Students enrolled in the Botanical Art and Illustration Certificate program will learn how to draw botanical subjects with scientific accuracy, artistry and mastery of technical methods. Using a basic knowledge of plant morphology, participants will develop the skills needed to document plants in intricate detail, including the root system, upper and lower leaf surfaces, flowers, fruits and seed heads. This program is designed for students who are interested in pursuing art for pleasure and self-satisfaction, and they can choose between two concentrations: watercolor or colored pencil. Beginners, as well as those with art experience, are welcome. Students may repeat most courses in the program at a 10-percent discount; however, a repeat course cannot apply toward certificate credit.

For more details about our programs, or to receive personalized class recommendations from our helpful staff, please feel free to contact us at edu@phipps.conservatory.org.

Pollinators II | Robin Menard

Saturdays: April 27, May 4 and 18 | 9:30 a.m. – 4 p.m.

$235 members | $265 nonmembers (includes specimen fee)
Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

Objective: To be able to accurately identify and depict pollinators in your art
Level: Intermediate to advanced
Prerequisite: Botanical Drawing I and II, Colored Pencil I or Watercolor I, and Pollinators I. This pre-requisite is a requirement to enroll in this course. If you feel you have alternate botanical art training that would satisfy these requirements, contact Phipps at slind@phipps.conservatory.org. Phipps will require you to supply samples of your work. Please allow a minimum of two weeks for review.

Apply scientific knowledge you learned in Pollinators I to carefully study and accurately illustrate butterflies and bees in their natural habitats. Add beautiful dimension to your paintings by connecting the plant or flower with the essential creatures upon which its very existence depends. Botanical Art and Illustration Certificate elective

Violets: A Native Plant Study | Jeanne Perrier

May 4 – 5 | 9:30 a.m. – 4 p.m.

$155 members | $175 nonmembers (specimen fee included)
Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

Objective: To study different species of violets and be able to complete a botanically correct illustration of a specific violet
Level: Intermediate
Prerequisite: Botanical Drawing I and II, Colored Pencil I. This pre-requisite is a requirement to enroll in this course. If you feel you have alternate botanical art training that would satisfy these requirements, contact Phipps at slind@phipps.conservatory.org. Phipps will require you to supply samples of your work. Please allow a minimum of two weeks for review.

Study the general characteristics of the genus Viola and the distinguishing characteristics of different species. Then, choose a specific type of violet and work out its composition to complete a botanically correct rendering of your violet of choice. Botanical Art and Illustration Certificate elective

Page of Petals | Amy Lewandowski

May 11 – 12 | 9:30 a.m. – 4 p.m.

$150 members | $170 nonmembers (includes specimen fee)
Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

Objective: To be able to observe color on a petal and portray its likeness on paper
Level: Intermediate to advanced
Prerequisites: Botanical Drawing I and II, Watercolor I (or equivalent experience). This pre-requisite is a requirement to enroll in this course. If you feel you have alternate botanical art training that would satisfy these requirements, contact Phipps at slind@phipps.conservatory.org. Phipps will require you to supply samples of your work. Please allow a minimum of two weeks for review.

Explore color matching to illustrate flower petals. Create a page of petals in an assortment of colors using different methods for mixing watercolor pigments along with a variety of wash techniques. The instructor will demonstrate a series of techniques for using watercolor paints on hot-pressed paper, and you will have a chance to practice them yourself, supplemented by individual help and group discussions. Botanical Art and Illustration Certificate elective

Colored Pencil I: Techniques | Amy Lindenberger

Saturdays: June 8, 15 and 22 | 9:30 a.m. – 4 p.m.

$220 members | $250 nonmembers
Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

Objective: To be able to create a gradual transition of tone and color with colored pencils
Level: Intermediate
Prerequisites: Botanical Drawing I and II. This pre-requisite is a requirement to enroll in this course. If you feel you have alternate botanical art training that would satisfy these requirements, contact Phipps at slind@phipps.conservatory.org. Phipps will require you to supply samples of your work. Please allow a minimum of two weeks for review.

Using different techniques, you can make colored pencil tones look like a drawing or a painting, providing you with the versatility to create a wide variety of surface textures. Develop your color perception and become familiar with colored pencil tools, color applications and color theory fundamentals. Learn to layer colors to achieve different hues and densities and master a variety of techniques, including burnishing, impressed line and sgraffito. Botanical Art and Illustration Certificate core course

Botanical Drawing I: Foundations | Robin Menard

Saturdays: June 15, 22 and 29 | 9:30 a.m. – 4 p.m.

