Seabed, Cove + Coast

Acrylic / Mixed Media / Landscape


Course details

Enjoy creating dynamic reliefs inspired by the landscape around you in this four-part online course.

Join artist Kitty Hillier and learn how to transform your drawings into 3D objects and back again. Inspired by your daily surroundings, wherever you are, Kitty will demystify her technique of building up and paring back a painting so you are left with an exciting new approach to creating work.

St Ives Painting Course Kitty Hillier

This course is a chance to play and experiment with new ways of working. See how to add colour and texture to your drawings, building them up to paintings, reliefs and mobiles, and then back again to drawings. By building this momentum in working, free-up your painting practice and see how you can work between disciplines to find different ways into abstraction.

Kitty will give clear demonstrations for you to follow, following four different ways of working over the four sessions. You will be encouraged to collect objects from the landscape and build your own kinetic response to your surroundings. Working through the course, find ways to develop your ideas, using materials as a way to build a body of work.


As soon as you book you will have access to our online learning platform where you can access all the course resources, including a recommended materials list. You will work through a series of recorded teaching sessions which you can watch as often as you like for 180 days.

Session 1

Use objects that you have collected from your immediate surroundings, spend time experimenting with shapes, form and texture. Kitty will demonstrate colour mixing using only primary colours and how to transform your sketches and observations into abstract shapes.

Session 2

Transform your sketches and paintings into collage. See how ‘drawing’ with scissors as well as adding layers of paper and card can add movement to your work.

Session 3

Taking your experimental sketches one step further again, creating 3D rockers, which are simple forms using cardboard. Adding depth and movement to your work this way can help you progress your ideas even further into abstraction.

Session 4

Move back into painting. Using our abstract 3D shapes to draw and paint from, see how moving from 2D to 3D and back again can add life and playfulness to your paintings.

What will I learn

Learn a new way into developing your ideas and approaches to painting.

Build confidence in working in 3D.

See how sculpture can inspire painting and vice versa.

Work with new mediums, see how different materials can build texture and dynamism in your work.

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

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. Kitty’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.

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 our community of fellow students from around the world.

You will need access to the internet and ideally a Smart TV, PC or laptop or a tablet with audio. Phones are not suitable unless cast to a smart TV.

Seabed, Cove and Coast

Acrylic / Mixed Media / Landscape


Taught by


View Kitty’s Work

It’s always great to hear that after trying some of these quick mark-making and drawing exercises, people are keen to repeat them at home regularly as a way to relax or reset. My approach encourages play, experimentation and trust in our gut intuition. 


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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