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Expressive Painting in Watercolour

A 10 week course where you will learn the basics of painting in watercolour medium

Student Artwork

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Teacher Artwork by Michael Solovyev

Expressive Painting in Watercolour

The beauty of water media lies in its calligraphic immediacy, luminous color, and relative speed and spontaneity.

This ten week course will introduce artists to the excitement of painting in watercolor.

Explore the joy of creating expressive and lively paintings.


Master painter Michael Solovyev will teach you his process for creating expressive and dynamic paintings with a fresh and contemporary feel. You will also learn how to combine different materials, methods and techniques to achieve the magical effects that are possible in watercolour painting.

You will become proficient in edge softening, controlling wet-in-wet, flat and graded washes and using the glazing, lifting off and spray techniques. By the end of this course, you will have the knowledge and skills required to create magical, luminous and stunning watercolour paintings.

  • Course Type Traditional Painting Courses
  • Duration 10 weeks
  • Skill Level
    Level 1
    Level 1

    Strong fundamentals in traditional drawing, painting and sculpting are the foundations to create amazing artwork.

    This level is about solidifying the fundamentals, getting a refresher on the most important art principles, and learning tricks to create realistic drawing and paintings.

  • Language English


Note: This class will be offered online only

Class Timings: Mondays from 6:30 PM to 9:30 PM Eastern Daylight Time (EDT or UTC -4 h)

Date of first class: September 28th

Duration: 10 weeks

If you are unable to attend the class during the times listed above, you will still have access to video recordings of the class lectures and will still receive personalized feedback from your instructor.



Foundations of Drawing or equivalent experience (having a foundation in the basics or realistic drawing, such as basic perspective, proportion and shading) is required.

Language requirements: You need at least intermediate level English to take this class (the teacher will use many visual examples and can help you if you don't understand something).

*Note that the students at Syn Studio are mostly all adults and you should be 16 years or older to take any classes here.


Required Materials

Recommended essential list of materials:


If you have a favorite brand of watercolor paper, use it by all means! Hot press paper is NOT recommended.

Otherwise, you will need 100% cotton 140-pound rough (torchon) paper from Saunders or Arches (orange label). Please buy five full sheets, (30 x 22 inches). You can cut them in half to get 15 x 22 sized sheets.


  • A round (or mop) paintbrush made from natural bristles such as squirrel, goat or the equivalent. (Approximately #12)
  • A round sharp paintbrush (or rigger, liner) (Approximately #4)

If you have a favorite brush set, please feel free to use it! Oriental calligraphy brushes are also very welcome (made from goat or rat, etc).

It is recommended to buy all other brushes AFTER the first class! The teacher will provide you with more information during the first week. 


It is highly recommended to use the Daniel Smith Basic Watercolour set (15 ml tubes) for best results.

You can also use any other professional brand of your choice, however, small travel sets are not recommended.

In addition to the Basic Watercolour set, it is recommended to have the following colours:

  • -Quinacridone Sienna
  • -Perylene Violet
  • -Indigo
  • -Cobalt
  • -Viridian Green
  • -Pthalo Blue

Other materials:

-Masking tape, pencil, eraser, a simple hairdryer.


Tech Requirements for Attending Syn Studio Online Classes

Minimum Requirements

  • A strong uninterrupted broadband wired or wireless (3G or 4G/LTE) connection with a minimum 600kbps bandwidth (up/down).
  • A Laptop/Desktop computer equipped with a single core processor (at least 1 GHZ processing speed) or a smartphone/tablet with equivalent processing capabilities
  • Good speakers/earphones to listen to the classes
  • Browser - IE7+, Safari 5+, Firefox, Chrome
  • Operating System - Windows XP, Mac OS 10.6, Linux distro based on 3.0 kernel, Android 5.0, iOS 10

Syn Studio Recommendations

  • A strong uninterrupted broadband wired or wireless (3G or 4G/LTE) connection with a minimum 1.5Mbps bandwidth (up/down). You can also connect to the internet directly using your ethernet cable to improve your experience.
  • Laptop/Desktop computer equipped with a dual core processor with at least 2 GHZ processing speed and a 4 GB RAM
  • High Quality speakers/earphones to listen to the classes
  • Browser & Operating System - We recommend using the latest version of the browser and operating system for an optimal online classroom experience.

Course Outline

*Please note that this outline is from the last time we held this class and we may make some updates and improvements for the coming term.

Week 1 - Understand how to work with the basic materials and paper types for watercolour painting. Learn how to prepare your materials and apply the basic techniques to, step-by-step, create a watercolour painting from life, under the guidance of the instructor.

Week 2 - Become proficient setting up your palette, filling colour evenly and using gradients, colour wheels and tables. Learn how to paint effectively with the flat, graded wash and wet-in-wet technique

Week 3 - Understand how to plan your painting and make proper use of negative space while you acquire proficiency in three basic watercolour painting techniques.

Week 4 - Learn how to create quick sketches in watercolour while working on a series of studies from life. Understand how to use the glazing technique and overlapping colours.

Week 5 - Learn how to use masking fluids, bubbles, blow and splashing to create some of the magical effects possible with watercolour painting. Begin the ''Four Seasons'' landscape project.

Week 6 - Acquire skill in dry brush and spray techniques. Receive master coaching on your ''Four Seasons'' landscape project.

Week 7 - Understand how to properly work out the details and apply the finishing touches using a thin brush. Acquire the best methods to finish, protect, frame and store your watercolour painting.

Week 8 - Become proficient in the basic techniques for watercolour painting and learn how to take advantage of the special properties of different paper types and materials.

Weeks 9 - Use all the techniques and methods learned in this class to complete your final projects while receiving one-on-one feedback and correction from the instructor.

Check out the entire outline

Speak to an advisor

Feel free to send us an email at [email protected] or give us a call at 514-998-7625
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