26.2.17

2017 Plein Air Landscape Oil Painting Workshop


THOMAS TORAK
PLEIN AIR LANDSCAPE CLASS

Welcome to everyone interested in the June 2017 Landscape Oil Painting Class.

Almost a hundred years ago Frank Vincent DuMond, an instructor at the newly formed Art Students League of New York, decided his students would benefit from landscape instruction during the summer months.  Every summer he and his students packed up their palettes and brushes and traveled to Old Lyme, Connecticut, where the DuMonds had a farm, to spend three months painting en plein air.  In 1951 Frank Vincent DuMond passed away and his student Frank Mason took over the class in New York.  Having benefited greatly from DuMond’s insistence on the study of landscape, Mason continued the practice of a summer landscape class while limiting its duration to the month of June and relocating the class to Stowe, Vermont near the Masons’ summer home.  Frank Mason passed away in 2009 and Thomas Torak, artist and former student of Mason’s, took over in Studio 7 at the Art Students League.  Torak, in his turn, continues the tradition of a June landscape class.  Like DuMond and Mason before him Torak has relocated the class to the area near his home and studio: the class is now held in scenic Pawlet, Vermont in the southwest corner of the state.

This year the landscape class runs for five days, Tues–Sat, June 20 – 24. Living and working in the landscape for five days gives the student time to explore his or her thoughts and ideas about painting, even as each day brings new observations on the effect of light and weather.  Students have time to get to know one another and to form a community of artists.  A Saturday night supper for the class, hosted by the Toraks, strengthens those bonds by giving everyone a chance to relax and socialize at the close of a week of intensive painting. 

Tuesday thru Friday the class meets outdoors for plein air painting. The time of the session could be anywhere from sunrise to late afternoon, depending on the location and the weather. Students paint on location for 1 hour, and then gather to watch critiques.  Torak’s critiques usually last 3 to 4 hours.  Students are encouraged to do another plein air painting on their own each day.  Though the distances are not long (and the drives are beautiful) everyone will need a car or a friend with whom they can carpool.

On Saturday everyone brings a painting they have done on their own to Torak’s studio. Torak gives each student a critique while discussing the principles and theories of landscape painting.  At the end of the day everyone is invited to stay for supper and socializing.  Students are encouraged to bring any friends or family who may be visiting.

For more information email thomastorak@gmail.com or phone (802) 325-6428

2017 Information and Materials List


FIRST CLASS: Tuesday June 20, 2017 @ 4pm – We will start with a late afternoon painting session on the road (Beaver Brook Road, Pawlet, VT) outside my studio. Directions will be sent when you register for the class.
LAST CLASS: Saturday June 24, 2017

CLASS SCHEDULE:  Tuesday thru Friday we will meet outdoors for plein air painting and critiques. The time of the session could be anywhere from sunrise to late afternoon, depending on the location and the weather. I will decide a day or two before the crit, so you should be prepared to keep those days free from other obligations. Saturday we will meet in my studio to discuss the principles and theories of landscape painting, each student should bring one painting.

CLASS SUPPERS:  Saturday evening (June 24) Elizabeth and I will host an informal class supper at our home and studio. We invite the students to bring friends and family.

CLASS FEE: $750 for the week. 
A $50 nonrefundable deposit (checks only please, no credit cards) payable to Thomas Torak will reserve space in the class, enrollment is limited to 20 students. The balance can be paid when you arrive.
Mail to:  Thomas Torak, 360 Beaver Brook Road, Pawlet, VT 05761. For additional information contact Elizabeth Torak: torak@vermontel.net, Thomas Torak: thomastorak@gmail.com, or call 802-325-6428.

TRANSPORTATION: Though the distances are not long (and the drives are beautiful) everyone will need a car or a friend with whom to carpool.

SUPPLIES: Portable field easel. Palette (a small wooden palette works well outdoors, no white or paper palettes). Gesso panels, canvas boards or stretched canvases (if you bring stretched canvases bring a piece of cardboard to put behind the canvas so that light will not pass through from the back), 9 x 12 or so is good for field crits, but if you want to do something larger to bring to the Saturday crit please feel free to do so. A sketch pad (9 x 12 or so), pencils, charcoal or other drawing materials are very useful. Mineral spirits in a can or jar to clean your brushes. Filbert and round bristle brushes in a variety of sizes. A few round sables are useful for details. Paper towels or rags to wipe your brushes and a small bag to keep them from blowing away. Palette cups to hold medium.

PAINTS: OIL PAINTS ONLY, no acrylic or water based oils. White (titanium-zinc or Permalba, a large tube); Winsor Newton’s best quality cadmium lemon yellow and cadmium yellow light (these are very important for making rich landscape greens); cadmium yellow medium and/or deep; cadmium orange; cadmium red light (again Winsor Newton’s best quality); cadmium red medium and/or deep; alizarin crimson; cerulean or manganese blue; cobalt blue; ultramarine blue; thalo blue; thalo green; sap green; yellow ochre; ivory or lamp black. Any other colors you like to use.

