Contemporary landscapes with Hester Berry 14th/15th September 2021

Contemporary landscapes with Hester Berry 14th/15th September 2021

I really find Hester Berry’s painting quite mystifying. She creates stunning landscapes that capture a moment in time beautifully. Standing slightly back from her paintings you feel like you are in the landscape – you can feel the warmth of the sun, movement of the clouds, the stirring of the leaves. Take a step closer though and the painting is ‘just’ a small number of beautifully executed brushstrokes.

Being able to deconstruct a landscape, distil it down and then reassemble on the canvas with seemingly effortless style is artistic alchemy my brain struggles to comprehend!

On this course will be taught a practical and expressive approach to landscape painting, including preparatory sketches, background on historical and contemporary landscape artists, and techniques for ways of looking and mark-making.  You will be shown presentations and a demo, as well as working to your own drawing and oil painting.

£215 for the whole weekend including your tuition, tools and materials


We are currently taking booking payments through the website for this course.


DAY 1:

Sketching: Gain confidence in using your sketchbook, gathering source material and choosing a view that appeals to you.

Tonal work: Learn how to represent the landscape using black and white – an essential skill for the landscape artist.

We will also prepare a board for the following day’s oil painting by applying a neutral colour.

DAY 2:

Colour and Mark-making

After an introduction to colour mixing, and a demonstration to show you how I approach a painting, you will have the day to spend on your own oil painting.

Hester will guide and offer advice along the way.

This fun course includes:

  • Informal, relaxed & attentive guidance for every student, provided by Hester Berry
  • Step-by-step talks and a demonstration covering…
    • Sketchbook use
    • Tonal observation and studies
    • Colour mixing
    • Applying oil paint using a variety of marks to create movement and expression
    • Painting materials

Suitable for?

Anyone regardless of experience.

We generally limit the age to 14 years old+ though exceptions can be made where appropriate. Please contact James Orts and ask.

What is included in the price?

  • Two full days tuition (10am-4.30pm)
  • Materials
  • Tea, coffee, biscuits/cakes
  • Use of a beautiful, purpose built art studio with all the equipment & materials you will need
  • Beautiful countryside setting

This course is for you if:

  • You want to learn how to create landscapes or ‘loosen up’ in your creative approach
  • You want to explore your creativity but lack the confidence to do so on your own
  • You want to get away from it all and immerse yourself in a fun, creative environment
  • You want to train your eye and improve your accuracy and confidence in mark-making
  • You want to try a different medium to explore your creativity or artistic practice

Pre course prep

You will be sent an automated email on booking which prompts you towards documents that help you prepare for your time here. If this does not happen then please email James before the course.

There is not much preparation needed for this course. Essentially though students will be asked to bring a number of landscape images with them. These could be of places that have special sentimental value to you. Hester will then advise which pictures will make a good landscape.

You will also be asked to bring a sketchbook to work in throughout the weekend.

Need accommodation?

If you are travelling from further afield and would like to stay in the area for your visit then have a look at our recommend B&Bs and hotels.  Click here for the list.

Beyond The Course

Having completed a Phoenix Studio course many of our students choose to explore the medium further. They may come on another weekend course, start coming to our Creative Monday Sessions, evening sessions or carry on independently at home. We are more than happy to help and advise you in taking those first creative steps!


Hester Berry

Hester’s practise is rooted in traditional representation and methods, but she constantly challenges her understanding of ‘painting’ and explores her technique to capture the intricacies of the landscape.

She studied at the University of Wales in Aberystwyth and went on to do a Masters in Wimbledon. In recent years she has returned to her native Devon where she lives, works and raises her family.

We get wonderful feedback from the people who attend this course.  Here are just a couple of testimonials:

£215 for the whole weekend including your tuition, tools and materials


We are currently taking booking payments through the website for this course.

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