Classes & Workshops

The Old Town Art Center

About the Old Town Art Center

Small class sizes allow students of all skill levels to take part in any given class – no class is larger than 10 students per Chicago guidelines. Instructors provide each individual student the amount of attention required. The focus is entirely on the visual arts – through drawing with pencils/charcoal and painting with oils, watercolor, pastels or acrylics. Figure Studio is open to all (for a full session or as a drop-in).  

Sessions typically begin the first week of January, the last week of March and the first week of September. Short sessions are offered in the summer and toward the end of the year. Classes are offered during the day, at night and on weekends.  


Limited Winter offerings available now. 

The Old Town Art Center will offer classes at half the normal capacity, in keeping with CDC, State and City guidelines. The Center is thoroughly cleaned after each class. Students must wear masks and maintain proper distancing at all times. Sanitizing stations will be provided. We request that anyone with symptoms of COVID-19 to refrain from attending class/visiting the Center. 

Winter classes are offered for 10 and 5 week sessions, note the timelines listed below. Registration is required. Scholarships are available. If you plan to pay for class at the first session, please call the office (312.337.1938) to place a registration hold for the class you would like to attend – this will help us to ensure minimum/maximum attendance. 

Art Class FAQs

  • OTTA membership is open to all
  • Up to two art classes can be made up within a ten-week session
  • There are no refunds after the 1st class
  • Classes with fewer than five students may be cancelled – class size is limited to ten students. (Note: if the City of Chicago Department of Public Health changes the guidelines, we will follow  their recommendation.)
  • Students provide their own supplies
  • Scholarships are available – please scroll down for complete information
  • Click here to print a registration form to be mailed or delivered


Art Classes 

Please note:  You can register for classes by visiting our secure member portal.  Membership is not required to register for art classes. If you have any questions or run into any problems please send an email to info@oldtowntriangle.com  


Figure Drawing Studio

Image by P. Renaud

Mondays | January 4 – March 8 | 12:00 – 3:00 PM | Ten Weeks 
Monitor: None
Fee: $145 non-members / $140 members or $20 drop-in fee

Register Here

Artists hone their skills, working directly from a live model. Beginning through advanced students are welcome to advance their figure stylings.  One hour is devoted to quick gesture poses. The focus for the remaining time will be longer poses for finished drawings and paintings. We provide drawing benches, easels, tables, and boards. All media are welcome.

 

 

 


Oil Painting

Joe Taylor

Tuesdays |  January 5 – March 9  |  10:00 AM – 1:00 PM  |  Ten Weeks
Fee: $275 non-members / $260 members

Register Here 

Students take on projects of their own choosing.  Joe provides support in difficult areas; whether color, mass, shadows or any other technique that fails. His level of instruction is dependent on each individual student’s needs. This class is as challenging for experienced painters as it is exciting for those expanding their knowledge. 

 

 

 


Pastel Painting

Kathleen Newman

Wednesday | January 20February 17 + March 3 – April 7 | 10:00 AM – 1:00 PM | Five Weeks
On-Line only
Fee: $140 non-members / $130 members

Register Here

Join our online pastel class this Winter to stay connected during the long days ahead.  Each week prior to class,  Kathleen will send a reference photo and description of the upcoming weekly focus.  During the ZOOM class, she will provide a slide show/discussion and/or a recorded demo of the week’s topic.  You will then take a ten minute break to stretch, refresh,  grab a cup of coffee and gather again in the ZOOM classroom to share your work, critique and provide camaraderie during these isolated times.  Come join us and reboot your art journey.  You can work on class assignments or continue on your own path as usual.  I will do my best to recreate our special Old Town class experience of sharing work between beginning students, returning students and the inspiration we’ve enjoyed while working together.   Everyone will have time to discuss their work in a group setting or privately if requested after class. You must be registered by January 18th to receive the first assignment and classroom ZOOM link

 


Acrylics – Drawing to Painting

Vivian Visser

Wednesdays | January 6 – March 10  | 1:30 PM – 4:30 PM | 10 Weeks 
Fee: $275 non-members / $260 members
Hybrid class: On-Line and In-Person

Register Here

Begin a new course of expression. This workshop encourages students to interact by exchanging ideas, visions, and knowledge about art. Vivian will take everyone through the basics of using acrylic paint as a medium. You will learn about techniques, styles, and composition. In addition, color-mixing, paint application, brush strokes, tools and more will be discussed in this workshop.  Everyone is welcome.