MEDIUM: A good general medium is: 1 part linseed oil, 1 part dammar or mastic varnish, 1 part turpentine mixed together in a jar. If you prefer to use Fels mediums, Maroger, Liquin or any other medium (except water based) please feel free to do so.

CLOTHES: Prepare for all sorts of weather. Bring boots, warm clothing, rain poncho, sun hat and a swimsuit.

2017 Accommodations



ACCOMMODATIONS in the PAWLET AREA

The class runs from June 20th – June 24th We recommend that students stay 6 nights, checking in on June 19th  and checking out on June 25th.  All of the information for the class can be found here http://toraklandscapeclass.blogspot.com/ 

Rebecca Raymond  
Rebecca has one room with a queen sized bed and shared bath. Kitchen privileges are available and she is happy to discuss eating arrangements as far as meals are concerned. Rebecca and her husband Jim are willing to share meals with guests, the cost of which they would discuss. There is a garage where paints can be stored. Rebecca’s property has 180 degrees of mountain views off the deck on the back of the house, a great place to paint. Also, many wonderful vistas within walking distance.  Rebecca and Jim love to have guests and we have had excellent reports from students who have stayed with them. $65 per night for queen bed room or $300 per week. Email rjraymond@vermontel.net or call 802-325-2504. 

Green Hill Artists Retreat is offering our students a special rate of $100/night for a shared room (i.e., $50 per occupant) or $75/night for a room by yourself.  The $75 rate includes a full breakfast made by their in-house professional chef.  The property includes an art studio where you can stow your gear, 10 acres of woods, walking trails, 3 decks, and a meditation gazebo. To top it off, Green Hill Artist Retreat is in Pawlet, not far from Torak Studios.  If interested, you can contact them directly through the link provided, or go through airbnb, where they are also listed.  This special rate is only for our class so be sure to let them know that you are with the Torak Landscape Class.

The Dovetail Inn
A charming, friendly, inn in Dorset, across the street from The Dorset Inn, but more economical.  Their rates vary from $99-169 weekdays and from $115-$199 on weekends. The nightly room rate for two includes a freshly baked breakfast of hot muffins and breads, fresh fruit, juices, coffee and tea and unlimited access to the butler's pantry, stocked with hot and cold beverages. Check their website for their pet policy.  They are offering one free weekday night to our students.  The proprietors only take reservations by phone and will be available to take calls beginning on May 1.  Until then, more information on their rates and rooms is available on their website. Please tell them you are with the Torak Landscape class.

The Inn at West View Farm is a chef-owned inn (the food is amazing) in the charming and nearby town of Dorset, Vermont.  They are offering our students a 20% discount for a 6-night stay.  Please contact the inn for their rates. The room rate includes a full breakfast, and if we have a sufficient number of students staying with them they will adjust the breakfast time to suit our class schedule.  Please tell them you are with the Torak Landscape class.

Another highly rated inn in Dorset.  The proprietors also own The Barrows House and guests at the Dorset Inn have access to the pool and tennis courts at The Barrows House.  They are offering a 25% discount for a 5 or 6 night stay.  Including the discount, the rate is $167/night Mon-thurs and $199 Fri-Sun.  A full breakfast is included as well as snacks in the downstairs area from 3PM-5PM. They also charge an additional $15/night for a night service charge.  The night service charge includes the tip at breakfast and a minimal house-cleaning tip.  Please tell them you are with the Torak Landscape class.

In addition to these options, there are many Inns, B&Bs, hotels, motels and resorts in our area. Check out the Manchester and the Mountains Chamber of Commerce website for information on places to stay as well as the many things to do in the area. 

And don’t forget airbnb which has many listings in our area.

4.7.16


The 2016 Vermont Plein Air Workshop was a great success!!
The 2017 class will run from June 20 - 24.
Details for that class will be posted here in February.
Happy painting everyone!

21.2.16

2016 Plein Air Landscape Oil Painting Workshop


THOMAS TORAK
PLEIN AIR LANDSCAPE CLASS

Welcome to everyone interested in the June 2016 Landscape Oil Painting Class.

