Missoula Public Library | 301 East Main Missoula MT 59802 | (406) 721-2665 | M-W 10am-9pm | Th-Sa 10am-6pm | Su 1-5pm

During this weekly ONLINE class, local artist Robert Peltzer will help you practice and develop the skills and techniques necessary to enjoy and succeed at watercolor painting. New painting lessons and assignments are posted every Friday. As assignments are submitted via the internet, feedback and support is provided. This class is open to adults ages 18 and older. For questions, e-mail Robert at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  


May 22nd ONLINE CLASS: Welcome to Missoula Public Libraries watercolor painting class! 

UPDATE: On May 5th the library's lending and curbside services resumed (returns are still prohibited).ONLINE services are continuing. For specific details and updates please visit the libraries home page.




CLASS NEWS:  Class President Jim has left on sabbatical for the 'Plain of Jars' in LaosShrouded in myth, megalithic stone jars are scattered across Xieng Khouang Province in groups from one to one hundred. Jim hopes to recharge and rejuvenate there as he works on his bronze castings. From there he plans to travel to Husavic in Northern Iceland among other places. We wish him well as he enjoys a well deserved break. Thankfully President Dori Groves has assumed the official mantle in his absence and is fully authorized. Thank you Jim and Dori -clap! -clap! -clap! laughing



HOMEWORK REVIEW: The homework assignment last week was entirely a free for all. This should be interesting...Hmm?...Hmm? lets see what we have






































What a fun show and I noticed you guys putting your smoky/misty/foggy skills to use  (clap! -clap! -clap!) 



EYE TRAINING SKETCH:  Monte brought to my attention an exceptional artist this week. I am featuring this artist today because last weeks eye training sketch was an easy assignment which everyone mastered.The artist name is 'Dain Yoon'. She paints illusions using her own face as her canvas. She is well known and has a large amount of work posted online, including videos. I am showing you 4 examples of her art. If you find her talent appealing, I would encourage you to look her up. Thank you Monte! laughing






This weeks eye training sketch contains lots of details and subtle shading around the eye. This week I will be checking to see how much detail you pick up on, so let your eyes see and to look even deeper than they are accustomed to. At the top of your sketch, please list 4 details that you included in your sketch that you think the ordinary viewer might not notice.



Send a photo of your completed drawing to my email address above -some time before Thursday.  


THEORY: Today I would like to say something about 'palettes' Palettes are the surfaces artists typically use for mixing their paints. Watercolor palettes are normally white and non permeable. White is the best palette background color for judging watercolors because watercolors are mostly translucent. The best watercolor palette is a matter of painting style and preference. Different watercolor palette materials, sizes and shapes each have advantages and disadvantages. I have used different kinds of palettes over the years and I thought you might like to see the kind of palette I am currently using. I made the following short video with an old cheap camera who's battery compartment is held together with a rubber band. The little camera microphone is smaller than a gnat, so I had to lean over and speak quite loudly -kind of painful on my librarians voice. Fortunately I was able to compensate for my inadequate video gear with my vast acting experience laughing  (CLICK HERE)


PRACTICE PAINTING:  This week I am featuring Dianne's practice painting because she did such a fine job of painting a soft interesting sky with matching wrap around fog. Good work Dianne! 


This weeks practice painting is about painting around and saving whites areas. Notice the variety of infused colors in the painting below. Paint the scene being careful to save the white areas. Make your practice painting visually interesting by infusing colors, by using soft and hard lines and by spattering.



Send a photo of your completed practice painting to my email address above -some time before Thursday. 


HOMEWORK FOR MAY 29th (send before Thursday) Your homework assignment is to paint a grape still life using only the 3 primary colors. Choose a blue that leans towards violet and a red that leans towards violet. Now test your yellows and pick a yellow that makes an acceptable green when mixed with the blue you have already chosen. Your goal is to build up your colors gently and gradually so as to maximize their translucent qualities. Copy the following video by Kanta Harusaki, paying particular attention to gradual layering and translucency. Notice how some grapes are slightly redder and some are slightly bluer in color. TIP: The grape sketching can be seen best at about 1:10 minutes into the video  (CLICK HERE)

Have a good week everyone!    -Robert