 


Oil Painting 

Marie Kirk Burke

No Winter Schedule  |  

 

In this class, Marie creates a still life to work from. Students construct their painting focused on observations of color, light, and shadows. Marie guides your progress from a sketch to a beautiful finished painting; learning about composition, color, color mixing, light, shadow and how they all relate along the way. Beginners are welcome.

 


 Oil Painting

Joe Taylor

Wednesdays | January 6 – March 10 | 6:30 – 9:30 PM  | Ten Weeks
Fee: $275 non-members / $260 members 

Register Here

Painters work one-on-one with Joe Taylor in this class. Students take on projects of their own choosing and Joe provides support in difficult areas; whether color, mass, shadows or any other technique that fails. His level of instruction is dependent on each individual student’s needs. This class is as challenging for experienced painters as it is exciting for those expanding their knowledge.  

 

 

 


 Watercolor Painting 

Kathleen Newman

Thursday | January 21 – February 18 +  March 4 – April 8 | 10:00 AM – 1:00 PM
Fee: $140 non-members / $130 members
On-Line only

Register Here

Join our online watercolor class this Winter to stay connected during the long days ahead.  Each week prior to class,  I will send a reference photo and description of the upcoming weekly focus.  During our ZOOM class, I will provide a slide show/discussion and/or a recorded demo of the week’s topic.  We will then take a ten minute break to stretch, refresh,  grab a cup of coffee and gather again in the ZOOM classroom to share our work, critique and provide camaraderie during these isolated times.  Come join us and reboot your art journey.  You can work on class assignments or continue on your own path as usual.  I will do my best to recreate our special Old Town class experience of sharing work between beginning students, returning students and the inspiration we’ve enjoyed while working together.   Everyone will have time to discuss their work in a group setting or privately if requested after class. You must be registered by January 18th to receive the first assignment and classroom ZOOM link.

Watercolor Painting

Tom Francesconi

Saturdays | January 9 – March 20  | 10:00 AM – 1:00 PM |
No class February 20
Fee: $275 non-members / $260 members

Register Here

Tom’s energetic teaching style and passion for painting combine to create a class that is enjoyable and informative. Any artist looking to break free of a careful, timid painting process will find Tom’s direct and representational approach very inspirational. Within this process, students learn how to create stronger, more effective visual statements. Expect discussions and demonstrations that allow you to see how Tom approaches work from start to finish. Ample opportunity is provided for everyone to paint with individual direction/guidance a priority. Students at every stage of experience are welcome.


Watercolor Figure Painting – NEW

Tom Francesconi

Saturdays | January 16 – March 20  | 1:30 PM – 4:30 PM | No Class February 20
Fee: $250 non-members / $235 members

Join Tom for this unique class. The focus of this watercolor class will be a simplified approach to painting the clothed figure. Tom will demonstrate his painting process, while covering a range of topics. Any artist looking to break free of a careful, timid painting process will find Tom’s direct and representational approach very inspirational. Within this process, students learn how to create painting that are rich in color and resonate with emotion. Expect discussions and demonstrations that allow you to see how Tom approaches work from start to finish. Ample opportunity is provided for everyone to paint with individual direction/guidance a priority. Students will work from their own reference photographs. Painters at every stage of experience are welcome.

Register Here


Open Studios

Fridays January 15, 29; February 12, 26; March 12, 26  | 10 AM – 1 PM
No Instructor
$10

Open studios are available to current students and OTTA members only. 

 

 

 

 


Suzanne Flavin Scholarships

The Old Town Art Center offers need-based financial aid through the Suzanne Flavin Scholarship Fund. Financial assistance is provided for the complete cost of a class and is offered to no more than two students for each full session – one watercolor class and another in any media. To apply, please complete the application found here or visit the OTAC (1763 N North Park Avenue) to pick up a copy.  Recipients will be announced two weeks prior to the start of the next session.