Painting from the Rim
of the Grand Canyon

Bill Cramer

May 3–5, 2019

Three-Day Workshop; Park Pass; Orientation and private tour of Kolb Studio by GCFI staff; Rainy Day back up studio in the Park (if needed)

Not Included:
Lodging, Meals or Transportation

Tuition: $800.00
Deposit: $500.00
Balance: $300.00 Due April 3, 2019



Nothing really compares to painting at the edge of the Grand Canyon. This three-day intensive offers: master instruction, the support of the Grand Canyon Association Field Institute (GCAFI) and coordination through the Sedona Arts Center. We will car pool to various locations on the south rim over the course of the workshop, coordinating our locations to create optimal lighting for the painting experience.

Bill Cramer teaches various approaches to working on-site and how to efficiently compose and complete plein air paintings. Emphasis will be placed on how to effectively translate the often complex three dimensional landscape onto a two dimensional plane using thumbnail sketches, limited palettes and the thoughtful use of colors, values, shapes, edges and textures. Further emphasis will be placed on the creative process to make paintings that are more than strict representations of the landscape we see. Multiple demonstrations will be complemented by individual attention and group learning.

All students should have a good familiarity with their equipment and some previous workshop experience with plein air painting. Bill will be demonstrating with oil paints. This workshop experience is limited to 10 students.

Three-Day Workshop; Park Pass; Orientation and private tour of Kolb Studio by GCFI staff; Rainy Day back up studio in the Park (if needed)

Not Included:
Lodging, Meals or Transportation

Tuition: $800.00
Deposit: $500.00
Balance: $300.00 Due April 3, 2019

(Note: First Meeting 9:00am at the Community Building orientation and private tour of Kolb Studio at 1:30pm on the first day. The next two days we will be meeting at 6:00 am for morning painting then after a long lunch break we will paint till sunset.)

Check out this recent article about Bill Cramer on BBC Travel:

"The Grand Canyon’s pinks, violets and reds were painted by nature six million years ago. Landscape painter Bill Cramer eternalizes these same hues on his canvas, using the holy grail of the United States’ great outdoors – at a record 5.5m visitors in 2015 – as the main inspiration for his artistic work."

"Having spent years exploring the Grand Canyon’s wild places in search of new inspiration, Bill Cramer creates art from the paths that tourists don’t take."

–By Monica Suma

Read more on BBC Travel


Workshop Materials List

Portable plein air easel - Prolific, M-Box, Soltec, Strada, French, etc. or make your own (I did). Practice setting it up and using it before class, if possible. I have a few extras if any of you need to borrow one for the class.

Paints - I'll be using artist grade oil paints. You'll get better results if you use better quality paints, not student grade. Utrecht and Gamblin are good brands for the $.
Titanium White (large, up to 200ml tube)
Cadmium Yellow Light
Cadmium Yellow Lemon
Cadmium Red Light
Alizarin Crimson (or Quinacridone Rose)
Ultramarine Blue
Cerulean Blue and/or Cobalt Blue

This split primary palette has a warm and cool of each primary color and is my usual palette, but feel free to bring whatever you're most comfortable with using. Any selection of colors will be a compromise; however a basic palette should have a minimum of 3 to 6 colors that can create a range of mixed hues and dark values all the way down to a near black (I don't use black, you can if you want).

Brushes - Good quality bristle flats and/or filberts #4, #6, #8, #10, small to med. Medium palette knife. One of those retractable razor blade holder thingies is handy for scraping paint off your palette.

Odorless paint thinner such as Gamsol, Turpenoid, Sunnyside - (cheaper brands are not so odorless) in leakproof container with brush agitator.

Paper towels and trash bags to put them in (I carry grocery type and hook them to my easel).

Panels (with or without canvas) - Bring 3 to 4 smaller panels for quick field studies and a few bigger sizes for longer ones. An assortment of sizes might include 6x8, 8x10, 9x12, 10x12; squares are fine, too - 8x8, 10x10, 12x12. I wouldn't suggest bringing any larger than these. No canvas paper, please.

Sketchbook or pad (6x8 or 8x10), soft graphite pencil (9B, 8B, or 6B) and/or a big sharpie pen. Viewfinder if you have one.

Sun screen, wide brimmed hat, insect repellent, camera to get reference photos, umbrella (can help to keep you cooler and keep the sun off your easel, but not entirely necessary). Wear clothes you will not be worried about getting paint on. A darker colored shirt (blue, gray) is best so it doesn't reflect light onto your panel.

A backpack to carry it all! Organize items so they can fit into a single pack. You can attach your easel to this or carry it separately. Any hiking we do for the class will be short; however, it's best to be able to get to your painting location in a single trip from your car.

About Bill Cramer

Growing up in southern California, Bill always had an interest in exploring nature and creating art.  As an experienced rock climber, he spent much of his youth enjoying the more vertical places of the American west.  This gave him a perspective of the world that few others would ever experience.  He received a fine arts degree from California State University Long Beach and later moved to Prescott, Arizona with his wife Michelle to be closer to the scenery they both enjoyed.  It was there that Bill discovered the joys and challenges of landscape painting, his outdoor experiences providing much of the insight and inspiration expressed in his art. Today with his wife and two daughters, Sarah and Megan, Bill divides his time between family, art and outdoor pursuits. "I'm satisfied when a painting is as rich as the landscape that inspired it. My goals are to keep exploring the southwest's wild places, search for new ideas and express what I find exciting about landscapes and about painting.

Recent Awards

Sedona Plein Air Festival (2016), Sedona, AZ. Artist's Choice Award.
Phippen Western Art Show (2016), Prescott, AZ. Best in Show, 1st in Oils & Best Body of Work Award.
American Impressionist Society 16th Annual Juried Exhibit (2015). Southwest Art Magazine Award of Excellence.
Phippen Western Art Show (2015), Prescott, AZ. 1st in Oils.
Tempe Festival of the Arts (2015), Tempe, AZ. Best in Painting.
Sedona Plein Air Festival (2014), Sedona,AZ. Best of Show, Artist's and Collectors Choice Awards.
Grand Canyon National Park (2014), Grand Canyon NP, AZ. Artist's Choice Award.
Zion National Park Plein Air Invitational (2013), Zion NP, UT. Artist?s Choice & Purchase Awards.







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