Start A Painting Workshop
Friday, 7pm, February 1st
through Sunday lunch, February 3rd
With Allyson Grey & guest faculty
Caren Charles

Whether this would be your first painting or your hundredth… whether you have been meaning to begin painting and have been procrastinating… or maybe you’d just like to start a new work while taking a rejuvenating weekend at CoSM, start a painting with us. Turn your inner vision into outer form and develop a personal approach to design, composition, mixing and applying paint. Learn how to evolve and improve your work as you practice the art of teaching yourself. Familiarize yourself with materials and techniques that can access new ways of expressing the “eyes of your soul.”

We paint because it is a great pleasure to reveal our inner world in outer form. Painting our inner world literally turns the subjective thoughts into objective reality. A painting can celebrate our uniqueness. Finding our personal style is a journey of discovery. What makes your strokes, marks, composition, design and symbols an expression that represents your inner world in a way that is recognizable to others? Through practice, our paintings evolve and our soul becomes increasingly transparent as we determine our manner of line, color and application of paint.

Successful painting makes evident the artist’s mind and essence. The subject of a work of art can make a political point, can represent a spiritual expression or communication a philosophical concept. We create to share a sense of beauty; to explore our perception of nature; to articulate strong emotions or because painting uncovers our personal expression of excitement, peace, emotion or contentment.

Progress images of “Swoven Flower,” by guest artist Caren Charles.

Painting is a practice. Like yoga, meditation or playing a musical instrument, facility in any creative medium will improve with devoted practice. Getting started, we need time, space, materials and a subject for our painting. A painting often confronts us with an awkward phase of unknowing. To overcome and evolve our artwork, we must learn from the last painting. By applying ourselves and giving our creativity the time it needs to flower, better work is the inevitable future reward that makes the practice worthwhile.

Start a painting with us at CoSM. Investing in a few basic materials, you may complete the work you start in the class. You may take the piece with you having goals in mind and a  mapped out vision of completion. Dive into the next painting easily on your own. MAGI Art Lab (at CoSM) will have a variety of supplies available for experimentation.

Materials to Bring:
  Buy the best supplies you can afford. Avoid student grade like Cotman or Liquitex Basic.
Bring examples of drawings or paintings you have done, if available.
3-5 Good brushes of various sizes and styles — flat, pointed, angled.
Do not choose a preselected set of brushes.
For the best results, choose better than the cheapest brushes.

Two 16 x 20 canvases or boards, pre-gessoed. Personally prefer a gessoed board.
Additional painting surfaces will be available.

Regular sized tubes of Golden or Liquitex paint:
Avoid a pre-boxed set. Select your favorite colors or choose these recommended:
Titanium white, cadmium yellow, cadmium red, ultramarine blue, medium green, purple, cadmium orange.
More color variety will be available to try.

Workshop Schedule:

Please plan to attend every session from Friday at 7:30PM to Sunday 1PM. Lunch on Sunday 1-2PM.


7:30 PM Friday evening:
Discussion on Design & Composition


Saturday morning:
Meet your materials
Cover canvas with tracing paper
Visioning your painting
Lay out drawing on tracing paper

1:00 pm – Lunch

Saturday afternoon:
Experimenting with paint application
New tracing paper;
Second drawing & adjustments
Lay down basic ground in paint

6:00 pm – Dinner

Saturday evening:
PPT of paint application styles
Paint mixing: theory & practice
Second layer of paint


Sunday morning:
Third layer of paint application
Group discussion of the weekend’s work.

1:00 pm – Lunch Provided for the class before departure.

Allyson Grey

Allyson Grey is a painter and social sculptor. Her paintings have been widely collected and exhibited in galleries throughout the U.S. Allyson’s paintings represent chaos, order and secret writing, an essentialized world view symbolizing the material world, the interconnected realm of energy and light and the sacred language of creative expression. With an MFA from Tufts University, Allyson has long been an art educator, art events organizer and a muse to artists worldwide.

“New Order,” by Allyson Grey, 2018, oil on wood panel.

Caren Charles

Caren Charles is an artist & body painter inspired by the beauty found in nature, the divine feminine, and the energy that interconnects the life web. She aims to create works of art that emit a positive vibration & act as an uplifting presence in space.High chroma hues, flowing lines, & trailing dots are key elements in her art, which she describes as ‘flowedelic’. She views her creative process as healing and uses painting as a meditative tool for self-reflection, inner joy, & manifestation.

Caren is a frequent performance artist and offers body painting at festivals, events & creative community gatherings. She sees body painting practice as a transformative energy exchange, which serves by empowering individuals to embody the living masterpiece they truly are.

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Rooms are available for rent in the Grey House, CoSM’s fully renovated Visionary Victorian guest house.

Accommodations for this event must be booked directly through Hospitality. Please call 845-297-2323 ext. 104 or email us at [email protected]

To plan a future stay, please view our Booking Calendar.


Guest Room Photo

The artwork of Alex Grey & Allyson Grey plus many other visionary artists are on display in the guest house.

The CoSM Store and the Mushroom Cafe will be open.


CoSM, Chapel of Sacred Mirrors, 46 Deer Hill Road, Wappingers Falls, NY 12590.