Oil Painting Workshop—Understanding the medium and colour

Sunday, 21 May 2017 9:30 AM - 4:00 PM AEST

Shop 6, 4 - 14, Hunter Street, Parramatta, New South Wales, 2150, Australia

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DAY ENTRY Partial Approval - $130.00

Entry ticket for a full day workshop including art materials and lunch

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Sunday, 21 May 2017 9:30 AM - 4:00 PM AEST

CPAS Studio, Shop 6, 4 - 14, Hunter Street, Parramatta, New South Wales, 2150, Australia.

A lot of artists and students get confused and sometimes even intimidated by oil painting as it looks so complex. There are also concerns about health and safety issues, paintings cracking, layering of paint “fat over lean” and many more. The reality is that there are a lot of mis-conceptions surrounding oil painting which could be overcome by understanding the materials that you are using. The problem is that although today there is a lot of information on the net, unfortunately most of this information is either confusing or incorrect. The information given in this workshop is based on referenced and published sources about art materials. 


The aim of this workshop is to help you understand the various art materials available on the market including painting surfaces (cotton canvas and linen), oil paints and various media and varnishes used for oil painting. We will then discuss colour and new advances in the use of colour and colour mixing. We will have practical sessions about how to mix and use paints/colour by painting simple objects from life.





·         Using oil paints and health concerns: the mis-conceptions.

·         Painting supports Canvases and linens (you will prepare your own canvas board including pre-staining)

·         Oil painting media including various oils and solvents (Turpentine, odourless mineral spirits, walnut oil, linseed oil, stand oil, safflower oil, liquin and other alkydes etc)

·         How to prepare your own slow drying media (without health hazard)

·         Discuss brushes and palettes suitable for oil painting.

·         Oiling up and varnishing painting


12:30 pm—1:00 pm      LUNCH BREAK


1:00 pm—4:00 pm        COLOUR:  New understanding of colour & colour mixing


·         Understanding light, paints and pigments (discussion and demonstrations using paints from various brands)

·         New advances on colour theory and colour mixing

·         Practical exercises on colour mixing and adjusting colour by comparing to real life objects



Please note that although I will be using safe products for painting and throughout the workshop, however I cannot exclude the use of turpentine in varnishes.



Printed notes with information will be given to participants.



 Christopher Vidal is an artist and scientist living in Sydney. His love for arts and science started from a very early age. At the age of six he was showing his interest in drawing and painting and at the age of thirteen he attended the school of Arts at Palazzo de La Salle, Valletta, Malta. For three years, he studied Arts in the classical way using life objects as reference materials for his drawings/paintings and sculpture. He was inspired by works of arts of the Renaissance and Baroque eras and by artists such as Caravaggio, Leonardo da Vinci and others. Later, Chris pursued a career as a scientist initially working in various clinical laboratories in chemistry and later he obtained a PhD in molecular genetics. He worked in science and research in both Malta and Australia for twenty-five years. During these years, he mentored several students. His scientific background also helps him to understand better the effect of light on the various pigments used in paint and so he considers each painting as a challenge to try to create the illusion of light using paint.  However, his innate love for arts always remained and throughout the years he experimented with various media and techniques. For the last fifteen years, his focus was to develop his technique in oils. He finds oil paints as the best medium to work with, since it is versatile and dynamic and hence you can use them to create endless effects using both brush and painting knife.  His experience taught him the importance to get to know and understand your materials to be able to use them well. This means that one needs to know the various pigments and other materials that are available on the market. Preparing your own surfaces also gives you more control on the materials that you use and to ensure quality to your clients. Traditionally used materials such as oil paints gives you peace of mind about their durability since they have been used for centuries and hence passed the test of time.

Please visit Chris’ website for more information and to see his works  http://www.christopher-vidal.com.au





For whom is this workshop suitable?

This workshop is suitable for those individuals that already have some experience in painting and/or are interested to develop their technique in using oil paints.


What Materials to bring with you?

The aim of this workshop is to help you understand the importance of using high quality materials especially painting surfaces and paints. All materials are provided by the organiser.  However, if you have your own materials and you want to discuss with the tutor whether you are using the right materials or not, please bring them with you.


You will only need to bring with you a notebook to write additional notes. Printed notes will also be provided.


All media used for painting during this workshop are safe and non-toxic.

Some paints might be toxic such as cadmiums, however these does not present any hazard as long as they are in the form of paint (and not powdered pigment that can be inhaled)

Please be aware that Turps are only present in varnishes used during the workshop (unfortunately we cannot eliminate this but their use is minimal)



AU$ 130 (full day workshop including Materials and lunch)


Cancellation policy

Money is only fully refunded if the organiser cancels the activity for any reason.

No refunds are given to individuals that change their mind.

In rare instances a 50% refund will be given if a replacement is found.


Limit class size


8 people

Vidal Arts and Photography

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