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The Basics of Oil Painting
with Kelly Sullivan

Hello! I’m happy you are here.

I love to see students go from wanting to paint to learning to paint, to understanding WHY we paint. Yes, you will learn how to use the materials, create value structure, play with color harmony, explore composition, and it will open up a world of discovery for you that will spill into your everyday life.

Your eyes will begin to find beauty in familiar places. You will notice how light falls on the world and creates your perception of it. You will have a heightened sense of observation and exploration, and a solid foundation for the expression of it.

The state you enter when you create is ancient and hard wired, and to be in it is transformative. I will help you find that place through the deliciously colorful art of oil painting.

I have chosen to lead a life that is driven by inspiration and adventure. I am told that it is palpable in my paintings and in my teaching style. I hope you join me.

“Kelly is an outstanding teacher, she not only leads you on the process but builds your confidence as well. Kelly helped me to fall in love with oil painting years ago and always is an inspiration for me.”

— Yelana Maksina

The Basics of Oil Painting with Kelly Sullivan

“I must study politics and war that my sons may have liberty to study mathematics and philosophy. My sons ought to study mathematics and philosophy, geography, …commerce, and agriculture, in order to give their children a right to study painting, poetry, music,…”

– John Adams


“A society that studies art has less need to study war. The arts create peace, in people and in nations, but that doesn’t meant that we don’t have to fight for them. So I fight in the most peaceful and powerful way possible. I practice the arts and I do my best to help others understand their ability to shift perspective and heal what ails us.

– Yours Truly

Wielding the Power of Art

Wielding the awesome and fun power of art is my labor of love. I’ve taught in my studio and at live events all over the world. I’m looking forward to returning to that with the passing of Covid and the renovation of my new studio at the old Lambertville Strand Theater in New Jersey.

In the meantime, I am excited about this new platform! I can record and customize content from anywhere (like from the sprinter van Tommy and I converted into the coolest possible painting RV) and I can get it out to a wider population who may need a little creativity and inspiration now more than ever. Thanks for joining me in this wild colorful adventure.

Mixing Values

Let’s get some paint on that palette! In the video below you will see how we mix our black and white to create a value scale. This will get us ready to put paint on…

Staging Your Still Life

We are ready to paint! By now you have all of your supplies and you've found a spot in your home to set up your easel. Now you can set up your still life. If…

Find Your Shapes

We begin painting in the very first session. We will be starting with the ultra, uber, not to be underestimated, lesson on the importance of value (the range of light to dark), and how these…

Start Scribbling

Start Scribbling! Drawing and Painting are two different languages - drawing is about line, and painting is about form and color. If you begin to develop your drawing skills now it will help you leap…

Supplies. Get your self set up!

Supply List You can download the supply list below and take it to an art supply store, or hunt for them at flea markets and garage sales which is really kind of fun. If you…

Why I Share this Workshop

My grandmother introduced me to paint when I was 5 years old. My Mom didn't much like the mess or the smell so I used lots of colored pencils as a kid. When I picked…