"Donna is an exceptional teacher as well as a gifted artist. She beautifully conveys her passion for painting, constantly opening our eyes and minds
to the qualities of light, color and composition. By example and unique verbal ability our sensitivities are constantly challenged and encouraged.
by artists studying with
"Donna Aldridge has made learning a wonderful, fulfilling experience. She is full of life with a juicy soul and it comes out when she talks about painting. Her teaching style is relaxed and personalized.
"She finds a way to dig in deep into your soul to find the core of who you are and then helps you develop your own style. She has helped me find "me" and supports you when you stray.
"Overall my experience has been uplifting, from her gentle teaching style to her always encouraging and positive critiques."
Tracie L Drake
"There are teachers whom we meet along our way who change us, the way of seeing the world around us and the way we see ourselves.
"Donna is one who leads and teaches from the inside out so what we see and feel is one on the canvas."
"The way Donna sees color and articulates her vision has given my artmaking greater pupose and excitement.
"Class for me is definitely a weekly highlight which, in turn, creeps into the rest of my life."
"For the past three years I have been taking courses and workshops at the Studio of Donna Aldridge.
"In my long career as an artist, I have had the opportunity of taking many workshops and classes, but I had never experienced such a knowledgeable, attentive and generous teacher as Donna.
"The scope of her knowledge of "color", "composition", "different media (oils, pastels)", "figure painting", "still life", "landscape", etc., reveals depth and an unusual universality that inspires and fosters creativity and growth in all the students."
"Donna, you give a class from the heartit makes me joyful to be an artist and share your knowledge."
"Once again Donna has provided us with an exceptional daya workshop on color. Amazing how much we think we know but don't until Donna points things out!"
"Donna has the unique ability to support and encourage her students without imposing her own style on them.
"She finds the individual spark inherent in each artist's style and let's that person go with it.
"She backs up an academic foundation with freedom to run with your talent."
"Donna Aldridge is more than a teacher of painting. She teaches technique of
painting, drawing and seeing. Observing being one of the most important
things to learn, she made me really see what I was looking at. I began to
paint what I saw instead of what I "knew" was there. The painting techniques
began to improve as I learned to really see. I began to believe I could
really do this, this painting thing. I fell in love with pastels.
"Finally decided she is a therapist posing as a painting teacher. I am
learning to believe in myself in more ways than just my painting or art. I
know now I can do anything I want to do, I just need to remember Donna
believes in me and so do I."
"Donna Aldridge is a fabulous and fun teacher. She has a knack for bringing out the best in her students because she recognizes where your weaknesses are. She gives you confidence and encouragement.
"She helps you develop your personal style and is always enriching your knowledge with written material, lectures, and demonstrations.
"She has helped me immensely. Her talent as an artist and teacher is truly outstanding!"
"Prior to studying with Donna, I had very little formal art training and only a limited introduction to pastel painting. I found Donnas color class and my first lessons with her challenging but intriguing.
"Her approach to teaching was holistic and only later did I realize how much I was assimilating in each of these sessions.
"After only a half dozen lessons I became aware that her concepts were actually beginning to show up in my painting. They had become a part of me.
"Donna is very unique in her ability to teach to both the right and left hemisphere of her students at the same time.
"She is a master at using a combination of sensory modalities to impart her material.
"She works effectively with students of highly diverse levels of experience and expertise. Her manner is both kind and direct, and the progress of her students is rapid and long lasting.
"I feel extremely fortunate to have come across Donna early in my study of pastel."
"My experience of classes with Donna Aldridge was really an eye opener for me.
"First, just going into her studio was Wow, I want this, her finished and unfinished paintings all around...it was such a neat feeling and I wished I'd been painting all my life.
"Donna shares all she knows about art with everyone and really influenced me in how I go about painting...color, style, composition, light......and that was just pastel classes. I plan to get some oil painting classes in the future."
"After taking Donna's pastel class, I feel I've finally gotten good instruction and guidance in my paintings.
"She has taught me how to "see" differently and how to approach a painting from the very beginning
"I would recommend her class no matter what level you are, beginner or advanced."
