If you ever get the chance to speak to Jennifer Brandon or her mother, Deborah Hamby, make sure you don't say that you can't pain. If you do, you will get a stern reprimand.

"Of course you can paint," Hamby said. "Everyone can paint. It's just that you haven't given yourself the chance."

Brandon and Hamby are going to give people the chance to hone their artistic skills this summer with an oil painting workshop, to be held at their Dalton studio from Monday, July 29, to Friday, Aug. 2. The two-part workshop will teach students the basics of barn and landscape painting as well as theatrical portraiture.

Brandon explained why the workshop will include both subject matters.

"Barns and landscapes are a little bit less intimidating, so they provide the opportunity for up-and-coming artists to practice their skill at painting and value and light as well as mixing color without the stress of focusing on the structure of the face, as you would in portraiture," she said. "We get them comfortable with the landscapes, we break for dinner and then we do the portraiture. We haven't seen theatrical portraiture classes anywhere. We thought it would be a fun twist for the people who are intimidated by portraiture or who want to increase their skills."

"Subject matter per se doesn't really matter because you are still dealing with the same abstract elements of design, which would be your color, your value, your edges so whether you are doing a barn, a landscape or a portrait, you are still dealing with the same abstract qualities," Hamby added.

The entire workshop costs $1,000 or $600 for students who would like to participate in only one part. Brandon and Hamby are offering a variety of scholarships to students who might not be able to afford the course fee.

"We welcome any level and we can adapt to teaching from the beginner to the more advanced student," Hamby said. "It will be a very fun week. It is a very encouraging and inspiring atmosphere. There are two instructors, so they get a double whammy. Everyone is encouraging in the group, not just the instructors. The artists themselves are encouraging each other, which makes for a wonderful learning experience."

The camaraderie formed amongst the artists is what, according to Brandon and Hamby, makes the workshop worthwhile.

"It is a very positive atmosphere; and you sadly don't find enough of that in the arts," Hamby said. "There's a lot of competition and it isn't like that here. It is fun, encouraging and inspiring. There is no judging. We have all different levels, people who have been painting and people who are brand new."

Space is limited for the workshop and registrations are due by Monday, July 1. A $50 fee will apply for all registrations after that date. For more information or to register, email Brandon at jen@jachestudio.com or call her at 575-4536. Dalton mother/daughter duo offer summer oil painting workshop