Fine Art

Mentoring & Workshops

Join me at my studio in Bend, Oregon for either private mentoring sessions or workshops. The fundamentals of good composition and design are the framework for an understanding of how to create original work without being a slave to a reference photo, still life, or outdoors in the landscape. For workshops, I keep the class size under ten students to guarantee ample personal attention and feedback.

Weekend Workshops

Two days of personalized instruction.

These oil or acrylic workshops will incorporate the basics in design principles and elements with a creative challenge each day. You will learn how to build a solid painting and how to express your personal feelings about your subject through paint. Growth is essential to me, so at the end of each workshop, my goal is that each person has advanced their artistic journey.

The dates for the upcoming workshops and their focus will be posted here and announced in my newsletter. If you haven’t signed up for my newsletter, please do so below.

Workshops will generally be held across two days; Friday and Saturday, beginning at 9 a.m. and ending at 4 p.m.

Cost: $200 per workshop
Place: Wierzba Fine Arts Studio in southeast Bend, Oregon.

NOTE: Workshops temporarily suspended due to COVID19.

To protect the health of my family and my students, my workshops have been postponed until further notice.

Just have fun!

I like to ask my students, who is the best artist in the class? They never give me the right answer which is “the one having the most fun”. And isn’t that the truth? Every painting is as individual as the person behind the brush and we should paint them with joy; even when we make a mess, and I make lots of messes. We learn to paint by creating a successful painting, and mostly by making lots of unsuccessful paintings (just look under my bed!).

Materials List

Bring the paints and supplies that you usually use, and if needed, reference this Materials List.

Workshops Topics

Painting the Landscape Without Being a Slave to the Reference Photo.

  • Demos on painting the landscape without a reference photo
  • Analyzing a photo reference
  • Learning to recognize good design and composition, and why, before starting to paint
  • Designing with value and planes
  • Palette knife techniques and demos

"Thank you Shelly for your instruction: Looking at shapes, putting in the dark shapes first, simplifying, minimize the details and save those for the last touches; these are all things we learned from Shelly and seemed natural to me, which surprised me because I didn’t have a lot of confidence yet!”

"The biggest take away from my class with Shelly was how much we learned that is already embedded in our minds, even if we don’t think it is and how being exposed to other instructors brings that out. My confidence level has gone up a notch! Happy painting!"

“The classes my husband and I took with Shelly were so informative! The topics and techniques covered were very helpful. The depth of that coverage may not always be apparent until taking a class like this one I just finished. Thank you!”


I’m currently a member of the American Impressionist Society, National Oil and Acrylic Painters’ Society, Oil Painters of America, and Plein Air Painters of Oregon. I have worked in acrylic, watercolor, and oils for many years and am honored to be a past juried member of the Watercolor Society of Oregon, the Western Federation of Watercolor Societies, and the High Desert Art League.

Mentorships or small group classes

If you are interested in a more private experience, I am currently taking on students for mentorships or teaching with a small group of 4 to 6 students.  These private or semi-private,  3-hour sessions are $75 each per student. If you are interested in starting or improving your painting skills, contact me to schedule a free introduction and consultation.

Contact Shelly

Please feel free to contact me with any questions or gallery inquiries. I will respond to your message within 24 hours.