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Not-for-profit art school offers workshop bursary to young painters


A not-for-profit Cotswold art school is offering young painters the opportunity to study with an internationally renowned tutor.

Raw Umber Studios runs in-person and online classes featuring award-winning artists from all over the globe. This autumn, two under-30-year-olds will be awarded half-price ‘bursary’ places on its still life workshop with classically trained artist Lizet Dingemans.

“It’s very difficult for young people to be able to afford good tuition,” Raw Umber founder Neil Davidson said. “We delight in finding classically trained artists of outstanding ability to teach our classes, and we want all kinds of people, of all ages, to be able to benefit from that.”

Lizet – who is artist in residence at Raw Umber – will teach the still life oil-painting class on September 24 and 25 at the studios in Nelson Street, Stroud. Over two days, 12 participants will gain a wealth of knowledge about oil painting, as well as leaving with two finished pictures. The cost of £200 per person will be reduced to £100 each for two people aged between 18 and 30. Applicants will need to submit a link to an online account, such as Instagram, demonstrating a range of their work.

However, Lizet added Raw Umber will be looking for passion above all else. “Even if you have never painted before, all that is important is that you have an interest.”

Lizet, who trained at Florence’s prestigious Angel Academy and the London Atelier of Representational Art, particularly recommends a still life course not only as an end in itself but as a solid foundation for progressing to other types of art, including portraits, figures and landscapes.

“What’s great is that you can bring your own objects, related to your own interest. Personally, I love to paint fish – I really like the way water reflects off them. Students can use something shiny, something matt; something furry – anything at all. You’re only limited by your imagination.”

Other tutors this year have included Oliver Sin, whose portraits of Virginia Woolf and Emmy Noether were used as TIME magazine covers in 2020; and regular BP Portrait award exhibitor Anastasia Pollard.

Neil is a keen amateur painter himself. ‘Because we do not aim to make money, we are able to focus on helping and supporting people who would like to study art. Young people have had an especially difficult time through lockdown. Among other things, we know that art can be an aid to good mental health. This current initiative is the first of many that we intend to promote.’

The deadline for submission for a half-price place is July 31. For more information, visit rawumberstudios.com/under-30

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