Aimee Erickson

Oil Painting: Inspiration and Design

Instructor: Aimee Erickson
July 17–19, 2017

Skill Level: Appropriate for all levels; true beginners are advised to familiarize themselves with tools and materials, before class starts.
Fee: $450 plus Model Fee ($20 due on 3rd day)

Aimee’s Materials List

This three-day oil painting workshop presents the opportunity to paint directly from the model or a still life setup, and emphasizes the importance of having a clear idea for a painting. What is it you see that makes you want to paint something? Awareness of your inspiration guides the decisions you make as you paint.

The First day begins with the practical matter of color and value. A structured exercise will reveal keys to this important relationship. Subsequent lessons on days will impart techniques useful for any subject.

Short lectures and demonstrations will reinforce an understanding of design, vision, and a lighthearted approach. Plenty of studio time and individual instruction.


• Day 1

  • Morning: Color and value (demonstration/practice)
  • Afternoon: Still life: value studies still life

• Day 2

  • Morning: Doing stuff with paint: various useful techniques
  • Afternoon: Studio time with individual instruction. Still life. still life

• Day 3

  • Morning: The fundamentals of form — With Model
  • Afternoon: Studio time with model. Individual instruction.


Paris-born, Portland-based oil painter Aimee Erickson takes a practical approach to painting. Trained as an illustrator in BYU’s Visual Communication Design program—where learning to draw was a requirement— she thinks in terms of creative problem-solving and intention. Her paintings are informed by fundamental design principles and an interest in abstract paint quality and color.

After college she sought instruction from various painters and has studied with Sherrie McGraw, Burton Silverman, and at the Florence Academy with Joseph Paquet. Her influences and favorites  include a lot of old-school illustrators and traditional painters, as well as some composers and poets.

Over the years Aimee has worked at a variety of artistic endeavors: first as a scenic designer, and then as an expert freelance architectural color consultant, muralist, designer, and art instructor. Her mural projects include several school murals and one at the Multnomah Arts Center, ranging from forty to 180 feet long, all done with the help of hundreds of volunteers applying paint using Q-Tips to a mosaic-like effect. Aimee is the first woman artist to paint an Oregon gubernatorial portrait, that of Barbara Roberts in 1997.

In the last two years, Aimee’s work has received national attention, including the following awards:

  • Best of Show in the American Women Artists 2014 National Juried Exhibition
  • Gold medal for portrait/figure in oil at the First Annual International Artists’ Guild Exhibition
  • Award of Exceptional Merit from the Portrait Society of America
  • First Place in the Emerging Plein Air Artists 2014 competition
  • Featured as an “Artist to Watch” in the March 2014 issue of Southwest Art Magazine
  • Best Two-Dimensional Work in the American Women Artists 2013 National Juried Exhibition
  • First Place at the 2013 Pacific Northwest Plein Air event in Hood River
  • First Place at the Eugene Paint-out
  • An unprecedented three ribbons at the 2013 Carmel Arts Festival, where she again won first place in 2014.
    • First Place
    • Honorable Mention
    • People’s Choice