Artist Landmarks - Zennor with Hilary Jean Gibson

Drawing / Waterbased / Landscape

Book Selected Date

Course details

How ‘as artists’ do we connect with the landscape and interpret what we see and feel? In this new series of online webinars, we will be discovering the landscapes that inspire our practising artists, in and around St. Ives, and learn how they capture the essence of place, both in the landscape and back in the studio.

Painting by Hilary Jean-Gibson of Zennor Head
Photograph Zennor footpath photo © Hilary Jean-Gibson
Sketch by Hilary Jean-Gibson of Zennor and Church

At the St Ives School of Painting, we are fortunate to have a team of practicing artists, all with different teaching styles, personal passions, and interests.  Each of these individual ‘Artist Landmark’ webinar episodes will focus on a different location and will capture the unique approach of one of our artists, responding to the Cornish landscape.  We will get a glimpse into their artistic lives, an insight into what motivates them creatively, and learn about the methods that they hone to capture the essence of a place.  As a result, these Landmark sessions will help you to build confidence in discovering your own artist landmarks and making work in response to these.

Our first session will be with artist Hilary Jean Gibson who will be visiting the historic village of Zennor, the church, and its surrounding cliffs. Zennor lies within the Cornwall Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and has been home to many creatives over the years. D.H Lawrence and his wife lived in Zennor during the First World War, whilst he was writing “Women in Love” and the artist Patrick Heron lived at “Eagle’s Nest”, overlooking the cliffs near Zennor, until his death in 1999.

Hilary has a fascination for history and enjoys exploring narratives in her paintings. She will be walking and working in her sketchbook in different Zennor locations, sharing how she approaches drawing, her methods of making colour notes and observations as a visual diary and exploring the myth of ‘The Mermaid of Zennor’. The legend tells the story of a mysterious woman who occasionally attended the parish church of Zennor; a young man followed her home one day, and neither was seen again.

Before the live event, you will have access to pre-recorded lessons that you can work through to help you make your own concertina sketchbook and practice different drawing techniques for en plein air.  In the live session, Hilary will be working up her sketchbook beginnings with water-based materials and sharing her ideas for including narratives in paintings, all beneficial tools to start building your own creative toolkit and help you to banish the fear of how to start a painting based on a sense of place.

What’s included:

Pre-recorded practical lessons filmed on location, to watch before the live webinar.  The idea is that you can work through these preparatory exercises over a few days or a week (depending on your time commitments) to prepare yourself for the live classes.

Reference images and footage of the unique Cornish landscape that our tutors will be visiting. You can revisit these time and time again, to practice the techniques learned in the session.

A live interactive studio session.  You can watch or work along with our tutor, who will be bringing together the preliminary ideas from the pre-recorded footage, in a practical session, that includes the opportunity to pose questions.

You will also have access to all the pre-recorded lessons and live recording for up to 60 days, so if for any reason you can’t make the live webinar, or you simply wish to keep practicing or replay the snippets of the beautiful Cornish scenery, you can do so in your own time.

Hilary Jean Gibson, illustration of cowslip in a concertina sketchbook


Who is this course for?

This course is suitable for both absolute beginners and those with more experience, looking to build confidence in new ways of working en plein air and in the studio. Aimed to help you step out of your comfort zone and loosen your approach to drawing and painting a sense of place.

What will I learn?

1. Loosen your approach to capturing the landscape around you.

2. How to prepare materials for working out in the landscape.

3. Learn to create paintings inspired by your direct environment and the weather conditions present at the time.

4. How to find ways into painting when you have a creative block.

5. How to include narratives in your paintings.

How does an online session work?

We record the sessions so you can watch on demand, as often as you like, for up to 60 days after purchase. This way you can pause a scene, rewind and finish your painting.

You will be invited to join our Facebook Alumni group so you can share your discoveries with fellow students from around the world. You can also share your work live with others on social media using the #schoolofpainting and tagging us @stives painting

You can watch on a PC, laptop or tablet and if you have chromecast or miracast you could even cast to your SmartTV from your phone.

Artist Landmarks – Zennor with Hilary Jean Gibson

Drawing / Waterbased / Landscape

Book Selected Date

Taught by

In 1995 I became a tutor at the St Ives School of Painting. Offering inspiration through my passion for drawing, water-based media and art history, I strive to liberate a creative vision by teaching skills and techniques through direct observation and en plein air.

