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The Art & Science of Image Making

A year-round online workshop series focused on the fundamental aspects of art making and the science behind them.

As creative people, many of us have an intuitive sense of what looks good: of colors that work well together or how to make something appear three dimensional. This series of workshops looks at the science behind these fundamental aspects of art making. For anyone who has ever said to themselves, “I know this works but I don’t know why” this series can help you to answer those questions. Designed to clarify and expand on concepts that may have come up in previous art classes, these workshops will help you bring more understanding and sophistication into your current artistic and creative endeavors.

Continuing Student Reward

Join the Art & Science Workshop series at the start of any module. When you continue on with the next consecutive module, join at a reduced price. Receive a 10% discount if you are a continuing student, within one series. We want to encourage deep exploration within our series themes and we want you to have the experience of watching your skills accumulate and layer in meaningful ways.

Online Workshop Modules for 2021

Join at the start of any workshop, no matter what level you are at. 

    • Each workshop includes 6 livestreaming classes.
    • Also includes: recordings of every class, individual feedback on finished work, supplemental material.
    • 6 – 8 pm Wednesdays
    • Starting at 6pm in Berlin, 12pm in New York, 9am in San Francisco, 5pm in London…

Artist-Instructor Ian Jehle

Ian Jehle 's practice as an artist and educator lies at the intersection between art and science, utilizing his background in engineering and fine art.

Ian Jehle is a Canadian artist and teacher based in Berlin and Washington DC. He is on the faculty at American University in Washington DC and previously was head of engineering at the construction firm P&J Arcomet. Jehle studied computer science, mathematics, philosophy and visual arts at American University, Kansas City Art Institute, Brandeis University and Columbia University.

Jehle’s work focuses on the intersection of math, engineering and visual arts. His large scale math-based installation projects are often participatory in nature, using games, puzzles and live events where participants are invited to create works of art by following a simple set of mathematical rules. Jehle considers his teaching an important part of his art-making process and often includes groups of students in the design and implementation of his project based works.

Our Online Workshop Format

“To my delight, taking a drawing class online is FAR MORE FUN than I imagined it was going to be!”
– Melissa, online workshop participant

  • Livestreaming classes take place via online video conference (using Zoom). The instructor conducts live demos with step-by-step instruction so that you can work together in real time. You also have the opportunity to ask questions and get feedback during class time.
  • We keep class sizes small and the atmosphere is interactive and supportive.
  • Finish exercises or practice at your own pace, at home, outside of class time.
  • Receive individual feedback on your completed work and exchange comments and questions with the instructor and your fellow workshop participants in an encouraging environment.
  • Find supplemental material and watch the progress of other participants by visiting the workshop Dropbox folder in between classes.
  • Recordings from each week’s livestreaming session are available in case you miss a class or want to review a demo.

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Best art workshops I’ve ever attended! I really enjoyed a botanical watercolour workshop with Mira, and have attended the Sketchbook Workshop series monthly for the past year. It’s changed my artistic life by keeping me motivated to create art daily, and I learn so much from the instructor and the other students each class. Best of all, the sketchbook series is completely online right now, so students from around the world can join in! I highly recommend classes from Berlin Drawing Room for students who are beginners, advanced, or anywhere in between 🙂

Lindsey Gould

I wanted to learn how to draw comics or create a graphic novel. Books and classes I found and did so far, had quite a conventional approach. When I found Ali’s course, I had the feeling this is a bit different from the others. I wasn’t sure at the beginning, if it would be worth to book all 5 classes at once, but I absolutely didn’t regret that I did. Over 5 months I participated nearly every week in the online class. Ali offered a nice mix of warm up exercised, theoretical input, feedback, answering questions, sharing own experiences and several drawing exercises. She encouraged the participants to create and stick with a character. Since the course happened over a long period and I got feedback and input every week, it was possible to get into a process and develop something. I didn’t had any specific in mind, but over the time I created a wolf character, who is now part of several comics I’ve made and still make. I also liked Ali’s political awareness and openness. I didn’t have a favourite exercise, but I liked a lot, that we started with a short warm up, did another longer exercise and did a long exercise in the end of each class.

Maria Preußmann (Visual Storytelling Workshop Series with Ali Fitzgerald, 2021)

I recently finished Mira’s online Winter Botanical Watercolour series and it’s been a very special experience, not only because the class was wonderful, but also because I signed up together with my eleven-year-old daughter and my mum. I think it’s the first time the Berlin Drawing Room has seen three generations of one family in a class!

I took the Drawing Workshop and can highly recommend it. This is a great class for learning to observe and draw in a structured, yet playful and creative way. I was familiar with some of the ideas from Betty Edwards ‘Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain’, and I also met many new exercises and ways of approaching drawing. Mira is a gentle and supportive teacher, at the same time she is always stretching her students to try different methods and get beyond their self-imposed limits. By the end of the class, I noticed that my drawing had improved in ways that I hadn’t even realised!

Catherine Lupton (Drawing Workshop, 2013)

Great drawing and painting courses. Teachers have a professional background and outstanding social skills – to make a group feel comfortable. Even beginners and people who feel insecure about their creativity are taken care of here. Definitely recommend! I’m currently participating in an online course and enjoy being creative in a group from the comfort of my home.

