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Purposeful Simplification Painting Workshop

  • Tuesday, February 28, 2023
  • 1:00 PM - 3:00 PM
  • Zoom
  • 1


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Simplification of still life

Jane Appleby


Levels: Beginner - Advanced

Expressive painter Jane Appleby will lead a fun & informative painting workshop via zoom focused on ways to use brushwork & certain elements to simplify paintings

"There is power in each brushstroke which can impact a painting” & limiting certain elements will be the focus in this workshop.

Jane will explore “simplification" in compositions & what that may mean to individual artists. When painting "less is more” artists consider the elements of design such as using line, shapes, space, textures, colours & values. One of the simplest ways to depict something is to do a simple line drawings of what you see. When employing colour & other elements, the process becomes complex & options are limitless. 

In this two hour class Jane will lead participants in various exercises in painting using watercolour or acrylic to offer suggestions on simplifying  compositions. Some painting experience is helpful but all are welcome to join & paint along with Jane. 

Please have all your paints, colours, palette & water ready to go. 

Suggested Materials:

Paint: Acrylic or Watercolour.
Jane’s preferred colours (*) 

  • *Hansa Yellow Light, or Cadmium Yellow Light ,or Lemon Yellow
  • *Quinacridone Magenta (or Red), or Alizarin or Cadmium Red Light, or Rose Madder
  • *Primary Blue, or Pthalo Blue (Green shade), or Cobalt Blue, or Ultramarine, or Cerulean Blue
  • *Titanium White
  • *Raw Umber, or Burnt Umber, or Payne’s Grey or Black
  • Optional: Yellow Ochre, Sienna, Prussian Blue, Purple, Green, Neutral Grey, your favourites

Brushes: Good quality synthetic brushes, firm yet flexible Flat & Round brushes, big & small.

  • 3 Flats - bright, long, angled or filbert. 1.5”, 1”, 1⁄2”, 3/8”, or 1⁄4”
  • 3 Round with good point (no. 4 up no. 12)
  • Tiny Round with good tip (no. 00 – no.2) for details

Paint Palette: “Stay Wet” for acrylics. Other palettes of surfaces ie: ice plastic container tops, foamboard, plates or trays (Paper palettes or tin foil are fine but are less solid to mix on).

Water Holders: such as 2 -500 ml containers half full, spray bottle with water to moisten paints.

Paper Towels or Rags to clean brushes.

Sketch Book or Paper: Ring bound sketchbook approximately 11 x 14 or larger, or clipboard with blank white paper, or watercolour paper. At least 10 sheets.

Drawing Materials: HB pencil &/or Sharpie (wedge or round) for sketches.

Work Surface: Table to work on, with protective cover (paper or plastic).

Simple Still Life Set Up or Photo Reference: fruit, silverware, cups, flowers, simple shaped items - max 3 items. Make rough outline sketch(s) of these on a paper before the class.


  • View finder or cropping tool (2 L-shaped cardboard pieces)
  • Small mirror to view composition backwards
  • Colour Wheel (printed or hand made with primary, secondary & tertiary colours for reference)
  • Small scissors
  • Masking tape to tape paper on a board, foamboard or cardboard
  • Small canvases are optional for those working in acrylics (Jane will work on paper).
  • Palette Knives (metal or plastic) to mix acrylic paints (not needed for watercolours)
  • Easel for those that have one & like to paint upright
  • Painting apron 
  • Box for supplies
  • Notebook & pen for writing notes

Artist/Instructor Bio

Jane Appleby is an expressive painter, inspired by the Canadian landscape; her process includes painting on location “En Plein Air" & into abstraction. Her latest oil & acrylic canvases titled "Lyrical Expressions" are currently showing in several galleries in British Columbia & Alberta, as well as overseas in Madrid Spain.  

Jane has instructed workshops for over 25 years to art groups, including the WVAC, Place Des Arts & Okanagan School of Arts. She shares her intuitive process on a Youtube Channel: Jane Appleby Art & has authored two inspirational books: Between Cottages & The Purposeful Brush.

She lives in Burnaby with her husband Ken & enjoys skiing, kayaking & hiking - Laika, her dog often at her side.

Her work is collected internationally, & is available through her representative galleries listed on her website:

West Vancouver Community Arts Council
Located at
The Silk Purse Arts Centre
1570 Argyle Avenue
West Vancouver, BC  V7V 1A1

Phone: 604-925-7292


Gallery/Art Box Gift Shop Hours:

Winter Hours: Wednesday  Sunday 12 – 4 pm


The West Vancouver Community Arts Council acknowledges that the lands on which we gather for cultural activities are part of the traditional ancestral territories of the Coast Salish Peoples.

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