NGV Painting Materials and Techniques Guided Tour with Dr John R. Neeson

This private guided tour will draw your attention to the influence painting materials and techniques have on the 'look' of finished works from the permanent collection of the National Gallery of Victoria including:
  • 14th - 16th Century Paintings
  • 16th - 17th Century Paintings
  • 17th Century Dutch and Flemish Paintings
  • 18th -19th Century European Paintings
  • 19th - early 20th Century Paintings

In this small study group Dr Neeson will guide you through various works within the permanent collection, selecting examples to highlight and discuss techniques and materials used. Questions welcome.

About your tutor:

Dr John R. Neeson is a well known Melbourne based Artist/Educator. He has extensive teaching experience at a number of schools including the Victorian College of the Arts, Melbourne Polytechnic and Monash University. He has a PhD from Monash University and as a Samstag Scholar a research qualification from The Royal College of Art, London. 

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What you will learn
  • Identify the materials and techniques used to get the 'look' of a painting
  • Understand the layering process employed, looking at specific works
  • How colour choices affect the look and impact of a work
What you will get
  • A private guided tour with Dr John R Neeson

What to bring
  • Camera (phone is fine) and notebook
What to wear


Appropriate for

Artists, art students and enthusiasts


Fitzroy Painting for Beginners

Vendor since 2013

Established in 2009 and based on the top floor of a Victorian heritage building overlooking bustling Brunswick Street, Fitzroy Painting for Beginners is the original and best of private art classes in Fitzroy!  A working artists studio, the space provides a great environment to develop your painting and drawing skills with the expert support and guidance of highly qualified teachers and full-time professional artists.

Our 4 - Week Beginners Courses are designed for the complete beginner, taking you through a series of exercises and building your skills week by week as you produce paintings to take home. Students may choose to continue to our Beginners Course: Level 2. Ongoing students are supported to help develop their own direction, with optional exercises offered to expand on skills and knowledge, and our Atelier students are assisted in taking it to the next level in professional practice.

Love the class? All students wishing to extend their course may purchase 4 or 8 - week blocks for ongoing students at a discounted rate. Some of our students have gone on to Higher Education courses and are now exhibiting professionally!

Need to miss a class? We understand busy lives and offer flexibility - just let us know in advance and we'll credit you a class. (Maximum of 2 changes per 8 weeks, ongoing and Atelier students only).

Evening classes include wine and cheese, and morning classes include tea, coffee and cakes. Classes run for 3 hours and basic equipment is available for student use at the studio, including easels, aprons, palettes and drawing boards. We believe in safe studio-practice and provide low-toxic, low-odour materials for student use, as well as high-quality clean-up materials for brushes and hands. We also have storage facilities if you wish to keep your materials at the studio.

Each student works at their own pace and receives one-on-one attention, and all students are invited to exhibit in our annual end of year exhibition, a fun opportunity to show family and friends what you’ve been doing!

Visit our website for more info and pictures of student work.

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Cancellation & Refund Policy

Course refund policy:

  • Refunds for cancellations can be given up to 30 days before the course commencement date.
  • A 50% refund will be given for cancellations 10 days before the course commencement date.
  • No refund will be given after 10 days before the course commencement date. Under exceptional circumstances a full refund will be given regardless of date of cancellation.
  • No make-up classes can be offered for our beginners courses.
  • Please note there is a $30 fee deducted on all refunds due to the Weteachme processing fee.

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Terms & Conditions

Bookings and class cancellations policy: 

Due to the high demand for classes and small number of places available in our 4-week beginners course, Fitzroy Painting is unable to swap, substitute or offer ‘make-up’ classes. Ongoing students please contact us if you are unable to attend a class. Absences without notification will forfeit the full class/course fee and receive no credit.

Should Fitzroy Painting be forced to cancel a class students will be notified as soon as possible prior to the scheduled class and will receive a credit for a replacement class or a refund as required.

* Please note that you are welcome to store your materials at the studio however space is limited, so please take them home at the end of your course! Uncollected materials and paintings are disposed of at the end of the year.

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3 Reviews
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09 March 2018 • NGV Study Tour: Painting Materials & Techniques

Fabulous tour of the VGA with John. Leading us through each period of painting in the varied sections of the VGA, John progressively explained the development of paint mediums and painting techniques as well as some key insights into specific painters and their impact in changing styles. A truly inspirational Saturday morning!

Fitzroy Painting for Beginners


Thanks Pam, great to hear you enjoyed John's NGV study tour - he is a font of knowledge! 


05 March 2018 • NGV Study Tour: Painting Materials & Techniques

Very interesting , educational and relaxed environment. Much more fun in a small group with a guide. I would certainly recommend the tour. thank you Sally

Fitzroy Painting for Beginners


Thanks Sally, great to hear you enjoyed Dr John's tour, and hope you'll look at paintings in the gallery in a new way!


16 January 2018 • NGV Study Tour: Painting Materials & Techniques

Casual and informative. A nice way to spend a couple of hours. Thanks.

Fitzroy Painting for Beginners


Thanks Jenny, great to hear you enjoyed it, and hope it's helpful to your painting practice.