Discover the Best Acrylic Painting Classes in Chicago
Acrylic painting is done with acrylic paints. Acrylic paints evolved from acrylic resin, which was developed in the 1930s. By the 1940s acrylic emulsions had become popular among house painters. This is in part because acrylic paints were less toxic and easier to use than other paints on the market at the time. Acrylic paints became popular with artists in the 1960s. They had realized that acrylics were great at holding color and could be used to mimic oil paints and watercolors.
Acrylics are considered a low-maintenance painting medium. Beginners simply need acrylic paints, paint brushes, a painting surface, and an optional glass of water to get started with acrylic painting. This medium is great for beginners because acrylics are inexpensive, they dry quickly, and they’re easy to use. They also have a near-undetectable odor, which is ideal if you’re painting at home.
Why You Should Learn Acrylic Painting in Chicago
The versatility of acrylic paints and their ease of use makes them a great medium to begin painting with. Acrylic paints are considered inexpensive when compared to other mediums and they can be used on virtually any surface, like wood, cloth, and paper. This also makes acrylic painting an effective way to enhance other crafts. For example, if you are a woodworker, you can use acrylic paints to decorate your pieces.
Painting promotes creative thinking and the use of your imagination. When you’re deciding what to paint, you’ll have to brainstorm your piece and plan it out. This stimulates your brain and improves your ability to problem solve. Painting is also used as a therapeutic activity to regulate emotions. It has been shown to reduce stress and anxiety while creating positive emotions in the painter.
In-Person Acrylic Painting Classes & Schools in Chicago
Sign up for in-person acrylic painting classes scheduled in the Chicago area to learn from an expert. These classes will provide you with hands-on instruction and in-depth demonstrations of acrylic painting. You’ll receive feedback and advice from your instructor and be able to socialize and bounce ideas off other participants.
Most in-person classes will provide you with the necessary materials to take the class, but some may request that you supply your materials. These materials can be purchased at your local art or hobbyist store. You can check a class page for a supply list.
Ingrid’s Originals Inc. in Lakeview offers the class, Seductive Surfaces, for painters of all skill levels. This class will teach you to create depth and add texture to your paintings using a variety of acrylic mediums. The techniques you learn in this class can be used in future paintings, to create a base or finish a piece. A light breakfast, snacks, and refreshments will be provided during the three classes.
Capturing the Colors of Summer, taught at the Chicago Botanic Gardens in Glencoe, is a study of the colors of nature. Your instructor will provide you with a review of color and light and their impact on landscapes. Over four sessions you’ll use this knowledge to help you create small and medium paintings. You have the option of using acrylics, oils, or gouache. Once you have signed up for the class, you’ll be sent a supply list.
The Discovery Center, in Irving Park, is holding a mixed-media art class for people of all skill levels. Students will be able to experiment with acrylic inks, watercolors, images, found objects, and pastels to create dynamic, multi-layered compositions. If you’re interested in learning a variety of techniques, this class might be for you.
Virtual Acrylic Painting Classes & Schools
If you can’t make an acrylic painting class in Chicago but are still interested in learning from an expert, check out the virtual acrylic painting classes available to you.
Virtual classes are taught remotely by a live instructor. You can take your class from any interruption-free environment with a stable internet connection. Keep in mind that online classes will require you to purchase all necessary materials for the class, although your instructor may suggest a kit that you can buy.
The Evanston Art Center offers an introduction to acrylic painting in their class, Painting with Acrylics. In this class, you’ll learn about color mixing, techniques, and composition that are all exclusive to acrylics. Instruction is one-on-one and you’ll be encouraged to work on something that speaks to you personally.
The 92nd Street Y offers an acrylic painting class for absolute beginners. You’ll work from observation in this virtual class as you start with basic forms before progressing to still-lifes and to a live model. You don’t need to have prior experience to take this class; all skill levels are welcome.
If you’d like to learn how to use acrylics on fabric, sign up for La Pittura Art Studio’s tote bag painting class. You’ll be able to show off your creativity and personal style as you paint a tote bag with acrylics. You’re also encouraged to take this class with friends and family as a fun group activity. The studio will send you DIY kits that include paints, brushes, a disposable apron, and a canvas tote bag. Participants simply need to have paper towels and a cup of water on hand.
Private Group Acrylic Painting Classes in Chicago
Are you and a group of friends interested in booking a private group acrylic painting class? CourseHorse’s private acrylic painting classes are a fun, stress-free way to learn a new craft and socialize with friends.
Their virtual Acrylic Painting workshop will walk you and your group through the creation of a painting on canvas. You’ll all work on painting the same image and be able to compare your different approaches at the end of the class.
Another option is their online Acrylic Pour Art class. This non-traditional method teaches you how to make pour art. An instructor will guide all participants through the creation of their pieces. At the end of the class, you’ll walk away with a unique painting.
CourseHorse will provide all participants with the necessary materials once they have your final headcount. They’ll send out acrylic paints, brushes, and an easel. If your participants are over the age of 21, a bottle of wine can be shipped to them for an additional $30.
You can reach out to CourseHorse through the contact form on their website to ask about other private group classes that they offer. You’ll be able to discuss your group's learning needs and goals, as well as the group size that CourseHorse can accommodate. If you’re unsure of your group’s size at the time of booking, CourseHorse will allow you to book with the minimum group size and update your headcount later.
CourseHorse does not charge booking fees and allows free cancellations up to two weeks before your class. Classes are taught through an online video platform such as Zoom, Google Meets, Microsoft Teams, or WebEx.