Bottles, Bananas & Beyond!

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Bottles, Bananas, & Beyond!
with Alison O’Donoghue
Three-Week Class; 6 Video Lessons

Class Dates: September 20 – October 6, 2016


Bottles. Bugs. Bananas. Dogs.
Cats. Fruits. Teapots. Logs.
Books. Cows. Horses. Flowers.
Couches. Pennies. Clocks & Showers!

(If you are a “more is more” kind of person, this is truly the class for you!)

Alison will share her unique acrylic painting techniques for creating a stacked, interactive, and harmonious world within the bounds of a 14″x14″ canvas. Alison loves painting on super smooth surfaces, so the class will begin early with a “bonus” lesson on how to smooth a canvas using levening gel.

The first exercises are designed to help you find your “go-to” imagery and begin the process of creating patterns with simple shapes: people, animals and objects.

Next you will build layers of acrylic paint (a black layer, the white imagery, then color washes and light highlights), and finish with Alison’s method of varnishing her paintings for a beautiful finish.


In this class you will:

• Make a canvas smooth
• Create a visual vocabulary
• Explore interlocking simple shapes to create pattern
• Limit your main palette to black and white
• Negative space awareness
• Apply washes of transparent color
• Create dimension with highlights


Class Itinerary

Bonus Lesson – Smoothing a Canvas
Have you ever wanted to paint on canvas but have it be completely smooth? Alison demonstrates her method of leveling a a surface. This step is optional… if you don’t want to use canvas, you can paint on a gessoed board (panel box) with two coats of gesso, sanding between coats.


Lesson 1 – Drawing Exercise
Here we are creating a simple visual vocabulary and loosening up. Don’t think  about the rules of gravity, perspective, or actual size relationships (small house, large shoe). No need to think of  content or meaning, just allow the  images to free associate and become neighbors in the drawing.

Lesson 2 – Prepare the Canvas; Draw it Out
Paint canvas or panel box with black acrylic. Then you’ll draw your all-over pattern. Keeping shapes simple, think of the spaces between, the negative space, as shapes also. Explore size relationships and lack of gravity.

Lesson 3 – Paint the Pattern in White
Follow your drawing lines, painting not the lines but the shapes themselves, keeping the shapes simple. Allow for changes and new imagery. Explore creating and repeating shapes to allow your collection of images to become a bold and almost abstract pattern.

Lesson 4 – Apply the Washes
Apply three transparent color washes to add subtle color.

Lesson 5 – Highlights
Paint into the imagery, creating a sense of light, dimension and pattern. Think about dappled light, even in its randomness it creates a sense of light.

Lesson 6 – Finishing Touches & Varnish
Adding Final details and Varnishing the Painting using oil-based varnish.





For details and to sign up, click HERE!