Group classes

“Everyone follows their own path with Nicole. She has the ability to know when the timing is right to introduce or re-introduce an exercise, tool, or technique. She can explain in more than one way, can break things down into simple steps so the novice does not get overwhelmed.” – Paulette

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Do you want to learn how to draw and paint? Beginners are welcome, even (especially!) those who can only draw stick figures.

Are you already experienced and want to improve your skills? Experienced and advanced artists are also welcome. As artists our journey is full of continuous learning.

Weekly 3-hour classes focus on drawing and painting with a classical approach, where students learn to draw by studying techniques used by the Old Masters. An atelier-style environment and small class size (8 people max) foster rich learning and an in-depth understanding of the material. Mediums taught include pencil, charcoal, conte, ink, and oil paint.

Drawing is the foundation of many other art forms, and is the first thing you will learn as a beginner before moving to a more complex subject. The usual progression of skills taught starts with line drawing, then tones and shading, and then learning a different medium such as oil paint.

FAQ:

What can I learn?
Can I see student testimonials?
Where are they located?
Are materials provided?
What is the schedule?
How much are they?
How do I sign up?
How long does it take?
Are there figure drawing models in the class?
Can you/your classes help me prepare my portfolio for school applications?

What can I learn?

At first, you will learn how to draw, then how to add light and dark tones to your drawing using charcoal, and afterwards it is up to you. All students start with drawing, even if you have taken art classes in the past, since it is a necessary skill for learning any other medium. If you already have drawing experience, then we will move through this section fairly quickly.

After learning how to draw and how to use tones, there are a few different paths you can take. Nicole teaches the following subjects, all with a classical approach:

- pencil drawing
- oil paint (including colour theory, glazing, impasto, etc)
- conte
- pen and ink
- charcoal
- portraiture
- anatomy

Watercolour, acrylic, pastel, and coloured pencil are not taught at the studio, but if you are looking for classes/an instructor, a referral can be provided.

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Can I see student testimonials?

Absolutely! Testimonials are available here, and examples of student work are available here.

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Where are they located?

Classes are located at Nicole’s studio, 302-549 1/2 Fisgard St., Victoria BC, Canada.

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Are materials provided?

Initial drawing materials are supplied for use free of charge. Once you progress from line drawing to charcoal shading and beyond, there are some materials to buy and a list will be provided.

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What is the schedule?

Wednesdays 1:00pm-4:00pm
Wednesdays 6:00pm-9:00pm
Saturdays 11:00am-2:00pm

The classes are all the same structure, so you can choose whatever time slot works best for you. There is a maximum of 8 students per class.

Classes are ongoing and booked month-to-month. ┬áThe instruction is individual and all levels are accepted in the classes – beginner to advanced. You are welcome to start at any time, even midway through a month, and continue as long as you like. Students are taught at their own pace in the group classes, with a focus on learning the material thoroughly rather than progressing on a set timeline. There is a maximum of 8 people per class.

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How much are they?

There are three options for booking classes. All classes must be paid for in advance. Prices include 5% GST.

Single class $75 Space permitting, a single class can be booked and paid for in advance for a specific date. Space priority is given to monthly students. Once booked, a single class cannot be rescheduled or refunded in the event you are unable to attend.
Monthly booking $220/month for weekly classes A monthly booking is the same price each month and guarantees a space for you in the class time of your choosing for as long as you are registered. With a minimum of 24 hours notice, missed classes can be rescheduled, space permitting. Any additional classes you choose to book are $55/class. Months with fewer than 4 classes offered are prorated at $55/class.
4 month booking $792 for 4 consecutive months of weekly classes With prepayment of 4 consecutive months, you save 10% off the cost of monthly booking ($49.50/class).

Methods of payment accepted are credit card, e-transfer, cash, or cheque.

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How do I sign up?

To sign up, contact Nicole. Include information about your art background (if any), artistic goals, and what class time you prefer.

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How long does it take?

The classes are set up so you can continue as long as you need to – there is no end date. If you progress quickly, then you move through the material quicker. If it takes a bit longer, then you get the time you need to learn the material thoroughly. The focus is always on learning the material thoroughly, not on progressing at a certain pace.

Generally speaking, it takes about 10-12 weeks for absolute beginners to go through the drawing section. The charcoal tones & shading section is usually a similar amount of time. However, these are rough guidelines only, and it depends on your goals and where you want to go.

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Are there figure drawing models in the class?

Drawing the figure is an area that students can focus on by learning artistic anatomy in the classes, and creating master studies of the figure using painting and drawing references from books in Nicole’s library.

As each student works on a different project and subject, there are no figure drawing/life models in the class. If you are interested in life drawing, a referral can be provided.

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Can you/your classes help me prepare my portfolio for art school applications?

The skills taught in my classes are essential to any pursuit of art/design formal education. Drawing skills and an understanding of values/shading are applicable in many careers and help to convey your ideas with more accuracy.

While the techniques taught in the classes will no doubt help with your portfolio, I am not able to help directly with building it, nor do I offer portfolio advice or critique. If the work we do in class is appropriate for your portfolio, that is great. However, as the classes focus on technique and learning to draw/shade/paint accurately, the work we do will not be influenced by the requirements of your portfolio.

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