For the Love of a Tree

Self-Study Class Includes Lifetime Access, Online Community & More!

6 Lessons – $42.50 $85

Trees are a source of design and composition for the artist: leaves, seeds, branches, fruits, nuts, and more. In this six-lesson acrylic painting class, Diane Culhane demonstrates a variety of techniques that translate the rich visual vocabulary of a tree into a complete work of art.

Now available as a self-study class.


TEACHER: Diane Culhane

Class Description

“For the Love of a Tree” is dedicated to celebrating the glory of a tree; the beauty and the magnificence of the blessings they bestow — from oxygen, shelter, shade, nutritious food, and a home to many creatures.

Trees are a source of design and composition for the artist: leaves, seeds, branches, to fruits, nuts, etc. . . .  Trees give us a bountiful visual vocabulary from which to create paintings. It’s a set up for success.

We will begin by exploring – Seeing – Looking – Feeling – and just being in the presence of trees.

From there we will begin addressing forms with line, color and value, with value being the most important component; pushing and pulling color. Exercises are guides to develop skill for the next steps in creating a 18″x18″ or 20″x 20″ completed painting. We will also have conversations about problem solving and how to face the struggles we all encounter as artists.

As a tree reach and stretches for the sunlight, reach into your open blue sky of creativity . . .

Learn, Grow, Explore
Nurture Your Art & Your Life.

Sign up today !

Much Love to you all,
Diane Culhane

Class Itinerary

Lesson 1
Looking and synthesizing forms through drawing and creating inventive shapes.

Lesson 2
Begin work on our large painting. Cover large cradle board, layering with color and line.

Lesson 3
Use collage to explore a variety of forms, concentrating on size and value contrast, then translating these discoveries into small practice paintings on paper.

Lesson 4
Work with value: practice pushing and pulling space using warm and cool colors and compliments by painting on small cradle boards and then taking these concepts to our larger painting.

Lesson 5
Focus on our larger painting: add layers of paint, building volume, troubleshooting.

Lesson 6
Add details; from blurry into focus.







  • Gesso
  • Watercolor paper gessoed: 3 small sheets, about 5″x3.5″
  • Gel pen, charcoal pencil
  • Scissors
  • Cradle board: one 18″x18″ or 20″x20″
  • Cradle board: two 5″x5″
  • Acrylic Paints: assortment warm colors – colors of the sun. I love Golden Paints but any type of acrylics will work. I use fluid & heavy body – either one works Colors I use: Transparent Red Iron Oxide, Nickel Azo Yellow, Cadmium Yellow Medium Hue, Manganese Blue Hue, Paynes Grey, Jenkins Green, Dioxazine Purple, White, Titan Buff.
  • An assortment of brushes (fan, flat, various sizes; script brushes)
  • Gloss Medium varnish
  • A magazine for collage

Diane Culhane

Diane Culhane is a professional artist and art educator who lives in West Seattle in a 1910 home, and works out of her studio in Ballard, Building C.

She received her BFA from the University of Utah and Master’s Degree from Seattle University. Diane has taught for The Bellevue School District, Seattle Pacific University, Kirkland Arts Center, Bellevue Arts Museum and currently directs and owns Kelsey Creek Fine Art Camp, ‘Go Go with Van Gogh,’ for children in the summer.

When Diane is not in the studio painting you can find her on her bicycle or hiking. Learn more about her at

Check out Diane’s first book, released by Quarry Books, If You Can Doodle, You Can Paint.

Nuts & Bolts

  • This class is now available as a self-study class.
  • Immediately upon class signup, you will receive access to the class videos and corresponding materials.
  • A private Facebook group will be available for you to (optionally) share your artwork and enjoy and learn from the artwork of others. You may also email your teacher directly with questions or feedback.
  • You will have indefinite access to this class.
“It was a wonderful class, very informative and fun! I love my tree!” — Cecile L.
“I liked when Diane said we all have a creative spirit inside us. It gave me confidence!” — Michelle L.