Advance your skills and expand your confidence & joy in abstract painting



Online course with Jenny Nelson


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You can develop a strong abstract language that is unique to you

Hi, I'm Jenny Nelson. I've been practicing and teaching abstract painting for 20+ years. Through the years, I've painted daily and experienced all the self-doubts and personal challenges that the creative process presents.

I know where artists can get stuck —  unsure how to start or evolve a painting, overwhelmed by color and composition. It can feel frustrating, and isolating. 

Having taught hundreds of students over the years through my live workshops, I've learned the common challenges that arise when trying to implement abstract elements into your work. As a result, I've developed a simple, sequential framework to develop your skills and build your confidence in abstract painting.

And now I've created an online course upon this framework that allows you to study whenever and wherever you want. It's called Exploring Abstraction.


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Jessie Kotler

"Color and shape can be so overwhelming, but Jenny teaches you to keep going and not be afraid. I learned to trust myself."

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James Ransome

"Jenny is warm, comfortable and really eager to share. Her lessons teach you the principles of making good abstract work."

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Jane Hofverberg

"Jenny took the fear out of a blank canvas. She has several exercies that enabled me to not feel stressed about starting with nothing."

The Exploring Abstraction online course will give you the building blocks and tools to create dynamic abstract compositions. You will strengthen your mark-making, shape and color vocabulary by developing a language that is authentic to you.

Your work will change in ways you could not have anticipated — incorporating your present sensibilities while pushing your work to the next level.

The course is delivered in 6 modules, each released weekly, with exercises that build upon each other

  • The video trainings are pre-recorded so you can access them anytime — and you own the course for life
  • The exercises are simple, yet can produce expansive results
  • The course was filmed in a beautiful industrial space with 4 actual students, so you'll feel as though you're in class with them, sharing the same experience

Plus, you get access to my private Facebook Group just for my students. This is a vibrant community for sharing your work and getting support in your creative journey.

Here's a peek at what we'll cover in the course:

The Course at a Glance

Week 1

Introduction & Supplies

  • Introduction to the course
  • Detailed description and demonstration of the supplies needed for the exercises
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Week 2

Exercise 1: Charcoal Drawing

  • Discussion of abstract paintings, lines and mark making from several masters
  • Demonstration and exercise in lines and mark-making creating an abstract charcoal drawing
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Week 3

Exercise 2: Exploring Collage

  • Discussion of shape and composition, including edges, value, texture and contrast. Using magazines and media sources to create dynamic collage.
  • Demonstration and exercise in creating collage
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Week 4

Exercise 3: Interpreting Collage

  • Demonstration of creating a warm and cool gray scale palette in both oils and acrylics
  • Exercise in interpreting a collage into an abstract painting
  • Critique/discussion of student work
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Week 5

Exercise 4: Overlapping Shapes

  • Creation of a harmonious limited color palette in both oils and acrylics
  • Demonstration and exercise in using 3 overlapping shapes as a starting point for creating a composition, then evolving this into a workable abstract painting
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Week 6

Exercise 5: Lines from Life

  • Demonstration and exercise in painting/drawing everyday objects through observation as a path for creating an abstract painting with life force energy
  • Evolution of this work into a workable abstract painting
  • Discussion of one of Jenny's works
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What Students are Saying about Exploring Abstraction

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About Jenny

Jenny Nelson is a painter and arts educator. She attended Maine College of Art in Portland Maine, and is a graduate of Bard College, where she received a scholarship to the Lacoste School of the Arts in France. She has been living in the Hudson Valley for nearly two decades, including a Residency at the Byrdcliffe Art Colony from 2004-08. She has taught classes and workshops at the Truro Arts Center at Castle Hill, Provincetown Art Association and Museum, the Woodstock School of Art, the Nantucket Artists Association, and Lubin House: Syracuse University.  Jenny has been exhibiting for many years nationally and regionally including, Tria Gallery, Manhattan, NY; Hidell Brooks Gallery in Charlotte, North Carolina, and the Carrie Haddad, Hudson, NY.


Answers to some of the most frequently asked questions

Still have questions? Email me here!

Ready to take your skills in abstract painting to the next level?

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