Alyssa Monks Workshop 2018
Syllabus Day 1:

  • Why this workshop/Objective of the workshop/Methods and plan

  • What makes a good photo reference and how to create one in more detail and go over examples.

  • Students will pick from a supply that is provided for subjects that interest them and are also good references to work from.

  • Initial thumbnail drawings of the image and decide how to crop or recompose the subject.

  • Imprematura demonstration to extrapolate and celebrate the essence of the image and compose the painting, explanation

    of measuring techniques for accuracy.

  • Hone composition with as much detail as desired as they frm up their compositions. Complete 2 studies and 1 larger imprematura as well as the sketches.

    Day 2:

  • Color progression/color relationships discussion

  • Color mixing, (matching) and palette preparation, understanding color progression

  • Discussion and demonstration on application, edges, brushstroke, thick or thin paint, etc.

  • How to see volume instead of silhouettes and paint form, various techniques discussed

  • Editing detail in photograph

    Day 3

  • Initial application covering entire surface, taking care of color relationships and exploring new application techniques, to create initial illusion based on color in photograph

  • Discussion on responding to the painting vs. the photograph.

  • Experimentation and exploration: not following the photograph perfectly or literally. Making intentional strokes and

    informed decisions. When and how to experiment and why it’s essential to the painting process.

  • What is the useful information to look for in the photograph? Anatomical clues, volumes, structure, drawing issues solved by avoiding the silhouette and looking at the internal structure and volumes as opposed to the outline

  • Pitfalls to avoid when reading the photograph Days 4

  • Lecture on responding to the painting vs. the photograph.

  • Discussion of desired results varying from abstraction/improvisation to a more realistic illusion

  • What is the essence of your subject that must be conveyed with the intimacy of the human touch beyond the photo- realistic image?

  • How to fnish, what is fnished, you are the frst audience.


MATERIALS LIST (highlighted means you will need on DAY 1)

Small sketchbook and pencil/pen/charcoal

(your choice) for thumbnail sketches


12-inch ruler (about 30 cm)


Prepared surface FOR FINAL PAINTING:

WHITE gesso or oil primed canvas in the format of 3:4 (12x16, 15x20, 18x24, 24x36in) (30x40cm is great!!)

Canvas must be primed with gesso or oil and dry before class. A grid done in pen or thin sharpie over the dry white canvas is applied great before class. The grid lines should be at 25%, 50%, 75% both vertical and horizontal for a total of 6 lines, creating 16 boxes.

palette container such as Masterson’s for storing palette through the workshop

 Flats in bristle are recommended, sizes 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, plus two 1- inch, and at least Two 1.5 inch wide flats  Rounds in bristle, 2, 4, 6, 8
 two 2-inch brush, such as a house painting brush for oils, you can purchase cheaply at a hardware store.

Clorox wipes! Masking tape
thin sharpie marker

Recommended Oil Paints for full flesh palette:
 Transparent Red Oxide (old Holland)
 Blue Black or cold black (Williamsburg or other)


(2) 9”x12” (22x30cm) heavy watercolor paper sheets, primed with gesso, shellac, or matte medium (already dry and ready to use) or


canvas paper from a canvas pad. THIS IS FOR STUDIES


Palette: Glass palettes are great.

Paper or wood are also fine. I highly recommend a toned palette to match your imprematura color if


possible. If using wood, be sure it is sealed properly and not absorbant. (fresh new wood palettes need to be sealed before using)







PAPER TOWELS (SUCH AS VIVA or blue shop towels from hardware store).



 Titanium white (Large Tube)
 Flesh ochre (old holland), PLEASE DO NOT BUY FLESH TINT!  Yellow ochre (gamblin)
 Sepia extra (old holland)
 Phthalo green (gamblin or other)
 Kings blue DEEP (old holland)
 Violet grey (old Holland)
 Raw sienna (gamblin)
 Madder Lake Deep (old Holland)

additional pigments (NOT NECESSARY FOR CLASS, just for your curiosity...):

  • Turkey umber (williamsburg)

  • Brilliant Yellow pale (williamsburg)

  • Yellow green (for landscapes)

  • Canton Rose (williamsburg)

  • Green ochre (williamsburg)

  • Sap green (a warm green for sunny landscapes!)

  • Scheveningen Red medium and light (old holland)

    Palette knife: mixing knife and painting knives.

     Linseed oil (NOT STAND OIL) (the lighter the color the better)
     Odorless mineral spirits (NOT TURPENTINE or HARDWARE STORE PAINT THINNER!!)  2 Empty glass jars with lids to hold your mediums


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