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Highlights from our Christian Dore Workshop

Our May 6, 2022, our Member Workshop featured guest instructor Christian Dore. This sold out event was the Vail Valley Art Guild's first joint workshop with the Art Students League of Denver (ASLD). Modeled on the famous Art Students League of New York, The Art Students League of Denver first opened its doors in 1987 with a handful of recognized artists teaching over one hundred students within its first year. Today, located in the historic Sherman School in the West Washington Park area at 200 Grant Street, ASLD engages over 900 students a month with over 200 noted artists who teach diverse fine arts classes throughout the year.

Christian Dore is a 1999 transplant to the US from England where he was a graphic artist for the BBC. He became enamored with Colorado landscapes and merged his feelings of the outdoors into colorful, layered representational paintings of animals and tribal motifs. Christian opened the workshop by telling everyone that he was going to change our lives.

Through a series of mini-demos and exercises he explained his process in creating an abstract painting in this one-day class - normally an 8 week course for his Denver students.

The morning session focused on creating looseness by drawing random shapes in our sketchbooks. We were told to fill a page with doodle shapes, then overlap all the shapes. This created a drawing to give us ideas for the afternoon session.

In the afternoon we painted our canvases black, then lightened them with unbleached titanium and drew lines across that with black paint. Next we colored between the lines using only black, titanium, and a green mixed to vary colors. We then added an accent color, scrubbed out most of what we’d done and looked to find an animal to bring out of the “mess.” Most didn’t finish this part but Christian's animals on his website are examples of the end result.

All the students in this class came away with exciting new ideas and we hope that we can entice Christian to return again soon. For additional information on Christian Dore see his website:

To find out information regarding our future workshops this summer please see our Events list. You can sign up for a future workshop online. All of our workshops are filling up quickly!!

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