Tony demonstrates his technique for landscapes, townscapes, and still life, catering to any type of presentation as long as it involves watercolours.
About the Classes
Tony’s teaching ethos is to dive right into the practical aspects without lengthy preambles or extensive theories. He assesses each attendee’s experience in watercolour painting to determine the pace of the workshop. The first painting choice is universally pleasing, a simple yet gratifying local view that attendees can take home as a full-sized painting. Tony works from a provided photograph, explaining the process of choosing the view, simplifying complexities, and planning the painting order. He proceeds to demonstrate each phase, with the class following suit, referring to Tony’s painting and their photocopies. Throughout the course, Tony offers guidance and advice, encouraging class members to introduce their own subjects for painting, while he assists in discovering the artistic essence, simplifying intricate details, or deconstructing classic works.
About the Artist
Tony Burke, a Huddersfield artist with over 60 years of experience in watercolours, maintains a distinctive style marked by frankness and contrast, which is rather uncommon among watercolorists. He typically outlines the primary elements in pencil for precise positioning, applies paint from light to dark, and then adds crucial details. Depending on the subject, he works at his desk or stands at his easel. Tony enjoys outdoor painting and often joins others on Fridays when the weather allows. His versatility enables him to tackle a wide range of subjects, challenging the notion that watercolours are limited in style. According to Tony, “Nothing is off-limits,” rejecting the perception of watercolours as strictly traditional. Tony’s artistic journey began at Bradford Art School in the seventies before pursuing a career as a Product Designer, during which he accumulated two patents and over forty registered designs while never forsaking his passion for watercolours. He has established a presence on YouTube, offering live classes every Monday and Zoom sessions every Friday. As a member of the Huddersfield Art Society, he achieved the honour of “Best in Show” at last year’s annual exhibition.
Materials to Bring
For watercolour paints, Tony recommends a limited palette of colours, including Burnt Umber, Burnt Sienna, Raw Sienna, Alizarin Crimson, Scarlet, Ultramarine, Payne’s Grey, and white gouache, all of which should be of a “low” cost Series A grade. Naples yellow, Hooker’s Green, Cobalt Blue, Sepia, and Neutral tint are also useful but not essential. While professional-quality materials are preferred, student or Cotman grade paints are acceptable, although they may be used in larger quantities. Tony advises simplicity in the choice of watercolour brushes, with a Chinese goat hair brush for 90% of the work and a 1″ synthetic brush for washes, along with a No. 4 brush for finer details. Good-quality watercolour paper is a must, with options like Saunders Waterford or Arches, 140lb minimum weight, in either CP or Rough surface. Attendees can choose between loose sheets or a block (although blocks tend to be more expensive), and Tony personally opts for 15″ x 11″ paper. Necessary accessories include masking tape, a soft pencil, an eraser (preferably putty), and a ruler. While a mixing palette is provided, attendees are encouraged to bring their own.
The course provides a table-top easel, a 13 x 17 12mm warp-resistant MDF board, and a palette or mixing plate.
The course is contingent on meeting minimum enrolment requirements, and full payment is due at the time of booking, whether through the shop, phone, or online. All sales are considered final unless participants wish to transfer to another class, in which case any price difference will be adjusted. Full refunds are issued if the course cannot proceed. No refunds are offered for missed classes, but participants may explore the option of transferring their booking to an alternative event by contacting Calder Art Supplies at 01484 422991.
Location: Calder Art Supplies
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