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Abstraction with Acrylic: Emphasis on Composition 1

Instructor: Marsha Staiger

Acrylic paint is a versatile medium. It can be applied as a heavy body paint directly from the tube which will allow it to form stiff peaks and create an impasto feel. It can also be thinned down with water and used for watercolor painting. Class demonstrations will offer a variety of techniques for students to explore. The technical use of acrylic paint will inspire abstraction, if the student makes way for the unexpected in their work. Each class will highlight an Abstract principle and an Abstract element. Examples of art, as well as our class work, will be analyzed and direct students towards completing their artwork.

This course is taught using the digital platform Zoom.

For more information, contact The Art League School at 703-683-2323.

All Dates & Times

Class Supplies

Abstracting with Acrylic: Emphasis on Composition Supply List

This kit of supplies is available for purchase here, and can be shipped for a fee, or picked up inside the Torpedo Factory Art Center at the school store. The kit includes the underlined items. Please indicate in the notes section of your order if you would like to schedule curbside pick-up, or if you need your kit mailed to you. Please contact us at store@theartleague.org if you would like to purchase a selection of items different than the kit.

Abstracting with Acrylic: Emphasis on Composition, Marsha Staiger


Fluids:                                                             Heavy body tubes:

Primary Yellow                                              Ultramarine Blue

Primary Magenta                                           Cadmium Red Light

Primary Cyan                                                Yellow Ochre

Zinc White                                                      Burnt Sienna


White gesso

GAC 500 or Gloss medium

Matte medium


Sketchbook 9” x 12” (or a size you have)

Construction paper multiple colors and black white

Graphite and eraser

Water-soluble graphite 6B




An assortment of 3 bristle brushes for heavier marks, sizes should vary from smaller to large.

Synthetic brushes are helpful with softer application of washes of thinned paint #12 (7/8” brush width) or up to a #16 (1inch 1/16 width).

I do like wider brushes 2 inch to 3 inch, hake are goat hair and reasonable. They tend to lose hair after lots of use but lay down a nice wash. This can happen with your sponge as well but the sponge may produce bubbles.


4 canvases, 12” x 12” (or ones that you have)

4 pieces of watercolor paper, 22” x 30” (I like Strathmore Aquarius II, info at the end of list)

A board or cardboard a little bigger than 22” x 30” to tape your paper to.

4 clips to hold paper onto board (or use tape)

Frog Tape for edges of paper and masking techniques


Porcelain Palette or palette paper with a board to put paper on

Clean small sponge (great for putting water down)

Paint Bar or brush cleaner

Smaller spritzer for rubbing alcohol, 70% or 90%. (The bottle usually accepts a spritzer from a Windex bottle)

Small spritzer bottle for water


500 Series Aquarius II Watercolor

weight: 80lbs (22″ x 30″) 170 g/m2)

Surface: Cold Press

This unique lightweight sheet is made with a blend of cotton and synthetic fibers. This fiber combination allows this sheet to resist buckling and the need for stretching when applying light to medium washes. The lightly textured cold press surface is excellent when combining drawing media with watercolor and for fine detail work. Sheet stock has two deckle edges.

The kit includes the underlined items.

Cost is $244.01 plus sales tax of $14.64 for a Total = $ 258.65

Please contact us at store@theartleague.org if you would like to purchase a selection of items different than the kit.




How to Register

When registration is open (check the “Registration starts” date above), click the Add to Cart button to select this course. Add as many classes and workshops as you like, and then proceed to the Checkout page to complete your registration.

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