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Watercolour basics with Fred Osther - introduction to watercolour

Introduction to Watercolour

Dene Croft Studio

Saturday, October 12th, 2019, 9:30 am to 3:00 pm

Sunday, October 13th, 9.30am to 1.30pm

Instructor:  Fred Osther

To many people, watercolour seems “so hard”.  This one-day course will help you get started on the right path with an understanding of materials and techniques.

Osther, Ambleside Alley, 15x22 copy.jpg


We are attracted to watercolour’s fluid nature, subtlety, spontaneity and radiance that comes from the medium’s transparency.  But these same characteristics seem to give the brush a mind of its own.  Often, our first attempts are not successful because the paintings appear weak in value and “muddy” in colour.

This short course will help you gain control.  We will explore how far to push darks, how to build contrast and saturated colours and at the same time make the hard or soft edges that are essential to any painting.


For each subject, we will develop a “plan” for layering, reserving whites and placing darks.  Successful watercolours are more often the result of “thinking ahead” because corrections, although possible, are hard to make without destroying freshness.

We will work with a simple set of materials; paper, 2 brushes and a few pigments.  I encourage you to purchase good quality items as the interaction of paper, water, pigment and brush is critical to success. A recommended supply list will be sent out a few weeks before the course.



Throughout the day, we will work on:

·      Techniques; wet-on-wet, wet-on-dry, washes and glazing

·      How to control water

·      Colour mixing

·      Contrast through values and edges

·      Contrast through colour temperature

·      Watercolour with pencil or ink drawings.

Fred Osther: 

I have been drawing and painting almost all my life.  Over the past 10 years, I have had the luxury of pursuing a personal program of art instruction, mentoring and painting in watercolour and oils.  Many workshops with excellent instructors and courses at the Ontario College of Art, Toronto, Angel Academy of Art, Florence and Gage Academy of Art, Seattle provided a sound foundation particularly in drawing and watercolour.  Over the past 4 years, Dene Croft has guided me through the challenges of painting in oil and developing a professional art career.

I strongly believe art is an acquired skill like riding a bicycle.  It’s easy to forget the first steps we took.  After a few scrapes, we finally get past the driveway and onto busy streets.  Then it becomes second nature.


Many professions use art as a communication tool such as engineers, architects, interior designers, fashion designers and fine art students.  Most do not start their training already knowing how.  It takes lessons, often many…but they all get there and so can you.


All supplies needed for this workshop are provided by the studio. Total cost for the two days(including instructor fee, taxes and material costs) $200

Please call the studio @604-250-5562 to book, or use the contact feature on the home page