About the Teaching Artist

A Helene Wurlitzer Foundation fellow and international BP Portrait Award exhibitor, Natalie Voelker creates paintings that investigate complexity and transcendence in seemingly ordinary people. Her painting, “Davetta,” has been exhibited at the National Portrait Gallery in London. Her work has been featured in multiple publications including the anthology, BARED, and the French-English magazine, VolUp. Voelker has produced commissioned works for the Harwood Art Center, 508 Mural Festival, the City of Albuquerque, and various private collections – both nationally and abroad. She has a BFA from the University of Wisconsin.


Covid Policies

  • If you are feeling ill do not come to this class
  • Masks are optional and encouraged indoors

Class Description

Fluffy, velvety, sleek, or scaly – learn to paint any animal you choose in this fun and experimental weekend workshop. We’ll break animal forms down into simple manageable shapes. Then, we’ll use value (lights and darks), color, and – most excitingly – texture to bring our animals to life. Different animals require different approaches: instruction is tailored to painting the animal you choose. Whether you decide to focus on a beloved pet or an exotic wild animal, this workshop will guide you in using the fundamentals of painting to connect with the inherent beauty and wild spirit of the natural world. Bring a reference image of any animal you’d like to paint. Instruction is in oils; acrylics are also welcome. Both brand new beginners and intermediate painters will gain experience and confidence in applying painting fundamentals to this expressive and complex subject. You’ll be well on your way to painting animals by the end of the weekend!



This class will be indoors in our Dining Hall in the main Harwood Building. 1114 7th St nw 87102


Saturday February 24th: 10am-5pm

Sunday February 25th: 10am-5pm

*There will be a scheduled break in halfway through the session


Teens (15-19) and adults (20 and up). Suitable for beginners, practicing artists, and


What to Bring

For your convenience, a list of materials for this class is compiled at blick.com:https://www.dickblick.com/lists/blicku/0FJ41SLIWJAQB.

There are several panel (paintings surface) options listed; you’ll only need 1 for the class.

Blick.com generally has the lowest prices; shipping can take a while though. For in town shopping, try Artisan’s (local) or Micheal’s.

Supply List

1 photo reference – Bring a printed photo (8×10 or bigger) of any animal you choose in any environment you like. (Pet portrait, wild life image, zoo animal, etc. – anything goes as long as you find it interesting!) Printed on regular paper is fine. Bring multiple options if you’re not sure what you’d like to paint.

Oil paints (recommend Winsor & Newton’s Winton line. It is less expensive because it’s “student grade,” but is still decent quality.):

  1. burnt umber
  2. cadmium red (or similar color)
  3. cadmium yellow (or similar color)
  4. french ultramarine,orcobalt blue,orprussian blue(or similar color)
  5. permanent alizarin crimsonorpermanent roseormagenta
  6. titanium white


  1. naples yellow
  2. yellow ochre
  3. cerulean blue
  4. any other colors you love

Linseed oil or any other oil medium you like.

Surface to paint on –around 12×12, 12×16, or bigger. I recommend a smooth primed panel – such as Ampersand Value Series or Blick Premier. (Arches oil paper or tretched primed canvas or any primed panel is also okay. If you use Arches oil paper, also bring a sturdy board to adhere it to.)

Palette— paper palette pad or glass palette or roll of wax paper. (Glass works best if you have it.)

Painter’s tape–1 or 2 inches wide.

Palette knife – Blick Painting Knife style 132 or similar (for mixing paint colors).

Brushes – at least 1 small filbert bristle brush (such as Princeton 6600FB or Silver Grand Prix extra long flibert 2, or similar) and variety of soft or bristle brushes (such as Princeton Real Value Brush Set 9130 from Blick or similar).

2 jars with lids – One holds solvent while you’re painting; one serves as a “dump jar” to hold used solvent.

Gamsol–at least 8 oz of Gamsol solvent. (Gamsol brand strongly recommended for safety.)

Cotton rags and/or paper towels –rags recommended, old cut up tshirt works great.


Safflower oil –handyfor cleaning and protecting brushes. grocery store version is ok.

Dish soap or bar soap– for clean up. Dish soaps cuts oil nicely. Any brand of bar soap works.

How Much

Registration – Subsidized Registration – Regular  Registration – Community Support
$140 $165 $190


If you have any additional questions, please reach out to Ruby Rodriguez at ruby@harwoodartcenter.org

Refund Policy

Class Fee refunds will be issued on a case by case basis and requests must be emailed to Ruby (ruby@harwoodartcenter.org) at least one week prior to the start date of the class. The Class Fees will not be refunded if students request to withdraw from the workshop less than one week before the start date of the class or after the class has begun. If the class is cancelled by Harwood Art Center for any reason, the Class Fee will be refunded in full.