Nancy Ellen Thompson 3 Day Workshop

September 16,17, and 18th 2014 10am-4pm

Fast and Fearless Sketching and Watercolor   

Artist, Nancy Ellen Thompson , is from Snow Hill, Maryland. She has gained national and international recognition as an in depth instructor of sketching and watercolor technique. She is know for broadening the scope of the student through demos, critiques, and exercises, taking them to the next level in their work, whether they are beginners or master painters. This sketching and watercolor workshop is designed to expand your painting technique and is for all skill levels.

Experience sketching and watercolor with a new and fresh approach. Techniques will be given to create quick, accurate and strong sketches with an application of paint. Working from photos, we will be looking at the process of how you get from the idea or concept to the finished painting. This approach creates fresh, strong paintings and fearless painters!

Join us for a fast paced and fun workshop.

Thompson is a popular speaker and instructor. She has been teaching for over 20 years, students of all levels of expertise, with patience and encouragement. Her aim is to take her students a step forward with the goal of helping them to achieve their own style.

Her works are in public and private collections worldwide. She has been featured on Maryland Public Television and in Southern Living. Thompson teaches classes and workshops in sketching, watercolor and acrylic both here and abroad. A South Carolina native, Nancy now resides, with her husband, in Snow Hill, MD where she also has her studio.

Paintings by Thompson are sold through City Art Gallery in Columbia, SC, Bishops Stock Gallery in 
Snow Hill, MD and through her website,


The Workshop fee is $325.00 ...Sign Me Up      


SPACE and IMAGERY – Exploring Painting with Interiors  - With Brian Rego

August 13, 2014      Wednesday Nights

6:00 pm - 8:30 pm

6 weeks 

In this workshop we will explore structures of space as the basis for pictorial imagery. Each visual element of the interior will be considered a spatial construct that can be used to compose a meaningful response to the interior through painting.


The session fee is $175..Sign Me Up

FACESCAPES: Pushing the Limits with Watercolor Portraiture 3 Day Workshop (Mixed media) - With  Dan Smith

November 5-7, 2014  all day

This 3-day workshop will be held in-doors and out-of-doors. It will integrate art history with art-making styles and philosophies comparing and contrasting the classic with the expressive ideas in art. Capturing a likeness will also be combined with intense experimentation in an attempt to reveal an internal spirit. From an objective to a subjective approach to portrait painting, participants will be challenged to think and act in new ways utilizing integrative techniques and attitudes during their art-making process.

Throughout the workshop intimacies of personality and mood will be investigated and revealed resulting in the expression of the sitter’s essence. The vocabulary of art laid over the composition of the face will involve a traditional combination of line, color, shape, texture, form and scale. These formal approaches will merge with contemporary issues and strategies resulting in a psychologically charged image of a unique individual.

This workshop will be held in conjunction with Dan Smith’s one-person exhibition in McMaster Gallery shown from October 15 through December 15. Smith earned his BFA and MFA degrees in Painting from East Carolina University and the University of South Carolina, respectively. In 1989 his first watercolor portrait, created as a USC student, was selected by internationally renowned painter and teacher Katherine Chang Liu for the South Carolina Watercolor Society’s exhibition and travelling show. His painting, Job, was also purchased by Betsy Havens of Havens Gallery, who became his first art dealer.

During the past twenty years, Dan Smith has taught college level studio courses in painting, drawing, design and photography, as well as in humanities and art appreciation courses, at colleges in South Carolina, Virginia, and North Carolina including Claflin University, Virginia Commonwealth University, Hampton University, and Appalachian State University.

The session fee is $375.00...Sign Me Up  

Beginning and Intermediate Watercolor class with Esther Melton

Tuesday mornings 10:00 am 12:30 pm

4 weeks beginning Sept 9, 2014

Learn the basics of transparent watercolor in this special 4 week summer class format. Painting techniques, composition, and color choices will be explored.This class will cover topics from materials, paint color choices and mixing, to effective ways to keep your paint application and color fresh, composition, and many other tips to enhance your painting skills.

