Basic Drawing for Beginners

Basic Drawing for Beginners

Basic Drawing for Beginners

Basic Drawing for Beginners

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Class will take place over 5 consecutive Tuesdays starting September 26.

Class is full. Registrations are closed.

Ages 18+
Skill level: absolute beginner

Arts Alliance of Stratford members: $140.00
Non members: $160.00
Register below

Sterling House Community Center
2283 Main Street, Stratford, CT

Drawing is a foundational skill that can help with other creative pursuits, such as painting, sculpture, and design. It’s the basis for any other medium you choose.


Lesson 1 – Exercises to silence the inner critic and give yourself permission to participate in the creative process.

  • Contour drawing
  • Gesture drawings
  • Copying images upside down

Lesson 2 – Observation: learning to identify shapes inherent in the objects around us.

  • Shapes: Circles/Spheres; Squares/Cubes; Triangles/Cones
  • Lines: Straight; Curved; Angled; Dots; Spirals
  • Using these to draw simple objects from life.

Lesson 3 – Elements of Composition.

  • Differences: to keep the viewer engaged in the drawing.
  • Contrasts in Value; Shapes; Texture
  • Impact of verticals; horizontals and diagonals

Lesson 4 – Perspective: the relationship of objects in space, near and far

  • Introduction of linear and freehand and atmospheric perspective;
  • Creating depth: size of objects; edges (soft vs hard); value darker=closer /Lighter=distance; mark size (closer = larger strokes); cast shadow; overlapping

Lesson 5 – Finishing touches.

  • Shading and shadows
  • Highlights
  • Subtraction – Using the eraser to remove shapes from darker areas


Art supplies can be expensive so we recommend you explore alternative retailers like Ocean State Job Lot or Walmart. Michaels and Jerry’s Artarama periodically run good sales on art supplies for customers who hold their loyalty cards.
If you purchase your supplies online, be sure to price shop.


  • 24 oz. plastic food storage container (lid is optional)
    • To fill with water for cleaning the brush and mix with the black watercolor paint (supplied by instructor) for washes
  • White plastic palette or a white (important) plastic or foam dinner plate, $5.00 if purchased or $0.00 if you bring your own plastic plate
  • scrap paper, no more than 10 sheets (inkjet paper is fine)
  • #2 pencil with eraser
  • Pink pearl eraser
  • Q-Tips
  • Paper towels and facial tissues
  • A box or small tool bag to store your supplies

Drawing tools

Amazon Basics Sketch and Drawing Art Pencil Kit, 17 Piece starter Set, under $8.00
This set includes

  • Sharpener
  • Erasers (soft & kneeded)
  • Charcoal pencils, soft, medium and hard
  • Graphite pencils, 3B – 2H
  • Sanguine conte crayons
  • Blending stump
  • Uniball Vision waterproof Pens, $7.00 total (available at Staples)
  • Rollerball Pen, Micro Point, 0.5mm (micro), Black Ink
  • Rollerball Pen, Micro Point, 0.7mm (fine), Black Ink
  • Vine charcoal sticks – medium or soft, $10.00 (package of 12)
  • Additional pencil sets at students discretion- teacher will provide suggestions, $10.00 and up

Drawing pads

  • 14″ x 17″ drawing pad (Strathmore 400 Series), Medium finish; 80 lb for dry media and light washes, $18.00
  • 8″x 10″ drawing pad (same Strathmore 400 series), $7.00
  • 14″ x 17″ Newsprint pad, medium or rough surface – NOT SMOOTH, $18.00
    About the Instructor, Donna Osterby-Brien
    Donna Osterby-Brien has had a love affair with drawing and all forms of art since studying at Parsons School of design.
    Osterby-Brien is a member of several local arts associations including Arts Alliance of Stratford, BRAG and Artists Collective of Westport. She has won awards in juried exhibits and has had several solo shows in libraries, museums and other venues in the Tri-State area.

Class is full. Registrations are closed.

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Date And Time

09-26-23 @ 07:00 PM to
10-24-23 @ 09:00 PM

Registration End Date


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