Michele Illing fine artist and tutor

I am an art enthusiast and well known tutor and demonstrator formerly living in the Southeast of England, now living near Bude in North Cornwall. I have been teaching art for over 18 years, having started my career as a freelance illustrator in advertising and publishing.


As well as offering group classes and workshops, and private one to one lessons, I also hold workshops, demonstrations and critiques for other art groups and have organised and been the principal tutor on painting holidays abroad.


I also love to paint and have had paintings shown in many joint exhibitions across the UK including The Mall Galleries, London where in 2014 I received the Faber-Castell Award for my pastel painting of 'Big Baby'.


I regularly take private commissions, particularly portraiture and exhibit both locally and nationally. My paintings hang in private collections at home and abroad.  

I have also created a number of art video courses in collaboration with ArtTutor.com and have been featured in several art magazines in the UK and United States. More recently I have contributed to two art books for Dorling Kindersley, a Random House publisher. The first is a practical watercolour techniques book called 'Watercolour Techniques for Artists and Illustrators'. The other is called 'The Artist Manual'. Both are out for sale now.


My passion for art just keeps growing and I love to share that passion and all the amazing benefits of art with my students. With a maximum of 6 on classes and workshops, you are guaranteed plenty of individual tuition.


I also take workshops, demonstrations and critiques for other art groups and have organised and been the principal tutor on painting holidays abroad.


From November 2021 I will be offering main courses in watercolour, ink, pastel, oil, acrylic, drawing and mixed media from my new light and airy studio. I will also be offering extended weekend workshops and painting holidays, taking inspiration from the beautiful North coast, an area of oustanding beauty.


For further information on any of the above please visit the relevant page above or send a message via my contact page.

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Art in lockdown

March 16, 2020

I hope you are all safe and well and haven't been too affected by Covid. They say art is therapy, well it certainly takes our minds off all the insane happenings of the world right now. In the spirit of our need to ease our stresses and anxieties, I am offering a few online lessons. If anyone is interested please get in touch and I will send you all the details.

Dorling Kindersley practical watercolour book September 2020

September 02, 2020

Recently I have been working on a practical watercolour techniques book for Dorling Kindersley, a Random House publisher called 'Watercolour Techniques for Artists and Illustrators'. I am one of several artists asked to contribute to the book which will be out for sale in September.

Boutique Hotel Leone Painting Holiday 2021

September 17, 2021

I will be taking a painting group to Montelparo in Italy next year. The accomodation is luxurious, the food mouthwatering and the painting locations are simply divine! It will be my first year teaching at Montelparo and I am very much looking forward to it! To avoid disappointment please book early as places are limited. 

Manzac D'en Bas Painting Holiday 2020

July 15, 2020

As promised I am returning to Manzac D'en Bas this July 16th - 23rd for what will undoubtedly be another fantastic painting holiday. Please go to my 'Painting Holiday' page for more information.

Manzac D'en Bas Painting Holiday

September 17, 2019

We had a wonderful time painting at Manzac this year, I really didn't want to come home. Giles and Louise offer the warmest hospitality, the most delicious food and wine and take us to stunning locations to paint to our heart's content. It really was a very special holiday. So much so that and I will be returning in July 2020. There are only a few places left though so if you're interested please go to my 'Painting Holiday' page for more information.

July 15, 2019

I went back to Liverpool last September to film another online art tuition video with Arttutor.com. The course 'Watercolour landscapes bright and fresh' is now up on the Arttutor site to view and download, with four individual lessons and step by step demonstrations. Visit www.arttutor.com/artist/micheleilling or go to my video page to take a look at all my videos!

Painting Holiday in SW France

Very excited to be leading a painting holiday in SW France with Giles and Louise Nevill at Manzac D'en Bas in mid to late September 2019. To find out more please see 'Painting Holidays' page.

The Pastel Society Exhibition, The Mall Galleries, London SW1 February 20th - March 3rd 2018

Very pleased to have been accepted to show at The Pastel Society Exhibition at The Mall Galleries again this year. Will let you know how it goes!

'Michele Illing discovers the beauty of Bali' September 2017

In June I spent a magical month visiting my daughter in Bali. I was asked to keep a painting diary and to write for an article giving advice on what to pack and how to plan when painting en plein air. The article ran in SAA Paint magazine's anniversary special in September 2017, alongside a demonstration of how to work up a sketch on the SAA's blog site.

'Behind the Face' 5 - 8 June 2017

It was a great pleasure to exhibit alongside these three amazing award-winning portrait artists; Gilly Lovegrove, Felicity Gill and Andrew James in June last year at the Trinity Theatre Gallery, Tunbridge Wells. 

'Behind the Face'

I sincerely hope we repeat the experience at another venue very soon!

'Front cover artist' March 2016

In March 2016 my watercolour painting of 'Wilson' was featured on the front cover of the SAA's Paint magazine. 

'Front cover artist' March 2016

They also interviewed me for an inside double page spread- thanks Sarah! . 

'Developing pen and ink line with Michele Illing'

In April and August 2016 I traveled to Liverpool to film with Arttutor who provide online art video lessons and courses. They have over 30 tutors and when you join you get instant access to all courses- well worth it! My following demonstrations can be seen by clicking the links on my video page- I hope you enjoy them!


'Watercolour Line and Wash with Michele Illing'

Painting holiday in the Limousin, South West France. July 2015

In 2015 I took a small group to France for a painting holiday in the Limousin. Needless to say we had a great time with our hostess and good friend Elizabeth, and as a joint venture and hopefully going concern with Elizabeth and Hesham, will be offering painting holidays from June 2016.

'All Creatures Great and Small' February 2015

In February 2015 I was approached by The Pastel Journal of America asking if I’d like to contribute to an article describing the creative processes and techniques behind my depictions of pet portraits.

Award winner 2014

2014 was a good year for me, having ‘BigBaby’ accepted by the pastel society to exhibit at the Mall galleries was pretty fantastic and winning the Faber-Castell prize was just the icing on the cake!

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