Painting - Oils

Ideas and techniques in oil painting – looking at landscape with Christopher Baker

Ref: S5D09386


Book now

Places available

About this course

Learn how technique can be used to develop your ideas through painting. Evaluate how studio practices, systems and processes have influenced artists who work in oils. Make use of existing work or research and initiate a new project.

Course Description

"The idea and technique are inseparable" Francis Bacon

When you look at a good painting what you see is an idea that has been made visible through, and fused with, the technique. The physical form in which a work is expressed, is to a large part, the content of the work. No artist's vision is greater than their power to materialise that vision.

We shall look at the technique of oil painting, received studio practices, systems and processes and gain insight into how artists worked in oils. You will understand and make use of the techniques to express what you feel and think about your subject. You will learn how to identify your idea or vision in and through your painting technique.

The subject is landscape and you can make use of your ongoing research or initiate a project from primary studies in the landscape.

By the end of the course you will have a variety of processes in oils connected with vision:

An understanding of tonal painting with colour


Colour selection

Vision and design

Relating studio work to plein air


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


  • On this course the tutor will make and supply the oil painting medium.
  • The College will supply six 10 x 8in ply panels and four 16 x14in ply panels per student. Some acrylic gesso primer, muslin and rabbit skin glue.

What students need to bring

  • Roll of 2 metres of primed canvas - cotton duck
  • Apron/overalls
  • Rags
  • White used cotton sheet
  • Notebook
  • White firm surface for palette

Available to buy

  • Available from shop:
  • Odourless thinner - 'Zest It' or Sansador
  • Roberson's glaze medium matt to spread the paint.
  • Rabbit Skin Glue Granules (This will be used as a primer to glue and protect surfaces from oils.)
  • Acrylic gesso primer
  • 2 inch household brush
  • Scissors
  • Brushes
  • 3 hogs hair filbert - large, medium, small
  • 1 synthetic hair detail brush
  • Palette - white Perspex
  • PAINT - NO HUES and artist quality Winsor&Newton
  • Colours:
  • Earth
  • Raw Umber, Raw Sienna, Burnt Sienna, Vine Black and/or Indigo
  • Primaries:
  • Cadmium Yellow, Aureolin or Lemon Yellow, Cadmium Red, Rose Madder and/or Alizarin Crimson
  • French Ultramarine, Cerulean Blue and/or Cobalt Blue (genuine)
  • Whites:
  • Titanium, unbleached Titanium
  • Sketchbook
  • Charcoal
  • Plastic rubber
  • 4 sheets of cartridge paper
  • Please bring any of the above, if you have them.

The tutor highly recommends a Pochade [this is a small box that will hold brushes and paints, wet oils and can be an easel on your lap] or Box easel He also recommends artist quality paints - Old Holland are reliable


Christopher Baker

Christopher Baker is an artist and author and had a leading role playing himself in the feature film Archipelago. He exhibits in the UK and Europe as well as Canada, including the Royal Academy Summer Exhibitions, Pallant House Gallery (Chichester) and Medici Gallery Cork Street, New English Art Club, LondonDescribe your approach to teaching?


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

Courses of interest