Almost a hundred years ago Frank Vincent DuMond, an instructor at the newly formed Art Students League of New York, decided his students would benefit from landscape instruction during the summer months.  Every summer he and his students packed up their palettes and brushes and traveled to Old Lyme, Connecticut, where the DuMonds had a farm, to spend three months painting en plein air.  In 1951 Frank Vincent DuMond passed away and his student Frank Mason took over the class in New York.  Having benefited greatly from DuMond’s insistence on the study of landscape, Mason continued the practice of a summer landscape class while limiting its duration to the month of June and relocating the class to Stowe, Vermont near the Masons’ summer home.  Frank Mason passed away in 2009 and Thomas Torak, artist and former student of Mason’s, took over in Studio 7 at the Art Students League.  Torak, in his turn, continues the tradition of a June landscape class.  Like DuMond and Mason before him Torak has relocated the class to the area near his home and studio: the class is now held in scenic Pawlet, Vermont in the southwest corner of the state.

This year the landscape class runs for five days, Tues–Sat, June 21 – 25. Living and working in the landscape for five days gives the student time to explore his or her thoughts and ideas about painting, even as each day brings new observations on the effect of light and weather.  Students have time to get to know one another and to form a community of artists.  A Saturday night supper for the class, hosted by the Toraks, strengthens those bonds by giving everyone a chance to relax and socialize at the close of a week of intensive painting. 

Tuesday thru Friday the class meets outdoors for plein air painting. The time of the session could be anywhere from sunrise to late afternoon, depending on the location and the weather. Students paint on location for 1 hour, and then gather to watch critiques.  Torak’s critiques usually last 3 to 4 hours.  Students are encouraged to do another plein air painting on their own each day.  Though the distances are not long (and the drives are beautiful) everyone will need a car or a friend with whom they can carpool.

On Saturday everyone brings a painting they have done on their own to Torak’s studio. Torak gives each student a critique while discussing the principles and theories of landscape painting.  At the end of the day everyone is invited to stay for supper and socializing.  Students are encouraged to bring any friends or family who may be visiting.

For more information email thomastorak@gmail.com or phone (802) 325-6428

2016 Information and Materials List


FIRST CLASS: Tuesday June 21, 2016 @ 4pm – We will start with a late afternoon painting session on the road (Beaver Brook Road, Pawlet, VT) outside my studio. Directions will be sent when you register for the class.
LAST CLASS: Saturday June 25, 2016

CLASS SCHEDULE:  Tuesday thru Friday we will meet outdoors for plein air painting and critiques. The time of the session could be anywhere from sunrise to late afternoon, depending on the location and the weather. I will decide a day or two before the crit, so you should be prepared to keep those days free from other obligations. Saturday we will meet in my studio to discuss the principles and theories of landscape painting, each student should bring one painting.

CLASS SUPPERS:  Saturday evening (June 25) Elizabeth and I will host an informal class supper at our home and studio. We invite the students to bring friends and family.

CLASS FEE: $750 for the week. 
A $50 nonrefundable deposit (checks only please, no credit cards) payable to Thomas Torak will reserve space in the class, enrollment is limited to 20 students. The balance can be paid when you arrive.
Mail to:  Thomas Torak, 360 Beaver Brook Road, Pawlet, VT 05761. For additional information contact Elizabeth Torak: torak@vermontel.net, Thomas Torak: thomastorak@gmail.com, or call 802-325-6428.

TRANSPORTATION: Though the distances are not long (and the drives are beautiful) everyone will need a car or a friend with whom to carpool.

SUPPLIES: Portable field easel. Palette (a small wooden palette works well outdoors, no white or paper palettes). Gesso panels, canvas boards or stretched canvases (if you bring stretched canvases bring a piece of cardboard to put behind the canvas so that light will not pass through from the back), 9 x 12 or so is good for field crits, but if you want to do something larger to bring to the Saturday crit please feel free to do so. A sketch pad (9 x 12 or so), pencils, charcoal or other drawing materials are very useful. Mineral spirits in a can or jar to clean your brushes. Filbert and round bristle brushes in a variety of sizes. A few round sables are useful for details. Paper towels or rags to wipe your brushes and a small bag to keep them from blowing away. Palette cups to hold medium.

PAINTS: OIL PAINTS ONLY, no acrylic or water based oils. White (titanium-zinc or Permalba, a large tube); Winsor Newton’s best quality cadmium lemon yellow and cadmium yellow light (these are very important for making rich landscape greens); cadmium yellow medium and/or deep; cadmium orange; cadmium red light (again Winsor Newton’s best quality); cadmium red medium and/or deep; alizarin crimson; cerulean or manganese blue; cobalt blue; ultramarine blue; thalo blue; thalo green; sap green; yellow ochre; ivory or lamp black. Any other colors you like to use.

MEDIUM: A good general medium is: 1 part linseed oil, 1 part dammar or mastic varnish, 1 part turpentine mixed together in a jar. If you prefer to use Fels mediums, Maroger, Liquin or any other medium (except water based) please feel free to do so.

CLOTHES: Prepare for all sorts of weather. Bring boots, warm clothing, rain poncho, sun hat and a swimsuit.

