The Foundation of all Strong portraits

Add to Cart

£62 GBP / $77 USD / 72 EURO / $104 CAD / $105 AUS

(exchange rates may vary slightly)

View Cart

Want to paint a portrait with skill, confidence and ease?

What if you feel you have a portrait inside of you waiting to be unleashed or have tried before but results have fallen short of your expectations, and the fear of not being good enough is holding you back.

How would you like to learn how to paint successful portraits using classical techniques, without years of academic study?

Crafting portraits that work

Kitchen tables and Artist studios are full of unfinished portraits, of out of place eyes and skin tones that don’t quite work.

After your initial inspiration starts to flounder, your confidence can take a hit and more often than not ideas that are in your mind don’t even make it to the easel!

Does this sound familiar?

Using the right approach when you’re starting portraiture, can help immensely in your progress as a painter.

The Importance of Black & White

If you look at any Classical Portrait under the surface is a hidden structure, a Grisaille underpainting – a fully developed picture in tones of grey.

This black & white painting lays the foundation for future portraits if you want to move onto colour, but creates a stunning portrait in its own right.

In traditional Ateliers, this Grisaille training can last over 12 – 18 months whilst you practise brush handling, learn about lost and found edges and develop glazing techniques without the complications of colour.

Want to know the secret to getting the results you deserve?


painting high lights on the eye

My biggest mistakes in Portraiture

When I first started to learn portraiture my approach was, to say the least, erratic.

From a list of paint colours from one book to a brush recommendation from another tutor and never mind the many hours spent in museums studying the paintings first hand – cos eventually Rembrandt would whisper the secret right if I stood there long enough!!!

Well guess what, he didn’t tell me a thing (but the security guard and I were on first name terms!)

So I then took a new creative approach, 20 colours, blaring Classical music and a livener of whisky, inspiration should take over… well it sort of did.

I did produce a lot of portraits, some Award Winning, so not too shoddy – but something was still missing.

The subtleties of tone and smokiness of the Old Masters kept alluding me, so I decided to go to the source and head for Florence, Italy.

It was here I had a breakthrough, courtesy of Maestro, Micheal John Angel, founder of the Angel Academy of Art, Florence. I’d been lucky enough to win a Queen Elizabeth Craft Scholarship to study there and also sight-size portraiture at The Sarum Studio, Salisbury with Nick Beer (senior instructor at the Charles Cecil Studio, Florence)

The complicated recipe I’d created for myself was all wrong, I’d been using too many colours and working too hard.

How come no-one had told me this before? I’d wasted so much time and energy.

This was the inspiration to create this resource, to help other aspiring artists to not make the same mistakes I did.

What will this course offer?

Portraits might sound like something only practised artists can handle but with the ‘Essential guide to Black & White portraits‘ course, you will discover how to transform your own painting by following a step-by-step demonstration of a self-portrait.

The demonstration is in the form of a  3 hour + video instruction, alongside a 10,000 word PDF guide with full-colour photographs.

I’ve taken care to film everything from my perspective so I could ensure you can see exactly what I’m doing as we go through the entire portrait process in real time.

In this demonstration, I work from a photograph and this is the technique I recommend when you are first getting started.

The PDF guide explains different materials mediums used in Oil painting and describes the various layers used in a classic underpainting-overpainting oil technique.

pdf guide to oil portraits


You can work at your own pace at home.

The process will teach you how to approach a Grisaille portrait from a photograph for maximum results, every time.

That’s not all – I will show you how you can simply mix the tones you need using colour strings so your painting is more effective and efficient.

Creating a bridge between drawing and painting, using simple to follow techniques that a beginner can learn from.

With a solid foundation in oil painting techniques, you can build on your successes to create the portraits you’ve always dreamt about.

 Here is what you will discover:

  • Why a simple black & white painting is the best place to learn a foundation for your portraits
  • How to use colour strings to improve the speed of your painting
  • Classic oil painting techniques of the Old Masters in a step-by-step demonstration
  • Paint quality and the relationship of light to form
  • How to use a technique of Da Vinci to see your work in a new light
  • Exact steps to build your portrait layer by layer
  • A multimedia learning experience, video plus a comprehensive guide and high definition photography that acts as a companion to the tutorials.

What my students say :

“Thank you, thank you, thank you.
Over the last 2-3 years, I have wanted to learn to oil paint.  There are no classical oil painting instructors or courses where I live.  I have purchased lots of supplies, turned my lounge into a studio, and have amassed around 50 canvases, all gessoed up and ready to go.  Also I have been reading art instruction books, and studied art forums.  For the most part, that is all have been doing.  I have fear of failure AND fear of success.  ( If I failed, I would be disappointed with myself, and if I succeeded, I thought I would turn into Tommy Mc Hugh or Van Gogh, and not be able to stop.  I was starting to think that it would take Leonardo himself, to hold my hand and make me get started!

