Strategies for Painting the Figure – D1017-19

Date: Aug 05 - 09, 2019

Skill Level(s): open to all i

Instructor(s): Patty Wickman

Tuition: $1,090
Studio Fee: $100
Registration Fee: $45


This workshop explores a variety of approaches to painting the figure, with emphasis on finding meaning and agency in the human form and a personal connection to content. Investigate what it means to identify with the painted figure through scale, content, kinesthetic drawing exercises and placement of the figure in a particular time and space. Historical and contemporary strategies for using the figure are also explored, including working from a live model, from photos and media imagery, mining art history, and investigating portraiture and self-portraiture, as well as narrative, metaphor and allegory.

Media & Techniques:

Students begin each day drawing, using it as a starting point for exploring and conceptualizing the figure and for working with composition. Then students work with oil paint to investigate overall tonality, light and color, using both subtractive and additive processes.


Daily activities include: a brief period of reflection; warm-ups such as gesture drawing and experimental drawing; studio work (including prompts such as working from a live model, from observation and from photos, as well as self-directed projects); demonstrations; lectures and discussion; and both individual and group critiques.


Patty Wickman is a Los Angeles artist who has worked with the figure for more than 30 years. Her paintings investigate non-linear narratives within a realist framework. Patty is a professor in the University of California, Los Angeles’s Art Department and has exhibited nationally and internationally. She received her MFA from University of Colorado, Boulder.

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