2016 Accomodations



ACCOMMODATIONS in the PAWLET AREA

The class runs from June 21st - June 25th. We recommend that students stay 6 nights, checking in on June 20nd  and checking out on June 26th.  

The Inn at West View Farm is a chef-owned inn (the food is amazing) in the charming and nearby town of Dorset, Vermont.  They are offering our students a 20% discount for a 6-night stay.  Please contact the inn for their rates. The room rate includes a full breakfast, and if we have a sufficient number of students staying with them they will adjust the breakfast time to suit our class schedule. Please tell them you are with the Torak Landscape class.

Another highly rated inn in Dorset.  The proprietors also own The Barrows House and guests at the Dorset Inn have access to the pool and tennis courts at The Barrows House. They are offering a 25% discount for a 5 or 6 night stay.  Including the discount, the rate is $167/night Mon-thurs and $199 Fri-Sun.  A full breakfast is included as well as snacks in the downstairs area from 3pm-5pm. They also charge an additional $15/night for a night service charge.  The night service charge includes the tip at breakfast and a minimal house-cleaning tip.  Please tell them you are with the Torak Landscape class.

A charming, friendly inn in Dorset, across the street from The Dorset Inn, but more economical. Their rates vary from $99-169 weekdays and from $115-$199 on weekends. The nightly room rate for two includes a freshly baked breakfast of hot muffins and breads, fresh fruit, juices, coffee and tea and unlimited access to the butler's pantry, stocked with hot and cold beverages. Check their website for their pet policy.  They are offering one free weekday night to our students.  The proprietors only take reservations by phone and will be available to take calls beginning on May 1.  Until then, more information on their rates and rooms is available on their website. Please tell them you are with the Torak Landscape class.

Green Hill Artist Retreat  is offering our students a special rate of $100/night for a shared room (i.e., $50 per occupant) or $75/night for a room by yourself.  The $75 rate includes a full breakfast made by their in-house professional chef.  The property includes an art studio where you can stow your gear, 10 acres of woods, walking trails, 3 decks, and a meditation gazebo. To top it off, Green Hill Artist Retreat is in Pawlet, not far from Torak Studios.  If interested, you can contact them directly through the link provided, or go through airbnb, where they are also listed.  This special rate is only for our class so be sure to let them know that you are with the Torak Landscape Class.

In addition to these options, there are many Inns, B&Bs, hotels, motels and resorts in our area. Check out the Manchester and the Mountains Chamber of Commerce website for information on places to stay as well as the many things to do in the area.  

And don’t forget airbnb which has many listings in our area.

7.2.15

2015 Plein Air Landscape Oil Painting Workshop


THOMAS TORAK
PLEIN AIR LANDSCAPE CLASS

Welcome to everyone interested in the June 2015 Landscape Oil Painting Class.

Almost a hundred years ago Frank Vincent DuMond, an instructor at the newly formed Art Students League of New York, decided his students would benefit from landscape instruction during the summer months.  Every summer he and his students packed up their palettes and brushes and traveled to Old Lyme, Connecticut, where the DuMonds had a farm, to spend three months painting en plein air.  In 1951 Frank Vincent DuMond passed away and his student Frank Mason took over the class in New York.  Having benefited greatly from DuMond’s insistence on the study of landscape, Mason continued the practice of a summer landscape class while limiting its duration to the month of June and relocating the class to Stowe, Vermont near the Masons’ summer home.  Frank Mason passed away in 2009 and Thomas Torak, artist and former student of Mason’s, took over in Studio 7 at the Art Students League.  Torak, in his turn, continues the tradition of a June landscape class.  Like DuMond and Mason before him Torak has relocated the class to the area near his home and studio: the class is now held in scenic Pawlet, Vermont in the southwest corner of the state.

This year the landscape class runs for five days, Tues –Sat, June 23 – 27. Living and working in the landscape for five days gives the student time to explore his or her thoughts and ideas about painting, even as each day brings new observations on the effect of light and weather.  Students have time to get to know one another and to form a community of artists.  A Saturday night supper for the class, hosted by the Toraks, strengthens those bonds by giving everyone a chance to relax and socialize at the close of a week of intensive painting. 


Tuesday thru Friday the class meets outdoors for plein air painting. The time of the session could be anywhere from sunrise to late afternoon, depending on the location and the weather. Students paint on location for 1 hour, and then gather to watch critiques.  Torak’s critiques usually last 3 to 4 hours.  Students are encouraged to do another plein air painting on their own each day.  Though the distances are not long (and the drives are beautiful) everyone will need a car or a friend with whom they can carpool.

On Saturday everyone brings a painting they have done on their own to Torak’s studio. Torak gives each student a critique while discussing the principles and theories of landscape painting.  At the end of the day everyone is invited to stay for supper and socializing.  Students are encouraged to bring any friends or family who may be visiting.

