Home » Classes » Workshops


Each semester the Brentwood Art Center offers fine art workshops and mini-series for all levels.

All instructed workshops include supplies in the registration fee, unless otherwise noted.

Artist Masterclasses are free but attendees must reserve their seat online.

Uninstructed workshops are $15 per session and students must bring their own supplies.

Enroll online on our registration page or by calling us at (310) 451-5657!

Abstract Techniques: Pushing, Pouring & Scraping

Instructor: Gary Paller
Wednesday, January 15
6-9 PM, $70

Learn to paint without a brush! Learn expressionistic methods similar to those used by such artists as Gerhard Richter and Helen Frankenthaler using acrylic paint.

Register Now

Your iPad as a Digital Sketchbook

Instructor: Melissa Dyanne
Saturday, January 25
2-5 PM, $60

With the new surge in digital art technology, the iPad is wonderfully suited to be a “one-stop-shop” for drawing and painting. This workshop will take you through the basics of using your iPad as a Digital Sketchbook. All students will need an iPad and the Sketchbook app (free in the apple store). An iPencil is extremely helpful but not required. Each student will draw or paint a still-life using the Camera and Sketchbook scanner, learn the interface and tools in the Sketchbook app as well as how to import images and sketches that can enhance the final piece.

Register Now

Talk with Dan Hill, author of First Blush: Intuitive Reactions to Art

Saturday, February 1
2:30-5:00 PM
Free with RSVP

What’s the actual experience people have when standing before a work of art, taking it in? Find out thanks to this unique guest lecture that will be of interest to artists, photographers and the general public at large. Hill’s latest book is by far the largest study ever conducted that involves eye-tracking technology and art in order to learn where people precisely look, for how long, and in what order. By adding in facial coding, Hill also captures not only where people look but how they feel about what they’re seeing. In addition to results that cover 88 famous art works from the Renaissance to today, Hill’s lecture will also explore how knowing facial expressions, per emotion, can enrich your understanding and appreciation of portraiture based on his previous book, Famous Faces Decoded: A Guidebook for Reading Others. Dan Hill, Ph.D., has given lectures in over 20 countries.


Color Mixing: How to Get Exactly What You Want

Instructor: Hayley Quentin
February 4 – February 6
6:30-9:30 PM, $210

This three-part workshop is designed to demystify color mixing and give students the fundamental tools to accurately mix any color imaginable (really!). Day 1: Students will create their own color wheel and neutrals chart, including comprehensive instructions on how to set up an optimal working palette and use a palette knife to mix paint effectively. Day 2: Students will learn a fail-safe, step-by-step process to mix any color and will put this theory into practice as students reference from famous works of art and recreate the colors therein. Day 3: students will learn how to select colors that look good together based on saturation, value, color temperature, and “complementary” colors, culminating in students creating custom color charts of their own aesthetic preferences. Suitable for all levels.

Register Now

California Cacti: Watercolor on Yupo

Instructor: Molly Segal
Wednesday, February 12
2-5 PM, $70

Explore the unexpected and dynamic techniques of using watercolors and water-soluble pastels on yupo, a type of plastic paper, in this introductory workshop. Students will work from life to paint and draw drought-resistant plants. Because yupo is made of plastic, the pigment does not absorb and stain like more traditional watercolors. This allows for a low pressure, vibrant, and flexible use of water pastels and watercolor.

Register Now

Ceramics: Sgraffito Serving Platters

Instructor: Liz Navarro
Saturday, February 22
2-5 PM, $70

Students will learn how to make their own sgraffito serving platter. We will use underglazes to decorate and then edge (sgraffito) different patterns and designs. All of the pieces then will be fired with a food-safe clear glaze. Come prepared with some images or templates for inspiration.

Register Now

Acrylic Painting Techniques: Impasto Landscapes

Instructor: Ally Wallace
Tuesday, February 25
5-8 PM, $70

This workshop will focus on creating a landscape using acrylic paint to create a natural pastoral palette. Then, using various tools and techniques we’ll develop lots of texture in our compositions. Come ready to learn about impasto, mark making, and painting without restraint! Potential Prework: If you have a particular landscape you are interested in bring a photo of it along with you.

Register Now

The Portrait: Techniques of the Masters*

Instructor: Hayley Quentin
March 2 – March 11, Monday/Wednesday (4 meeetings)
2:30-5:30 PM, $275

*Students must provide their own materials and have drawing and painting experience for The Portrait workshop. Live model every session.

This four part portraiture workshop will explore one of the oldest painting techniques: Glazing and Veiling (using multiple thin layers of paint to create a completed work). The process will include underdrawing, underpainting, and two layers of overpainting. This technique creates a smooth, luminous finished painting. Students will work from a live model each class. Prerequisite: painting and drawing experience.

Day 1: Students will review facial proportion and structural drawing techniques of the head. Working from a live model students will create several drawing studies as well as their final, completed underdrawing onto their canvas.

Day 2: Students will follow in a long tradition of artists and create a burnt umber underpainting as their first layer. Using the correct brushes, applications, and mediums with their paint, students will separate color and pure value for this layer.

Day 3: First layer of overpainting! Color mixing, including the differences between color theory and actual paint pigment mixing will be reviewed. Students will learn a “fat over lean” technique (oil painters) as well as how to achieve the correct consistency to maintain smoothness and luminosity in their paintings.

Day 4: Final layer of overpainting. Students will add their finishing touches to their portrait paintings, including learning how to make a color correcting glaze, compensating for inaccurate color temperature, as well as additional dry brush techniques. Voila! Your masterpiece is complete.

Register Now


Uninstructed Figure Workshop

Tuesdays & Wednesdays, 2-5 PM
$15 drop-in

A model is scheduled twice a week for these uninstructed figure drawing workshops. Students must bring their own supplies. Short poses are on Tuesdays and long poses are on Wednesdays.