oil painting

Moving Beyond the Ordinary

Moving Beyond the Ordinary

An Online Course
with Marla Baggetta

I believe that it’s our job as artists to see the beauty in our reality then bring it to a visual form and to share it. That means moving beyond the obvious, the ordinary. It means getting under the surface of things and seeing them differently. This workshop is an opportunity to sink deep into painting the still life and discover the extraordinary in the ordinary.

12+ Hours of Video

We have worked hard to bring you high quality instructional videos that provide easy to follow, clear and detailed instruction.  You’ll have 24-hour access to all the videos enabling you work at your own pace in the comfort of your own home from any device for a seamless and modern online experience.

85+ Page Beautifully Illustrated PDF

Our 85+ page detailed coursework presents you with an illustrated guide to materials, theory and wisdom from an expert instructor and professional artist covering everything you need to get started with Still Life Oil Painting. Divided into 8 highly structured chapters, Marla will guide you through all of the necessary groundwork, reinforced with exciting exercises and step-by-step demonstrations, providing you a roadmap to becoming an accomplished painter.

Private Facebook Community

 You’ll also have access to a private Facebook group where you can share your progress, ask questions of Marla and a community of your fellow students who are also taking the course to keep you motivated and inspired along the way. 

Course Contents

Each chapter focuses on a fundamental of painting

Chapter 1:
Introduction - Moving Beyond the Ordinary

I believe that it’s our job as artists to see the beauty in our reality, bring it to a visual form and then share it. That means moving beyond the obvious, the ordinary. It means getting under the surface of things and seeing them differently. This workshop is an opportunity to sink deep into painting the still life and discover the extraordinary in the ordinary.

  • Guided Learning:
    Art and Beauty
    Why Still Life?
    Realism vs. Impressionism
    How to Use This Workshop
    A Look at History
    Materials + Tools
  • Video: A Look at History

Chapter 2:
The Stage - Assembling the Scene

Learn how to assemble an engaging still life in a still life stage and what equipment you need. The three components of lighting, how to choose your objects, how to use surfaces to create drama and the components of good composition are all explicitly covered in this detailed video.
  • Guided Learning:
    Your Objects
    Composing Your Setup
    The Three Components of Lighting
  • Video: Setting the Stage

Chapter 3:
Starting Simply - SIngle Objects

Learn how to assemble a simple yet engaging still life from everyday objects. Learn how to set up a still life stage. The three considerations of lighting, how to choose your objects, how to use surfaces and reflections to create drama and the components of good composition are all explicitly covered in this detailed chapter.
  • Guided Learning: Why Drawing Matters
    The Illusion of Light
    Color Mixing Tips
    Basic Techniques
  • Step by Step Demo: Starting Simply Single Objects
    Basic Techniques
    Color Mixing Tips

Chapter 4:
From Kitchen to Canvas - The Bowl & The Pepper

Build a simple yet engaging still life from the kitchen to the canvas by seeing familiar everyday objects as art. Learn to use eye level, lighting and background to set the tone in this light and bright scene. Arrange objects in the picture plane using some simple tips and tools that will help you to create successful compositions consistently.
  • Guided Learning:
    Proportion and Planning
    Keeping it Simple
  • Step by Step Demo: The Bowl and the Pepper

Chapter 5:
Value - The Pumpkin and The Blue Bowl

Learn how to orchestrate a focal point to a crescendo by building the light slowly. See how to go right to the heart of your painting by developing the pattern of light. Marla shows you the give and take necessary to tease out the nuances in a piece and maintain an impressionist feel.
  • Guided Learning:
    Value Does The Work
    Expanded Palettes

  • Step by Step Demo:
    Value: The Pumpkin and the Blue Bowl

Chapter 6:
Finding Beauty - The Ginger Jar and the Buddha

This 2+ hours jam packed lesson focuses on simplifying the core elements to their common denominators then building them back up again. Detail is rendered while maintaining an impressionistic feel to the painting. The illusion of depth is created using predictable principles of light and shadow. Marla adds radiance and glow to the objects and orchestrates light to the areas of interest.
  • Guided Learning:
    Adding Details
    Fixing Mistakes
  • Step by Step Demo: The Ginger Jar and the Buddha

Chapter 7:
Telling Your Story - David and the Postcard

Tell your story through still life. This lesson is an opportunity to sink into your creative well by making a personal statement. Learn how to use reflected light, circulate the eye throughout your piece, and best of all, create mystery and intrigue in your work!

  • Guided Learning: Atmospheric/Aerial /
    Making a Personal Statement
    Reflected Light for Focus
    When Are You Finished?
  • Step by Step Demo: Aerial Perspective -
    David and the Postcard

Chapter 8:
Afterword and Next Steps

White reflects all the colors of the visible light spectrum! That means in order to paint convincing whites we must be able to paint the subtle color shifts and value changes. Therefore, the truth is this – convincing whites are actually quite colorful. You’ll learn to capture the essence of a winter landscape; the glistening light, cool cast shadows and the hidden contours of the ground. We’ll key our color on the large shapes and save “white” for the highlights. 

