Create a portrait with a focus on the balance of imaginative and representational painting, incorporating exploration with experimental mark-making techniques while maintaining a sense of form and realism. We will build the painting in layers by utilizing each consecutive week as a new layer on the same painting. Each week will demonstrate a wide range of painting methods, and how to utilize them in a balanced manner. Students will be able to paint along during the class, and will gain insight regarding tools, materials, and surfaces as well as the application used for various marks from loose and painterly to form-driven rendering. Other topics that will be discussed are: personal voice and vision, inspiration and influence, and interpretation and perception, to name a few. During these 6 weeks, this process will yield an imaginative realism portrait.
A virtual room link will be sent to you up to 24 hours prior to your class start date.
Complimentary 10-day access to each recorded session. Recordings are emailed the day after each live session.
For Water media, I will be using a variety of:
Acrylic paints in various colors, Heavy Body paints are great for building up textures, and I will show some of this with Heavy Body White, but regular viscosity is great too for most other things I’ll be doing in acrylic.
I’ll also use and discuss mediums such as:
Matte Medium and Gloss Medium/Varnish
(you are welcome to use a limited color palette or other similar colors if you choose)
The colors I may be using during this class are:
Cadmium Yellow Pale
Cadmium Red Light
Transparent Gold Ochre
Transparent Red Iron Oxide
I will talk about other colors that I use frequently as well such as the Grays and Radiants by Gamblin. If you do not have these colors listed above, don’t worry. If you are painting along, please just use what you have. And no matter whether you are painting along or just watching and taking notes, you can pick up any of these colors if you find you’re interested while taking the class, but it is not necessary to have all these colors.
If you’d like to use water based media only, that’s fine too but just be aware of drying time
Various sizes and shapes of sables from small rounds to mid-sized flats, brights and filberts
Various mops or large soft sables if you don’t have mops (basically something puffy and soft)
A couple larger bristles or utility bristle brushes, a couple medium-sized bristles could be good too.
Supplies for water-based media:
Jar/cup for water, rinsing brushes
Supplies for oil-based media:
Gamsol mineral spirits or odorless turpentine
Jar for gamsol
rags or paper towels
silicone spatula (kitchen spatula)
If you have more than one, that’s great, but one will be fine for the workshop
Any other sort of silicone tools such as paint shapers or combs.
Other unconventional tools I will be using are: scraps of foam core, kneaded erasers, rubber stamps, squeegees, paint rollers, plastic wrap, sand paper, straws, misc found objects.
I will discuss different surfaces and how they react differently to various media.
Suggestions for surfaces to use:
Pre-gessoed masonite panel such as the Mona Lisa gessoed art boards
Matte board or illustration board
**Note: You’re welcome to paint along during the live workshop, or watch the demonstration and take notes, then watch the recording later to paint along.
If you do not have any of these materials, and especially because of the possible limited opportunity to go out to acquire new supplies, it is not necessary. You can still learn by watching and listening to the demo and I will show various options to try in place of some of these unconventional tools. You can also obtain the tools you may not have at a later date to experiment on your own after watching the demo.
This online course requires the use of the Zoom program. You will need a computer, tablet or smartphone (with camera preferred) and internet. To download the program, click on the following link: zoom.us/download.
A Zoom meeting link will be sent to you up to 24 hours prior to your class start date. If you need help with Zoom, please let us know and we will schedule a short tutorial for you prior to your class.
Vanessa Lemen is an award-winning painter based in Carlsbad, CA, with works exhibited and in private collections internationally. Her paintings are layered in subtle allegory, with an explorative process that intertwines realism and abstract to depict humanity, metaphor and story. Her work has been published in two new Illustrated Limited Edition books: The Left Hand Of Darkness by Ursula K LeGuin and A Scanner Darkly by Philip K. Dick, and is published in such art books as Spectrum, Women of Wonder, The Journal and Infected By Art, and has been featured in articles in magazine such American Art Collector, ImagineFX, and Poets And Artists. Vanessa also writes monthly columns for the Muddy Colors blog, and is an educator who mentors privately, teaches classes online, and instructs at workshops across the US. Her recent work has earned her The Chesley Award and other awards in publications such Infected By Art, a Spectrum Award nomination, as well as Art Renewal Center’s ARC Salon, and participation in the International ARC Salon Exhibition.
Described through metaphorical imagery, it’s excerpts from her personal journey and reflection that she credits most as the inspiration for her work, and rolling with the unexpected as the very nature of her process. Much like the spontaneity of a dialog, the marks on the surface are what evoke a response and then a discovery, and a possibility of something new to form. Each piece she creates seems to come from a chaos, and in it, she is able to create a place of reflection and curiosity, a balance of the deep-seated and the unknown, with areas of rest and of movement that intertwine to form a calm amid the chaos.
For more info, visit VanessaLemenArt.com
vanessalemen on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter
Course Changes or Cancellations
LAAFA reserves the right to cancel any class/workshop, limit workshop size, change class/workshop times or substitute instructors for those listed in the schedule.
If a class/workshop is cancelled; students may transfer to another class/workshop, use credit on artschoolvideos.com, keep credit on file or be issued a full refund.
Refunds and Transfers
All online classes and workshops are non-refundable.
There are no make-ups available for online courses. Students are emailed a 10-day access to each recorded session, made available the next day after the live session.
16926 Saticoy Street
Van Nuys, CA 91406
Phone Hours: Mon-Fri, 10:00 AM-5:00 PM
Main Office Hours: Mon-Fri, 10:00 AM-5:00 PM
LAAFA campus is closed in between quarters. Main Office hours will resume on Tuesday, July 5, 2022.