$220 members | $250 nonmembers
Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

Objective: To be able to accurately draw three-dimensional shapes using line and tone, and employ geometric and aerial perspective in drawing botanical subjects
Level: Beginner
Prerequisite: None

Botanical illustration differs from traditional drawing because it captures a subject with scientific accuracy through observation, form and detail. Learn to identify basic shapes in nature and use a step-by-step process to create the illusion of depth through light, shadow and perspective. Botanical Art and Illustration Certificate core course

This class is now filled. Please call 412/441-4442 ext. 3925 or e-mail with questions, or to get an email alert about spaces in this class or the next Botanical Drawing I class.

Botanical Art and Illustration

Explorations of Van Gogh's "Sunflowers" | Robin Menard

Sundays: June 16 and 30 | 9:30 – 4 p.m.

$145 members | $170 nonmembers (includes specimen fee)
Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

Objective: To be able to create a sunflower study in response to Van Gogh’s "Sunflowers" paintings
Level: Intermediate
Prerequisites: Botanical Drawing I and II. This pre-requisite is a requirement to enroll in this course. If you feel you have alternate botanical art training that would satisfy these requirements, contact Phipps at slind@phipps.conservatory.org. Phipps will require you to supply samples of your work. Please allow a minimum of two weeks for review.

Explore the colors, details and textures of Van Gogh’s famous "Sunflowers" paintings and create your own version! Recreate the painting as is or take liberties with style, composition and color. Any medium goes: graphite, pen and ink, colored pencil, watercolor, or mixed media. Botanical Art and Illustration Certificate Elective

Watercolor I: Techniques and Color Theory | Brenda Gail Jordan

Saturdays: July 6, 13 and 27 | 9:30 a.m. – 4 p.m.

$220 members | $250 nonmembers
Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

Objective: To gain control of the brush, pigment and paper while learning to combine watercolor paints to create a rich and varied palette
Level: Beginner to intermediate
Prerequisites: Botanical Drawing I and II. This pre-requisite is a requirement to enroll in this course. If you feel you have alternate botanical art training that would satisfy these requirements, contact Phipps at slind@phipps.conservatory.org. Phipps will require you to supply samples of your work. Please allow a minimum of two weeks for review.

Learn the basics of transparent watercolor as a medium and gain a foundational understanding of the brushes, paper and paints suitable for botanical watercolor. Using a limited palette, explore techniques such as washes and glazes and practice creating a full range of hues, shades and tones. Produce a series of studies that demonstrate the foundational techniques of transparent watercolor and apply those techniques to rendering plant forms. Botanical Art and Illustration Certificate core course

Soft Focus Flowers on Claybord | Amy Lindenberger

Saturdays: July 6 and 13 | 9:30 - 4 p.m.

$145 members | $165 nonmembers
Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

Objective: To be able to create colored pencil botanical drawings on a claybord ground
Level: Intermediate
Prerequisites: Botanical Drawing I and II, Colored Pencil I. This pre-requisite is a requirement to enroll in this course. If you feel you have alternate botanical art training that would satisfy these requirements, contact Phipps at slind@phipps.conservatory.org. Phipps will require you to supply samples of your work. Please allow a minimum of two weeks for review.

Colored pencil is known for being very detail-oriented, but not so much for its soft, painterly qualities. Amy will share her technique, which uses powdered graphite followed by layers of colored pencil, graphite and solvent to create a finished product with the look of a painting that can be varnished and framed without glass! Botanical Art and Illustration Certificate elective

Drawing Birds for Botanical Illustrations | Melissa Fabian

Sundays: July 7 and 28, Aug. 18 | 9:30 a.m. – 4 p.m.

$220 members | $250 nonmembers
Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

Objective: To be able to incorporate birds into a botanical art piece.
Level: Beginner to intermediate
Prerequisites: None

Enhance your botanical art work with drawings of beautiful and essential birds in this introductory class. Combine plants and birds from early botanical works to contemporary ones and use various drawing techniques to take on the challenge of depicting a “moving” object. Botanical Art and Illustration Certificate elective

Pen and Ink I | Melissa Fabian

Sundays: July 14 and 21, Aug. 4 | 9:30 a.m. – 4 p.m.

