Rivers have been an inspiration to artists for hundreds of years. From the fast moving upper reaches, bustling boat filled marinas to wide expansive estuaries. All have captivated the painters attention and been the starting point of many a great painting.

And where could be better than along the banks of the beautiful River Stour, beloved by one of Britains greatest landscape, John Constable, to join experienced artist, tutor and writer Rob Dudley, as he shares his approach to painting rivers in watercolour.

Rob will show you how he paints water in all its moods. From shimmering sparkles to realistic reflections.

How to gather information using drawings and photographs, plan and design paintings, understand and use tone, colour and texture to produce successful images.

This watercolour course is suitable for both beginners and those with more experience of the medium alike.

Taking the River Stour as inspiration and working on location Rob will show you how to gather information through drawings and photographs and how to use these to develop more finished pieces back in the studio.

With plenty of tips, exercises and demos the course will explore composition, tone, colour and mark making. Along with the marvels of masking fluid!

If you have painted before it would be useful for Rob to see a selection of your work in order to discuss what you would like to achieve during your stay. But don’t worry if your new to painting, he’s here to help. Rob recognises that not everyone is ready to exhibit, and you need not show your work to anyone else if you don’t want to!

To see more of Rob’s work you can visit his website www.moortoseaarts.co.uk or for further examples look at his book ‘Painting Rivers from source to Sea’, published by Crowood Press.


Tutor: Rob Dudley

Rob Dudley has lived and worked in Devon since completing his degree in Fine Art at Exeter College of Art in 1980. The landscape has always been a starting point for much of Rob’s work.  Finding the variety of landscapes in Devon particularly inspiring, he spends a great deal of time exploring the different effects of light on moorland and coastal scenes.  He records the fleeting changes of light with both sketches and photographs, which he takes back to the studio to develop into more finished works.  Rob works almost exclusively in his preferred medium of watercolour.  Although a difficult medium to master he finds its elusiveness, which can be both rewarding and frustrating, makes each painting an exciting challenge. Rob also enjoys writing and in 2018 saw the publication of his first book on watercolour; ‘Painting Rivers from Source to Sea’. He is a regular contributor to The Artist and Illustrators magazine and demonstrates to art groups in the south west of England. He also is one of the script writers for the award winning animated children’s series ‘Shaun the Sheep’ produced by Aardman Animation, home of Wallace and Gromit and shown on the BBC. His work is in private collections in the UK and abroad. Rob’s website is: www.moortoseaarts.co.uk

What's Included

Before You Attend

What to Bring

  • Please bring along anything you already have. As well as paints, brushes, palettes etc., kitchen roll is essential!
  • Please bring along any photographs, sketches or other reference material you would like to work from. We are happy to supply inspiration and reference material if you need some!

Please note that the Centre shop no longer stocks art materials, apart from loose sheets of Bockingford 140lb.

Sorry this course has ended