Painting 1: Practice of Painting

Course Level: 1 (HE4) | HE Credits: 40 | Approx. Duration: 12 months at 8hrs/week


This unit enables you to see in a selective way, developing your own visual ideas and means of expression. You will explore given subject matter systematically, experiencing different approaches to painting and will be introduced to some of the major artists and movements, including those in C20 and C21 painting.

You will learn to paint by being encouraged to analyse and select from the visual world what seems to be important and discover ways in which this visual experience can be translated into painting. Working from direct observation, the importance of drawing is emphasised. There are projects on tone values, colour theory, perspective, pictorial composition, use of studies and photographs, an introduction to figure painting, emotional aspects of painting and painting outdoors. You are required, through a series of theoretical studies, to investigate artists and visit galleries and museums. You will record your discoveries and observations in a learning log.


The course aims to:

  • A1 experiment with key processes for drawing and painting
  • A2 explore a range of media and use them expressively
  • A3 examine the works of significant historical and contemporary painters and artistic movements and consider how they might inform your own practice
  • A4 use reflection to develop your learning.


On successful completion of the course you will be able to:

  • LO1 explore and employ key processes for drawing and painting
  • LO2 explore a range of media to create visual work
  • LO3 begin to understand how historical and contemporary painters and artistic movements can and have informed your own practice
  • LO4 reflect on your own learning experience

Course content

  • Painting materials and techniques
  • Understanding and using colour
  • Perspective and the third dimension
  • Picture composition
  • Working from studies and photographs
  • Painting the figure
  • Painting outdoors

Unit Leader

Hayley Lock

Unit Leader for Painting 1: Practice of Painting

Hayley Lock profile image

“I am a practicing artist and lecturer based in East Anglia. I graduated in 1989 from Goldsmiths College, University of London having studied Fine Art Textiles and hold an MA from Colchester Institute in Contemporary Art and Professional Practice…”

Read the rest of Hayley’s profile here