What to Bring

A list of materials will be available to see in your account at least four weeks in advance of the live class. If there are any pre-course tasks to complete before the session they can be found here too.

You will need access to the internet and ideally a PC, laptop or a tablet with audio.

Timings and Breaks

Pre-recorded footage will be available in your learning account from the 10th July 2024

Live broadcast, 16:30pm, Saturday 10th August 2024 (1.5 hours)

During the session please pose questions to the artist using the chat function.

You can revisit as often as you like for up to 60 days after the start of the course via the same links as the live events.


Online Broadcast

How can I get help in choosing a course?

Our friendly expert staff are always happy to discuss your needs and our courses in more detail to help you with your decision. Please call us on 01736 797180

Do I need a webcam/any equipment?

For our webinar sessions which are broadcast on the internet and no webcam or microphone is needed as you just need to be able to see/hear hosts and you can communicate using the chat function. You can watch using a PC, Smart TV or tablet. A phone isn’t ideal as you will struggle to see enough unless you can miracast to a screen or smart TV.

For the longer online courses on Zoom you will need a laptop or tablet with audio and camera enabled so you can have a screen near where you are working. If you have a PC without camera or speakers, you can purchase a plug and play webcam for approx £25 which connects to a usb port. You will also need reasonable broadband connection and speed.

All the art materials and equipment needed to participate in the course will be listed in full on the online learning platform, for live webinars this will be a minimum of two weeks before the session starts.

I have registered for the webinar but I can't find my joining link

You can access all the resources and joining link for your webinar via our online learning platform. You will need to have set up an account on our online learning platform in advance. You can do this during the checkout process when purchasing your webinar. If you are having trouble accessing your online account, please contact [email protected]. You can use a PC or tablet or even cast from your phone to watch on your Smart TV.

I paid for the session but missed it, how can I watch?

Currently all our online sessions are recorded and you can access the recording on our online learning platform until it expires. Usually 60 days for a webinar, 90 – 180 days for multipart webinars or online courses.

Studio Courses

How can I get help in choosing a course?

Our friendly expert staff are always happy to discuss your needs and our courses in more detail to help you with your decision. Please call us on 01736 797180

How do I get my work home?

Tutors have special techniques for transporting oil paintings and the school has plastic folders available in our shop for £3.50 or do bring a portfolio.

For international students we are happy to arrange transportation of your work back home.

What do I need to bring?

Absolutely nothing! All materials and aprons are provided although some people do like to bring their own set of brushes.

What do I do for lunch?

Courses allow an hour’s break for lunch and there are numerous places nearby or you are welcome to bring a packed lunch into the studio.

What times do courses run?

Most of our courses start at 10am and end at 4.30pm on the first day. Subsequent days we start at 9.30am ending at 4pm.

Weekend Courses run 10am – 4pm on the first day but the final day starts at 9.30 and ends at 3.30 with a short lunch break to enable people to get home that evening.

Do you have to be experienced to come to the School?

The School is a very friendly and welcoming place for all ages and experience. Our drop-in life classes and August half-day workshops are ideal for those wanting to have a go for the first time. Most of our longer courses are also fine for novices.

If any of the courses do need a bit of experience we flag this up in the brochure and on the website.

Booking a Course

How can I reserve a place?

We will hold a provisional reservation for 24 hours if you give us a call whilst you find accommodation. Otherwise please book online or by telephone 01736 797180.

You can reserve a place with a £100 deposit; balance is due 12 weeks before course start date.

About St Ives

Where do I park?

The nearest long stay public car parks are the Island and Barnoon Long Stay Car Park, both a 5 minute walk away. In the peak summer months it may be easier to park at Trenwith Car Park by the leisure centre and walk down into town. If you don’t fancy the walk up the hill at the end of the day there is a shuttle bus which runs from outside the cinema.

How do I get there?

Public Transport: If you are coming from further afield the main train line runs into St Erth which is a 15 min taxi ride away or you can take the St Ives Bay Line which runs approx. every 30 minutes. The School is a 10 minute walk from St Ives station.

Driving: M5 will take you to Exeter where we recommend that you take the A30 across Bodmin Moor and into Cornwall. After passing Hayle, leave the A30 at St Erth roundabout for St Ives. Turn right at the second roundabout. This road will take you through Lelant and Carbis Bay into St Ives.

Where can I stay?

St Ives has a huge selection of hotels, guest houses and self catering accommodation to choose from. Please browse the art holidays St Ives section on our website and give us a call if you would like any help.

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