Until . . . I found your tutorials.

I am amazed at what I have painted, and it’s all down to you, your enthusiasm and clear instructions are what gave me the confidence, and got me going.

This I hope will be the turning point for me, and I will have the confidence to start painting portraits of people I know. Once again, thank you so much.”

Roy – U.K.

Home Study – Instant Access £62 / $97

    • Instant Download Video & Guide – download to your computer to work offline in your studio.


    • Over 3 hours+ of HD Video – I’ve recorded step-by-step tutorials. They are compatible with any computer or tablet, including iPad.This is so anyone can access it worldwide with no shipping costs and you’ll have instant access to it. You will not receive DVDs.


    • 10,000 word PDF Guide – A step-by-step written guide with full-colour photographs, that has been designed to work alongside the videos.

Add to Cart

£62 GBP / $77 USD / 72 EURO / $104 CAD / $105 AUS
(exchange rates may vary slightly)


creative coaching

This 5-part video course will provide you with a great introduction to creating professional, personal black & white portraits in Oils.

And I’ve taken care to film everything from my perspective so I could ensure you can see exactly what I’m doing as we go through the entire portrait process in real time.

Technical Download Questions

So how does it work?

After clicking ‘Add to Cart’ you will see a page with a ‘Check out with Paypal’ button


Click the ‘Check out with PayPal’ even if you don’t have a Paypal account.

Don’t have a Paypal Account?

In most countries, Paypal offers an option for you to pay using Paypal, without opening a Paypal account.
Here is a screenshot from UK Paypal.


Once you’ve paid, after a few seconds you’ll be redirected to a download page containing all the video links and Information (see image example below)


You will also be emailed your download link as a backup.
If you ever update your computer or can’t track down the downloads just drop me an email and I’ll send through fresh links.

How big are the video files?

To download the course you ideally need a broadband connection as the video files are quite large (Total 4GB) – you do not receive a DVD.

You then have to Download and Save the video tutorials onto your home computer.

This can take up to 20 minutes for each file depending on your internet speed.

(Please Note: If you want to watch the videos using an iPad, you need a free app called ‘Documents’ this will allow you to download and save the files – you can read more about Downloading to an iPad here)


So how does it work?

  • After clicking ‘add to cart’ you can pay via Paypal using a credit/ debit card or a PayPal account.
  • After a few seconds, you’ll be redirected to a download page containing all the video links and Information.
  • You will also be emailed your download link as a backup.
  • You can then download the video tutorials onto your home computer.
  • Once downloaded you can burn them onto your own DVD to play away from the computer if you paint somewhere else in the house.
  • I’ve tried to make all the videos as user-friendly as possible so they are designed to be watched in chronological order. This way you won’t be able to get lost.

Can I download the videos to my iPad?

On an iPad

Firstly, I would download the files onto a desktop or laptop if you have one, just so you have a copy of the files.

Then you have a couple of options, either to transfer via iTunes or to purchase a separate app on the iPad.

Use a separate app

If you have an iPad you can use a free app called ‘Documents’ to be able to download the video files onto your iPad.

Please note: Without the app, you won’t be able to download and save the videos directly to your iPad. here is a more in-depth tutorial on how to download the lessons to an iPad.

Transferring files via iTunes

If you have a Mac you can:
1. Download the files to your desktop (or find the ones you’ve already saved)
2. Plug in iPad to Mac
3. Open iTunes
4. Drag MP4′s (video files of the course) on the Mac into TV shows or Movies
5. To Play on iPad open the Videos App then look under TV shows or Movies
6. The MP4 video files from the course should play fine.
If you’re on a PC you can download iTunes here and go through the same process.

If you’re on a PC you can download iTunes here and go through the same process.

Can I download the video files and put them onto my own DVD to watch on a DVD player?

Yes, you can download the files onto a DVD, however, not all DVD players will playback Mp4 files.

There are a couple of options:

1. DVD playback on another computer:

If you burn the MP4 files onto a DVD and then play the DVD on another computer or laptop it should play without a problem if you have an up to date media player that supports MP4s. 

(If you need an up to date media Player you can download one here: VLC media player (also free) VLC Media Player

2. DVD playback on a DVD player with a file Converter

It all depends if your DVD player supports MP4 video files.

Many DVD players will say MP4 on the front tray, for example, ‘DVD/Audio CD/DivX/MP4/MP3/’

Some older DVD player do not support MP4 because MP4 is a format with different decodes.

If you have an older DVD player you will have to convert the files using free software.

The MP4 to DVD converter from is a good choice.

So after all that technical stuff, we can now get painting, to your portrait success!