Abstract and Intuitive Painting

This course will explore the qualities of abstract art through a variety of lenses that students will learn to integrate into their own working process. Students will examine the techniques and methods of the past as well as a variety of contemporary approaches to this subject. Additionally, this class will explore the notion of abstract painting as it relates to direct observation along with visual ideas that derive from intuitive inspiration. The goal is for students to gain an informed understanding of the depth and breadth of abstract art so that they may proceed beyond the class room with their own pictorial investigations.

Furthermore, students will explore a variety of mixed media approaches, textural applications, and transparent layering techniques throughout many visual contexts and exercises. Students will gain an understanding of the appropriate use of acrylic paint and the corresponding additives of this medium. The principles of composition, color theory, brush and palette knife techniques, and appropriate preservation methods will serve as the common thread that will run throughout the course.

What you will learn:

  • Apply knowledge of color theory and perception to a variety of pictorial problems

  • Develop an understanding of the principles of design and composition

  • Gain an understanding of paint mixing and paint application techniques

  • Develop an understanding of the rich historical context of abstraction

  • Apply the appropriate language and understanding in order to critically analyze a given painting

For the first day of class, bring these supplies:

  • A basic primary color paint set: red, blue, yellow, black, white.* Preferred but not required pigments: red, cadmium red medium; blue, ultramarine blue; yellow, cadmium yellow light; white, titanium white; black, ivory black.

  • Pre-stretched canvases and/or panel (one per class; preferably 12” x 16” or larger)*

  • An assortment of acrylic/oil brushes*

  • Metal 2” 3” palette knife*

  • Palette paper,wax paper or tempered glass*

  • Items marked with an asterisk are available for purchase in Fleisher’s school store. Members receive a 10% discount on art supply purchases. 

Other supplies, to be discussed on the first day of class:

  • Additional colors (acra magenta, phthalo blue/green, yellow ochre, burnt umber, raw sienna, zinc white, permanent green light, dioxazine purple)

  • Retarder

  • Matte medium

  • Gloss medium

  • Gloss gel

  • Sand, marble dust, aluminum foil, fabric, magazines images, photographs for mixed media and texture