Painting - Water Based

Watercolour painting – loosen up without losing control with Brian Smith

Ref: SLW09465

Suitable for all

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About this course

Use water, paper and pigment creatively to produce individual work and develop your own painting style.

Course Description

The simple materials of water, paper and pigment can be used creatively in a variety of different ways. Learn how to consider these choices fully to produce individual work and develop your own painting style.

On this course you will explore how to paint with free flowing pigment whilst retaining control. Wherever possible you will learn ways to allow pigments to mix on the surface of the paper, and explore this process with a selection of different paper surfaces including hot press, NOT and rough to gauge the varied responses. You will tackle subjects from landscape, detail, figures and architecture on both a large and small scale.

On the first evening there will be two demonstrations followed by exercises on a similar theme. Quick and fast to get started.

This course will help you become a more accomplished artist on the journey of exploration. You will leave with studies, exercises and finished pieces which will help you move forward to broaden your painting boundaries. You will have gained confidence in colour mixing on the paper surface, exploring the fluidity of the medium in a range of subjects.


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

  • Water spray atomiser bottle
  • An old blunt knife (similar to a butter knife) not a scalpel
  • Please bring a couple of reference photos of your choice that could be used as the framework for a study

Available to buy

  • Available from shop:
  • Saunders Waterford or Arches watercolour paper 140lb, 300gram in all surfaces, hot, NOT and rough
  • Windsor & Newton Artist Quality tube paints: recommended colours to be discussed
  • Bleed proof white paint by Windsor and Newton
  • Selection of watercolour brushes
  • Adhesive tape
  • Pencils 2b, 4b,
  • Putty and plastic rubber

"The Course led by Tutor Brian Smith exceeded expectations. I learned a great deal about composition and colour in general and water painting in particular. With his enthusiasm for his subject he ensured a happy and positive group. I am sure we all felt included, whatever our previous experience or skill level."

Jane, 2019


Brian Smith

People and Architecture are the main focus of Brian's watercolours striving to capture mood, light and atmosphere in daily life. His paintings have been exhibited at The Mall, Bankside and the RWA Bristol gaining awards. He has written articles for International Artist, The Artist and Leisure Painter magazines. He now demonstrates and tutors Watercolour nationally.


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

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