$220 members | $250 nonmembers
Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

Objective: To be able to create line, value and texture with pen and ink on a botanical form
Level: Intermediate
Prerequisite: Botanical Drawing I and II. This pre-requisite is a requirement to enroll in this course. If you feel you have alternate botanical art training that would satisfy these requirements, contact Phipps at slind@phipps.conservatory.org. Phipps will require you to supply samples of your work. Please allow a minimum of two weeks for review.

Beginning with the fundamentals of pen and ink techniques, learn how to use different strokes to create a compositional balance of black and white tones. Botanical Art and Illustration Certificate core course

Guided Open Studio: Composition | Weldon Doran

Sunday, July 14 | 9:30 a.m. – 1 p.m.

$15 members | $20 nonmembers (price is per session)
Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

July 14: Weldon Doran | Composition

Objective: To have improved technique in creating a work of botanical art.
Level: Beginner to advanced
Prerequisites: Botanical Drawing I and II, Watercolor I or Colored Pencil I

Making time to concentrate on your art can be tough! Join fellow botanical artists at these open studio sessions, and find the inspiration and support to start, continue and finish projects. Work on class work, your portfolio or something totally new. Current Flora students may attend as part of their Flora Project fee. Bring your artwork and materials and enjoy the time to create.

Botanical Drawing II: Volume, Texture and Details | Robin Menard

Saturdays: Aug. 3, 10 and 17 | 9:30 a.m. – 4 p.m.

$220 members | $250 nonmembers
Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

Objective: To apply skills gained in Botanical Drawing I to accurately capture various plant forms, details and textures that are unique to the subject
Level: Intermediate
Prerequisite: Botanical Drawing I

Continue to develop your observation and drawing skills to accurately render leaves, stems, roots and flowers in varying positions, capturing details and textures unique to the botanical subject. Botanical Art and Illustration Certificate core course

Summer Flowers | Brenda Jordan

Thurs., Aug. 8 | 6 – 9 p.m.

$36 members | $41 nonmembers
Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

Objective: To be able to depict summer flowers accurately in watercolor while improving watercolor technique
Level: Intermediate
Prerequisite: Watercolor I. This pre-requisite is a requirement to enroll in this course. If you feel you have alternate botanical art training that would satisfy these requirements, contact Phipps at slind@phipps.conservatory.org. Phipps will require you to supply samples of your work. Please allow a minimum of two weeks for review.

Build upon your knowledge from Watercolor I to render a study of a summer flower using washes and dry brush techniques. Explore color mixing, light and shadows, rendering plant forms accurately, and composition. Botanical Art and Illustration Certificate elective

Colored Pencil Florals on Black Paper | Amy Lindenberger

Sat. Aug. 10 and 17 | 9:30 – 4 p.m.

$150 members | $170 nonmembers (includes specimen fee)
Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

Objective: To be able to create colored pencil botanical drawings on a black paper background
Level: Intermediate
Prerequisites: Botanical Drawing I and II, Colored Pencil I (or equivalent experience). This pre-requisite is a requirement to enroll in this course. If you feel you have alternate botanical art training that would satisfy these requirements, contact Phipps at slind@phipps.conservatory.org. Phipps will require you to supply samples of your work. Please allow a minimum of two weeks for review.

Colored pencil drawings are traditionally applied to white or light, neutral-colored papers. But some subjects — such as night-blooming flowers — can be much more effective against very dark backgrounds, and those backgrounds can be difficult (and labor-intensive!) to achieve with colored pencil. Discuss colored pencil opacity and explore key techniques for using colored pencil on black and very dark-colored surfaces to keep colors true and luminous. Botanical Art and Illustration Certificate elective

Guided Open Studio: General Assistance | Robin Menard

Sunday, Aug. 11 | 9:30 a.m. – 1 p.m.

$15 members | $20 nonmembers (price is per session)
Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

Aug. 11: Robin Menard | General Assistance

Objective: To have improved technique in creating a work of botanical art​.
Level: Beginner to advanced
Prerequisites: Botanical Drawing I and II, Watercolor I or Colored Pencil I

Making time to concentrate on your art can be tough! Join fellow botanical artists at these open studio sessions, and find the inspiration and support to start, continue and finish projects. Work on class work, your portfolio or something totally new. Current Flora students may attend as part of their Flora Project fee. Bring your artwork and materials and enjoy the time to create.

