Figurative Painting in Oil

with Michael Carson

Filmed in Florence, this online workshop focuses on Michael Carson's unique approach to figurative oil painting, as he demonstrates his techniques to simplify the figure. He will look at the balance between representational art and instinctive design decisions which can transform an academic figure study, and carefully take you through his painting process, from start to finish.

  • 3 hours and 50 mins of instructional content

  • Open to all levels

  • Life-time access with unlimited streaming

  • Audio: English

  • Reference photos to paint from

  • Downloadable handbook

Design & Decision

Figurative Painting in Oil with Michael Carson I Trailer

Painting Giveaway!

Deadline for entry 15th March

Win an original oil painting! When you complete this online workshop and leave a review you'll automatically be entered into our painting giveaway. To celebrate the release of Michael Carson's online workshop, he'll be giving away this signed oil painting, which he painted in preparation for filming this workshop. You have until the 15th March to enter, the winner will be selected at random, and announced in the Community Section on 20th March. Good luck!
  • £112.00

    Pay securely with Stripe, and receive an official receipt upon purchase

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What this course is about and what you will learn!

Learn how to incorporate design when creating figurative oil paintings. During this online course, Michael Carson will demonstrate his approach to figurative painting, from start to finish. He will show you the methods that he uses to simplify the painting process, whilst explaining his materials and technique in detail. This workshop is suitable for all levels, whether you are just starting out or looking to deepen your understanding of the subject. Paint along with Mike using his photo references, and enjoy life-time access to this course, which you will be able to rewatch at any time.

What's included?

Mike will begin by explaining his materials to you, as well as the unique limited palette he uses and has developed through his career as a painter. He will start his painting demonstration by showing you how he sketches out the figure onto his panel and draws using paint. Throughout the painting process, Mike will cover important topics, such as composition, values, and edges, and show you how these concepts come together to create a finished painting. Mike will then tell you a bit about himself and how he started out as a painter, and end the course by giving you some final advice. You will have access to the photo references Mike has taken and uses during this workshop so that you can paint along at home. You can share your progress in the Community Section, where you will also be able to connect with other like-minded creatives!

Workshop Overview

  1. 1
    • Introduction

  2. 2
    • Materials

  3. 3
    • The Under Drawing

  4. 4
    • The Under Painting

  5. 5
    • Adding Color to the Portrait & Figure

  6. 6
    • Painting the Fabric & Environment

  7. 7
    • Adding Detail to the Portrait

  8. 8
    • The Finishing Touches

  9. 9
    • Adding A Design Element

  10. 10
    • Looking After Your Brushes

  11. 11
    • Interview with Michael Carson

Michael Carson

Your instructor for this workshop

Michael Carson is a Minnesotan oil painter and sculptor, whose artwork can be found in private and corporate collections throughout the world. His aim is to use technique, mechanics, color and design to bring a fresh approach to the subject of the figure. "My work is first and foremost figurative studies. It's what I like to paint, my biggest challenge and my greatest payoff."
Michael Carosn

Course Reviews

All of these reviews are written by students who took this workshop

5 star rating

One of the Best Painting Classes I've taken!

Denise Barta Sagan

This class is very well constructed by Art Escape and very well taught by Michael Carson. The site is extremely user friendly and the class well structured. ...

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This class is very well constructed by Art Escape and very well taught by Michael Carson. The site is extremely user friendly and the class well structured. I especially like Michael's teaching at every step of the painting. I will say I was intensely interested in his process to begin with but unlike many courses Ive taken where I've fallen asleep watching the painting process, Michael's tips and comments kept me awake. This is the first class in which I am actually going to follow along and paint from the photos provided. I bought all the paints, brushes, the Gessobord and even the Scheveningen Purple Brown. Great background music too btw! BRAVO! Well done!

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5 star rating

100% recommended

David Cooke

Out of all the artists one inevitably comes to admire on Instagram (and, let’s face it, all in all, IG is a wonderful platform for artists), Mike’s work stan...

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Out of all the artists one inevitably comes to admire on Instagram (and, let’s face it, all in all, IG is a wonderful platform for artists), Mike’s work stands out to me and fits with my own style so I jumped at the opportunity to purchase this course. I’m certainly not new to oil painting but it was good to cover old ground, take the time, listen to Mike’s commentary (which is simple, solid and unflowery) and also learn some new tricks. It’s like doing a mastercopy with Mike holding your hand along the way. And, if you listen to the final chapter (11), Mike explains that growing as an artist is about selecting someone who you admire and copying their work until you develop your own style. One of the best bits for me was an introduction pigments I hadn’t used before. Wow, that Old Holland Sheveningen Purple Brown really blows your socks off! It might be expensive but it’s hard to beat the chroma and it lasts and lasts. So, yes, I’d definitely recommend this course. Spot on. p.s. – oh yeah, and I’d like to win the demo from the course, please!

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5 star rating

Informative, entertaining and practical help

Richard Scarr

I've found, previously, the downside of a lot of courses is that they focus on the wrong things or are a bit dry in presentation or skip the exact info I was...

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I've found, previously, the downside of a lot of courses is that they focus on the wrong things or are a bit dry in presentation or skip the exact info I was looking for. None of this can be said of this course. The presentation is professional and understated. The views of the canvas, palette and artist were perfect in giving a complete view of Michaels work flow and the breaks for each chapter felt very natural. It was also reassuring to see how to correct things when they go wrong. I'll definitely be referring back to this course for my own attempts. Oddly considering this is an art course I want to give a mention to the sound quality throughout. Michaels narration is an invaluable part of the course and both his voice and the music in the background are perfectly balanced.

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5 star rating

Awesome! I got more than I expected!

Agnese Kurzemniece

To be honest, I really wanted to participate in the "live" master class with Mr. Carson. But of course, the seats were sold out in a flash! I am really happy...

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To be honest, I really wanted to participate in the "live" master class with Mr. Carson. But of course, the seats were sold out in a flash! I am really happy for the opportunity to buy this online lesson. It is really high-quality and complete. Thank you!

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5 star rating

Great course

Adriana Toth

Great structured and well presented course. I have enjoyed all sections very much, would highly recommend. It was what I have expected, with a small excep...

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Great structured and well presented course. I have enjoyed all sections very much, would highly recommend. It was what I have expected, with a small exception: In the finishing details chapter, I was hoping to see the resin and pattern demonstration. The doll hand squeezing the black paint was such a good idea, it made me smile the whole day. Thank you!

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5 star rating

what a gift !

Birgit Mierbeth

please don`t miss that workshop painting friends ! it`s a kingly gift !

please don`t miss that workshop painting friends ! it`s a kingly gift !

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5 star rating

Love it

Ervan Cunanan

So great to see Michael paint from start to finish. Such an amazing artist:)

So great to see Michael paint from start to finish. Such an amazing artist:)

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