For more information email thomastorak@gmail.com or phone (802) 325-6428


2015 Information and Materials List



FIRST CLASS: Tuesday June 23, 2015 @ 4pm – We will start with a late afternoon painting session on the road (Beaver Brook Road, Pawlet, VT) outside my studio. Directions will be sent when you register for the class.
LAST CLASS: Saturday June 27, 2015

CLASS SCHEDULE:  Tuesday thru Friday we will meet outdoors for plein air painting and critiques. The time of the session could be anywhere from sunrise to late afternoon, depending on the location and the weather. I will decide a day or two before the crit, so you should be prepared to keep those days free from other obligations. Saturday we will meet in my studio to discuss the principles and theories of landscape painting, each student should bring one painting.

CLASS SUPPER:  Saturday evening (June 27) Elizabeth and I will host an informal class supper at our home and studio. We invite the students to bring friends and family.

 CLASS FEE: $750 for the week. 
A $50 nonrefundable deposit (checks only please, no credit cards) payable to Thomas Torak will reserve space in the class, enrollment is limited to 20 students. The balance can be paid when you arrive.
Mail to:  Thomas Torak, 360 Beaver Brook Road, Pawlet, VT 05761 For additional information contact Elizabeth Torak: torak@vermontel.net or call 802-325-6428

TRANSPORTATION: Though the distances are not long (and the drives are beautiful) everyone will need a car or a friend with whom to carpool.

SUPPLIES: Portable field easel. Palette (a small wooden palette works well outdoors, no white or paper palettes). Gesso panels, canvas boards or stretched canvases (if you bring stretched canvases bring a piece of cardboard to put behind the canvas so that light will not pass through from the back), 9 x 12 or so is good for field crits, but if you want to do something larger to bring to the Saturday crit please feel free to do so. A sketch pad (9 x 12 or so), pencils, charcoal or other drawing materials are very useful. Mineral spirits in a can or jar to clean your brushes. Filbert and round bristle brushes in a variety of sizes. A few round sables are useful for details. Paper towels or rags to wipe your brushes and a small bag to keep them from blowing away. Palette cups to hold medium.

PAINTS: OIL PAINTS ONLY, no acrylic or water based oils. White (titanium-zinc or Permalba, a large tube); Winsor Newton’s best quality cadmium lemon yellow and cadmium yellow light (these are very important for making rich landscape greens); cadmium yellow medium and/or deep; cadmium orange; cadmium red light (again Winsor Newton’s best quality); cadmium red medium and/or deep; alizarin crimson; cerulean or manganese blue; cobalt blue; ultramarine blue; thalo blue; thalo green; sap green; yellow ochre; ivory or lamp black. Any other colors you like to use.

MEDIUM: A good general medium is: 1 part linseed oil, 1 part dammar or mastic varnish, 1 part turpentine mixed together in a jar. If you prefer to use Fels mediums, Maroger, Liquin or any other medium (except water based) please feel free to do so.

CLOTHES: Prepare for all sorts of weather. Bring boots, warm clothing, rain poncho, sun hat and a swimsuit.

2015 Accomodations


ACCOMMODATIONS in the PAWLET AREA

We recommend that students stay 6 nights, checking in on June 22nd and checking out on June 28th.


A beautiful, chef-owned inn (the food is amazing) in the charming and nearby town of Dorset, Vermont.  They are offering our students a 20% discount for a 6-night stay.  Their rate includes a full breakfast, and if we have a sufficient number of students staying with them, they will adjust the breakfast time to suit our class schedule.  Please tell them you are with the Torak Landscape class.

Another highly rated inn in Dorset.  The proprietors also own  The Barrows House and guests at the Dorset Inn have access to the pool and tennis courts at The Barrows House.  They are offering a 25% discount for a 5 or 6 night stay.  Please tell them you are with the Torak Landscape class.

A charming little inn in Dorset, simpler and also more economical than the Dorset Inn.  They are offering one free weekday night to our students.  Please tell them you are with the Torak Landscape class.


In addition to these options, there are many Inns, B&Bs, hotels, motels and resorts in our area. Check out the Manchester and the Mountains Chamber of Commerce website for information on places to stay as well as the many things to do in the area. 

And don’t forget airbnb which has many listings in our area.


23.6.14

Looking Forward to 2015


The 2014 Vermont Plein Air Workshop was a great success!!
The 2015 class will run from June 23 - 27.
Details for that class will be posted here in January.
Happy painting everyone!

