from 9.15 - 5pm

Lunch is included.

Course Materials


  • On this course the tutor will supply some of the materials including: a variety of different drawing and watercolour papers to try out as well as collage material, glue, ink and watercolours.

What students need to bring

  • Bring any paper-based drawing, painting and collage materials you usually like to work with.
  • Bring your own paint brushes, and paint mixing trays.
  • Bring some physical examples or pictures of patterns that you notice in your everyday life, and may like to to use as a starting point for some drawing or painting. This could be anything from a design or pattern found in a magazine, on a piece of material, in your kitchen cupboard, on a paperbag or patterns found in nature in the park or from your garden.

Available to buy

  • Available from shop:
  • A good variety of general drawing and painting materials
Wear appropriate clothing/aprons for the workshop or studio, this includes stout covered footwear i.e. no open-toes or sandals.


Annabel Tilley

Annabel Tilley, graduate of the University of Brighton and shortlisted for the Jerwood Drawing Prize, has a drawing-based and sketchbook practice and has exhibited widely and undertaken several residencies. She is a lecturer, co-author of What they didn't teach you in art school (Octopus Books, 2016) and co-Founder of Zeitgeist Arts Projects (2012-2015).

Courses of interest

Further study options

Take the next step in your creative practice, with foundation level to Masters in Fine Art study. 

Depending on your experience, start with an Online Foundation Certificate in Art and Design (one year, part-time), a Foundation Diploma in Art and Design made up of 10 short courses taken over two years (part-time) or a Diploma in Art and Contemporary Crafts (10 three-day study blocks, over two years). All will help you develop core skills, find direction in your practice and build an impressive portfolio in preparation for artist opportunities or higher-level study. See all degree and diploma courses.

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