Watercolours & Drawing from Scratch

This course may be delivered online - please see the course information box to confirm.

A course suited to the complete beginner in watercolour painting, introducing the basic techniques required in order to gain some confidence and mastery of the medium

Course Content

Drawing exercises are geared towards painting with watercolous and include line and shape, proportion, object and surround, composition and tonality. Colour mixing will be explored at length and you will have developed an understanding of hue, value and saturation at the end of the course. Techniques explored are specific to watercolour painting and include wet in wet, wet on dry, laying a wash, glazing, mark-making with various brushes, learning about and using hydrodynamics to achieve a wide tonal range, resist methods, lifting paint, how to correct mistakes etc.

The course’s emphasis is on painting with watercolous and will include exercises regarding composition and tonality, proportion, object and surround, line and shape. Colour mixing will be explored at length and you will be able to define hue, value and saturation. Focused exercises will be given. This includes working directly from objects in the studio and also from photographs.

There will be a mix of tutor demonstrations and formal 1:1 tuition. The teaching style is friendly, supportive and will allow you to develop your own personal way of drawing. Teaching methods include illustrated talks, demonstrations of materials and techniques, practical drawing and painting experience, exchanging ideas and experience with others, looking at the work of inspirational artists within their historic context, plus individual tuition and feedback.
If you are a returning learner you will discuss your aims with your tutor and come up with some achievable personal targets for the course.

Learning outcomes:
• You will learn to draw and paint from a 3-dimensional object taking line and shape, proportions, object and surround as well as composition and tonality into consideration.
• You will learn how mix a million colours from the three primary colours and three earth tones and you will have developed an understanding of hue, value and saturation.
• You will learn and exercise to use different brushes to make distinctive brush marks.
• You will learn distinct watercolour techniques like washes, glazes, wet in wet and wet on dry.
• You will learn to work from light to dark building up a picture.

Entry Requirements

To be eligible for this course you must be 19 or over on the start date of the course.

This is a beginners course and so is suitable for those with little or no experience of painting in watercolours. Previous knowledge of painting and drawing is useful but not essential. Interview and advice is not required before enrolment.

First Class Requirements

Please bring a small notebook, pencil and rubber. Also, please bring any watercolour materials and equipment you may already own. However, do not buy any prior to the start of the course before receiving advice from the tutor on e.g. suitable paint colours, brushes, palette and paper etc

Assessment Methods

There will be personal and group critiques and you will be given individual informal verbal feedback as your work progresses and take part in discussions.

Additional Information

As a result of the government’s closure of schools and colleges, some of our courses will be delivered through remote learning including video conferencing, (using Skype, Zoom, Microsoft Teams) and email contact with your tutor.

If your course is indicated as an ONLINE COURSE, you will need either a PC (with a camera and microphone), laptop, tablet, smartphone and access to the internet to be able to join the lessons. Lessons will run at the published time – so be ready and set up to join in.

We hope you will enjoy this new approach to learning – many of our learners have commented on how they are enjoying the classes and have improved their IT and digital skills in the process.

Please don't worry if some of this is new to you - you are not alone! See here for guidance on how to use our simple software. If you are experiencing any problems with connection or installing software for your online class please contact our learning resource team on We are here to help you.

If you require further course information or advice & guidance that is not answered in this outline please email