  • Guided Learning: Paint Colorful Whites
  • Step by Step Demo: Working with White -
    A Mountain Stream

Sale Save $113

Limited-time offer

$113 off the full price of this incredible Online Workshop!

Beautifully Designed Ebook

over 85 pages of in-depth content

In Depth Theory and Guidance

Marla isolates the complex principles of painting and investigates them practically and simply so any student can comprehend and execute even the most difficult problems. Moving from simple to more involved concepts, each lesson builds on the previous so you’ll gain a sound foundation to further your study and practice of painting.

Step by Step Guided Demonstrations

Marla guides you through the time-tested fundamentals step by step, stroke by stroke from the very beginning stages of a painting to the finish line in a logical and enjoyable path. Marla  stresses the need to develop your own judgement and individual voice as an artist.

A Lifetime of Painting Experience
At Your Fingertips

Over 25 years as a professional artist and teacher

What You'll Learn

Skills, Techniques and Insights covered in this workshop

Learn How To:

  • Set up an effective still life composition
  • Use direction, strength and color of light will affect the mood of your paintings
  • Use eye level and point of view to add drama and convey a theme
  • Orchestrate the elements in your painting to a focal point
  • Set up a still life stage, step by step
  • Use value to do the work in your paintings
  • Paint 7 beautiful step by step projects
  • Paint indoors in the comfort of your home
  • Assemble rich and evocative compositions with dramatic lighting
  • Practice effective methods of starting your paintings
  • Experience calm and relaxing painting sessions
  • Capture surfaces and materials realistically in oil
  • Zero in on the predictable way light falls on all objects
  • Use impasto, glaze and scumble
  • Build the focal point to a crescendo
  • Use lighting effects like halos, vignettes and dissolving light
  • create a “star” and “supporting cast” in your painting
  • Set the stage for your “players”


Marla has Hundreds of Satisfied Students

I was both stimulated and excited at the prospect of taking on a totally new medium. I adored the class work and the interaction with other students. I hope to take another class soon and I feel I have learned a great deal in”mark making” and with a new medium upon which to play. Thanks, Marla!

Donna, New Mexico

This course is beautifully presented and I do love Marla’s pizazz and her wonderfully enthusiastic delivery of her outstanding course content!
I can see her growth as an online instructor, and she truly is delivering an excellent foundation for any oil painter!

Valeh, Florida

World Class Video Instruction

Like having a teacher at the easel with you, no matter where you are

Mixing In Depth

Enjoy a clear top-down view which allows you to see everything that is happening on Marla’s palette. Mixing color is the most important foundational skill necessary for you to develop as an oil painter. The palette view demystifies the mixing process ensuring you will walk away with a sound understanding of mixing basics.

Up Close and Personal at the Easel

Following along while learning has never been easier! The demonstration view shows the progress of each painting, the reference photo and thumbnail when appropriate, so you get to see how each piece is built from start to finish. Marla narrates her progress in real time as she is painting, so you won’t miss a thing!

Sale $113 Off!

Limited-time offer

$113 off the full price of this incredible Online Workshop

Frequently Asked Questions

You need to log into the site to participate in the workshop so you will need an internet connection. Workshops and Subscriptions are accessible on iPads, tablets, computers, laptops and even phones – any device you can watch access the web on.

If you have any problems with playing a video or hearing a video, try these steps: 

1) Check your internet connection and reset your internet connection if necessary.

2) Clear your browser cache and history.

2) Update your browser, or try another browser (like Chrome, Firefox or Internet Explorer).

Sure, you can open a support ticket and we’ll help you right away. Just Email Suport  and we will reply within 24 hours! If we don’t know the answer to your question, we’ll ask Marla and she’ll reply as quickly as she can.

The workshop assignments are online accessible 24×7 – you can take the lessons any time you want. You are not required to complete the course in a specified amount of time. You get access to all the assignments in the workshop at once in a secure member’s area on PaintingLessonsWithMarla.com

When you register for the workshop, you’ll get a Student Account which gives you access to the My Courses area on the PaintingLessonsWithMarla.com website. Your Student Account will allow you take lessons and complete assignments any time you want.

You get lifetime access to the workshop and lessons you pay for so you can finish your painting any time.  It’s fun to keep up with your fellow artists and see how they are doing too but you can stop and come back to it any time, 24×7.  Assignment reminders are sent via email but you can complete them at your own pace – no problem at all! 

100% Digital Online Course

Works With All Devices

24/7 Access No Matter Where You Are

Easy To Follow

Our Site has been carefully designed to be easy to follow. Our simple learning system tracks your progress and takes out the hassle, allowing you to focus on panting!

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