Semi Abstract Landscape Painting - Tom Voyce

Date 05th April 2020

4 nights residential art workshop holiday

3 days tutorial with Tom Voyce

Course Details  

Toms painting explores the boundary between abstract and figurative elements within the landscape by focusing on fundamental elements such as line, shape, structure and composition. Students will be drawing and painting directly from the landscape, learning a working method that is different, yet creative- the end result being a series of exciting works that explore the locations on offer and give a true sense of place . Working on a whole series of artworks enables the artists to become less precious about details and marks, allowing for exciting things to occur in their painting.

Class Schedule - The workshop

Day 1 - 


Intro and discussion on the tutors practice with examples of work, sketchbooks and tools shown with a short demonstration. Preparing boards for painting with a ground.


Sketching in pencil from the landscape in sketchbooks

The idea with this first session outside in the landscape is to work quickly on small thumbnail studies. The emphasis should be on composition and structure, finding that interesting feature in the image and developing it. Detailed studies and photographs can also be used to support this.

Working quickly and spontaneously will allow you to build up a whole series of compositions to choose from and develop later. Other materials such as charcoal or fineliner pens can also be used if preferred. Through this process you will find things in the landscape that you might not have noticed if you were only working on one drawing.

In the studio the drawings you made in the morning will be edited by selection, choosing those with stronger compositions, and perhaps recomposing some others into your sketchbook. We will discuss which ones to proceed with, and which ones to leave behind. This way you will rapidly build up a large collection of drawings. This helps you to find new and unexpected arrangements of shape, line and marks. Working in the landscape can be overwhelming at times and this studio process helps to bring focus to drawings that may seem chaotic when you are outside.

Day 2 - 


Sketching / Painting in colour from the landscape
in sketchbooks using watercolour.

Developing the sketches done yesterday, students will select certain thumbnails to develop in colour. These colour studies give a good idea of the arrangement of a composition when it comes the balance of colour and they are useful to help when painting later. Some may develop more abstracted studies, where others may become more figurative.


Studio - Editing Morning’s work / developing ideas from sketches
onto boards.

When ready, we will begin to transfer our compositional ideas from our sketchbooks onto the painting boards. Working in stages and on a number of boards all at once, we will begin to build up a body of work that contains a shared history and development that will hopefully reflect the surroundings. By the end of this afternoon you’ll have nearly filled a sketch book and have a whole series of compositions planned out on your boards- paintings in progress.

In the studio, we will also look over the work you have and see what ideas are starting to develop which may be worth taking further, sharing developments with one another. I like to think of students finding their own process and style through this too, injecting their own way of working. I often find that I learn things this way too, and as the tutor I also try to make a little time to paint during this stage-  sharing my thoughts and concerns as we go.  

Days 3 -



Continuing to work on the first two day’s paintings

Once you have began to develop your underpainting onto your boards, you can spend the day developing these ideas further- moving onto new stages by adding further colours, marks and details. The paintings will develop together, being informed by one another and your drawings, perhaps sharing colour pallets, marks and structures. Allow them to be as abstract or as figurative as you want. I will continue to paint and give practical demonstrations throughout so that we can tackle any problems, and make exciting discoveries together!

Thoughts on studio practice.

When working in the studio, I find it useful to be working on more than one piece at a time. You may have two or three on the go, a bigger piece and a couple of smaller ones. This way, if you are unsure of where to go next with the one you are working on, you can leave it for a while and work on one of the others. (This helps for drying too).

In my own work, I like to build the paint surface by using many layers (stages) of paint laid over one another rather than in one thick layer. I often manipulate it with my various tools as it adds interest to the surface, gives you more to work with and creates a satisfying result.

This process comes from experimentation, sometimes they work and sometimes they don’t. By having a series of works, you can see what things attract you and make a painting successful, and which ones don't. The process is something's as important as the end result, and each student will discover different outcomes.

Suggested materials required for the course

Sketchbook A3/ A4

A set of watercolours

A watercolour brush

A range of sketching pencils HB, 2B, 4B, 6B

A range of oil paint (preferable), or high quality acrylics (Phalto blue, Burnt Umber, Titanium white, Burnt Sienna, Green, Ceruleum Blue (Sky Blue), Cadmium Red, Naples yellow, cadmium Yellow. More of a range is good)

Turpentine (for oil paint)


Linseed oil

Two/ three rags


Clothes that you may get dirty!

Painting wedge (Princeton Catalyst) 00-1 (I can provide more info on this!). A palette knife can also be used.

Camera/ ipad 
To be prepared before workshop:
- Primed MDF boards. A range of sizes (quiet small). 13 x 20, 20 x 30, 30 x 40cm

Acommodation - The Lookout

During your stay you will be in a private en-suite bedroom located within the space. You will be welcomed on arrival with a two course home cooked evening meal. Each afternoon you will have a choice of cake and biscuits, coffee and tea. Following on for this the course is based on self catering where you will have full use of the kitchen facilities within the accommodation.

We also have a variety of alternative accommodation ranging from camping to five start holiday properties, if you would like to upgrade or extend your stay please contact us direct to proceed with a booking


4 nights / 3 day Course

£575 Painter

Of course, non painter i.e. partner, friends or family members are welcome to join you during your experience with us. During their stay we would be happy for them to come join us for tea and cake on arrival

We take a £150 per person non refundable deposit when you book a art holiday and the final balance is due 6 weeks prior to you stay. Please see our terms and conditions for cancellation policies.

The Artist

Tom Voyce is an artist who lives and works in Derbyshire. Having won the SkyArts Landscape artist of the year completion in 2017, he has since travelled across the world developing his artistic process influenced by travel and places. Teaching along the way, Tom has also led workshops in Canada, New Zealand and Australia as well as across the U.K. And Ireland. His focus lies in the difference between the abstract and the figurative landscape, and he is interested in the impact of light, line, perspective and structure on a landscape or cityscape. He attempts to capture an essence of a place, but also realises that is as much about the painting as it is about the place.

Tom is currently represented by The Fletchergate Gallery, Nottingham, Northanmakes Gallery, Manchester & The Artist Room Gallery in Dunedin, New Zealand.


Semi Abstract Landscape Painting - Tom Voyce
Semi Abstract Landscape Painting - Tom Voyce
Semi Abstract Landscape Painting - Tom Voyce
Semi Abstract Landscape Painting - Tom Voyce
Semi Abstract Landscape Painting - Tom Voyce
Semi Abstract Landscape Painting - Tom Voyce
Semi Abstract Landscape Painting - Tom Voyce
Semi Abstract Landscape Painting - Tom Voyce
Semi Abstract Landscape Painting - Tom Voyce
Semi Abstract Landscape Painting - Tom Voyce
Semi Abstract Landscape Painting
Tom Voyce
05/04/2020 - 4 nights
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