20.5.14

Tues June 17, 2014

Crit site – Beaver Brook Road, Pawlet     
2pm palette lesson in my studio
4pm plein air painting & critique


  • Take Route 30 to Pawlet
  • turn on to Route 133 North (to Middletown Springs)
  • follow rte 133 for 1.8 miles (rte 133 bends left at 1.3 miles)
  • turn left on to Andrus Drive
  • take first right on to Beaver Brook Road
  • my studio is 360 Beaver Brook Road (the 3rd driveway on the right, name is on the mailbox) enter through breezeway between the house & studio
  • drive up the road past my driveway and find a suitable place to paint
 If it is too rainy to paint outside come to my studio and we will have the first class there

2.2.14


THOMAS TORAK
 PLEIN AIR LANDSCAPE CLASS

Welcome to everyone interested in the June 2014 Landscape Oil Painting Class.

Almost a hundred years ago Frank Vincent DuMond, an instructor at the newly formed Art Students League of New York, decided his students would benefit from landscape instruction during the summer months. Every summer he and his students packed up their palettes and brushes and traveled to Old Lyme, Connecticut, where the DuMonds had a farm, to spend three months painting en plein air. In 1951 Frank Vincent DuMond died and his student Frank Mason took over the class in New York. Having benefited greatly from DuMond’s insistence on the study of landscape, Mason continued the practice of a summer landscape class while limiting its duration to the month of June and relocating the class to Stowe, Vermont near the Masons’ summer home. In 2009 Frank Mason passed away and Thomas Torak, artist and former student of Mason’s, took over in Studio 7 at the Art Students League. Torak, in his turn, continues the tradition of a June landscape class. Like DuMond and Mason before him Torak has relocated the class to the area near his home and studio: the class is now held in scenic Pawlet, Vermont in the southwest corner of the state.

This year the landscape class runs for five days, Tues – Sat, June 17 – 21. Living and working in the landscape for five days gives the student time to explore his or her thoughts and ideas about painting, even as each day brings new observations on the effect of light and weather. Students have time to get to know one another and to form a community of artists. A Saturday night supper for the class, hosted by the Toraks, strengthens those bonds by giving everyone a chance to relax and socialize at the close of a week of intensive painting.

Tuesday thru Friday the class meets outdoors for plein air painting. The time of the session could be anywhere from sunrise to late afternoon, depending on the location and the weather. Students paint on location for 1 hour, and then gather to watch critiques. Torak’s critiques usually last 3 to 4 hours. Students are encouraged to do another plein air painting on their own each day. Though the distances are not long (and the drives are beautiful) everyone will need a car or a friend with whom they can carpool.

On Saturday everyone brings a painting they have done on their own to Torak’s studio. Torak gives each student a critique while discussing the principles and theories of landscape painting. At the end of the day everyone is invited to stay for supper and socializing. Students are encouraged to bring any friends or family who may be visiting.

For more information please email thomastorak@gmail.com or phone (802) 325-6428

2014 Information and Materials List


FIRST CLASS: Tuesday June 17, 2013 @ 4pm – We will start with a late afternoon painting session on the road (Beaver Brook Road, Pawlet, VT) outside my studio. Directions will be sent when you register for the class.

CLASS SCHEDULE:  Tuesday thru Friday we will meet outdoors for plein air painting and critiques. The time of the session could be anywhere from sunrise to late afternoon, depending on the location and the weather. I will decide a day or two before the crit so you should be prepared to keep those days free from other obligations. Saturday we will meet in my studio to discuss the principles and theories of landscape painting, each student should bring one painting.

CLASS SUPPERS:  Saturday evening (June 21) Elizabeth and I will host an informal class supper at our home and studio. We invite the students to bring friends and family.

LAST CLASS: Saturday June 21, 2013

CLASS FEE: $750 for the week. 
A $50 nonrefundable deposit (checks only please, no credit cards) payable to Thomas Torak will reserve space in the class, enrollment is limited to 20 students. The balance can be paid when you arrive.

Mail to:  Thomas Torak, 360 Beaver Brook RoadPawlet, VT 05761

For additional information contact Elizabeth Torak: torak@vermontel.net or call 802-325-6428

SUPPLIES: Portable field easel. Palette (a small wooden palette works well outdoors, no white or paper palettes). Gesso panels, canvas boards or stretched canvases (if you bring stretched canvases bring a piece of cardboard to put behind the canvas so that light will not pass through from the back), 9 x 12 or so is good for field crits, but if you want to do something larger to bring to the Saturday crit please feel free to do so. A sketch pad (9 x 12 or so), pencils, charcoal or other drawing materials are very useful. Mineral spirits in a can or jar to clean your brushes. Filbert and round bristle brushes in a variety of sizes. A few round sables are useful for details. Paper towels or rags to wipe your brushes and a small bag to keep them from blowing away. Palette cups to hold medium.

