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Watercolor Portrait Painting

at Trestle Workshops - Greenwood

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Greenwood, Brooklyn
62 18th St
Near Hamilton Ave
Brooklyn, New York 11232
Please bring $15 for the model fee.
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Class Level: All levels
Age Requirements: 14 and older
Average Class Size: 8
Teacher: Allison Maletz

What you'll learn in this watercolor class:

Watercolor is the perfect medium for painting portraiture and skin tones. Students will learn to see, mix, and apply a range of colors that convey light and shadow in any skin tone, under any light. We will learn how to draw the human head, mix skin tone accurately, convey detailed facial features and various expressions. 

Students will experiment with techniques such as wet on wet, wet on dry, dry on dry and overlaying washes to visually communicate different parts of the face. This three week class will use live models, mirrors for self portrait, and focus on honing into isolated features to better understand how to depict them two-dimensionally.

Additional fee: Please bring $15 cash for the model fee.

Required Materials

  • 1 Pad of Paper (Cold press, 140 lb (300 gsm), 11 x14, 12 sheets.) Great Cheap Paper:
  • Canson Montval and Fluid. Other great papers: Arches, Fabriano - 100% cotton.
  • * BAD PAPERS TO AVOID: ”Borden & Riley Vellum" and Blue cover “Canson XL" and Fabriano - 25% cotton” watercolor paper brands- they are very frustrating to work with.
  • Hard Pencil (HB or 2H)
  • Kneaded Eraser 
  • Tray/Pallet - A metal palette with a lid and at least 12 one inch wells for different colors.
  • A range of Watercolor Brush Sizes varying from round and flat: 
    • 0 round
    • 4 or 6 flat
    • 10 round
    • 20 Flat
    • for example (you will know them from oil brushes because the bristles on water-based brushes are very soft to the touch.) 
    • The instructor recommends: Princeton Art and Brush Co. Princeton Series 9000 Brown Handled Brush, Set of 7
  • 1 water container, a plastic cup or coffee tin (anything out of the recycle bin will do.)
    • Watercolor paint tubes. The instructor would recommend buying a box of 8-15 small tubes of all the basic colors. ***At the very minimum you must have primary colors: 
      • Cadmium Red Deep
      • Cadmium Yellow
      • Ultramarine Blue
      • Lamp Black
      • Burnt Umber. 
      • (No White,Naples Yellow, or “Flesh Tint”) 
      • The instructor recommends opening the tubes of paint in the store to make sure the colors look "primary" aka, that the red is really RED and not an orangey red, etc. *Avoid: Reeves and Michaels Brand Paints - They are very frustrating to work with.
  • Kitchen Paper towels
  • 1 pen-like Xacto Knife
  • Hand mirror

Still have questions? Ask the community.

Refund Policy
Full 7 business days before class time for rescheduling. No refunds.


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Reviews of Classes at Trestle Workshops (321)

School: Trestle Workshops

Trestle Workshops

Trestle’s community classes program called Trestle Workshops offers instruction in a wide variety of artist techniques and theories, as well as training in professional practices. This program serves a dual purpose of educating artists in new media and creating jobs for highly-trained teaching artists....

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