Private Painting Lessons

with artist Adria Moynihan Rusk

Private lessons are custom tailored to each student and are designed to be educational, fun, and encouraging! 

Lessons are ideal for new painters (adults and teens) or those looking to build upon their existing skills with guidance and more personal attention. 

Lessons are held at Still Life Studio, Portland Maine.

painting lessons

My Approach to Painting instruction

Are you interested in painting but not sure where to start? Would you prefer private, personalized instruction over the larger classroom setting? Whether you are brand new to painting or looking to get back into the swing of it after time away, I can help. Together we will discuss your goals and create a lesson plan that is custom tailored for you. Through short exercises and multi-session paintings you'll learn about materials, foundational skills, and advanced techniques that will help you manifest your own painting practice. 

While we often use the still life as a point of reference, it is by no means our only source of inspiration. Students will be invited to reference printed images, study the paintings and techniques of favorite artists, and develop their own style of creative expression through paint. 

My approach has a foundation in realism with a strong leaning toward impressionism. I help students step back from old habits and deeply ingrained assumptions about painting, and lead them toward a freer, more confident, painterly aesthetic. 

Examples of things we study

  • Drawing/painting from life (learning to translate what we see)

  • Color theory and paint mixing

  • Painting materials and tools

  • Composition and editing

  • Painting representationally while keeping it loose

  • Custom exercises and study based on student needs

painting lesson Rates

2019 Private Lesson Rates

All painting materials are included in the cost of lessons, but students are welcome to bring their own supplies if they have them. 

  • Private painting lesson, 90 minutes (package of 6): $550

  • Private painting lesson, 2.5 hours, single lesson: $150

The best way to begin is to start with a 6 lesson package. This will give you a jumpstart on painting with a commitment that will keep you engaged, and you'll see dramatic results from your efforts. Single 90 minute lessons ($110) are available to continuing or returning students after completing the initial 6 lessons. Students who attend more frequently see the best improvement. 

2019 Semi-Private Lesson Rates

The below rates are for lessons that are shared with one or two other students who share similar goals. Students are responsible for identifying their own painting partners. This is a great way to learn alongside a friend or family member while maintaining the benefits of private lessons. 

  • Shared painting lessons, 90 minutes (package of 6): $400 per person

  • Shared painting lesson, 2.5 hours, single lesson: $110 per person

Packages of 6 lessons must be used within 6 months. Please contact me with any questions about rates or packages. 

Book your private painting lesson today!

To book your lesson, you can contact me or follow the link above to look at my online calendar. If available dates and times don't work for you please contact me as I often have additional availability. 

Lessons Policies (click to read)


I offer a free meet and greet to all new students (optional)
This way you can meet me prior to scheduling your first lesson, visit my studio, and see if it's a good fit. Contact me to set up a meeting!

Do you have a friend who would like to take lessons with you? I offer private instruction for up to 3 people. You and your guest/s will be the only students in attendance.

Are you interested in a larger class for more than 3 students? Sign up for group classes and workshops here, or contact me to discuss creating a custom class just for your group. 

Do you have a teenager (12+) who might benefit from private instruction? Read more about lessons for teens

What students are saying...

My art experience with Adria over the past four plus years has been nothing short of inspiring, exciting and just as important, great fun.
As a beginner, she was patient and carefully explained each step in terms I understood and as I have become more experienced, she has allowed me the freedom to experiment while gently guiding me in interesting directions.
— K.B.E.
Coming to Adria with relatively little painting experience, I have been wonderfully impressed by her unique teaching approach. Her lessons always manage to strike the right balance between teaching the technical side of painting, while at the same time encouraging the development of individual creativity and vision. Her studio provides the perfect environment in which to escape, and her subtle, encouraging guidance insures that my hours spent there are some of the most worthwhile of my week. Even after a short period of time, I have noticed a significant improvement in my own work.
— L.D.
Adria, I thank you for opening up the artist in me. Your classes have been encouraging and inspiring. Looking forward to more.
— E.B.
Adria is amazing! She is very talented and patient while giving instruction. I was a newbie to painting, but had a definite vision of what I wanted to learn. She helped me evolve that vision into a creative work with terrific instruction.
— A.N.