Courses - Emily Ball @ Seawhite

These contemporary painting courses offered by Emily Ball studios have been running for 20 years. Emily Ball and her colleagues specialise in teaching painting and drawing. A wide variety of artists attend the courses and they all share a passion for art and their desire to be more adventurous and innovative.


This course meets monthly, through the academic year, for two consecutive days at a time.  During the 3 terms, each student will be encouraged to develop an individual approach to putting the figure into their work. Painting People could be from a model, your own drawings of your family or people you have observed, an image taken from a magazine or a photo, even a still from a film. Based on individual tutorials, students will each decide how they approach figure painting; by concentrating on personal experience and self-knowledge. We will have various sessions with a life model (both nude and clothed) which will aid the student in looking, composition and how to place the figure in a variety of situations and environments. We will refer to other artists and practitioners, and work on how to develop drawings into more considered and consolidated paintings. The course will also include other practical sessions and structured exercises, and we anticipate the students will use their imagination to develop their skills to create paintings that are dynamic, full of character and personal experience.
One intensive day of inspiration (all materials provided)

Tutor Katie Sollohub

A series of stand alone workshops tutored by Katie Sollohub, or they could be seen as a chance to build a project around observation of the figure. If you book all 5 of Katie's sessions you get a £50 discount on the total cost. These workshops are more than your average portrait or life drawing class, these sessions will keep you (and sometimes the model) on your toes - taking a line for a walk, multi views, sculpting the form, drawing with your eyes shut, the moving figure - and other exercises. Whether working in charcoal or paint, the emphasis will be on keeping an image lively and expressive, capturing a sense of the pose, a glance, a particular turn of the head. You will be given exercises and ways of looking, to encourage an experimental approach to a timeless subject. Working from long and short poses, making the most of the amazing models we have the pleasure to work with.

This course focuses on the how you make your paintings have the energy, atmosphere and freshness of those first studies and explorations into a subject through drawing. Drawing and Painting share the same language; with directional marks, an exploration of space, a sensitive and particular touch or pressure given to each motif. Drawing can be direct, fast, evocative, stripped back, selective, inventive and irreverent. Non precious! Paint is sumptuous, with endless visual possibilities to create surfaces and colours that suggest, mood, light, sensations  The technicalities of handling paint; mixing with mediums, layering, glazing, editing, mixing colour using oils or acrylics will be covered during the course as the paintings grow. The subjects for the paintings will be triggered by the work of other artists. Borrowing and making contemporary responses to other artists paintings is a process that so many famous artists have used throughout art history. Picasso's versions of Las Meninas by Velasquez and Le Petit Dejeuner sur L'herbe by Manet, are famous. David Hockney's hommage to Hogarth's 'Rakes Progress', Cy Twombley's interpretation of Turner's 'Temeraire', Anthony Caro's sculptures in response to Giotto, the list is endless. It is a rich resource that can be used to revive and inspire new bodies of work that speak of your own passions and life. The paintings will evolve through the course. Some may be resolved quite quickly and freshly, others may require time, layers and excavation to find their place. You will create paintings that are a true reflection of your personal experience and interests by learning how to unpack how you see, select, up cycle and re-invent existing images by other artists.  This is designed as a year long course. Each term feeds processes and ideas into the next. We recommend that you attend all three terms to create resolved paintings and fully benefit from the processes being taught.