Term 3 Contemporary Tonal Realism

Term 3 Contemporary Tonal Realism

$430.00 inc. GST

Lecturer: Melanie Brown
Mon 29 Jul – Mon 2 Sep
6pm -9pm
Level: Advanced


This course explores various objective approaches in representational painting, applying indirect methods and processes to projects in both still life and figurative genres. Participants can investigate both classical and contemporary practices in tonal realism, with opportunity for both observational painting and working from their own photographic references for individual projects.
Painting processes will also include tonal structures & colour temperature, brush strokes, edges, detail, composition, supports, contemporary palettes and other conceptual possibilities in paint and narrative. Practical demonstrations, individual and group discussion are integral to the course. 

Suitable for intermediate painters who have completed “Introduction to oils – Part 1” or have basic or more advanced skill experience. 


This is a suggested basic range in paint and mediums. Students are encouraged to bring their full kit and add other colours as the projects progress 


Suggested warm and cool oils 

  • Titanium White* 
  • Ivory Black* 
  • Ultramarine Blue* 
  • Phthalo Blue 
  • Cadmium Red light* 
  • Alizarin Permanent* 
  • Cadmium Yellow Medium* 
  • Lemon Yellow* 
  • Burnt sienna* 
  • Naples yellow or yellow ochre* 
  • Raw & burnt Umber* 

Acrylics: burnt sienna, choice of other colours for contemporary grounds. To be discussed in class. 


  • Odourless solvent 500mls* (Gamsol or Langridge Solvent 75 recommended. Artist grade odourless solvents only; please, no turpentine or common hardware solvents are permitted in the classroom). 
  • Gamblin Galkyd Lite or fast dry non-toxic medium (no liquin/ liquol please) 
  • If choosing Langridge mediums note the low toxic mediums (underpainting no 1 and no.2  can take a long drying time. Linseed oil & no toxic gels may also be used 


  • 2 @ a3 sketch paper 
  • Suggested size 16 x 20”  or 20 x 24 inch primed wood panel or canvas board of canvas 
  • Canvas- size of choice. 16 x 20, 20 x 24 inch or larger. Scale according to image composition and approach. (to be discussed in class) Note: the experienced painter may choose a larger scale for the final project. Large brushes required! 


Any brushes are fine except floppy rounds! A selection of large, medium & small is recommended. 

Below are some suggestions: 

  • Flat or Bright stiff synthetic bristle brushes sizes, 4, 6, 8 & 12* 
  • 1 of each filbert synthetic bristle brushes sizes 4 -12 
  • 1 cheap flat hogs hair no 16 or 18 approximately for acrylic ground application 

(An approximation of these brush sizes will be suitable.) 

Other Materials 

  • A3 disposable palette* 
  • A small-medium palette knife* 
  • 2 small jars with lids* 
  • A5 Art Journal* 
  • Cotton rags and paper towels* 
  • Masking tape* 
  • Photographs for final project- to be discussed in class. 
  • 1 sheet of fine sandpaper if using wood panel in week 2 

*Materials needed for the first lesson 


Melanie Brown completed a Bachelor of Visual Art (Honours) in 2008 at Adelaide Central School of Art, having been awarded several scholarships and the Alumni Award. She has won awards including the Clifton’s Art Prize in 2008, the Loreto Star Portrait Prize in 2013 and the Kennedy Art Prize People’s Choice Award for 2015. Melanie has an extensive exhibition history including group shows at BMG Gallery and more recently at Praxis Artspace. Mel has significant experience lecturing in Painting and Drawing at Adelaide Central School of Art in both degree and short courses! Melanie has received corporate and private commissions for her paintings both locally and overseas. 



Melanie Brown, Gogo Fiasco (DETIAL), 2014, 164 x 104cm, Oil on canvas. Winner of the Kennedy Art Prize Peoples Choice Award, 2014


Please read the Terms and Conditions before completing your enrolment.

Categories:Term 3 2024Short Courses
Experience Level:Advanced

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