The session fee is $125.00...Sign Me Up 

Painting in Oil and Oil Sticks with Esther Melton  

Thursday mornings 10 am -12:30 pm  

6 weeks

Beginning Sept. 11, 2014 

Using  your preference of oil tube paints and/or oil pigment sticks, we will cover the following info and more:

*  Capturing light when painting in oils
*  Using expressive painting techniques and color choices
*  Creating strong compositions
*  Toning your canvas and creating blockings for key shapes and value
*  Understanding value and how it relates to depth, movement, and light in your paintings
*  Choosing the best references for your paintings
*  Lots of individual help and feedback

The R & F Pigment Sticks are buttery smooth and soft. They dry to a tough, flexible oil paint film. Pigment Sticks may also used with regular oils. The class will include demonstrations and will have an emphasis on individual attention and personal instruction.  All levels welcome.

The session fee is $175.00...Sign Me Up

Basic Drawing and Painting for Everyone! -  High School and up With Mark Conrardy

Starting Sept 25  (6 weeks)

Thursday Nights 6:00pm - 8:30pm

Learn how to really look at your photo to make the perspective look believable (1-point and 2-point perspective). In this 6 week class, you will also learn techniques to speed up your drawing skills, drawing with your opposite hand and how to draw with one-line to help with spatial feel. These techniques help you keep  a loose feel to your drawings and paintings and help you interpret what you are seeing quickly. The class will also include basics on portraiture, drawing from live models, still life and color theory.... bring your color wheel and watercolors.

Struggling with your painting? Bring it in for help.

The session fee is $150.00...Sign Me Up

Plein Air Oil Painting Workshop with Mark Conrardy

Limit 6 students. 

Saturday mornings 9:00 am to 1130 mm  

June 7, 14, 21 and 28th 2014

The course will focus on Plein Air painting of man-made objects out in a natural landscape. That could be a building, other type of structure, vehicles or other objects. We will also discuss how to make creeks, rivers, marsh, paths, fences and roads look believable in your paintings. 

We will discuss composition, layout and getting the drawing right before we start painting. Also using man-made objects as a minor element in your painting. 

I will be using oils but you are welcome to use other mediums as desired. Instruction will be tailored to fit each student individual. 

This course in Plein Air painting will begin with the fundamentals of working outdoors including the selection of an easel, palette, paints and how to set up on site. You are welcome to contact me before the class starts if you have questions before buying certain items. (803-429-0327). 

The workshop will be painting in parks and other locations around Columbia. Participants will be notified of meeting location.

 Please allow 30 minutes  for early setup before the start of workshop.
The workshop is designed for all levels of painting.

The session fee is $100.00 ...Sign Me Up

Help us continue to offer art classes by shopping in the City Art Art Supply Store for your class supplies!  Class lists are at the bottom of this page.

Study In Italy

Pam Bowers and David Voros: 

Co-Directors and Founders

Within the International Center for the Arts the new International Studio School is the heart of our program. The Studio School offers multi-level classes in the visual arts as well as opportunities for uninterrupted studio time, a visiting artist/critics series, exhibition opportunities and weekly trips to some of the most compelling cultural sites of Italy.  Using the Studio School as our focal point, we also offer satellite programs of an interdisciplinary nature. These include acting as an Study Abroad Provider for institutions, hosting Conferences and Symposia, a long term Residency for artists/writers and scholars and organizing personal development tours and education travel experiences through our Lifelong Learning Program.

Through our diverse, but integrated programs, we celebrate the connection between the art of Italy and the rhythms of daily life, believing that the food, wine, and folk traditions of Italy are inseparable from a full experience of its music, literature and paintings. At the International Center for the Arts at Monte Castello, it is our mission to provide our program participants with a holistic experience of the synergy of these elements and how they come together to form the rich and multi-facetted culture of Italy. 

The International Center for The Arts offers programs suited to various interests, levels of experience and time frames.

International Studio School

Study Abroad Provider

Residency Program

Life Long Learning Program

Conference and Symposium Site

Click here to learn more: International Center for the Arts