Art Workshops, Classes & Retreats


"Fly Away Home: Creating a Mixed Media Artist Book"
September 24-26, 2021
 

Create a book dedicated to the winged creatures that we all love by diving into the concepts of nests and what home means to us in our hearts. We will begin with texturing our pages, using gesso and modeling paste. Then we will mark up our surfaces in unique ways, adding texture to our backgrounds. Next, we will add color and collage to our pages using instructor favorite techniques, nature-based stencil designs, and make our own stamps. Lastly, we will add focal points and details that will make our pages sing, including hand stitching and some more detailed mark making. We will use a simple technique to bind our pages into an artist book that tells your own unique story.
 
Location: Mineral Point, Wisconsin
Instructor: Roxanne Evans Stout
Cost: $440.00
Sponsor: Shake Rag Alley Center for the Arts
Website, email, 608-987-3292


"Mastering the Art of Yoga Photography – The Yoga of Seeing"
September 26-30, 2021
 

Discover the secrets of how to make powerful, poetic images celebrating the beautiful art of yoga with acclaimed photographer, Robert Sturman. This retreat is scheduled in conjunction with yoga instructor Liz Corwin's retreat, with the ability to participate in pieces of both retreat experiences. Enjoy the beauty of Lake Superior, healthy, locally sourced meals, inspired lodging, and retreat amenities, all in peaceful surroundings in the woods and on the water. Lodging packages available.
 
Location: Bayfield, Wisconsin
Instructor: Robert Sturman
Cost: Tuition + meals from $1,075
Sponsor: Wild Rice Retreat
Website, email, (715) 779-0178


"Photo + Encaustic: Layers, Surface, and Substrate"
September 27-30, 2021
 

This workshop is designed for both painters and photographers interested in gaining new skills and pushing the boundaries of their studio practice through the combination of encaustic and photography. Explore a range of subject matter, as well as a variety of surfaces on which to create work.
 
Location: Fish Creek, Wisconsin
Instructor: Sarah Rehmer
Cost: Members: $510 / Non-Members: $550
Sponsor: Peninsula School of Art
Website, email, 920-868-3455


"Moku Hanga: An Intro to Japanese Woodblock Printing"
October 1-3, 2021
 

Moku Hanga, meaning “wood print,” is a simple, centuries-old Japanese technique employing water-based ink, basic carving and rubbing tools, beautiful Japanese paper, and fine-grained wood. Many Western printmaking methods involve complex printing presses, oil-based inks, and toxic solvents. By contrast, Moku Hanga utilizes only a few simple tools, a small work space, and is entirely water-based. Alfred will teach you to hand-carve and print your unique drawing from fine-grained Shina Plywood onto beautiful Japanese paper, a skill you can continue to use to make prints for many years. No experience necessary. You are encouraged to bring photos or drawings you can use in creating your print. Materials fee covers papers and other supplies.
 
Location: Mineral Point, Wisconsin
Instructor: Alfred Stark
Cost: $385.00
Sponsor: Shake Rag Alley Center for the Arts
Website, email, 608-987-3292


"Cochineal Dyeing & Zapotec Weaving"
October 3-8, 2021
 

During this unique 5 day experience, delve into the fascinating techniques of traditional Zapotec weaving practices, along with an introduction to the art of natural dyeing with cochineal – one of the oldest pigments used in Mexico. Enjoy the beauty of Lake Superior, healthy, locally-sourced meals, onsite lodging, and retreat amenities, all in peaceful surroundings in the woods and on the water. Lodging packages available.
 
Location: Bayfield, Wisconsin
Instructor: Porfirio Gutierrez
Cost: From $1,149
Sponsor: Wild Rice Retreat
Website, email, 715-779-0178


"Impactful Pencil: Transforming Simple Graphite Works to More"
October 9-10, 2021
 

We’ve all worked with a graphite pencil, even if it’s just signing our names or writing lists. In this workshop we’ll be training our hands and minds to have a sensitivity to the amount of pressure we use to apply that graphite mark so that we can produce impactful drawings that include the full range from white to black. We’ll initially be inspired by seeing other artists’ graphite drawings. We’ll then do an exercise that stretches your comfort zone to practice applying an almost invisible layer of graphite to white paper moving to almost black coverage. We’ll refine this use of a full polarized value range through fairly fast tiny drawings, and on the second day we’ll review composition.
 
Location: Prairie du Sac, Wisconsin
Instructor: Rhonda Nass
Cost: $175 + $15 kit fee
Sponsor: River Arts Inc
Website, email, 608-643-5215


"Fine Silver Rings in a Day"
October 9, 2021
 

Create your own unique .999 pure silver ring using precious metal clay silver and wear it home. Learn the techniques to size, form, refine, embellish, and set a fire-in-place stone into your ring. Make your ring as plain or glitzy as you wish, with or without a stone. After it’s fired and polished, you can leave it bright silver or add patina. You’ll also learn to torch-fire PMC. If you have clay left over from your ring, you can make earrings or charms and torch-fire those. Included materials fee paid to instructor in class includes silver metal clay, use of silver paste and syringe, appropriate stone, disposables, and use of tools.
 