PAINTS: OIL PAINTS ONLY, no acrylic or water based oils. White (titanium-zinc or Permalba, a large tube); Winsor Newton’s best quality cadmium lemon yellow and cadmium yellow light (these are very important for making rich landscape greens); cadmium yellow medium and/or deep; cadmium orange; cadmium red light (again Winsor Newton’s best quality); cadmium red medium and/or deep; alizarin crimson; cerulean or manganese blue; cobalt blue; ultramarine blue; thalo blue; thalo green; sap green; yellow ochre; ivory or lamp black. Any other colors you like to use.

MEDIUM: A good general medium is: 1 part linseed oil, 1 part dammar or mastic varnish, 1 part turpentine mixed together in a jar. If you prefer to use Fels mediums, Maroger, Liquin or any other medium (except water based) please feel free to do so.

CLOTHES: Prepare for all sorts of weather. Bring boots, warm clothing, rain poncho, sun hat and a swimsuit.

2014 Accomodations


ACCOMMODATIONS in the PAWLET AREA

We recommend that students stay 6 nights, checking in on June 16th and checking out on June 22.

Rebecca Raymond  Email rjraymond@vermontel.net or call 802-325-2504. 
Rebecca has two rooms with a shared bath. One has a queen sized bed and the other has a double. Kitchen privileges are available and she is happy to discuss eating arrangements as far as meals are concerned. Rebecca and her husband Jim are willing to share meals with guests, the cost of which they would discuss. There is a garage where paints can be stored. Rebecca’s property has 180 degrees of mountain views off the deck on the back of the house, a great place to paint. Also, many wonderful vistas within walking distance.

$65 per night for queen bed room or $300 per week
$50 per night for double bed room or $250 per week

Rebecca and Jim love to have guests and we have had excellent reports from students who have stayed with them.

A beautiful, chef-owned inn (the food is amazing) in the charming and nearby town of Dorset, Vermont.  They are offering our students a 20% discount for a 6-night stay.  Their rate includes a full breakfast, and if we have a sufficient number of students staying with them, they will adjust the breakfast time to suit our class schedule.  Please tell them you are with the Torak Landscape class.

Another highly rated inn in Dorset.  The proprietors also own  The Barrows House and guests at the Dorset Inn have access to the pool and tennis courts at The Barrows House.  They are offering a 25% discount for a 5 or 6 night stay.  Please tell them you are with the Torak Landscape class.

A charming little inn in Dorset, simpler and also more economical than the Dorset Inn.  They are offering one free weekday night to our students.  Please tell them you are with the Torak Landscape class.


Should none of these options appeal to you, there are many Inns, B&Bs, hotels, motels and resorts in our area. Check out the Manchester and the Mountains Chamber of Commerce website for information on places to stay as well as the many things to do in the area. 




19.9.12


There is no new class scheduled at this time.

14.7.12

About the Class

Almost a hundred years ago Frank Vincent DuMond, an instructor at the newly formed Art Students League of New York, decided his students would benefit from landscape instruction during the summer months. Every summer he and his students packed up their palettes and brushes and traveled to Old Lyme, Connecticut, where the DuMonds had a farm, to spend three months painting en plein air. In 1951 Frank Vincent DuMond died and his student Frank Mason took over the class in New York. Having benefited greatly from DuMond’s insistence on the study of landscape, Mason continued the practice of a summer landscape class while limiting its duration to the month of June and relocating the class to Stowe, Vermont near the Mason's summer home in Peacham. In 2009 Frank Mason passed away and Thomas Torak, artist and former student of Mason, took over in Studio 7 at the Art Students League. Torak, in his turn, continues the tradition of a June landscape class. Like DuMond and Mason before him Torak has relocated the class to the area near his home and studio: the class is now held in scenic Pawlet, Vermont in the southwest corner of the state.

The June landscape class is an experience like no other. Generations of students cherish the memory of their time in the class. Living in the landscape for an entire month gives the student time to explore his or her thoughts and ideas about painting even as each day brings new observations on the effect of light and weather. Students have time to get to know one another and to form a community of artists. The tradition of Saturday night suppers strengthens those bonds by giving everyone a chance to relax and socialize at the close of each week of intensive painting.

On Tuesdays and Thursdays the class meets outdoors for plein air painting and critiques. The time of the session could be anywhere from sunrise to late afternoon, depending on the location and the weather. Students paint on location and receive critiques on their work.

On Saturdays everyone brings a painting they have done on their own to Torak’s studio. Torak gives each student a critique while discussing the principles and theories of landscape painting. At the end of the day everyone is invited to stay for supper.

