Painting the Light in Oils or Acrylic – a two day course with Jenny Aitken

Course Details


Wednesday – Thursday 08 – 09th – th March 2023


10:00 am – 4:30 pm

Course Description



Day one will begin with a colour demonstration of sparkling light on water, using Daler Rowney acrylics. Students will then paint a small tonal study in black and white. It’s a great warm-up to the day! You’ll then work on the larger colour painting(s), focusing on colour, brushwork and the variation of tone to achieve a credible sense of light and atmosphere.

Day two will begin with another demo, this time Jenny will paint a stormy sea. Student will then go straight into the colour painting – looking at the structure and reflective nature of waves, still water and foam, and how to achieve the illusion of moving water and light through paint.

Throughout the session Jenny will give individual teaching and advice to students. There will be notes provided, and a variety of photographs to work from. You are also more than welcome to bring your own photos, if you would prefer.

Jenny Aitken is an award-winning painter known for her sparkling seas and coastal light. A regular visitor to Cornwall, she has worked and exhibited here for the last twenty years. She runs demos and painting workshops around the country and is a guest writer for The Artist magazine. As a seasoned tutor her passion for painting is well known, as is her encouraging and informative teaching style.  This two-day workshop is suitable for beginners to regular painters who would learn how to construct a painting in order to best tell the visual story – how to begin and methodically work through to a successful conclusion.

Course Information

Ability level

All abilities welcome


Acrylic, Oils

Useful Links

Course FAQs
Couse Terms & Conditions

Oil Painters:

  • 1 no. 10 x 8” and 4 no. 20 x 16” (or any similar sized) canvas boards (if you paint faster/ larger, bring more/ bigger ones)
  • Oils – these colours, or similar: Titanium white; lemon yellow; Cad red; alizarin crimson; Purple; Ultramarine; Phthalo green; Sap green; burnt umber
  • Low-odour thinner (I recommend zest-it)
  • Brushes: to include a synthetic (soft, not bristle) a medium filbert, a medium flat, a small rigger.
  • Large palette
  • Baby wipes or cloth
  • sealable pot for thinner

Acrylic Painters:

    • 1 no. 10 x 8” and 4 no. 20 x 16” (or any similar sized) canvas boards (if you paint faster/ larger, bring more/ bigger ones.
    • Acrylics: (student quality is fine) These colours, or similar: Titanium white; Lemon yellow; Cad red hue; Purple; Ultramarine; Pthalo blue; Pthalo green; Sap green; Payne’s gray
    • Brushes: a medium filbert, a small rigger, and a medium
    • Baby wipes or cloth
    • Apron/Old shirt

Provided by Cornwall School of Art if required

  • Easels
  • Drawing boards
  • Water jars
  • Pencils
  • Erasers
  • Rulers
  • Scissors
  • Clips

All art materials are available to purchase in the Truro Arts shop, 26 River Street Truro TR1 2SJ, and you will receive a 10% discount on all supplies for the course.


Jenny Aitken

Jenny lives in Derbyshire, not far from the beautiful Peak District, and has been a professional painter for 25 years, and has been teaching for over 10 years. She has strong family roots and connections to Cornwall and the Channel Islands, and a love for the sea. ​ Since graduation in Art & Art History from seaside university Aberstwyth in 1998, Jenny has exhibited all over the UK and won several awards, most recently the Artist Exhibition prize and the Claire Fontaine award in AOTY 2020. She exhibited with the RSMA in 2019, was highly commended in The Artist 2019 and festival choice in the 2019 Buxton Spa prize. ​ Jenny is currently represented by several galleries, including The Harbour Gallery in Cornwall and Peter Barker Gallery in Rutland. You can also view and purchase daily studies, paintings, prints, calendars and cards from her own online gallery. ​ Jenny is a regular contributor to The Artist Magazine, and an online tutor, with a series of 22 modules on painting in oils and acrylics. She also produces shorter painting videos on YouTube. Jenny is a Member of the Royal Society of Marine Artists and was Winner of the highly prestigious RSMA Baltic Exchange prize in 2023. She has recently published a book with Search Press titled ‘Into the Light’ which is available March 2024.

Find Out More

Our courses usually begin at 10am and end at 4:30pm, with a half an hour lunch break at around 1pm. There will also be brief morning and afternoon breaks, with free tea and coffee available in the kitchen area. At Lunch time you can make things nice and easy by pre-ordering a freshly prepared Coach House Lunch. Alternatively, you’re very welcome to bring along a packed lunch and any other refreshments you like.

On sunny days students and tutors are invited to enjoy breaktimes outside in the leafy courtyard or gardens surrounded by birdsong.




Wednesday – Thursday 08 – 09th – th March 2023


10:00 am – 4:30 pm



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Waiting list


Cancellations must be made in writing/email more than 4 weeks prior to the course start date to guarantee a refund. Read our full policy on the Course Terms & Conditions page.