Summer 2017 art classes at River Gallery School

BRATTLEBORO — River Gallery School is offering a spectrum of art making opportunities for everyone, children to retirees. At RGS, the focus is on creativity, instruction is individualized, and the classes and workshops are suitable for students at all levels — from absolute beginner to experienced artists alike. Check out the details at

For children ages 6 to 12, RGS offers seven weeks of Summer Art Camp, June 26 through Aug.12. This individualized approach to creativity nurtures each child's free imagination. Campers will experience different art making stations throughout the morning, break for a healthy snack, and then finish-up with more creative time.

Classes and Workshops for Adults and Teens:

Adult Studio, afternoon and evening sessions July 5 to 28, focuses on individual process and expression employing various media and techniques, including oils, acrylics, pastel, charcoal, watercolor, Sequencing, sculpture and mixed media. Projects develop individually and instruction (with Helen Schmidt and/or Lauren Watrous) is one-on-one, so veteran artists work side-by-side with absolute beginners in a supportive and fun atmosphere.

Monotype Printmaking will take place June 23 through July 28 led by Leigh Niland. Explore the unexpected and serendipitous results monotypes can offer. More Printmaking opportunities are available on weekends, with Kim Colligan returning to offer Printmaking Marathon on June 24 and 25, a full-on immersion in various non-toxic ways of making prints. Niland will also teach Screen Printmaking, employing stencils and silkscreens, July 1 and 2, and Schmidt will offer Layered Printmaking on July 8 and 9 combining monotype, drypoint, transfer and chine-colle.

Niland will also teach a drawing course, June 26 to July 31, in which still life set-ups and clothed models in controlled lighting will help students develop and practice skills with pencil and charcoal. Her fun new course Portraits: Secret Lives of Shopkeepers, invites Brattleboro merchants to the studios to pose in whatever garb appeals to them. Mary Giammartino of Hotel Pharmacy will kick it off in July, posing in her fur hat.

Watrous and Niland will each also offer a Life Drawing session, June 22 to July 27. Students (beginners to experienced) will receive personalized support to draw from individual interest and approach.

Plein Air Landscape on June 27 and 28, will take students to Deer Ridge Farm in Townshend, where old barns, a pond, hills and fields will offer inspiration. Artists can choose to work in either pastels or oils, with one-on-one interaction with instructor Lydia Thomson. Thomson will hold her annual Sequencing Teacher Training , July 20 to 23. Students will immerse deeply into this approach and learn to deal with the nuts and bolts of presenting a workshop. This is for those interested in deepening their understanding of the RGS approach to teaching art and/or those wishing to share Sequencing with others.

Encaustics with Julia Jensen, June 29 to Aug, 3, will offer hands-on instruction on various ways to build up surfaces, manipulate the wax, and finish paintings. Jensen will also offer and intensive Encaustic Weekend July 6 and 7, for both beginners and experienced folks who want a full-on experience.

Visiting artist Deborah Rubin will bring aspiring sketchers and watercolorists out to explore keeping Travel Journals on July 15 and 16. Create memories from your trips — anyone can do it! And Lynn Zimmerman will come at journaling from the other end, teaching how to make a Found Paper Sketchbook on July 29. Zimmerman will also teach Watercolor: Exploring Textures on Aug. 5, 19, and 26.

Cameron Schmitz will teach two dynamic August workshops: Still Life with Palette Knives, Aug. 1, 8, and 15, and Abstracting the Landscape, Aug. 21, 22, and 23. Local artist Cat Nunn offers something special on Aug. 1, 2, and 3, an Introduction to Classical Oil Painting, a structured approach allowing even first-time painters to progress with confidence.

Inspiring pastel teacher Robert Carsten will hone in on composition, and technique with Sublime Summertime on July 16. Charcoal Landscape with Ailyn Hoey on Aug. 6 is a hands-on workshop and demonstration of her unique method of drawing with charcoal. In Magic Houses, Aug. 12 and 13 with Ross Smart, creators will use found objects, wood, metal and soapstone to create a small fanciful dwelling.

River Gallery School is a 41-year old non-profit arts organization providing high-quality arts instruction to people of all ages and all levels of experience. The RGS Outreach Program with Marilyn Allen, Ross Smart and Nancy Detra, has regularly scheduled classes at the Gibson Aiken Senior Center, Hilltop House, The Gathering Place, and Pine Heights, as well as other venues.

Call 802-257-1577 or email for details and more information on classes, workshops, and inclusive scholarship policy, or visit 32 Main St., Brattleboro, or Scholarships are available through various generous grantors (Vermont Arts Council, Thomas Thompson Trust, the Doune Fund, Frances Hicks Foundation), generous donors, and RGS fundraising such as the Off The Wall Art Lottery, and their annual auction Oct. 7.


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