Laura Menzies, Coming Home Again

Line, Texture, Tone - Coldwax Painting

Mixed Media / Oil / Abstract / Landscape


Course details

Enjoy creating luminous abstract paintings using coldwax painting. Learn how these three fundamental aspects – texture, line and shape – can help develop your unique visual vocabulary.

Join artist Laura Menzies for this three-part series using the landscape and it’s various dualities as its starting point. Play with variations of light and dark, stillness and movement and different scales and develop your coldwax painting practice.

Over three sessions, Laura takes you through how to translate a landscape into an abstract painting using coldwax painting techniques. A chance to loosen your approach and build luminous paintings with depth, texture and vitality. In between each session, you will have the chance to practice new techniques and play with various approaches.

Laura will give clear demonstrations for you to carry out at your own pace, following a theme designed to look more closely at the landscape and create atmospheric paintings; the dualities of the light and the elements will be a way in to capturing a place or area. Taking you through the fundamentals of coldwax painting, Laura shows you how line, texture and tone can work individually and in harmony with one another.

In preparation for the sessions, you will need to collect 4 to 6 images of the ‘landscape’. These can be whole or partial – a landscape or zoomed in details of textures of bark or reflections on water, for instance.



Session 1: 90 mins – Recording : start watching now.

Following an introduction, Laura demonstrates the fundamentals of coldwax painting and how to create different tones using the medium.

This session will be a chance to learn about the medium and tools that Laura uses, and how it inspires her work. You will also paint the first underlayers and Laura will set you a task for the next session.

Session 2 : 90 mins – Recording : start watching now.

Laura will be focusing on colour mixing, tone and composition in the first part of this session. You will then continue building up layers through various techniques and mediums. Again, Laura will set you a task to be completed between sessions.

Session 3 : 90 mins – Recording : start watching now

In this final session, you will learn to work back into you pieces to create visually compelling compositions. This will be a chance to finalise your works and share on our Facebook alumni group.

What will I learn

Learn how to use coldwax medium in your work.

Build confidence using colour and tone in your painting.

Build your own visual vocabulary.

Learn how to add texture to give your painting depth and luminosity.

Work in a more fluid, intuitive way. Move quickly from piece to piece and lose your inhibitions in the process.

How does an online session work

Once you have booked you will be able to watch on demand immediately.

You can pause, rewind and watch again as often as you like until the session expires 180 days after purchase

You will also be invited to join our Facebook Alumni group so you can share your discoveries with fellow students from around the world.

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

Who would this course suit?

This course is suitable for all abilities. If you are interested in learning new skills and interests, or gaining confidence, experience, attitude and mobility in your painting practice, this course is for you. Laura’s approach will help you build confidence in working between disciplines, integrating one into the other, and finding new ways in to creating a painting.

Line, Texture, Tone – Coldwax Painting

Mixed Media / Oil / Abstract / Landscape


Taught by


View Laura’s Work

My teaching focuses on sharing my ideas, enthusiasm and techniques, in a playful and experimental way. My aim is that participants will come together to learn and explore and to start to develop their own visual language, which they can use as a springboard for their own studio work.


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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