Plein Air Fridays

June 2 to August 11

photo of two women students painting outdoors.

Students bring a variety of setups to this outdoor class

This summer, spend Fridays painting au plein air at several beautiful great East Bay outdoor locations. Whether you are a beginner or a more advanced painting student, you will enjoy discovering beginner-friendly painting spots, and improving your technique in the company of new friends. You’ll receive support through the difficulties of painting outdoors.

Learn how to paint the sights you love with as much or as little feedback as you desire. Use the media of your choice. I can help you with acrylic, oil, watercolor, gouache or pastel. We’ll spend two weeks at each painting location so that students can either begin a new painting or complete the one begun in the previous session.

This class is taught on Friday afternoons, from 1-4 pm. Each class consists of a rotating 30 min introduction to painting concepts that may be a demo or a discussion with examples, followed by 2+ hours of painting. Locations are announced well in advance of the first day of class. You will receive accurate driving instructions and Rebeca’s phone in case you get lost.

Good news if you are planning to travel this summer! You can buy a package of six classes, which you can take on any of these dates: 6/2, 6/9, 6/16, 6/23, 6/30, 7/7 7/14, 7/21, 8/4, 8/11. No proration or registration after the last day of June can be accepted.

This is a rough outline of the class, subject to revisions:

April 4, Session 1 at Blake Garden
Get to know each other, review of materials, supplies and gear. Goals for the class. Aspect ratios. How to use a viewfinder.

June 9, Session 2 at Blake Garden
How to begin a landscape painting part 1. Safer painting practices.

June 16, Session 3 at Crest Avenue
How to begin a landscape painting part 2.

June 23, Session 4 at Crest Avenue
Selecting pigments for a Bay Area landscape. Limited palettes.

June 30, Session 5 at Meeker Slough
Determining a focal point.

July 7, Session 6 at Meeker Slough
The role of values in a landscape.

July 14, Session 7 at Lake Anza
Foreground, middle ground, background. Aerial perspective.

July 21, Session 8 at Lake Anza
The cell phone as a tool of the landscape painter. Revising from photos.

July 28, Session 9 at the Berkeley Marina
Perspective and man-made objects

August 4, Session 10 at the Berkeley Marina
Avoiding the dangers of overpainting

August 11, Possible Extended Session
I always book this date in case I get sick. Location TBD

Bad Weather
Please note that in the unlikely event of bad weather, the session will be canceled. Bad weather is defined as double-digit wind speeds, rain, temperatures in the fifties, all-day fog, or a heat wave. All students will be notified via phone and class will be extended an additional week.


Registration fees can only be refunded in full if canceled up to three days (72 hrs) before class. With less than 72 hrs but more than 24 hrs notice, you receive 75% of your registration. If you give less than 24 hrs notice and do not attend the first class, you’ll receive 50% of the registration fee. No refund will be given to students who attend the first class but decide not to continue.