Location: Mineral Point, Wisconsin
Instructor: Sherry Viktora
Cost: $172.00
Sponsor: Shake Rag Alley Center for the Arts
Website, email, 608-987-3292


"Link Bracelet"
October 10, 2021
 

In this class you will form both the links and toggle attachment from fine silver metal clay using your choice of design and shape. After shaping, drilling holes and refining, you will attach them with sterling jump rings and polish, then patina if desired. You will be able to wear your beautiful bracelet home. Included material fee covers: 28 grams of precious metal clay and sterling silver jump rings.
 
Location: Mineral Point, Wisconsin
Instructor: Sherry Viktora
Cost: $194.00
Sponsor: Shake Rag Alley Center for the Arts
Website, email, 608-987-3292


"Layers: Intro to Oil & Cold Wax"
October 16-17, 2021
 

Painting with Cold Wax Medium is a popular artistic expression all over the world. In this class, you will explore the basic principles of using Cold Wax Medium through instructor-led demonstrations, individual guidance, and exploration of individual pieces. The techniques are fun, creative, and only limited by your imagination. We will explore the process of building layers using printmaking methods, mark making, and adding textures. What is added and hidden under layers will be uncovered by reduction including scraping, scratching, gouging and the use of solvents. There are no mistakes in this class, only results that are yet discovered. You will leave with basic knowledge of the medium, a finished painting, and some works in progress.
 
Location: Prairie du Sac, Wisconsin
Instructor: Rick Ross of Summit Art Studio
Cost: $125 class fee + $125 kit fee
Sponsor: River Arts Inc
Website, email, 608-643-5215


"Intro to Woodcuts: Relief Cutting and Printing on Paper and Textiles"
October 23-24, 2021
 

Gain all necessary knowledge and skills to create, cut and print from a wood block in this introductory 2-part workshop series on woodcut creation. This workshop is broken into 2 days to ensure that participants have time and space to get comfortable with both relief carving wood and the printing process. The materials and tools for this workshop series are provided, but participants are welcome to bring in clothing or additional fabric to print for Day 2. Keep in mind natural fibers like cotton or linen work best for printing.
 
Location: Prairie du Sac, Wisconsin
Instructor: Sara Meredith
Cost: $115. All materials included. Scholarships available
Sponsor: River Arts Inc
Website, email, 608-643-5215


"Abstract Landscape and Nature-Based Painting With Oil and Cold Wax"
November 4-7, 2021
 

This 3.5-day workshop introduces mediums including Galkyd, Galkyd Gel, and Cold Wax as an addition to your current oil painting practice. The workshop blends instructor demos with guided exercises and personal experimentation and exploration. You will gain hands-on experience using new techniques, materials, and tools. Demos will include work on paper, wood panel, and stretched linen. Individual and group discussion focuses on composition, seeing and reacting, abstracted and simplified shapes, using unique and unconventional color, and unique and unconventional mark-making. Group and individual critiques throughout the workshop offer an opportunity to share ideas and learn from others. Class size is limited to ensure personal attention and ample one-on-one discussion time with the instructor.
 
Location: Mineral Point, Wisconsin
Instructor: Mark Russell
Cost: $435.00
Sponsor: Shake Rag Alley Center for the Arts
Website, email, 608-987-3292


"Painting Horizons: Approaches to Landscape"
November 6-7, 2021
 

Join Wisconsin artist Danica Oudeans and learn the art of painting landscape. This introductory class will give detailed instruction on how to create inspirational landscapes with acrylic paints. Demonstrations will be given on how to plan your painting, mix colors, select your brush, and focus on a variety of brushwork techniques. All materials are provided to you as part of your registration fee.
 
Location: Prairie du Sac, Wisconsin
Instructor: Danica Oudeans
Cost: $185 (includes all supplies)
Sponsor: River Arts Inc
Website, email, 608-643-5215


"Electro-Etching Steel Jewelry"
November 6-7, 2021
 

Mild steel is a wonderful metal for jewelry. It is inexpensive, easy to work, lightweight, and tough. Electro-etching is a safe and inexpensive way to add texture and pattern to metal. Day One: Learn the basics of using mild steel. We’ll go over three types of “resists” to apply patterns: hand-drawn designs directly on the metal, laser-printed patterns, and adhesive backed vinyl. You’ll electro-etch your pieces in a salt water solution using batteries or a bench-top power supply. Day Two: Create jewelry from your etched steel with Deb available to help, or etch more pieces. We also introduce etching steel texture plates for a rolling mill. Finally, explore patinas and methods to seal your pieces.
 
Location: Mineral Point, Wisconsin
Instructor: Deborah Donaghue
Cost: $255.00
Sponsor: Shake Rag Alley Center for the Arts
Website, email, 608-987-3292


"Wet Felted Vessels"
November 13, 2021
 

Create a beautiful wool and silk felt vessel for yourself or someone on your gift-giving list! In this workshop you will learn the magical process of wet felting. Using only soapy water and your hands, in a few hours you will transform a handful of loose wool fibers into a solid and seamless three-dimensional felt object. You will take home a gorgeous felt vessel of your own design, along with the knowledge needed to create more on your own. No previous experience needed. We recommend you wear clothes that can get wet.
 
