How did the artists who painted like Turner, learn to paint like Turner?

Norfolk Painting School Course Director Martin Kinnear shows you how the Masters learned how to paint from proven methods and how you can see for yourself in our Studiotalk and Masterclass Programs.

Thank you for connecting with us - I'm Martin Kinnear, Founder of The Norfolk Painting School, and I'd like to share a self assessment project with you to try at home so you can see what we do and decide if you'd benefit from learning the secrets of the classical and contemporary Masters with us.

In fact I'm coming to this post straight from leading our latest Masterclass ('Glowing Skies') on the working methods of the great American Luminist painters such as Thomas Moran and F. E. Church (above), and wanted to reach out to both our members and painters across the world, who have yet to join us, and share my rekindled passion and enthusiasm for learning the techniques of classical oil painting.

Rekindled, because as a professional artist this is certainly not the style of painting which won me my public gallery shows, or my 2018 Paris Salon medal, but it's what I taught myself to do when I started out and really wanted to learn how to make paint work.

Skills facilitate Creativity

Painting is both an art and a craft, and I have learned that the craft or skill of painting facilitates the creative vision we need to make Art. If you always have a better picture in your head than you can get on to your canvas, you'll want to learn all about the craft of painting such as opacity, edges, luminosity, range, control - everything in fact which makes paintings impactful - so you have the skills to realise your creative vision.

One of the great myths which stops people becoming better painters is the idea that painters are born not made. Every single painter from Titian to Thomas Moran learned and earned their craft, time spent on the brush is the key to success, providing that practice is spent on mastering good habits, not reinforcing bad ones.

Most modern artists are put off because traditional style oils look very hard to recreate, but because they are built using systems and principles, they really are much more predicable - and therefore much easier to pull off than good direct contemporary work. In short, learn the process: get the results. Skills facilitate creative expression, and learning them will enable you to become the best painter you can be.

Studiotalk: Be part of our painting and learning creative community

Sharing ideas, increases learning so we've always put community at the heart of our painting experience.

One of our recent Studiotalk collaborators, the American master of Luminist and Tonalist oils, Maurice Sapiro, inspired our members with his contemporary works based upon the methods of the Hudson River School, and Turner who influenced them in turn. Great Art is timeless

Masterclass - in depth Monthly Demonstrations

Seeing things done is a fantastic way to learn, but its even better if you can hear things explained, then see them done and ask questions as you're watching, before doing it yourself. Our effective process of saying what needs to be done, showing how it's done and clarifying as we do so, has been at the heart of our success since 2007, and is the reason our online Masterclasses are so effective as learning experiences.

'It is the most intensive, interesting oil painting school, probably in the world, since people from all over the world beat a path to the school's door.'

Read more student reviews online

As we've got a whole bunch of classical Masterclasses coming up which are brilliant for contemporary artists, I thought I'd channel my enthusiasm for learning from the Masters with a free project to get you Classical Painting learning fit, and share some example lecture slides to give you a sense of what we can do for - and with - you.

See if it's for you

As part of our ongoing commitment to improving all of our students painting skills, we share step by step projects with our Members' painting community. Why not check out this recent PDF step by step project on Turner's core methods which we released to supplement our Maurice Sapiro Studiotalk, its a great self assessment and a chance to give your classical painting skills a spin!

Turner Article for Maurice Sapiro Studio
Download • 1.44MB

Your Next Chance to Learn with Us

Coming soon we have Masterclasses on everything from the amazing contemporary art of Diebenkorn to Classical Nocturnes, the very best of English `Sea Painting, and a landmark course on Turner. To find out more simply check out our Masterclass Program here

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