Painting - Subject Led

Painting landscapes with natural and traditional materials with Melanie Rose

Ref: SLW10865


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About this course

Make drawings and paintings in the landscape using materials sympathetic to the geology and surrounding environment as well as traditional mediums. Create finished paintings back in the studio.

Course Description

This course not only takes you out into the magnificent landscape around West Dean College to draw and paint but will introduce you to local materials that are sympathetic to the environment as well as to the earth. For the first day we will walk out to the Arboretum where you will have an opportunity to make reconnaissance artworks using charcoal, ink and watercolours that you will use to inform paintings back in the studio. You will be introduced to the medium of egg tempera which can be used as a paint medium in its own right or it can be used as an under-paint or ground before applying oil paints. It is suggested that you bring your preferred materials to this course - excluding acrylic paint which contains plastic.

Eliminating toxic materials in our artists supplies is very difficult but returning to tried and tested mediums used historically by artists, in combination with digital technology, has to be a step in the right direction. The fusion of what we know now with what we can draw on from the past is immense and exciting. The second day will consist of studio practice, collating and isolating visual material created the previous day whilst out on location, you will utilise this to produce a final piece or pieces of work. The day will consist of one-to-one tutorials, demonstrations and conversations.

The course will be carefully planned but the tutor encourages you to find your own voice and travel down your own path, therefore you have the opportunity to follow what is planned or take a leap of faith and work independently but with the full support of your tutor.


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 College will supply some of the materials including egg and a selection of natural raw pigments, size and a mop head paint brush each.
  • Potable easels, chairs and drawing boards will be provided for working on location.

What students need to bring

  • Comfortable weather appropriate walking equipment
  • Outdoor drawing and painting materials including:
  • Prepared surfaces for painting including canvas, board, wood and/or paper
  • Pigments (if you have any)
  • Water pot/water bottle
  • Rags and an apron
  • Any items listed on the available to buy that you may already have

Available to buy

  • Available from shop:
  • Watercolour pans, paintbrushes
  • Charcaol, putty rubber
  • Sketchbook, sheets of paper A3 and/or A2
  • Prepared surfaces for painting including:
  • Canvas, board, wood and/or paper
  • Oil paints
  • Oil paint mediums including:
  • Zest it or other low odour solvents
  • Linseed oil
This course will require you to walk, therefore appropriate footware and clothing is essential. The craft shop will supply all the necessary materials should you need to buy something or have forgotten anything. The shop does not sell powdered pigments, these can be bought from L. Cornelissen & Son in London, should you require a specific pigment.


Melanie Rose

Melanie Rose is a visual artist. She graduated from Trent Polytechnic with a BA Honours degree in Fine Art in 1987, then Central Saint Martins with MA in Fine Art in 2002. Melanie is a member of the practice-led research group Land2, has exhibited extensively, and has work in both public and private collections.


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

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