27.6.12

crit sit Thursday June 28, 2012 5pm Andrus Drive

click on this map for a larger view then right click to print
  • Take Route 30 to Pawlet
  • turn on to Route 133 North (to Middletown Springs)
  • follow rte 133 for 1.8 miles (rte 133 bends left at 1.3 miles)
  • turn left on to Andrus Drive
  • park on the right side, off the road, and find a suitable place to paint (please don’t set up too close to the horse pasture)

24.6.12

crit site Tuesday June 26, 2012 9am Mettowee Community Center

click on this map for a larger view then right click to print
  • From Pawlet (intersection of rte 30 and rte 133) take Route 30 south 3.4 miles
    or From the Dorset village green take Route 30 north 4.9 miles
  • Turn into the Mettowee Valley Community Center (left from Pawlet, right from Dorset)
  • find a suitable place to paint

18.6.12

crit site Thursday June 21, 2012 5:30am Shehadi Pond

click on this map for a larger view then click right to print
  • From Route 30 in Pawlet turn on to School Street (school st is the street in front of Mach's Market)
  • follow School Street (through Pawlet village, then over a one lane bridge) for 0.25 miles
  • after you cross the bridge bear left on to the Rupert Road for 0.9 miles (there will be a pond to your left and a speed limit sign to your right)
  • turn left on to the trail next to the pond and park, you will see a lovely view looking back to Pawlet village

    This is private property. Do not paint here unless we are meeting as a class.

17.6.12

crit site Tuesday June 19, 2012 9am Dorset Quarry

click on this map for a larger view then click right to print
  • From Pawlet (intersection of rte 30 and rte 133) take Route 30 south 9.7 miles
    or From Manchester take Route 30 north 4.6 miles
    or From Dorset take Route 30 south 1.3 miles
  • Turn on to Kelly Road (left from Pawlet or Dorset, right from Manchester)
  • Park on Kelly Road and walk over to the marble quarry, find a suitable place to paint
This quarry is the locals favorite swimming spot so we will be able to paint figures in the landscape. Bring a hat, sunblock and water. You will probably need to set up in the sun and midday can be rather hot, but it will be worth it.

12.6.12

crit site Thursday June 14, 2012 5pm County Rt 31 Granville, NY



click on this map for a larger view then right click to print


• From Pawlet (intersection of rte 30 & rte 133) follow rte 30 north for 4.3 miles
• turn left on to Rte 153 West
• continue on rte 153 for 3.1 miles (through West Pawlet village) to the T intersection
• bear right at T intersection then stay left on to Egg Street
• Egg St becomes County Rte 31, stay on this road for 1 mile
• park on the side of the road and find a suitable place to paint

• From Granville, follow Rte 22 south for 3.6 miles
• Turn left on to County Rte 31, park on the side of the road and find a suitable place to paint

10.6.12

crit site Tuesday 6/12/2012 9am 4208 Dorset West Road

click on this map for a larger view then right click to print


• From Pawlet (intersection of rte 30 & rte 133) follow rte 30 south (toward Dorset) for 6.1 miles
• turn right on to Route 315 then immediately left on to the Dorset West Road
• continue on the Dorset West Road for 0.5 miles
• turn left into #4208, the Thompson residence driveway
• Cherie Thompson will meet us there and direct us to a place to paint in the shade by the Mettowee River

This is private property. Do not paint here unless we are meeting as a class.


5.6.12

crit site Thursday June 7, 2012 9am Robinson Hill Road

click on this map for a larger view then right click to print

  • Take Route 30 to Pawlet
  • turn on to Route 133 North (to Middletown Springs)
  • follow rte 133 for 1.3 miles, instead of bearing left to stay on rte 133 continue straight on the Pawlet/Danby Road
  • take first right on to Robinson Hill Road
  • find a suitable place to paint on this road

16.1.12

Letter to the 2012 class


Welcome to everyone interested in my June 2012 Landscape Oil Painting Class!

This class takes place in and around Pawlet, VT a small agricultural community at the north end of the beautiful Mettowee Valley. An ideal place for landscape painting, Pawlet is also where Elizabeth and I make our home and have our studios. Saturday crits and Saturday night suppers will take place at our home and studio.

Traditionally the workshop is a month long plein air painting experience. This year I will be teaching from June 5 - 30. I encourage students to come for the entire month but realize many have time and financial constraints. For that reason I offer 1, 2 or 3 week options in addition to the full month.

You will find detailed information about the class and a materials list in the posts below. As always students will be responsible for their housing. Expect to find both housing and crit locations in the surrounding towns of Danby, Rupert, Dorset, and Manchester. In past years students have had success finding accommodations in both the Manchester http://www.manchestervermont.net/ and Lake St. Catherine area. Though the distances are not long (and the drives are beautiful) everyone will need a car or a friend with whom to carpool. If you have any questions please feel free to email me at thomastorak@gmail.com or Elizabeth at torak@vermontel.net or call 802-325-6428.