Short Courses – New for Christmas

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Life Sculpture in Clay with Pam Foley

28th to 29th November** 10am – 5pm

Working with Oxford’s loveliest model, Patti, this short course will develop life sculpture clay modelling techniques, observational skills, to produce a posed figure. For those who attended a similar short course in August, you will be familiar with Patti and you will continue to develop your observation and modelling skills. For those who are new to life sculpture, you’re in for a treat. A focus on the life figure through observation and modelling will produce an expressive interpretation of the human form.

Course Fee: £230 includes firing. Clay is charged extra according to usage.

Maximum 9 students

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Raku workshop with Graham Hudson

Friday 27th November  10.00 – 12.30

(Making session – items produced by either hand-building or wheel throwing, these will then be dried and bisque fired ready for Friday.)

Friday December 4th 10.00 - 16.00 (Glazing and raku firing session.)
Maximum 6 Students

Raku is a pottery firing process developed in 16th century Japan for the Japanese tea ceremony – The word Raku translates loosely as enjoyment, happiness, or comfort. The process involves ceramic pieces being glazed, then fired in an outside kiln to a temperature of approximately 1000°c. The pieces are then removed from the gas fired kiln and buried in sawdust – creating a reduction chamber. This reduction atmosphere changes the molten glaze to produce the array of colourful, lustrous crackle glazes which are associated with Raku Pottery. 
Raku firing is considered to be one of the most dramatic and exciting ways to fire pottery!

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Painting GreenJane Strother

Monday 30th November 10am – 4pm.


Maximum 8 Students

Our landscape is predominantly green for most of the time, but for a painter it can be a challenge to use successfully. This one-day painting workshop is an opportunity to try out ideas for making green work. Starting with a warm up inspired by Winifred Nicholson’s Liberation of Colour essay you will get stuck into a green painting.

Start thinking about your reference material now. You might like to bring photographs or drawings to work from. Try and bring more than one and make sure they are clear enough to allow you to really see the nuance and subtlety in the colours.

You will need:

  • acrylic paints
  • brushes, palette knife,
  • a large flat palette, ideally, a thick plastic bag opened up and taped to the table top works well. Or greaseproof paper.
  • some painting paper (something heavy enough not to cockle too much. You can gesso this if you like or leave it as it is.
  • masking tape
  • scissors
  • a sketch book or scrap paper
  • and of course, your reference material.
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Portrait with Still Life and Bouquet Neil Drury

Tuesday 1st and Wednesday 2nd December 2020

9am – 3pm


Maximum 8 Students

Join us for a two-day portrait workshop designed to inspire creativity and lift spirits.

We will work from a seated model accompanied by a splendid arrangement of flowers and still life objects. You can include as much or as little in your picture as you see fit.

All mediums will be welcome.

On offer to inspire will be varied illustrations and examples by portrait artists ancient and modern.

Take your time to ponder scale, style, colour scheme, techniques and mediums – all of which will be discussed and explored in some short exercises.

The workshop will be a great opportunity to pull something positive out of the 2020 hat!

(Suitable for those with some previous portrait experience.)

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A Fireside Life Class with Clova Stuart Hamilton

Tuesday December 1st 4pm – 7pm


Maximum 8 Students

An enamel tub and some other props will add to the atmosphere and facilitate a range of interesting short poses in the first half hour. 

The rest of the session will be devoted to one pose in which the female model will be seen very much in relation to the props offering “figure in interior” possibilities. 

Experienced artists may want to produce a quick painted study using a limited palette.  Alternatively, a coloured graphic medium like chalk or oil pastel could be used for capturing the fleeting effects of firelight on the flesh and white towel.  For those not wishing to venture into colour, the strong shapes and unusual lighting will make it a rewarding subject in monochrome.  Interest could always be added by using charcoal/chalk/conté on a coloured paper and/or using sanguine and white to bring out warmth and heighten lights.

Examples of work by Degas, Bonnard and others with a “bath tub theme” will be discussed.

Bonnard, Nude by the Bath Tub
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Hand building with Anthony Eccles.

Wednesday 2nd December 2020 10am – 4pm (making) and Wednesday 6th January 2021 (2-hour lesson for glazing.)

This allows for drying and firing times between classes.

£150 (all materials included)

Maximum 9 students

This course is an opportunity to be playful, intuitive and experimental with clay as a material. Students will make rapid 3D sketches whose influence will lead to and inform an exploration of a range of hand building methods. The destination is open ended, a vessel or sculpture? The focus is on discovering the form and surface texture which is then enriched with slips and glazes. Suitable for those with some experience of clay.

Anthony Eccles Stoneware Bowl
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Drills, Thrills and Spills with George Boyter

Thursday December 3rd and Friday December 4th 2020



Maximum 8 Students

Over 2 days students will learn various watercolour techniques used in figures, reflections, ripples in water, clouds, cars, lost & found edges, graded washes, colour transition washes, tonal values, mixing colours on paper and the colour spectrum.

There are fun, effective practice drills for each of these and more. 

Students will need to bring watercolour paints and a selection of brushes. Some spares will be available.

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Looking forward to Christmas!

Christmas children’s craft workshop with Emma Williams

Saturday 19th December 10.00am-12.30pm.


Maximum 8 Students

Join us for a chance to get creative and make some festive decorations with a nature and eco theme. We will see how we can transform, leaves, cones, twigs and even some household waste into beautiful decorations for you to take home. Bring a drink and a snack to make a morning of it at our beautiful art school in Sunningwell. Suitable for ages 5-10. All materials included and covid-19 measures in place.

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