Charcoal Making And Drawing

Art & Crafts |

Charcoal Making and Drawing | Mon 10 Oct | 10am-3pm | £65 | 16+yrs | Tutors Karen Lester & Gareth Thomas of Woodmatters | Venue Footprint building and woodland at National Trust St Catherine’s Estate, Windermere

A unique experience…..Make your own charcoal to create drawings in the beautiful setting of Footprint and National Trust’s St Catherine’s estate in Windermere

What will the session cover and how will it be taught?
Experience the fascinating process of charcoal making and gain an insight into the rich history of this once thriving local industry. Make your own charcoal, under expert guidance and then use this to create drawings from direct observation of the surrounding nature.

Who is it suitable for?
Everyone, including beginners and those more experienced to drawing.

Important Information
A lot of the time will be spent outdoors and will involve some walking on uneven paths and climbing slopes, which could be an issue for those less mobile. Please contact the Creative Learning Team if you wish to discuss any specific needs via email

What do I need to bring?
Materials are provided but please bring a board to rest paper on

Charcoal can be messy and we will be sitting around a fire so wear appropriate clothing

Please bring equipment for going outdoors:

  • A stool, folding chair or cushion for outdoor work
  • Rucksack or bag
  • Please also be prepared for the weather, so some sturdy shoes and layers to keep warm, waterproofs for wet weather, hats, scarves etc.
  • Bring a packed lunch. Tea and coffee are provided.

Bear in mind you will be carrying equipment. Travel light!

The following materials will be provided:
Cartridge paper
Putty rubber

Are there any additional costs?

Location and Access
This course takes place at Footprint, St Catherine’s Woodland, Windermere, a National Trust property. Participants do not need to be National Trust members to attend. Please visit the following link for more information about this unique eco- building, the first straw bale building in Cumbria to get here

A small car park is available and the site is a 20-minute walk from Windermere train station.

Address: Footprint Building, Patterdale Road, Windermere, Cumbria LA23 1NH

About the tutors
Karen works across media, painting, drawing and printmaking, selecting media to respond to a variety of reference sources, particularly those found in the landscape, natural and man-made.

Her interest in Printmaking developed at Kendal College whilst completing a Foundation Degree in Drawing with the University of Cumbria. A recent project, a commission by Lancaster University and focussing on Morecambe Bay is a series of images using a variety of printmaking techniques.

She enjoys a freer style of painting and drawing as a perfect way to respond to subjects, as well as the excitement of the possibilities of colour. As part of her evolving practice, she continually seeks to develop through exploration of the wonderful qualities of different media, often combining materials to create mixed media images.

Karen is an experienced qualified teacher and has been teaching in the adult education sector since 2011. She is also a Member of Cumbria Printmakers and Green Door artists’ collective.

Karen Lester

Gareth Thomas is a gifted tutor in both green wood carving and environmental education. Gareth undertakes the coppice and woodland work, tutors our courses, environmental education sessions, gives talks, supplies firewood and charcoal, and runs the Community Woodshare Scheme. He carries out consultancy work around woodland grants, land use planning and interpretation.

Thanks to his parents, Gareth has always enjoyed being outdoors and had a keen interest in the environment. Following a degree in Countryside Management, he has worked with BTCV, upland footpath teams, and the National Trust. Gareth is passionate about celebrating the emotional, physical and environmental benefits of healthy sustainable woodlands and engaging people to deepen their connection with Nature.

Gareth expanded his environmental education knowledge during his seven years as National Trust Community Education Officer. He played a vital role in the project surrounding the inspiring Strawbale Footprint building, designed as a stimulating educational space. Following a few years as National Trust Regional Sustainability Adviser, Gareth took a heart-led move back into the woodlands and set up Woodmatters.

Gareth Thomas Woodmatters

See all Creative Learning courses here.



You might like...

Print Room Members Access

Print Room Member Access Tuesday 11am-3pm

Brewery Print Room Membership | 11am-3pm | £6 per session | Print Room Brewery Arts Print Room Membership allows experienced printmakers the opportunity to work...

Book now
Art & Crafts

Inspired By Nature: Drawing And Journal Making

Inspired By Nature: Drawing And Journal Making | Mon 12 Sep to Mon 26 Sep | 10am-12.30pm | £75 (3 wks) | 16+ yrs |...

Book now
Art & Crafts

Art In The Bar

Art in the Bar | Wed 14 Sep | Wed 28 Sep | Wed 12 Oct | Wed 9 Nov | Wed 23 Nov |...

Book now

Supported by