Visual Arts Workshop

Carolyn Gates Plein Air in the Garden
Watercolor Workshop
Saturday & Sunday, July 18-19 | 10:00am to 4:00pm
Tuition $125
Hoffman Wonder Garden | 595 Laneda Avenue | Manzanita

Plein Air in the Garden with Carolyn Gates

If you love gardens and watercolor painting, this is the class for you! Carolyn Gates returns to inspire us for two days in the lovely Hoffman Wonder Garden. Students will learn about composition, interpreting what they see and enjoy the unique experience of painting outside. Some watercolor experience is preferred, as there will be no emphasis on explaining materials or beginning techniques.

Carolyn enjoys teaching and is inspired by the work her student’s do. She encourages each student to find their own style. “after every class and workshop, I want to go back to my studio and paint with the freedom and joy I see in my student’s work.”

This two-day workshop includes 5-hour sessions each day plus a lunch break.

Carolyn has been painting in watercolor for the past 17 years. Her work is noted for strong color and compositions that explore the relationships of shapes to make pleasing visual patterns, resulting in abstraction of the subject. Carolyn’s paintings investigate beauty, shape and color, and the interplay between the ordinary and the extraordinary.

Gates currently teaches watercolor at Maude Kerns Art Center in Eugene, Oregon, and teaches watercolor workshops at the Hoffman Center for the Arts in Manzanita, Oregon.

Gates studied studio art at Mira Costa College in Oceanside, California, and watercolor paintings at Lane Community College in Eugene, Oregon. She has studied watercolor with Carol Carter, Satoko Motouji and Judy Morris. She is currently a member of the Watercolor society of Oregon. For more information and to view her work, go to her website at

Materials List
Easel or painting surface, three options
1.  A travel easel will give you the most flexibility of movement around the garden. Know how to set it up and use it ahead of time.

2.  Chair with a board on your lap, if you do not have an easel or do not want to buy one now. The Hoffman will provide chairs, but it you prefer a certain style of chair then bring it. Camping chairs are a good choice and you may want a small folding table for your supplies. See board recommendations below.

3.  A table and chair: The Hoffman will have some larger tables available for sitting at. These will provide comfort and space but your flexibility in movement will be more limited.

Arches, 140lb Cold Press Paper – Minimum two quarter sheets (11” x 15”); or, a painting block that is 9” x 12” or 11’ x 14.”  If you want to paint smaller, you can paint 1-2 paintings each afternoon by tearing your quarter sheets into half again. Fabriano or Fluid 100 paper are options to Arches.

Watercolor Sketch Book
We will do exercises and palettes in a watercolor sketch book. Make sure the paper is 140lb, so that it can handle water. 5” x 8” is a good size for this workshop. Recommended brands: Hand Book by Global Art Materials, Pentalic, or Stillman & Birn Delta series.

Bring what you have. Recommended: No 12 round, No 8 round, No 4 round, and 1” or ½” flat brushes are optional.

Bring any watercolor paints that you have. Recommended are Winsor Newton, M. Graham, or Daniel Smith Professional
Artist level paints – .5 ml size tubes are fine

Suggested Palette
Cadmium Yellow Light or Lemon Yellow
Cadmium Yellow
New Gamboge, or Indian Yellow
Cadmium Red
Cadmium Red Light, or Pyrrol Scarlet, or Vermillion
Permanent Alizarin Crimson
Carmine, or Pyrrol Crimson
French Ultramarine Blue
Cobalt Blue
Prussian Blue
Pthalo Blue, Cerulean Blue, or Manganese Blue
Sap Green
Winsor Green (Yellow Shade), or Pthalo Green
Burnt Sienna
Burnt Umber, or Sepia
Others, if you want to explore more colors
Quinacridone Gold
Cobalt Turquoise Light
Permanent Rose or Permanent Magenta
Winsor Violet or Carbazole Violet
The most minimum palette for painting in the garden from the list above would be
Azo, Permanent Alizarin Crimson and Prussian Blue

Other Supplies
A gator board or Masonite board for holding your paper. Make sure it is at least 12” x 16”
Clips to attach your paper to your board
Masking tape
Palette—folding palette is good for Plein Air or any travel palette that you have.
HB pencil
Watercolor Colored Pencils (Optional)
Kneaded eraser
2 water containers
Paper towels or rags
Small spray bottle
Viewfinder (optional) (Gates will provide paper viewfinders)
An apron or something to protect clothing

Preparing for weather
For Sun
Protective hat for the sun, lightweight long-sleeved shirt to protect your arms, sunscreen, and water for drinking

For Cooler Weather
Wear layers, a comfortable jacket to keep you warm. Perhaps a fleece to help with any wind. A hat, a lap blanket (perhaps), sunscreen, and water for drinking

Supplies May be found at
Salt and Paper
Dots ‘n Doodles
Dick Blick