My art workshops in Thornbury, South Gloucestershire (near Bristol, UK) are informal but intensive sessions in small groups of just 4 or 5 students. I will share my ideas on making art which I learned over the years. If you would like to learn to draw and paint realistically then please come along!
I have been painting and drawing full time for twelve years and am self-taught. Before my artist life I studied art history (MA, PhD). I have since exhibited my work at the BP Portrait Award, the Royal Society of Portrait Painters, the Pastel Society, the RWA and many other galleries and societies. I have gathered skills and knowledge through lots of practice and plenty of help. I hope to offer some help to others and make your journey as fulfilling as I possibly can.
For private tuition, just contact me for details and fees.
13 November: Clifton Art Club, Bristol. Textiles in Pastel.
“Its the first time I’ve ever come away from a workshop so inspired to keep practising. I had a fantastic day” (student quote)
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Small Classes * Informal * Packed with Info * Easy Parking
I will try and share what I have learned on how to draw and paint realistically. I will try to show you how I work towards a realistic drawing or painting, how to ‘see’, how to work with intent and dedication. There will be no quick results but hopefully plenty of helpful ideas and methods to help develop your artwork in the future. The workshops, though serious in content, will be informal in execution. The small number of students will allow for a very personal environment.
There are as many opinions about how to create art as there are artists. My way, therefore, is just my way and certainly not to be taken as the only way of doing things. But if you like my work and want to have a go, then please join me!
I am based in Thornbury, just north of Bristol. We will use my kitchen table (with my studio next door). Space is very limited, especially when working with still lives and table easels, but hopefully you will help me manage! You can park on my drive and there is plenty of on-street parking.
Materials are provided for use during some of the workshops (please check individual
workshops!). Table easels are available.
Coffee and tea are included, but please bring your own packed lunch. If the weather is good you can enjoy the garden during breaks.
Workshop prices vary (see individual workshops) ranging from £65 – £90. Please pay a minimum of 50% or the full amount to reserve your place. The balance must be paid at least 2 weeks before the workshop. Payment via cheque, bank transfer or Paypal.
mediums. I do not tolerate them very well and we would like to keep the air clean as we spend all day in there. We have our lunch in the same small space. We can wipe clean brushes on kitchen roll and if needed a quick clean in solvent (provided) at the end of the day.
Workshops January 2018
Classical Portrait Drawing 2
Especially for those who want to practice and extend their classical drawing skills. We will work from photos but the focus will be on learning to create shading and form. We will take it slow and work on a single portrait drawing all day.
Try your hand at painting lace in oils! We will warm up with drawing some lace patterns in pencil and then moving on to paint. I will demonstrate how I go about things and different ways to approach the subject. We will work on one small painting for the day, trying to keep things thin and light. We will touch upon pattern, values, mixing and materials. I will provide small pieces of lace to work from (some pieces will be more challenging than others). Spend a day concentrating on intricate patterns and refinement!
Workshops February 2018
Oil Painting Still Life
Working on a colourful still life. Perfect if you are just starting out. I will help you figure out how to mix your colours, how to set up your painting, and how to avoid mud. I will do a short demo to give you some ideas on how to go about things and will be hands on with help and suggestions. Perfect follow up from ‘Oil Painting for Beginners’ !
Workshops March 2018
Explore portrait painting in pastel. We work from photos that I will provide and go through initial setup, blocking in, and working into details. We will explore pastel and its wonderful and unique texture and technique. I will paint along with you, while explaining the various stages of a pastel portrait. We will discuss colour choices, mark making, layering, colour mixing, drawing, shapes and likeness as well as more practical things such as paper types and pastel brands. All materials provided.
Portraits in Oils
Explore portrait painting in oils in this one-day workshop in my kitchen. We work from photos and go through initial setup, blocking in, and working into details and we will touch upon all topics that come along during the painting process. I will paint a short demonstration in my studio to show you my approach. Because we only have one day we will not glaze but work wet in wet (alla prima), trying to get a portrait done within the hours we have. We will discuss colour choices, mixing, drawing, shapes and likeness. No solvents used. Some materials provided.
Colour in Oils
Focus on colour and colour mixing while painting a colourful still life in my kitchen. This workshop is for all levels. How to mix colours that you don’t have in a tube, how to see the effect colours have on eachother and what it does to a composition. Depending on the level of students we will work from a complex still life setup.
Workshops April 2018
Join me in exploring a portrait in charcoal. On of the most painterly of drawing mediums, charcoal is great for creating the deepest blacks and the most subtle of shades. We will focus on shape, likeness, form and shading and work all day on getting a expressive but realistic portrait. We all work from the same photo and learn from each other. The day will be fun and relaxed. I will demo and help out wherever I can.
We liked the cosy kitchen atmosphere and the one to one support
The course content preparation and planning were excellent and well thought through. Information was delivered at an appropriate pace and we were allowed to get on with it with out fuss. Lots of materials provided and books to guide us as well as Sophie keeping a watchful eye!
Friendly and relaxed approach. I had a fantastic day
I went home feeling that I had really learned a lot
In Sophie’s kitchen it is so relaxed”