I’m taking painting classes; Why you need to keep learning!

I think it is important to keep learning in the business. I love online resources and such to help me but sometimes getting direct feedback is even better!

Sometimes I feel almost embarrassed to say that I’m following classes for something that I try to make money with. But it really is a good thing to keep learning as a creative entrepreneur. I think that there is no such thing as knowing everything and since I have only been painting for around 7 years I still have a lot to learn.

Why you need to keep learning! I'm taking painting classes. Abot why you should keep learning, bad teachers and what I gained from this class

These classes really help me to try new things or paint things I never thought of. Also learning new exersizes and practising, in general, is great. I think that the main thing is just the feedback that can really benefit you.

Good and Bad Teachers

So I have had a few of painting classes now. I wanted to publish this after my first painting class. But unfortunately, there were some complications as I did not get any feedback in that first lesson. The teacher that I had then proceeded to call my work boring and the colours ugly which weren’t the best remarks. Especially since she did not really offer any advice on how to then solve that.

I just decided that this teacher was not for me. Her remarks were really getting me down and preventing me from drawing and painting in my own time. Hence the lack of work and updates.

Detail from my first painting of the old class!

Detail from my first painting of the old class!

I don’t think I’m someone who doesn’t handle critique well. I was in art classes for 6 years and that teacher really was serious about it. These were just a lot more vicious and since she did not really give me anyway to improve on it.

So I changed class and I now have the most amazing and nice teacher who has great feedback on my work. I don’t mean that she only compliments thing or something. I mean actual helpful feedback with remarks and ways to improve but not in a mean destroying way.

I think that if you want to learn something you need a teacher that you feel comfortable with and whose teaching style fits you! 

A new place to paint

The painting classes are not really painting classes as in you learn one thing at a time or start with basics.  Most of the people there already have basic knowledge. The classes are more so a place to get a theme and feedback.

The classroom that I’m in is actually the attic of an old police station (1908). The view from there is absolutely stunning as I can see the entire city at the horizon. The light in there is amazing as well. An Attic sounds dark to me, but that is luckily not the case at all.

This new place to paints really gives me a new burst of inspiration.

The whole room is set up very spacey and contains everything that you could need. I really love it as a place to paint. Since I do not have a separate room for art I just paint in my bedroom so getting a professional set up like that really is a treat to me.

my painting supplies

What I love the most are the painting easels. I only have desk one but the ones there are huge and so gorgeous.

I think the atmosphere in there is amazing. Since everybody is being creative, it really gets me going. We paint for an hour and then we take a half hour break before doing another hour. The breaks are not mandatory and when I get into painting I like to keep going. I did notice that I’m a slow painter apparently because almost everybody is already on to their second work.

I also really like that I now have a designated time for painting. Like I mentioned in my “day in the life” I try to save painting for the afternoons and evenings, but I end up working sometimes.

Trying new things

Like I said before, the painting classes really are a great pace for me to paint entirely new things and things I had never thought of before.

little crow from my painting

I love the fact that we have gotten a very broad theme and that we are completely free to give our own spin on it. Currently, we are painting boats. I love this theme and the teacher offered a lot of inspiration material. For my project, I decided to try my hand at a really old Dutch painting style. I think it will really help me practising light, water and atmosphere.

I’m also enrolled in my good friend Romica’s painting class for which she is starting a session on the 9th of November over at skillshare. I absolutely love her idea and I think this class will be so much fun. We will be making letter paper so do check it out!

I think it is very important for me to keep learning as a creative entrepreneur and artist. I always want to be the best version of me.

Of course, I know that painting lessons can be very expensive. 3 Alternatives are; painting with fellow friends or artists, asking feedback online or just using lessons and resources online. 

I would love to know if you ever followed any classes for your trade and if they helped you (or your business). Do you think it is important to keep learning?

Let me know!

11 Responses to “I’m taking painting classes; Why you need to keep learning!

  • Well I have to say I love your painting and I’m sorry you had bad luck with your previous art teacher. When working creatively you need supportive teaching rather than negative teaching. Your new art class sounds wonderful, it’s great to be able to practice your art in the company of other friends and to gain positive feedback on your work as well. I take a long time to complete each painting so don’t feel like you need to rush and follow the pace of others. As long as you feel comfortable doing what you’re doing, your enjoyment will shine through in your work.

