A is for Animals


Acrylic and watercolor on paper… inspired by all of the ANIMALS I’m seeing this week at the Yellow class!

I really love Mondays. It’s the beginning of the work week… so full of possibilities! Also, I try to keep Mondays free of appointments or meetings or “shoulds”… just a whole, clear day to move quickly or slowly, whatever that Monday needs.

Happy Monday to you!


It’s All About Yellow


Hello everyone!

This is the week that “Y is for Yellow” launches… I’m a tad behind on emailing… if your request is urgent, please email me again and I will get back to you asap!

The above drawing was based on a childhood photograph. Can you guess which one is me?

I read this yesterday:

“I try to push ideas away, and the ones that will not leave me alone are the ones that end up happening.” — J.J. Abrams

One of the projects I’m going to try to complete this year is a sort of “visual story” based on photos and memories of my childhood… it’s super scary! But the idea has been “hanging around” for long enough that I hope to attend to it this year.

That’s it for now. Have a wonderful day!

P.S. The class codes for “Y is for Yellow” were sent out yesterday. If you have signed up for the class and didn’t receive it, email me! If you can, please include your receipt number so I can search more easily. Thank you!



Some Yellow Questions Answered

Hi Everyone!
I hope you had a wonderful Christmas (for those who celebrate), and are enjoying the holiday break (for those who have one)!
I am just back in the game today, as most of our guests have left and I’m able to get back to planning “Y is for Yellow.”
I feel like I should be trying to “sell it” more, though, as we are just 10 days out from the start date! But this blog post is the best I can do before I get back to the fun stuff: drawing and painting and coming up with projects/assignments.😀
Questions about the “Y is for Yellow” Year-Long online class, starting January 8th!
Q: I’m not really an artist, just a mom of two boys and an idea of a children’s book that I would like to illustrate myself. I can’t say that I can’t draw at all. I can draw something. I just don’t do it regularly and most of the time it doesn’t turn out the way I thought it would. Do you think your course will benefit me or is it better to look for something simpler?

Also, could you, please, describe how time consuming the course is and what if I am very much behind the schedule?

A: Thank you for writing and for your interest in “Y is for Yellow“!
I feel like it will be a good class for you — the drawing exercises I give are meant for all levels, and try to focus on how to find your WAY of drawing (which in your case might just be that things turn out differently than you think!)… and there are plenty of new things to try in watercolor and mixed-media, too.
I think, just jump right in!
The amount of time needed for each lesson will change, as some lessons will include mixed-media lessons… so the longer ones might take 1.5 hours to do, and the shorter ones about 30 minutes… however, you can do much more than that if you decide to incorporate the drawing exercise into a daily practice, for example…
I guess what I’m saying is it is up to you how much time you want to spend on the lesson every two weeks… but the minimum would be 30-90 minutes every two weeks.
If you fall behind, please don’t worry! You can just pick up at that current lesson and continue on.

Q: [I am] wondering if it would be a good match for established artists who want some additional and diverse stuff to add to a licensing portfolio. 

A: “Y is for Yellow” will be part instructional and include 10-12 mixed-media assignments during the year, but participants will be encouraged to use their preferred media if desired, and can pick and choose which techniques to incorporate into their existing work.
There are also 26 drawing lessons, which will be related to the alphabet… I might have you render a “rhino using a ruler” (R), or a “portrait of Picasso” (P) or “charcoal cats” (C) or “abstracted animals” (A)… I am hoping most of these will be an opportunity for artists to be creative with the prompts within their own style.
I think “Y is for Yellow” would be great for established artists (I kind of created it because working on my drawing and then building a body of work is what I want to do myself!).
Let me know if you have any other questions and I’ll try and answer… I want you to join me!😉

Maryland Cont.


Our half-vacation is coming to a close. It’s been quiet with lots of walking and watching of wonderful performances at St. John’s College.

Yesterday Steve and I went to Washington D.C. for lunch, and visited the “Wonder” exhibit at the Renwick Gallery — 9 installations! I took a couple of portraits of Steve:

Installation by Gabriel Dawe.

steve1.jpgInstallation by Patrick Dougherty.

And from one of my walks:


Have a wonderful day!

Registration is OPEN! “Y is for Yellow”


“Y” is for Yellow: A 26-Lesson, Year-Long Class
Instructor: Carla Sonheim
Drawing, Painting, Mixed-Media • $198 

First Lesson: Friday, January 8, 2016



Welcome to my 2016 year-long online class:

“Y” is For Yellow!
(And no, we won’t paint everything yellow!😀 )

In this class we will march through the alphabet as a fun way to move through our year (“P” is for Picasso! “C” is for Collage!), while tackling the more serious question,

“How do you create a body of work?”

As mixed-media artists we are always trying new media and experimenting with new techniques — which is awesome! But what can happen is we don’t take the time to focus long enough on the things we really love so that we can create a cohesive series that is uniquely ours.

Let’s refine, focus, and create a body of work this year!


In this class:

• You are encouraged to focus on your favorite media. (Don’t know what that is? That’s okay, there will be plenty of techniques to try with both the drawing and mixed-media lessons.)

• There will be 26 short drawing exercises, one for each of the 26 lessons. These are meant to be warm-ups to give you ideas on how to face the blank page. I’ll keep them fun!

• In addition, there will be 7 mixed-media lessons, 3 optional assignments, and 3 surprise lessons. They will include techniques (old and new!) in watercolor, acrylics, charcoal, and other media.

• There will be 12 “light” weeks where you have the time and space to work independently on your chosen series. The goal is to complete three small series of work by the end of the year, with each participant choosing their own subject matter and media.

• YOU will choose your three projects! Some ideas are working on an alphabet book, a children’s board book, some paintings for a show, your portfolio, a small line of cards, etc. (Alternatively, you can choose one larger project to work on all year.)

• You can view a PDF of the “Y is for Yellow” schedule, HERE.

• “Y is for Yellow” will include an online community (via a closed Facebook group) where participants from all over the world share their work, their thoughts, and encourage each other (one of the best things about taking an online class!).


New to online classes? Check out the “Frequently Asked Questions” page, and here are some recent comments from students!

“In my opinion, you are a gifted instructor, who actually makes art fun, and I look forward to learning more from you.” — Jo

“Your style of teaching is warm, genuine and clear.” — Sheri

“Carla and her co-teachers inspire not just making art but also a sense of community among the students, of whom many have been making art for quite some time and others are new to it. This sense of community shows itself in the way everyone shares art — within a closed group on Facebook — and comments in a wonderful, supportive way.” — Corinne




• All levels welcome and encouraged to join in!

• Registration fee is good for people living in a single household.

• Instructor Feedback: I will be active in the Facebook Forum and available M-F for feedback. This year I will try to focus on deeper, broader feedback each day at the top of the page, so I can’t promise to comment on each submission (though I will try!)

• If you’d like a feel for the supplies you will need for this class, CLICK HERE.

• If you’d like to know more about how our online classes work in general, CLICK HERE.

• If you have any questions, please email me at carla[at]carlasonheim.com.

Thank you again and I hope you can join in!
Carla Sonheim

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