Painting - Subject Led

Contemporary landscape painting with Steve Humble

Ref: S5D08801



About this course

Working from the landscape, and referencing the work of contemporary landscape painters, extend your own approach to painting. Using exercises, studio briefs, and both group and individual tutorials, develop your responses to your chosen subject matter and use of materials. Through reflective practice get a better understanding of your work in the context of contemporary painting.

Course Description

Through your own painting practice, and working from the landscape, you will be encouraged to develop your technical skills and abilities with your chosen media, and to extend your responses to your chosen subject matter. Come with an open and enquiring approach and a willingness to work hard in the studio, along with a desire to develop your own practice further.

On the first evening there will be introductions and a brief overview of the week ahead.

The tutor will introduce a combination of exercises, these are technical 'work outs', usually quite short, to extend your technical approaches to your work. Each exercise invites you to work in a particular way, or with particular materials, or both. This can also include specified approach to the subject. The exercises may take the form of drawing, painting, or writing - or a combination of these.

Looking at examples of other artists is a way of introducing you to other Contemporary Landscape Painters, with whom you may not be familiar. The tutor encourages the wider exploration of the subjects presented, including fresh ideas and content. The aim is to show you a broad range of possible strategies which you might employ when working from the landscape and to inspire your own ideas further.

The tutor also introduces art-school style briefs, these are conceptual exercises designed to get you to extend your thinking and conceptual approach to working from the landscape. They will usually be set in response to a group tutorial discussion. You will require some degree of individual reflection, related to your own practice, in order to respond to the briefs. Each brief will be summarised at the end of that particular teaching session, with a group review to share the results and insights gained. Briefs will be introduced throughout the course or used in the early sessions (days one and two) to get some momentum going with your work. This will be dependent on how your are progressing.

Through individual tutorials coupled with group discussions, you will be encouraged to develop an increased understanding of your own painting practice within the current context of Contemporary Landscape Painting. Emphasis will be placed on the idea of reflective studio practice, so that you can begin to develop of a sense of 'critical thinking' in relation to your own work. The course will be couched in the broader art-historical context of landscape painting, and you will be asked to consider your practice in relation to this history, the changing notion of 'the landscape' as a social construct, and to think about what it means to be a landscape painter in the twenty-first century.

By the end of the course, you will have increased your knowledge and understanding of your approach to landscape painting, and what it means to be a reflective studio practitioner. You will have improved your handling of your chosen materials, and have begun to understand your work within the broader context of Contemporary Art History.


Arrival Day - this is the first date listed above

Courses start early evening. Residential students to arrive from 4pm, non-residential students to arrive by 6.45pm.

6.45pm: Welcome, followed by dinner (included).

8 - 9pm: First teaching session, attendance is essential.

Daily timetable

Classes 9.15 - 5pm, lunch is included.

From 6.30pm: Dinner (included for residential students).

Evening working - students may have access to workshops, but only with their tutor's permission and provided any health and safety guidelines are observed.

Last day

Classes 9.15am - 3pm, lunch is included.

Residential students are to vacate their rooms by 10am please.

(This timetable is for courses of more than one day in length. The tutor may make slight variations)

Course Materials

What students need to bring

Throughout the week you will be working in the studio and outside at times - please bring whatever equipment/clothing you feel is suitable to both situations.

No specific required preparation or reading, but students may find it useful to have a look at any text about Contemporary Painting / Contemporary Art History (1960s onwards). Any other text which extends your thinking about your painting practice, and your understanding of what painting is, may also be useful. Please feel free to bring these texts with you.

The following list is provided as a suggestive guide, please feel free to bring along whatever equipment is suitable to your practice:


Paints - Any pigments in medium/media of your choice - reds, blues, and yellows, possibly a black and a white

Brushes - A range of brushes, large and small

Tools - Any other implements for applying pigments

Supports - A plentiful supply of papers or supports, suitable to your medium, in various sizes.

Sketch pads in a variety of sizes

PENCILS - 3B, 5B and 8B

Water-soluble graphite pencil

Lightweight board, if required on location

Gummed tape and/or Bulldog clips


Craft knife

Putty rubber

Drawing/Technical pen(s)


Writing pad/notebook


Steve Humble

Steve is a professional artist and educator, whose practice spans over thirty years. Combining self-taught technical knowledge with an M.A. in Fine Art (York St. John) Steve is an elected Fellow of The British Watercolour Society and The International Guild of Artists.


Residential option available. Find out accommodation costs and how to book here.

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