Location: Prairie du Sac, Wisconsin
Instructor: Janis Merkle
Cost: $35 class fee + $15 kit fee
Sponsor: River Arts Inc
Website, email, 608-643-5215


"Intro to Acrylic Pour Painting"
January 8, 2022
 

Acrylic Pouring is a fun way to create abstract art to enrich your life and enhance your home. Each student will learn how to select and mix colors with pouring medium, choose one of several methods, and complete 1-3 paintings. Students will have the opportunity to try 3 of these different pouring techniques: Dirty Pour, Open cup, Dutch Pour, Flip cup, and Smashes. Each student will create up to 3 canvases during class, depending on the speed with which you work.
 
Location: Prairie du Sac, Wisconsin
Instructor: Mary Ringelstetter
Cost: $85
Sponsor: River Arts Inc
Website, email, 608-643-5215


"Macrame Plant Holder"
February 5, 2022
 

Instructor Kami Strunsee will guide you step by step through the process of creating a hanging macrame plant holder! All materials are provided, no prior experience necessary.
 
Location: Prairie du Sac, Wisconsin
Instructor: Kami Strunsee
Cost: $60
Sponsor: River Arts Inc
Website, email, 608-643-5215


"Intermediate Acrylic Pour Painting"
February 19, 2022
 

This workshop is meant for students who have some experience in acrylic pour painting, or those who attended the January 2022 introductory course. Instructor Mary Ringelstetter will guide students through more advanced pour techniques and color mixing options. Each student will create up to 3 canvases during class, depending on the speed with which you work. Class size is extremely limited and early registration is recommended!
 
Location: Prairie du Sac, Wisconsin
Instructor: Mary Ringelstetter
Cost: $115
Sponsor: River Arts Inc
Website, email, 608-643-5215


"Nature Journaling: Artist Books"
April 9-10, 2022
 

Learn to make an accordion folded, standing booklet with your nature illustrations on both sides. We’ll start with a 4×6?, 4-panel prefolded accordion style booklet made from watercolor paper. Cynthia will do several demonstrations to show how to draw, use ink pens, paint in watercolor or use watercolor pens, make collage, and add calligraphy. Each person will create a unique nature art booklet that will stand vertically for display. No previous experience needed.
 
Location: Prairie du Sac, Wisconsin
Instructor: Cynthia Quinn
Cost: $150 + $10 supply fee
Sponsor: River Arts Inc
Website, email, 608-643-5215


"Value, Value, Value: Introduction to Scratchboard"
May 14-15, 2022
 

Scratchboard, as in black and white photography, draws its drama by including the widest range of light to dark in each “painting.” The process itself is as basic as drawing with a pencil. The artist uses a knife instead of a pencil and applies the strokes to a panel coated with black india ink over white clay instead of applying to white paper. With each stroke of the knife blade, a scratch removes the black ink revealing the white beneath. The challenge is to remember you are creating various grey tones all the way to white (depending on the amount of scratching you do to remove the black). It is a thrill mid-process because your imagery emerges with each stroke.
 
Location: Prairie du Sac, Wisconsin
Instructor: Rhonda Nass
Cost: $175 + $15 kit fee
Sponsor: River Arts Inc
Website, email, 608-643-5215


"Photography Basics and Adobe Lightroom Post-Processing"
May 21-22, 2022
 

Day 1: Field Day at Parfrey’s Glen State Natural Area. In the field, we’ll cover how to use aperture, shutter speed, ISO, and focusing to perfect your compositions and exposures. Day 2: Post-Processing and Adobe Lightroom at River Arts Studio. In the studio, we’ll spend time learning to process the photos you took on Day 1 using Adobe Lightroom. Students should bring their cameras and any necessary cords, laptop and charger, and a notepad.
 
Location: Prairie du Sac, Wisconsin
Instructor: Mike Murray
Cost: $60
Sponsor: River Arts Inc
Website, email, 608-643-5215


"Colored Pencil: Delicate to Dynamic"
September 12-15, 2022
 

Sharpen your colored pencils for workshop fun in historic, picturesque Lake Geneva, Wisconsin- post-summer rush but still during the mild September weather. Kristy Kutch, a supportive, upbeat teacher, is the author of Drawing and Painting with Colored Pencil and The New Colored Pencil; she is also featured in 4 instructional DVDs. Included are many aspects of this medium and its compatible surfaces. Create effects ranging from soft, transparent, and aqueous to dense and dramatic. Harbor Shores Hotel, located on Geneva Lake, offers fantastic student discounts. Guests enjoy rooms featuring mini-fridges and microwaves. (Lodging reservations should be made separately: 888-746-7371. Mention this workshop for discount.) Bring an extra tote bag for samples; plan for this memorable fall workshop!
 
Location: Lake Geneva, Wisconsin
Instructor: Kristy Kutch
Cost: $295, including a class dinner and light snacks, drinks
Sponsor: Kristy Kutch Colored Pencil Workshops
Website, email, 219-874-4688


 

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