Art Classes at The Painting Workshop

This post is part of the ‘In 7′ photo series., where I share a moment in 7 pictures.

In the past, I never devoted significant time to exploring painting, drawing, and other traditional art mediums. So for 9 months, I took various evening art classes at The Painting Workshop. My classes included: Intro to Painting, Carving & Printing, and Drawing.

The Painting Workshop in Baltimore, Maryland, offers workshops and classes to children and adults. All my classes were taught by my now good friend, Laura Riveiro. I appreciated the open, inclusive, and understanding (e.g., bringing my toddler when I didn’t have evening childcare) the studio provided. These Monday evenings were important for managing my mental health, getting out and meeting people, and fueling creativity.

Here are my 7 photos that highlighted some of the work I created during class and what I learned with a photo-by-photo breakdown below:

I did this splatter painting during my first class at The Painting Workshop. I learned two things: 1. It’s incredibly freeing just to let go and throw some paint around, and 2. Splattering paint is hard.
Carving and Printing was the class that I didn’t know I needed. Thinking about negative space was quite challenging for me. I also learned a lot about different papers, how they interact with different mediums, and the impact paper has on a piece.
Laura Riveiro started many of her drawing classes with a “quick sketch” exercise. We would have to draw our classmates posing in 1 minute, then 40 seconds, then 20 seconds. It was a great way to focus on form and make choices about what to capture.
My first-ever soft pastel piece (with hints of oil pastels) was a study of Franz Marc’s Blue Fox. Soft pastels take a lot of work to build up color intensity. I appreciated learning various ways to tackle this medium.
A graphite drawing of my Teddy as an infant. I gained a huge appreciation for doing studies before tackling a finished piece. I did about 3 studies of this drawing before drawing the image above.
Laura Riveiro asked us to pick 3 object colors and a background color to create oil pastel portraits of our classmates. This has easily become one of my favorite exercises. I often do it on my own.
Laura Riveiro asked us to interpret a poem into a layered drawing piece. My poem was Caminante, No Hay Camino/Traveller, There is No Road by Antonio Machado. I used a mix of markers, graphite, and charcoal for the various layers.

If you liked this post, be sure to check out the rest of the “In 7” photo series.

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Smiti Nathan

I’m an archaeologist that travels around the world for both work and pleasure. I have a penchant for exploring ancient and modern places and the people, plants, and foods entangled in them. I write about archaeology, travel, and productivity.



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