Explore the expressive qualities of charcoal to represent the evocative landscape of the West Dean Estate. Develop your repertoire of mark-making techniques, working from direct observation and your photographs. Learn how to respond to the landscape as you explore the tone, composition and material qualities of drawing with charcoal.
On the first evening, the tutor will present examples of her work for inspiration, including sketchbooks and research material. You will then begin with some simple drawing exercises to help you explore the mark-making possibilities of charcoal. From these, you will start to build a range of expressive techniques with which to represent the beautiful and evocative landscape at West Dean.
You will work from direct observation and your photographs of the West Dean landscape. From this research material and your charcoal experiments, you will produce quick studies and then make finished drawings in a variety of scales and size. The tutor will guide you through each stage of the process, as well as support you in developing your personal response to the subject of the landscape through group discussions and one-to-one support.
By the end of the course, you will have developed your skills with charcoal and gained the confidence to use the techniques learned to respond to and draw other landscapes beyond the course.
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.
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.
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)
- The course fee includes the cost of providing some of the materials required, including some willow charcoal, masking tape, fixative and paper shared amongst the group to get started.
What students need to bring
- Smart phone (or camera and lead)
- Apron or protective clothing
- Scrap clean paper, envelopes, letters, etc., not newspaper or magazines
- Willow charcoal, various sizes
- Compressed charcoal black, any brand
- Masking tape, thick or thin
- A2 or A3 smooth (or hot pressed) paper pad
- Soft brush – like a make-up brush or a DIY soft brush
- Any other form of black pastel, charcoal or graphite you have, for experimentation
- Printouts of your own photographs – please only bring your own photographs, not those from magazines or not taken by you. Take and print out your photographs of landscapes that you're interested in, not magazines.
Available to buy
- Available from shop:
- A good variety of materials, including A2 and A3 smooth paper pads, sketchbooks and drawing materials including charcoal and compressed charcoal.
Please note: the course is situated in the Carrington Studio which is a 10-minute walk away from the main house through the walled garden or it can be accessed by road. You will have morning coffee and afternoon tea near the studio; lunch and dinner will be taken in the main house.
Please wear appropriate clothing/aprons for the workshop or studio. This includes stout covered footwear, i.e. no open-toes or sandals.