    • Thank you so much for the nice words! I think that the reason that I felt so bothered by painting more slowly was because for some reason the atmosphere in the first class felt almost competitive. I never had that with art before. I agree far more with your views and I hope to let that shine through in my work in the future! Thank you so much 🙂 Hope you have an amazing day! ~ Sofie

  • Hi Sofie, I got really upset when I read your previous teacher’s “feedback”. Sounds like a very frustrated person to me. I’m not sure if you have read a bit about my story but the first time I presented my work, I also got quite unhelpful critique like “this looks like a child has painted it”.
    I do really believe that there is a strong need for good, encouraging teachers. People, that make you want to work hard and improve and use your mistakes to become better at your craft. It actually hurts me to hear, that you felt so down about it that it hindered you from enjoying to paint. I really believe that everyone has potential and I want my teacher to see this potential. I’m glad that you turned your back on this experience and could find a place were you feel inspired and you get good, constructive feedback. Actually when I challenged this professor to give me constructive feedback, I could really take a lot from it. He mentioned my strengths and also my weaknesses. Through this I could really improve a lot. I think as well, if I ever encounter feedback that is just hurtful, I will stand up and challenge that person.
    I’m very glad that you found this place. It sounds amazing. I really like your picture with the bench, actually especially the bench. Love the perspective and the mood it has and how you painted the snow 🙂
    I also believe that we never stop learning – along the lines of standing still means actually to go backwards. Life is so rich and has so much to offer. I am really excited for you and I think people who always remain a student at heart will me the true masters in their field.
    Looking forward to see more 🙂 – Romica

    • Hi, Romica! I’m really glad you like my painting. The bench seems to be a success by a lot of people so I’m starting to feel a lot better again about my art! I’m very sorry for the terrible feedback you got as well. I’m glad you got through to him to actually get good feedback. I think that is so brave and an amazing decision to actually learn something from that professor. I get far to shy and I started to believe her so with this teacher it felt better to change classes instead. I already feel like I learned more in one lesson there than in my three lessons with that other teacher. And I’m actually looking to my next lesson on Friday morning! Now that my enjoyment for painting is getting back I really look forward to learning again as well.
      I really hope to keep improving and learning and I’m so glad that you agree!
      Thank you so much for the nice words. I never expected so much positive feedback on my experience. I really helped me see it in perspective. 🙂
      Hope you have a wonderful evening. ~Sofie

  • Hi Sophie, thanks for sharing your experience. I had something similar happen when I was in undergrad during my first watercolor course. I was too naive to challenge the instructor’s comment during the first class exercise like Romica did–so I dropped the course. After I graduated, I continued to take classes in drawing and painting (even while teaching and working as a designer). When you find a good teacher, you will know it and you will be ready to learn from them. Keep up your good work here on the blog! Your work is very painterly and expressive so keep at it 🙂 ~Karen

    • Thank you so much for the amazing comment! I’m so sorry that happened to you as well. I think that what Romica did was absolutely amazing.
      I personally tend to get very shy (and since this was not a course in a college or university but more a private organisation) so changing class felt like the best option and I never felt that happy. I was almost too shy to even do that because I did not want to offend the teacher, but I’m very glad I did. Now that I know the joy of painting classes again I’m really planning to keep doing them. I’m very glad you did them while teaching and designing as well. Thank you for sharing that and for all the nice words! ~ Sofie

  • Thanks for sharing! I’m taking all sorts of arts classes to try to keep improving. In addition to continually building skills, I think they really help artists see what other artists in their community are doing and trying. Classes put artists around each other in contexts where they can share openly (with the right teachers and feedback, of course). Glad you’ve found a class that works for you!

    • Oh, that is such an interesting view and so right! It does really give you a view of what others are doing. I really enjoy seeing the different styles. Since this is my first painting class outside of school I do really feel a difference in how dedicated and serious everybody is! Thank you so much for sharing your view!

  • That first teacher sounded awful. There’s a subjective element to art so what one person like is different from someone else. Glad you moved on to a ‘real’ teacher. My grade 8 art teacher told me I had no talent but I kept at it and at least some people

    • think I do. ooops ..anyways Ann Rea is one ‘successful’ artist that even after a 5 year art degree she took glasses later in life. No end to learning and that’s good!

      • I think you are very talented! And I kind of like how you used the term “real” teacher. The difference between liking someone’s work and giving critique to someone to improve is so important. I’m very glad to hear all these other people taking classes as well. Thank you so much for sharing! It really helps me. ~Sofie

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