Painting - Oils

Still life painting in oils for beginners with George Popesco

Ref: SWE09535


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About this course

Gain confidence and understanding of oil painting with structured exercises and expert guidance.

Course Description

A thorough introduction to oil painting from still life. Gain confidence and understanding of this wonderful medium with structured exercises and expert guidance.

The still life objects will provide a visually stimulating and varied subject group for the focus of your painting, including natural and manmade objects. Your painting will evolve through carefully planned stages that will give you control over the medium and encourage confidence in your own personal painting style.

The particular qualities of oil medium to describe and express form will be taught, starting with colour, and how to use it to structure a still life painting. Context and composition are also taught and you will learn and practice different technical approaches such as under-painting and impasto.

Through one-to-one tutor support, live class technical demonstrations and critical analysis, your confidence will grow. You will experiment and investigate different approaches to mixing and applying colour, mark-making, and highlighting.

By the end of this course, you will have completed a a still life painting which has succeeded through the fullest exploration of the oil painting techniques.


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


  • The course fee includes the cost of providing some materials shared amongst the group including, oil paints, linseed oil, turpentine and Zest it (odourless solvent).
  • Please note that you may need to purchase more materials depending on the scale of the work you produce.

What students need to bring

  • Rags or an old telephone directory/yellow pages
  • 3 jam jars with lids
  • Still life object. This object will form part of an 'ice breaker' exercise, something familiar to you which could be shared, talked about and even studied in oil colour.

Available to buy

  • Available from shop:
  • A2 (equivalent) Canvas or Primed Hard Board
  • Sketch pad
  • Pencil
  • Brushes:
  • Generally a good range of Student Quality - natural bristle or /and synthetic brushes, both Flat Filbert and/or Round pointed.
  • Sizes: Large, Medium, Small
  • Two dipper pots (preferably with lids)

Student Review

The quality of the course was an excellently thought through and presented programme, well pitched for beginners in oils. Having no previous knowledge of how to paint in oils, I came away with exactly the information and encouragement that I needed to learn and progress.

George Popesco is a gifted communicator, his tutorials put the students at ease from the onset with essential tasks they can easily cope with, whatever their level. The following tasks take the students into oil painting, interdispersed with informal talks on techniques and materials. George's passion for his subject shines through. After experimenting with oil techniques myself in the coming months, I would like to attend another of his courses at the next level.

Joy 2019


George Popesco

Since completing his academic training at the Royal Academy Schools London, George has taught extensively in varied Art & Design education structures alongside developing his own work and exhibiting both in group and solo exhibitions. George lives and works in Dorset, specialising in Oil Colour medium exploiting its tactile wet in wet qualities to form the mediums expressive and sculptural qualities.


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

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