Pat Re

I took the Summer Botanical Watercolor Workshop with Mira O’Brien. It was a such a marvelous experience; clear, precise, informative and wonderful. Although initially slightly hesitant about taking an online class, I was especially impressed! The online nature of the class gave us up close access to watching Mira do demos which was a huge highlight! I would recommend this class to anyone who is either interested in learning about watercolor techniques as a beginner or as someone who has watercolor experience. Mira’s enthusiasm for botanical watercolors comes through in so many ways! For each class she prepared wonderful slide shows about plants and techniques – always giving us a context with which to understand that day’s class! Take this class! It’s marvelous!

April Gertler

Had a wonderful experience at the Anatomy Drawing Online Workshop. The technical side of it was well organised and all the details before, during and after the course were excellently communicated by the tutor via email/dropbox! Overall a great experience. Would definitely recommend it to others! Liked it so much I’m taking another course there this month!

Heidy Wein

Mira’s Botanical watercolor classes are wonderful on many levels! Not only does one learn watercolor techniques, but also the skills of observation and recording the natural world. Mira is very knowledgeable, inclusive and accepting of all skill levels. It was fun!

Michelle Soule

Mira celebrates her wonder of nature with her students. Whether for beginners or for more advanced participants, her classes provide technical instruction from the blank page and fresh paints to the finished work. Participants gain tips from her meticulous drawings, as well as courage from each other as we each develop our skills. Emotionally soothing and intellectually captivating, these drawing classes are a great investment for developing a new skill or honing an old one!

Wendy M K Shaw

I really recommend these classes to open minded people. Here you will learn basics or enhance your already established skills in a non academic way. You can always grab a book and learn about how you “should” draw lights and shadows, but this is different. This is about approaching reality, breaking through your “standards” and creating something that, sometimes surprisingly, is always definitely interesting. If you are not afraid of what can get out of your pencil when you let it go, just come to this workshop: it is the right place for you!

Simone Brizzi

The course about anatomy was great! It’s amazing how much you can learn in such a short time and G is a very precise and nice instructor. Thank you for that!

Nathalie Frank (Anatomy Drawing Workshop, 2017)

Starting in January, I began a course in Writing and Illustrating Graphic Novels with Ali Fitzgerald through Berlin Drawing Room.  Ali is a fantastic instructor. She helps you find ways into your work: generative exercises, critical examples, interviews with artists about methods and materials. She also encourages you to find the ways to have fun. I was really intimidated by the idea of graphic novels – the undertaking seemed too daunting- but working with Ali and alongside artists with widely different approaches has been so helpful and inspiring.

For further backstory: My cousin Jessica had found Berlin Drawing Room classes in the height of lockdown and recommended I check them out. The recommendation proved incredibly fruitful. After I defended my dissertation in 2020 and my drawing practice turned mostly into Zoom conference sketching (still very useful!), I felt a little lost. Starting with Mira O’Brien technical instruction in botanical watercolor, then G’s figure drawing classes, I had a new place to go every week that helped me get out of my head about academia and work and job prospects. I am so grateful for this community of artists. Something about the global span is reassuring. I know I could find regular classes in New York (and should, perhaps), but I’ve paradoxically appreciated the distance.

The watercolor workshop was excellent and my first online art workshop. I hadn’t worked with watercolor for many years and I was able to refresh my memory and learn new techniques each week. Each session was recorded so I was able to reinforce my learning. Each participant was able to upload their projects and get positive feedback and suggestions. The instructor is an organized, very experienced water-colorist and teacher who shares her passion for the medium. She cares about each student and their progress. The sense of community that developed was such a treat. I live in the USA and worked from my studio. There were students from four other countries. I signed up for another class immediately and hope online classes will continue to be offered.

Norma Bradley (Sketchbook Practice Workshop, 2020)

This class was a real eye opener in every respect – I never thought I could draw and then the magic happens with the help of the calm professional inspired guidance by Mira O’Brien. This sounds exaggerated I’m sure, but to me the whole drawing course was a real life changing experience!!! I recommend to everybody to dive in there and come out feeling like a talented artistic person with loads of new skills : ))) Drawing Workshop

Hannelore (Drawing from Observation)

I’ve been taking drawing workshops all year online from California. They have been fantastic! I’ve notice huge improvements in my technical abilities, confidence, and overall passion for drawing. I highly recommend.

Derek Chan

Out of all of the art classes that I’ve taken this was the one that I see my skills progress the fastest. My instructor taught at a great pace, had such care for their students, and patience. You guys rule!! Portrait Painting Workshop.

I recently took a workshop with Ali Fitzgerald and it was absolutely wonderful! I am an illustrator, meaning I am used to working with single images, but I have always admired comic artists who work with multiple panels. Ali’s lessons were super insightful and she had so many simple and efficient tips that helped me actually put my single images together and tell a story with real emotional expressions and a storyline. Highly recommend it to any artists out there who are trying to take a leap into making comics or bringing their stories to life! But if you are a beginner this workshop will also be perfect for you 🙂 Ali is super patient, kind and willing to help with everything you might need.

Julia Mota Albuquerque

”I absolutely loved the Printmaking workshop! Not only did we get hands-on skills, but we also explored the fascinating history and context behind the art. The references were super helpful. The vibes were amazing and Alma created such a chill and supportive environment where we all helped each other out. She guided each of us so well, and thanks to her, I was able to create the prints I had imagined.”

Muj ( Printmaking Workshop )

I loved the specimens that she chose for the winter botanical series. Mira is an excellent teacher. She was gentle and kind with her appraisals of my work (I was a beginner) and she was open to the needs of her students. I highly recommend this class!

Michele Villeneuve

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