"Donna Aldridge has been my teacher and mentor for several years. I have benefitted knowing her in all aspects of my life. It was just in recent years that my work reached a professional level.
"She gives me individual care and supports me in my art and my lifefrom helping me find a gallery to understanding and guiding through proceedures for entering shows and competitons.
"She is generous with her knowledge, her studio and supplies. I am very lucky to be part of her circle of friends."
"I have been working with Donna Aldridge in her studio classes for about 3 years.
"Her teaching is very methodical: first you SEE your subject, and then you REALLY SEE your subject.
"In explanation, Donna has the ability to teach, through demonstration and explanation how to distill subject matter to its basic energy flows and tensions.
"Color begins as light or dark and travels into colors, shades and temperatures of warm to cool.
"After working with Donna you will never look at anything the same way again. Subject material now is alive in relationship to surrounding shapes and vibrates according to surrounding color relationships.
"Donna's painting technique is the result of many years as a professional artist. She is very generous about passing all her hard-won knowledge on to her students.
"She observes our techniques and will gently make suggestions but also seem to intuitively know when to leave her students to work things out for themselves.
"Donna never forces her teaching or personal style on anyone, in fact, she definitely encourages individual styles to emerge.
"In Donna's classes I have learned about materials and material care. I initially started class working in oils. When I decided I'd like to try pastels, Donna generously helped me get supplies together and has continued to be a pipeline of knowledge.
"She routinely shares information about sources, connects people who are placing orders and keeps us updated about new products, sales or anything else of relevant interest.
"Finally, Donna creates a learning atmosphere of fellowship and good will in her classes. Following her example, we share our experience, sometimes supplies, and always offer each other continuous encouragement.
"I leave every class feeling I have improved, some days a little, some days a lot, but always knowing Donna is teaching me to paint."
"Donnas classes are invaluable to me. She generously shares her extensive knowledge and encourages each of us to grow as individual artists.
"I learn so much when she explains her process of composing a picture from a still life or photo. She makes us see the movement, the energy and the colour.
"I had no idea how exciting the use of colour could be!"
"Donna Aldridge is a wonderful artist capable of working in any medium and expresses such energy and passion about art to her students. I have taken two sessions of pastel classes with her.
"She always stresses the aspects and use of color theory and how to improve concept and compositions, and gives valuable demonstrations.
"She is very constructive in her critiques of students' work and her goal is to help the students stretch and grow in their personal experience. She very strongly encourages students to experiment and create their own techniques and style.
"I know my pleasure in working with pastels today is greatly attributed to taking her classes."
"What is a Donna Aldridge Class or Workshop? It is as wonderful a 'Colorado Mountain High' in a drug-free environment that I could ever hope to achieve.
"Each student is encouraged, stimulated, and gently pushed to accomplish paintings that illustrate the utmost of one's abilities. She doesn't allow me to be lazy, to accept mediocrity in myself. I find myself stretching in all levels of my painting.
"In the Special Oil Painting Techniques Class, we went through the very basics, such as cleaning our brushes and bringing them back to top quality again. My brushes had been neglected since I earned my painting degree in 1980. The brushes had been a long time without loving care, and she shwoed me what a difference having clean brushes could make in my painting style.
"We discussed the affects of different mediums and much has changed in that technology in the last 22 years. Paints also have changed in that time period and we experimented with each brand and color to test transparency, opacity, etc. She shared many brands of paints. In that way, we could make intelligent choices based on the qualities of that color and brand and for the needs of a painting without buying an expensive tube, which may never be used again.
"She always demonstrates and shares her talents with all students. She holds nothing back. After experimenting with grisaille, glazing, alla prima, primatura underpainting and a transparent underpainting, wiping off the lights, I found that I prefer alla prima, but I know I have the other concepts to fall back on if needed. Each time I come away from a class with Donna, I find myself at a highter level of seeing and painting. Can't wait to take another class with the 'Master'"
Pat Deeter, President, Greater Kansas City Art Association
"Donna Aldridge has had a very positive impact on my painting. Her personal sensitivity and her great verbal clarity when explaining concepts and techniques is a gift in itself.
