Calendrical Art (rec)

Mixed Media / Landscape

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Course details

Over the course of nine sessions, explore this intuitive way of making work in tune with the dynamic patterns, energies and qualities of the calendar year.

Abstract watery painting in blues & earthy tones by artist Kate Southworth.

Join artist Kate Southworth for this new online course designed to sensitise your approach to creative work in line with the seasonal changes. During each yearly cycle we witness a pattern of fading, composting, lying fallow, germination, gestation, birthing, blossoming, fruiting and harvesting. Becoming tuned with these natural processes enables us to recognise similar patterns within our own work and with the creative process itself.

In this series, spanning the entire calendar year, we explore the symbolic significance of the four cross-quarter days celebrated by the ancient Celts, as well as the two solstices and two equinoxes. We will work with a range of creative techniques and processes that resonate with the specific qualities of each of these eight major transition points

Explore the work of artists who’s work addressed seasonal change, rituals and intuitive processes including Bracha Ettinger, Hilma af Klint, Shirazeh Houshiary, Emma Kunz, Ithell Colquhoun, Agnes Martin, Leonora Carrington, Georgiana Houghton. Look at the calendar customs and rituals pertinent to the time of the year, and to a range of creative processes and techniques that activate the imagination.

This course will take place over 9 sessions (the first session being an introduction to the course). Ideally, the course works well as a series, taken in succession, you can also buy the Introduction for £15).

Breakdown of Sessions

Session 1: Calendrical Art an Introduction

Kate will introduce you to the key ideas and processes you will be exploring on the course.

Session 2: Firing the Darkness (Samhain)

We will work with: Composting, Darkness, Fire, Non-Knowing, Relinquishing

Guided visualisation: Entering the Darkness

Practical: Exploring automatic drawing

Session 3: Stillness (Winter Solstice)

We will work with: Lying Fallow, Receptive Creativity, Deepest Darkness, Returning Light

Guided visualisation: Glints in the Soil

Practical: Holding the dynamic of darkness with charcoal and rubber

Session 4: Birthing New Dreams (Imbolg)

We will work with: Listening, Fragility, Fecundity, Silver light

Guided visualisation: Candlelight

Practical: Exploring emerging form through automatic drawing and painting

Session 5: Life Surges (Spring Equinox)

We will work with: Emergence, Yellow Light, Balance, Journeying Outwards, Uniting

Guided visualisation: Sunlight and Balance

Practical: Exploring balance through collage and paint

Session 6: Meadow Dancing (Bealtaine)

We will work with: Fertility, Freshness, Expansion, Blossoming, Heart-Easing

Guided visualisation: Entering the Brightness

Practical: Exploring vibrancy through mixed media

Session 7: Watering the Brightness (Summer Solstice)

We will work with: Active Creativity, Clearest Brightness, Returning Darkness

Guided visualisation: Holding the Light and Letting it Go

Practical: Exploring discernment through decalcomania and painting

Session 8: Growing and Slowing (Lughnasadh)

We will work with: Fullness, Abundance, Harvesting, Turning, Rose Light

Guided visualisation: Breathing the Sun and Moon

Practical: Exploring mood through parsemage and painting

Session 9: Life Surges (Autumn Equinox)

We will work with: Manifestation, Golden Light, Magenta Dark, Balance

Guided visualisation: Transformation

Practical: Exploring distillation through mixed media

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. Aimed to help you step out of your comfort zone and loosen your approach to painting.  

What will I learn?

1. Learn to work more freely and intuitively.

2. See how seasonal changes, processes and rituals can inform your creative work.

3. Learn how other artists have worked with the calendar in their painting.

4. Work towards finding your own ‘voice’ or visual vocabulary over an extended period of time.

5. See how to work in tune with the dynamic patterns, energies and qualities of the calendar year.

Taught by


View Kate’s Work

Kate Southworth makes paintings, spells and rituals. Her work explores calendrical and alchemical transformation. In addition to solo and two-person shows, her work has appeared in more than 35 group exhibitions including Craftivism at Arnolfini, Bristol.

What to Bring

We will send you a list of materials and instructions upon booking the sessions.

You will need access to the internet and ideally a PC, laptop or a tablet with audio. Phones are not really suitable to watch a webinar on, unless you can cast to your Smart TV.

We record the sessions so you can watch on demand, as often as you like. The expiry date for this course will be 31st October 2024.


Online Art Courses – All

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

Can I pay by cheque?

Please get in touch by phone and we can hold your place for a few days whilst you post your cheque (made payable to: St Ives School of Painting) to us at St Ives School of Painting, Porthmeor Studios. St Ives TR26 1NG

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 both 5 minute walk away. In the peak summer months it may be easier to park at the big top 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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