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Digital Painting Basics

Build a solid painting foundation!

Skill Level: Entry/Foundational

Duration: 8 weeks

Begins: April 12th, 2023




Lessons: Live online with feedback
Price: $749

Instructor: Nino Vecia


Wednesdays 5pm - 7:30pm (GMT)

April 12th - June 7th (no class May 10th)


Are you new to digital painting or never receive proper painting education? Then class was made for you!


Expert instructor Nino Vecia will guide you through the foundational art principles that underpin both illustration and concept art. You'll learn how to create digital paintings step-by-step with the industry’s standard program, Adobe Photoshop.


Each week, you'll enjoy a 2-2.5 hour lesson that will cover everything from sketching and shading to colors and edges. You'll also cover  how to approach complex subjects like faces and landscapes with confidence!


The class is created for those who are new to digital painting, so no prior experience is necessary. Nino has years of experience teaching digital painting and is dedicated to helping you master the basics in a supportive environment where you can learn at your own pace. The lessons will be delivered in a fun and engaging way which includes live paint-alongs that will leave you feeling inspired to create your own paintings. While some basic drawing instruction will be given, it is not a basic drawing class. The class will focus more on the process of painting; thinking and working in terms of color blocks, values, and edges.


During the class, you will have the opportunity to get your questions answered, and practice the lessons with provided assignments. You'll receive tailored feedback to help you improve faster, and with all the lessons being recorded you can review them at your convenience and take the class from any time zone.


Digital Painting Basics is a great place to start your digital art skills whether your interest lies towards illustration, concept art, or if you're undecided. If you've not received proper teaching on digital painting then we recommend taking before tackling the Intermediate classes here at Academy. Space is limited to only 15 students so register today and discover the world of digital painting!

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 Those who want to...  

• Enjoy learning digital painting with pro guidance

• Have the skills to create their own images after class

• Increase the accuracy and believability of their art

• Know how to approach painting complex subjects

• Improve faster with tailored feedback from a professional 



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Catch the weekly teaching in the live Zoom session or watch the recorded lesson later. Review of homework will be provided during the 2-2.5hr lesson time. Lessons will come with assignments and opportunity to ask questions.



Practice what you learned from the lesson with the provided assignments then upload no later than 12 hours before the next class. Allocate 10 hours per week to complete the homework to reach a satisfactory level.



The instructor will review your previous homework and give suggestions for improvements during the following week's lesson. Feedback may include a drawover, paintover, or discussion (situation dependent).





MTG artist and Instructor

Nino Vecia is a freelance illustrator with 7+ years experience working in the industry. His clients include Wizards of the Coast, Blizzard, Fantasy Flight, and Monte Cook Games, to name a few. Nino has years of experience teaching both beginner and advanced level concept art and illustration. He has self-published two illustrated novels, The Warden’s Call and Shadows of Aydralem.


Students will also receive access to a variety of resources and upcoming events!


DISCORD: You will have access to two private class Discord rooms on the Swatches server ( where you can socialize with your classmates whether through messages and images or video chat.


PDFs: In addition to the recorded lessons, every week you'll also receive a PDF copy of the class presentation for future referencing and saving.


PORTFOLIOS: Receive free access to two upcoming live presentation on portfolios: Concept Art Portfolio (June 13) and Illustration Portfolio (June 15th). For Concept Art Portfolio you'll join Diana Cearley for a presentation where she'll address a variety of topics on building a concept art portfolio including choosing a direction when you're starting out, personal artwork vs professional artwork, what to do if you aren't finding work, and practical info on types of files to use and how many images to include.

For Illustration Portfolio you'll join Clint Cearley as he addresses common issues on building an illustration portfolio such as what skill level you should be at before looking for work, how to build a starter portfolio that can get you work earlier than most, what kind of images should and shouldn't be included.


CAREER: Students who complete their assignments on time and finish the class (whether joining live or absent), will be invited to attend a bonus Career Discussion (June 11th) with Clint and Diana Cearley. This will be a practical and candid discussion on making a living as an illustrator and concept artist in the today's industry. Topics such as income, finding clients, and pitfalls to avoid, will be covered. Questions will be welcomed.


The curriculum for this class was made in collaboration between Nino Vecia, Clint Cearley, and Diana Cearley. It was designed specifically for:

• Those with little to no digital painting education

• Traditional artists wanting to add digital into their process
• 3D artists wanting to expand their 2D skill set


FAQ: Read the most frequently asked questions about the classes here.


This class is foundational/beginner difficulty, meaning that students will need little to no drawing education prior to class (though some would be beneficial). Experience with Photoshop is not required as you'll be taken through the basics of the program. This class is intended to prepare students for Intermediate difficulty classes here at Academy. This class will require moderate effort and time to complete the assignments.


A guide of the tiers of class difficulties, is here: Tier Examples


Time: This class requires an average of 10 hours per week to accomplish the homework to a satisfactory level.


Discord: Every student will have access to their classes' private Discord rooms where they can chat with classmates, share images, and see relevant class updates from your instructor.


Setup: Students will need HD video streaming speed internet, Adobe Photoshop, and a drawing pad and stylus. A microphone and webcam are also recommended if students plan on joining the Zoom lessons live. If you don't own a digital drawing pad, we recommend starting with the Wacom Intous small ($59) or medium ($119). If you don't have Adobe Photoshop, a monthly license for the program is available for $9.99 a month here (look for the "Photography (20GB)" option).


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