"Her deep caring for each student and the gentle way she guides one into new "seeing" has kept me from despairing of hope for myself as a painter which I had often felt under the critical eye of earlier teachers.
"She reminds us often and in new ways each time about slowing down to look until we are sure of what we see: reflected light, cast shadows, colors in the shadows, and what colors they really areand about such things as warm-cool as aspects of how colors "relate, relate, relate".
"I am beginning to see progress in my work and self confidence.
"I have observed the great energy and creative time she puts into the "set ups" we paint and am touched by her profound dedication to her own painting, to her teaching, and to furthering her student's progress."
"It sometimes can be difficult to describe a good teacher, but it is not difficult at all to describe Donna Aldridge.
"She always has a positive comment to say about all her students paintings. She is sensitive to their agonies of despair and helps them reach a higher ability in their work.
"Donna tells her students exactly what they should be doing or not doing in order to make their painting better. Her students come away with a better idea concerning how they can apply Donnas instructions to their art work, and that alone makes her a treasure!"
"Donna Aldridge has instructed me in pastel art for nearly three years. Pastels are challenging for me and tax my patience but not hers.
"Her skill and knowledge enable her to quickly identify the weaknesses or areas that can be easily improved and she has often done so for me.
"I think she has a special capacity for doing this and she does so with kindness and good humor. I have been the recipeint of this instructive gift and will always value it."
Mary Kay von Erdmannsdorff
"Donna Aldrige is an exceptional instructor. She is able to teach at all levels of expertise.
"If you don't understand something, she will find a different way to explain until you grasp what she is trying to convey.
"In just a short time she has helped me to start to understand the complex world of color and energy.
"Donna has helped me to improve my own style in a way that is very encouraging.
"Donna loves to teach and it shows. She is a wonderful person and loves to help others."
"Through the years I have taken a number of classes ... the majority of them have been fun and I have been fortunate to meet some wonderful and interesting people in them. This also describes Donna's class ... EXCEPT ... in Donna's class it's more than fun and socializing.
"In this class I feel I'm actually learning and growing ... and it's exciting to see the results in my paintings!
"Donna teaches the basics and fundamentals of pastel as well as issues of color and composition ... and she teaches in a way that is relevant and easy to understand.
"But she also goes beyond those basics ... helping us to reach deeper ... to take risks and try new things ... new techniques ... new ways of looking.
"In this class I have been challenged ... constantly ... and because of it I have grown. I see positive changes in my painting as well as in my attitude!
"And yes ... despite the uncomfortable feelings that come with being asked to stretch into those unknown places ... I have had a lot of fun! "
"I appreciate that Donna can find something positive to say about our efforts. No matter how badly we have botched up the picture, she gives us something to build on.
" I especially have profited from her suggestion to see if the elusive color is lighter or darker, warmer or cooler, duller or brighter than the surrounding colors.
" She has so much helpful advice from the initial planning of the picture, through the middle struggle to the finishing adjustments."
"With Donna I have learned to paint pictures, not objects. Donna's understanding of color and it's relationships is a rare commodity.
"She teaches you to look carefully at your subject. She cares if you have a successful painting and helps you achieve it.
"She really teaches in a classical manner, not just allowing you to paint."
It was Donna's generous spirit that impressed me most about the color workshop, and her ability to impart solid color info infused with her unique and experienced take on the subject. An enriching experience, Donna, and one that appealed to ALL my senses! Thank you.
"Through my lessons with Donna, I have learned to see shapes and colors. She lets you work on your own without going into your painting unless she asks permission. It has been worthwhile to take lessons from her and to meet other artists."
"I just started with Donna and I find she is inspiring, skillful, diplomatic, and has a wonderful studio. She is teaching me to see with new eyes."
"What a great session Wednesday. You should be so pleased with yourself. What you have brought out in each and everyone of us is thrilling. Each painting carried its own uniqueness and individuality and yet was very exciting.
"You are not cloning Donnas, which really wouldn't be such a bad idea. I have been in many classes where at the end you couldn't tell the student from the teacher. Doesn't happen with your students. Very impressive."