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How Do I Choose the Best Online Painting Classes?

By D. Nelson
Updated May 23, 2024
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People who take online painting classes might be interested in learning some basic skills so they can pursue their creative interests. Others might take these classes in order to earn degrees or certifications that can help them get on the right career tracks. To choose the best online painting classes, it is important that you know what your aspirations are. If you are interested in taking online classes in painting because you would like to earn a degree or certification, it is essential that choose courses offered by a school or organization that is accredited or professionally acknowledged. Schools that are accredited generally advertise this fact in informational resources that can be found online or in pamphlets and magazine advertisements.

It also is important to understand that online painting classes often vary by painting style. For example, some classes might focus on teaching students how to paint still life paintings, while others might focus on landscapes. Other online painting classes might concentrate on portrait painting and the human face and form. It also is possible to find classes that give a general overview of many different kinds of painting.

Keep in mind that online painting classes might differ in kinds of paint that are used. Some classes might focus primarily on watercolors, while others focus on painting with acrylics. It also is possible to find painting classes that focus on painting with oils or egg tempera.

When you are choosing online painting classes, think about the kinds of learning styles that are best for you. For many people, the best classes are those that allow students to view master painters at work. These online courses are typically video tutorials where an instructor paints slowly so that students can learn from his or her actions. Other students might prefer to read instructional text, this way they can learn at their own pace. In most cases, students who learn from text also can look at illustrations that allow them to see where they should be in a process.

Many painting experts believe that the best painting classes are those that individuals can take in person with instructors since instructors can be there to give advice specific to them. For example, if an instructor sees that you are consistently making the same mistake again and again, he or she might give you a tip that can help you to correct this problem. It might be that the best online painting classes also have a live classroom component to them. These courses are often part of low residency programs.

Musical Expert is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Discussion Comments
By anon1005529 — On Sep 16, 2021

In online painting classes like the Virtual Art Academy, you can get very good interaction with other students all around the world, because they have an app specifically designed for student interaction.

By anon342123 — On Jul 17, 2013

I am currently doing a painting course online and I've learned so much, even more than at expensive workshops. Of course, it does not replace excellent personal or classroom instruction, but it makes otherwise impossible instruction available to people like me. I am learning some skills some never seem to get at art school.

By summing — On Apr 30, 2012

I took a painting class through my local university and it blended online and in class learning. WE had a studio workshop once a week but the professor would post all of his lectures and other digital information in the online classroom.

It was great because we could work with the professor and the paint in the class, but having the internet allowed us to look at hundreds of different examples when we were out of class. The professor included hundreds of high quality picture files of paintings that were relevant to the class. It was like a super slide show. That is something that would have been impossible without the online component.

By Ivan83 — On Apr 29, 2012

I would really caution against taking online art classes. In my experience, it is better to either read on your own and try to paint, or to enroll in a proper art school with face to face classes. Online classes are kind of an unproductive middle ground.

They are good because they get you painting and that spark can be hard to find. But you never get any real instruction or feedback. Watching internet videos is just not the same as watching a person paint, seeing the painting come together before you. There is something fundamental that is lost.

You also do not have the chance to interact with other students in a meaningful way. In traditional art classes this can be a huge source of creativity and drive.

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