Throughout the year Plein Air Down Under presents painting Workshops and Masterclasses across all mediums.

In 2024 Plein Air Down Under will be featuring Masterclasses by three renowned international artists – Lori Putnam (USA), Tony Robinson (Ireland) and Leon Holmes (Australia).  In addition, Guest Artists Andy Dolphin (Mt Barker) will present a full day drawing class, and Gordon Alexander (Perth) will present a full  day workshop for Watercolour in the Landscape.

Keep your eye on this page for all up-and-coming workshops or sign up for our newsletter to get the latest info.

Workshops for 2024

Lori Putnam

Lori Putnam will be conducting 3 painting workshops, as well as an Artist Business session and demonstrations.

Read more on Lori  

Masterclass #1 “Plein Air, Right from the Start”

Monday 16 (studio) & Tuesday 17 September (plein air)

Mandurah, Western Australia

Lori Putnam believes that plein air and studio work go hand-in-hand with becoming a better painter. Lessons learned in one setting naturally benefit the other. A lifelong student herself, Lori will share how this way of thinking and hard work have helped her grow at such a rapid pace. By beginning indoors on day one, participants will have more confidence to tackle day two’s outdoor challenges.

Open to all mediums.

Intermediate and experienced artists will get the most from this two-day masterclass, which includes:

  • Understanding five types of light
  • Seeing the big shapes
  • Designing a good foundation
  • Capturing the feel of the day
  • Painting a scene’s essence and singularity

Two days $425 – SOLD OUT –  Register WAITLIST here

Masterclass #2 “Plein air, Resource Material or Finished Product”

Thursday 19 & Friday 20 September (plein air)

Peel Region, Western Australia. Location TBA

Lori Putnam sees plein air painting as having two separate and distinct purposes. In this two-day plein air masterclass she will show you both. Participants will learn the differences, how to focus on making the best colour notes for use as future resource material, and how to produce a finished painting in the field.

Open to all mediums.

Intermediate and experienced artists will get the most from this two-day masterclass, which includes:

  • Understanding the importance of colour notes
  • Making meaningful sketches for better painting results
  • Having the confidence to make strong painting decisions
  • Knowing when to push an idea and when to give up on one
  • Finishing in the field

Two days $425 – SOLD OUT – Register WAITLIST here

Masterclass #3 “Fix It, Scrap It, or Use It.

In this one-day masterclass, Lori Putnam will help you learn what to do with all of those piles of plein air paintings. Using your own paintings from the festival weekend, you will learn what went well, what did not, and what to do about it.

Open to all mediums.

Intermediate and experienced artists will get the most from this masterclass which includes:

  • Understanding why a painting does not work
  • Learning constructive tools for self-critique
  • Knowing when to save your painting, when to use it for knowledge, and when to toss it out
  • Working through and resolving issues as a way of growth
  • Painting with more confidence and understanding

Tuesday 24 September (studio)

Mandurah, Western Australia

One day $220 Register here

Tony Robinson

Tony Robinson will be conducting a one-day portrait painting workshop in the studio, as well as demonstrations.

Read more on Tony  

Mastering the Painted Portrait, with artist Tony Robinson and live studio model.

This Masterclass will explain techniques of the successful ‘alla prima’ portrait, demonstrated by Tony Robinson who will be helping participants aiming to produce a satisfying ‘head study’ or a ‘head and shoulders’ in 4 hours painting time.

The course will include:

  • Setting up the model.
  • Laying in, blocking in and working up.
  • Tones, colours, edges and brushwork.
  • Choosing and mixing flesh colours.
  • Common alla prima pitfalls.
  • How to critique your own work.
  • Making adjustments.

Tony will paint along with you for a fun day of portraiture. Use of a camera will be included.

Some basic drawing skills are recommended for this course but Tony will endeavour to adapt the teaching element to suit a range of experience and ability.

Wednesday 18 September (studio)

Mandurah, Western Australia

One Day $245 Register here.

Leon Holmes

Leon Homes will be conducting a two-day plein air painting workshop in the outdoors, as well as demonstrations.

Read more on Leon  

Oil Painting Masterclass, en Plein Air

Thursday 19 & Friday 20 September (plein air)

Mandurah and the Peel Region, Western Australia. Location TBA

In this two day Masterclass, Leon will be sharing his knowledge in oil painting, focusing on composition, tonal values, colour mixing and a myriad of painting tips and tricks to help you get the most out of your Plein Air painting experience.
After demonstrating these elements, students will be hands on, painting their own scene as Leon walks around, giving one on one advice and assistance.

Two Days $345 plus options – Register here

Note ticket options below. Please choose your preferred ticket options at check out:

Option 1 – Leon Holmes Two Day Workshop $345

Option 2  –  Leon Holmes Two Day Workshop plus easel hire $375

(incl. 9×12” Pochade Box Hire & tripod, no other materials included)

Option 3 – Leon Holmes Two Day Workshop all inclusive $405

(includes MH oil paints, brushes, palette knives, dipper pot, medium (MH refined gum turpentine or AO fast evaporating odourless solvent), rags, gloves, Leon Holmes Swag Apron, MH oleo gel).

This is a good deal for Plein Air beginners. Simply come and enjoy painting worry-free.

Students with some experience in oil painting will get the most out of this workshop, but if you have been painting for years and feel your work needs a new direction, you will also love it!

All details for workshops are now published (12.5.2024)

Gordon Alexander

Gordon Alexander joins the PADU teaching team in 2024 and is well known in Perth for his tuition in Watercolour and his plein air work in both Watercolour and Oils.

Read more on Gordon

Workshop – Fun Outside with Watercolour

During this workshop we will focus on classic watercolour technique with emphasis on understanding the crucial elements to rendering a successful image. Through some fun exercises we will explore how to simplify the scene and play with values, edges, colour and composition to enhance our interpretation of our chosen subjects and convey a sense of space, light and form. We will also explore some of the pitfalls of using watercolour outside and find solutions.

This workshop is ideal for those familiar to watercolour but would like to gain confidence when venturing outside as well as those wanting to extend their knowledge and ability with the watercolour medium.

Friday 20 September 9.00AM TO 3.00PM

Peel Region, Western Australia, Location tba

One Day $150  Register here

Andy Dolphin

A regular participant at Plein Air Down Under in Mandurah since 2020

Read more on Andy

Workshop – Drawing for Plein Air

Drawing is the foundation of visual art and it can be easier than you think.

Join award-winning artist Andy Dolphin for this full day studio workshop covering the basics of sketching en plein air. Topics covered include simplifying the landscape, handling perspective and finding successful compositions through tonal thumbnails.

Andy will also introduce students to a simple sketching method he calls Mindful Contour Drawing which he uses for urban sketching or to produce preliminary drawings for watercolour painting.  The session will also include some plein air drawing exercises.

While the lesson is aimed primarily at painters, the methods used will also suit artists simply wanting an introduction to plein air drawing.

Please note: This Workshop is for artists registered to paint at Plein Air Down Under – if you haven’t registered to paint, please register here:  Plein Air Down Under



One Day $150 – Register here