FACING YOUR FEARS IN THE STUDIO, and surviving being totally lost, w/ STUART SHILS

June 3 – 6, 2021

an invitation to demolish the wall between right and wrong, and to recognize that being out of control is actually the doorway to possibility and to your path forward

an intensive 3-day painting class on zoom, oriented to turning you inside out, disrupting expectations and questioning conditioning. By encouraging exploration, play and facing the unknown as a way forward, you will build an improvisational musculature for re-imaging who you might be in the studio.

Many of us settle into a carefully scripted and protected practice that keeps us safe within the boundaries of security. And when we do face change it’s often through someone else’s carefully scripted program related to how they paint. But “they” is not you.

Really, there is no way to paint other than your way, but it’s much easier to follow the path of another than to deal with the unknown. And then there is the question of who are you?

Through a sequence of prompts and exercises, these 3 aggressive days will ask you to self- interrogate through the lenses of analytical and improvisational mind, and it will not be for the meek; but you will emerge with a renewed, expanded and confident sense of strength that you will own.

Thursday night, opening slide talk, 6:00pm EST, 90 minutes with q&a at the end:

“The Structure of the Visual Moment,” a look into visual interiority and the language of form

and our decision making to get there.

this talk will be a foundational beginning for the following three days:

Friday, 11am – 3pm

Saturday, 11am – 2:30pm

Sunday, 11am – 2:30pm

all 3 days are keyed to Eastern Standard Time

it will not be unusual if we run a little over on some of the days so please allow for that if necessary.

Additionally, this class will offer a 30-minute individual consultation to be scheduled with Stuart following the class at your convenience.

Cost for this 5-part workshop is $720

Please contact artworkshopsboulder@gmail.com with questions and/or to register.

Reframing the Ordinary w/ STUART SHILS

a 5-part zoom seminar

2 sections:

April 15 – 18, 2021 – a few spots left

Reframing the Ordinary via Zoom, is a seminar-format deep-dive into observation of the ordinary visual world. We’ll address the nature of graphic response to the visual moment using drawing and collage to clarify what it means to really pay attention using an improvisational imagination.

Drawing is the fundamental thought engine of all visual response, yet most of us do not draw in a daily way to solve problems, open doors and pursue visual curiosity. We’re devoted to an idea of painting as the path forward but in the most elemental way, painting is drawing and is guided by the choreography of drawing, which at the end of the day is feeling. I can’t teach feeling but by way of close looking and paying attention we learn to feel our way through both looking and formulating a response.


1) enhanced visual confidence as an observer of what is right in front of you,

2) more intimate access to drawing as the engine behind all visual thought,

3) a more finely tuned graphic intuition in which risk and an improvisational imagination are part of your tool kit for decision making.

We’ll explore large themes like:

the nature of line and mass

the meaning of simplification,

how time impacts decision making,

the reshaping of expectations,

the impact of conditioning,

where to begin and why, 

and the overall palpability and malleability of the working surface as a choreography of form.

The class schedule is as follows:

·      Thursday, 1.5 hours orientation slide talk, required for all participants, 6:00PM EST

·      Friday, 3.5 hours beginning at 11:00AM EST

·      Saturday and Sunday, 2.5 hours beginning at 11:00AM EST(we may run over)

·      Also included with the class is a 30-minute individual conference with Stuart after the class is over, at a time of your choosing, to explore any aspect of your work or your work life that you’d like to discuss. Could be by phone, skype, zoom or whatever you are comfortable with. 

No matter what kind of art you are involved with, this class will bring you closer to drawing and perhaps more importantly, to your eyes.

Materials are simple – paper, pencils, eraser, black construction paper, scissors, a marker or two or two crayons, etc. (Materials list to be provided.)

Cost for this 5-part zoom presentation is $640. The class will be limited to 12 participants.

Please contact artworkshopsboulder@gmail.com with questions and/or to register


on zoom

Tuesday, May 11, 2021, 7:00 – 9:00PM EST

Tuesday, June 8, 2021, 7:00 – 9:00PM EST

Tuesday July 13, 2021, 7:00 – 9:00PM EST

Tuesday August, 10, 2021, 7:00 – 9:00PM EST

a monthly guided conversational seminar exploring how we pay attention to images analytically and intuitively to recognize and consider the roots of design, intention, and feeling.

during these two-hour monthly sessions, for May, June, July, and August 2021, Stuart will walk the eyes and imagination through paintings, drawing, sculpture, and architecture, dipping into how images offer themselves to us in form, structure, and mood.

this seminar is offered to artists and non-artists and to anyone interested in deepening his/her understanding of art and the visual world before our eyes.

The cost of this 4-month seminar is $310

Please contact artworkshopsboulder@gmail.com with questions and/or to register. Payment via paypal or credit card will be accepted. Please email for further details.