Acrylic Painting I: Basic Techniques and Fundamentals

Instructor: Carol Wylie
Mondays 6:30-9:30pm
10 weeks: January 14 to March 25, no class February 18
Room 118 Williams Building
$360 supplies extra
Prerequisite: none

In this class, students will develop personal expression as they learn to paint with acrylics. We will focus on colour mixing and colour theory, explore different grounds, and incorporate application techniques that include alla prima, underpainting, glazing and scumbling, as well as palette knife application.


This class will focus on fundamentals such as colour mixing, colour theory, painting techniques, and composition. At the same time personal expression and the development of an individual artistic voice will be encouraged. 

  • Course introduction and discussion of goals.  
  • Working with value alone in black and white painting.
  • Colour wheel and monochromatic painting
  • Complimentary colour painting.
  • Full palette.
  • Working with underpainting.  
  • Glazing and scumbling techniques.
  • Neutrals/Colour effects
  • Palette knife painting
  • Abstract
  • Class critique*

Note: This outline is subject to change in response to class dynamics and development.

*The last class will be a class critique, not as criticism, but to learn from each other, and strengthen our ability to see strength and weakness in the work as well as identifying personal “style”.


For the first class:

  • Black and white acrylic paint
  • Some kind of palette
  • Palette knife
  • Large and small brush
  • Masking tape
  • 1 sheet of Lynx or equivalent 
  • Pencil and eraser

In the first class, we will go over paint colours, so you can get the idea of what you need and choose a cheaper brand if you like. We do a black and white painting at the first class, so please come with those. The brushes don't need to be radically large or small, just the sizes you are comfortable with.