NLAPW Events

Alla Prima Oil Painting Workshop

Thursday, September 26, 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Instructor: Judith (Jude) Tolley 

Location: Pen Arts Building

Tolley painting

Alla prima is Italian for “at first attempt.” This painting technique layers wet paint to previously administered layers of wet paint. The alla prima approach will result in a complete study of still life by the end of the workshop.
Jude Tolley offers a short demo and a mini lesson about tones of light, medium, and dark. Artists start with a fast blocking in of basic areas of shape. Then, apply color while considering value, hue, and the shapes of highlights and shadows. An assortment of objects to paint will be provided. Participants can also bring in their own still life subjects. Please consider simplicity in the choice of objects. This workshop is designed to complete the painting in one day.
1) Quick Creation: Learn the basic steps to create a still life painting in one sitting with the Alla Prima technique. Adopt an expressive and efficient approach to painting.
2) Uniqueness: Artists are encouraged to work with their personal style, or uncover their style at this workshop.
3) Experimental Learning: A mistake is an opportunity to learn and celebrate the act of creating with colors and shapes. All attendees will produce a painting by the end of the workshop.
4) Be Empowered: Create in an upbeat, instructive, and nonjudgemental environment.
5) Explore: Discover best practices for brushwork, mixing colors, incorporating warm and cool tones, accuracy of form and color, and composition to express emotion.
6) Craftsmanship: Tolley teaches the finest techniques learned from master painters Nelson Shanks and Dani Dawson.
Some materials will be provided; artists are welcome to bring their own supplies to set up. Jude paints during the class, so students can learn from observation. Group sizes are small, so each participant receives personalized attention. All levels are welcome.

About the Artist

Judith “Jude” Tolley was born near Washington, D.C. She attended Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) and has a BFA in Painting and Printmaking. Additionally, she has a Master’s Degree in Education. She studied portraiture with renowned artists Danni Dawson and Nelson Shanks. In addition to her painting career, Tolley worked at Walt Disney Feature Animation in Burbank, California, from 1995-2002. During this time she worked on five animated featured films. Currently she maintains a studio near San Jose, California.


Workshop Registration

Cost is $150 for class only, or $175 for class and materials. The material fee is optional. You may bring your own supplies, as listed below. 

Register via PayPal to reserve your spot for this workshop. Seats are limited due to the intimacy of the event and space in our Pen Arts Gallery.  Thank you for supporting the National League of American Pen Women Inc. Your participation supports women in the arts.

Chose your registration option

Suggested Materials If You Bring Your Own:

  • Cad Yellow, Cad Yellow Deep, Yellow Ochre, Orange, Cad Red Light, Alizarin Crimson, Burnt Sienna, Ultramarine Blue, Cobalt Blue, Cerulean Blue, Permanent Green Light, Sap Green, Titanium White, Dioxazine Purple, and Paynes Grey
  • Odor free solvent (Terpenoid)
  • Refined Linseed Oil
  • Paper towels
  • 3 brushes (two bristle, small and med; one small brush for details)
  • Jars for cleaning brushes
  • Cups for holding medium
  • Suggested sizes for canvasses: 8×10, 10×10, 12×12, 10×12, or 16×20
  • Palette

logoFirst Friday Dupont 

Friday, October 4, 6-9 p.m.

The Pen Arts Gallery has been participating in First Friday Dupont. Every First Friday of the month from 6 to 9 p.m., join us for live musical performances by local artists, refreshments, and mingling with other art lovers. View and buy art created from the 1900s to today by Pen Women and D.C. artists.

Follow @penartsDC on Instagram for more details!

Million Mats DC

Saturday, October 5, noon to 4 p.m.

Million Mats DC is a new organization that uses food, yoga, and art as an access point to empower community, compassion, and creativity for individuals in marginalized spaces. MMDC hosts FYA two times per year to engage the community in a day of plant based cuisine, karma yoga, and vision boarding (creative goal-setting) as we segue into a new season.
Organizers ask each participant to donate a yoga mat, or make a charitable contribution, to support mindfulness programs in D.C. public schools. IG @millionmatsdc

GROWN Writers Circle (Ongoing)

Sunday, October 6, noon to 3 p.m.


Hosted by the GROWN the web series


All experience levels, types, and styles are welcome — come to receive feedback on your work. If you’re not a writer, but just want to see how the process works, we invite you as well!

To learn more and/or RSVP, click here.