Discovering Watercolor with Julia Dufault McGrath

Visual Arts Room
Presented by
Mondays, 1:00 - 4:00 PM
Grade Range
Adult - Adult
Member tuition
Non-member tuition

$275.00 (become a member)

Register by

Discovering Watercolor
A Beginners Course
Duration:  3 Hour Sessions for 6 Weeks

What is Watercolor?  What makes it different from Oil, Acrylic, or Gouache?
This class introduces students to this incredible, versatile, and wonderfully expressive painting medium.

The end goal of this Beginning Watercolor Class is for students to obtain enough skills to feel confident with watercolor and be inspired to continue using it on their own. In order to achieve this, this course will cover the fundamental elements and techniques of watercolor.

To begin, I will go through a brief history of watercolor: how the paint is made, what sets it apart from other paints, the qualities of watercolor, and examples of famous artists who used it in the past and present. (I will always have watercolor books in class for students to look at and reference). Watercolor will be discussed, including papers and brushes, as well as the difference between opaque and transparent paint and when to use them.  

Using water is the key to this medium. There will be demonstrations followed by student practice. 

Demonstrations will cover:

  • Stretching and taping watercolor paper to a painting surface. 
  • Using water to create degrees of value (light and dark).
  • Laying down paint and then adding water to blend out and create a different value as you go by adding water.
  • Doing a watercolor “wash”
  • Using masking fluid to preserve whites/highlights
  • Mixing colors, mixing their own grays, blacks, and browns

There is much to learn about this wonderful medium.  In this class, the final goal -- in addition to finishing a painting --  is to ensure that the student has gained enough knowledge and practice with watercolor to go further with the medium, inspired to learn even more. 

Medium and Supplies
Art Area
Visual Arts
Supplies provided

Julia Dufault McGrath

Artist and CTAC Instructor
CTAC Petoskey
Cancellation & Class Policies

Crooked Tree Arts Center has implemented new policies to control the spread of Covid-19 and keep our visitors and staff safe within the facility. Please note the following policies regarding illness, face coverings, social distancing, room capacity, and sanitation.

If students are experiencing (or have experienced in the past 72 hours) any symptoms of illness, or have been in close contact with someone who is, they should not come to class. Students must complete a wellness screening upon arrival, including temperature check.

Symptoms of Covid-19 include: Fever or chills; cough; shortness of breath or difficulty breathing; fatigue; muscle or body aches; headache; loss of taste or smell; sore throat; congestion or runny nose; nausea or vomiting; diarrhea. 

Face Coverings
Masks or other face coverings are required inside the building. All students should come to class with a mask or face covering.

Exemptions include: young children under age 2; anyone who has trouble breathing, is unconscious, incapacitated; anyone otherwise unable to remove the mask without assistance.

See Michigan’s guidelines for face coverings.

Class size will be limited to accommodate social distancing. Classroom setups will be arranged so that each student has 6 feet of working space. 

Social Distancing 
Students and teachers are expected to remain at least 6 feet apart whenever possible.

Students and instructors should sanitize their hands upon class arrival and departure.
Workspaces and shared surfaces will be sanitized between sessions. Hand sanitizer and surface disinfectant will be available onsite.


Student Withdrawal
Requests for cancellation by the student at least seven (7) days prior to the first day of class will be honored (minus a $20 processing fee).  NO REFUNDS will be given for a student cancellation made less than seven (7) days in advance of the first day of the class.

Class Cancellations (Weather)
When Public Schools of Petoskey are closed due to inclement weather, CTAC-Petoskey classes are cancelled. We will do our best to provide a make-up opportunity for the missed class. Refunds will not be given if the student is unable to attend the rescheduled session of class. Workshops and one-time classes will be handled on a per-class basis. School of Ballet students are asked to make up the missed class in an alternate session approved by their instructor.

Student Absence
We are unable to offer refunds or make-up sessions for classes missed due to student absence.

COVID-19 Symptoms or Exposure
If you suspect that you have been exposed to or display symptoms of COVID-19, please do not come to CTAC for your in-person class. We will offer a prorated credit (never expires) or refund for two weeks of your missed class for all cancellations due to suspected COVID-19 infection and/or exposure. If you choose to drop the remainder of your class, you will receive a prorated refund of the tuition of the remaining sessions.

COVID-19 Class Cancellations
In the event of a COVID-19 outbreak or state mandate, CTAC will announce the closure on its website and phone system (231-347-4337). Prorated refunds will be issued for the remaining sessions.

Minimum Enrollment
Crooked Tree Arts Center reserves the right to cancel any class that does not meet its minimum student enrollment prior to the first class session. If a class is cancelled by CTAC for lack of enrollment, CTAC will offer a full refund to the student in the manner in which tuition was paid. (Cash payments will be refunded by check.)