Oil painting landscapes with Hester Berry

Ref: S2D13453

About this course

Discover how to paint a landscape in oils, focusing on key points like tone, colour, and mark-making, in order to recreate light and movement experienced in nature.

Course Description

Spend time getting lost in the landscape painting. Discover and develop practical techniques in representing the landscape using oil paint, and learn how to transform your painting from a snapshot view to a confident expression of a landscape.

You will look at tone, using charcoal and oil paint to explore tonal relationships. You will also look in detail at colour mixing in order to recreate the colours that you perceive in the landscape in oil paint. This veracity to light and colour will enable you to free yourself with mark-making. You will explore how the physical application of paint can enhance your work, lending expression and the suggestion of non-visual elements to an oil painting. You will look at the work of other painters to inspire and gain insight into different techniques, as well as to understand the breadth of possible approaches to landscape painting. You will also look briefly at how artists collect source material, sketching and exploring the landscape through direct observation.

Everyone will have their own way of working, goals and questions. Your tutor will work with your unique needs and aims to help develop your individual practice.

By the end of the course, you will be able to make decisions on how to compress the natural spectrum of a landscape view into one which can be described by paint, to convincingly recreate a tonal piece. You will be able to use these decisions to aid you in your observation and processing of colour, mixing colours which more closely resemble those of the natural world. You will be able to call upon a range of marks to lend expression and movement to your subsequent paintings, adding more dimension, feeling and artistic licence to a work, elevating it from a snapshot view to a representation of an experience of a landscape.


Arrival Day - this is the first date listed above

Courses start early evening. Residential students to arrive from 4pm, non-residential students to arrive by 6.45pm.

6.45pm: Welcome, followed by dinner (included).

8 - 9pm: First teaching session, attendance is essential.

Daily timetable

Classes 9.15 - 5pm, lunch is included.

From 6.30pm: Dinner (included for residential students).

Evening working - students may have access to workshops until 9pm, but only with their tutor's permission and provided any health and safety guidelines are observed.

Last day

Classes 9.15am - 3pm, lunch is included.

Residential students are to vacate their rooms by 10am please.

(This timetable is for courses of more than one day in length. The tutor may make slight variations)

Course Materials


On this course, the College will supply all of the materials, including:

  • 2 pieces of A3 cartridge paper
  • charcoal
  • rubber, oil paints
  • 2 x A3 smooth gesso boards and 1 x A2 gesso board
  • 1.5inch flat brush
  • ¾ inch flat brush and size 2 round brush
  • a metal palette knife
  • Zest-it low odour solvent
  • linseed oil
  • poppy seed oil and dip pots.

What students need to bring

  • A small sketchbook and some sketching materials ie pens, pencils etc.
  • A device or printouts with landscape photos to work from
  • Optional - any oil paints, brushes or equipment you would like to use

Available to buy

Available from shop:

  • A good selection of art and craft materials

Additional information

Please wear appropriate clothing/aprons for the workshop or studio, this includes stout covered footwear (no open toes or sandals).


Hester Berry in the studio

Hester Berry

Hester Berry has made a living as a painter since leaving school, exhibiting throughout the UK and occasionally internationally. She gained a degree in Fine Art from University of Wales Aberystwyth and an MA in painting from UAL Wimbledon. She has taught painting and drawing for various societies and institutions including for Draw Brighton and Camden Arts Centre. In 2018 Tate published her book on Life Drawing.


Residential option available. Find out accommodation costs and how to book here.

Courses of interest

Further study options

Take the next step in your creative practice, with foundation level to Masters in Fine Art study. 

Depending on your experience, start with an Online Foundation Certificate in Art and Design (one year, part-time), a Foundation Diploma in Art and Design made up of 10 short courses taken over two years (part-time) or advance your learning with our BA (Hons) Art and Contemporary Craft: Materials, Making, and Place (six years part-time). All will help you develop core skills, find direction in your practice and build an impressive portfolio in preparation for artist opportunities or higher-level study. See all degree and diploma courses.