Gorgeous Greens in Watercolor | Amy Lewandowski

Aug. 24 – 25 | 9:30 a.m. – 4 p.m.

$152 members | $172 nonmembers (includes specimen fee)
Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

Objective: To be able to create a variety of greens in watercolor and apply them to plant specimens
Level: Advanced
Prerequisites: Botanical Drawing I and II, Watercolor I and II. This pre-requisite is a requirement to enroll in this course. If you feel you have alternate botanical art training that would satisfy these requirements, contact Phipps at slind@phipps.conservatory.org. Phipps will require you to supply samples of your work. Please allow a minimum of two weeks for review.

Plants often have a wide variety of beautiful greens and it can be challenging to represent these different colors accurately. Learn how to assess the differences in the greens of plants by observing their subtle variations in hue, value and intensity. Practice painting different greens through a series of watercolor mixing exercises and then apply this information to an illustration of a single leaf or of multiple specimens. Botanical Art and Illustration Certificate elective

Botanical Field Sketching/Studies | Robin Menard

Sat., Sept. 14 | 9:30 a.m. – 4 p.m.

$72 members | $82 nonmembers
Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens, Botany Hall Auditorium

Objective: To develop observation and drawing skills for botanical illustration
Level: Intermediate
Prerequisite: Botanical Drawing I and II. This pre-requisite is a requirement to enroll in this course. If you feel you have alternate botanical art training that would satisfy these requirements, contact Phipps at slind@phipps.conservatory.org. Phipps will require you to supply samples of your work. Please allow a minimum of two weeks for review.

Keep summer time going by heading to your favorite corner of Phipps Conservatory for field sketching. Field sketches are important tools in developing botanical illustrations and provide a great opportunity to hone your drawing and observation skills. Complete several pencil field sketches, accurately documenting plant characteristics such as posture, size, flower and leaf patterns, bark, and roots. Then, return to the classroom and use your notes to develop one sketch into a more refined drawing or painting in the medium of your choice. Botanical Art and Illustration Certificate elective

Guided Open Studio: Foreshortening, Shadow/Highlights | Melissa Fabian

Sunday, Sept. 15 | 9:30 a.m. – 1 p.m.

$15 members | $20 nonmembers (price is per session)
Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

Sept. 15: Melissa Fabian | Foreshortening, Shadow/Highlights

Objective: To have improved technique in creating a work of botanical art​.
Level: Beginner to advanced
Prerequisites: Botanical Drawing I and II, Watercolor I or Colored Pencil I

Making time to concentrate on your art can be tough! Join fellow botanical artists at these open studio sessions, and find the inspiration and support to start, continue and finish projects. Work on class work, your portfolio or something totally new. Current Flora students may attend as part of their Flora Project fee. Bring your artwork and materials and enjoy the time to create.

Salsa Still Life | Jeanne Perrier

Sept. 21 – 22 | 9:30 a.m. – 4 p.m.

$144 members | $164 nonmembers
Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

Objective: To complete a still life in colored pencil using the ingredients for your favorite salsa
Level: Intermediate
Prerequisite: Botanical Drawing I and II, and Colored Pencil I. This pre-requisite is a requirement to enroll in this course. If you feel you have alternate botanical art training that would satisfy these requirements, contact Phipps at slind@phipps.conservatory.org. Phipps will require you to supply samples of your work. Please allow a minimum of two weeks for review.

Use your composition and colored pencil skills to complete a still life of primarily vegetables. Bring the ingredients of your favorite salsa, arrange them in an aesthetically pleasing manner and create a drawing from the arrangement. You may include the recipe if you wish. Botanical Art and Illustration Certificate elective

Floral Morphology | Bonnie Isaac

Sept. 28 – 29 | 9:30 a.m. – 4 p.m.

$150 members | $170 nonmembers
Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

Objective: To understand plant anatomy and function, and quickly and accurately draw a plant’s reproductive and vegetative characteristics.
Level: Beginner to intermediate
Prerequisite: None

Study the morphology of a flower, including its parts, evolutionary trends and pollination adaptations. Plus, dissect and draw flowers representing a variety of plant families. Botanical Art and Illustration Certificate core course

Guided Open Studio: General Assistance | Robin Menard

Sunday, Oct. 13  | 9:30 a.m. – 1 p.m.

$15 members | $20 nonmembers (price is per session)
Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

Oct. 13: Robin Menard | General Assistance

Objective: To have improved technique in creating a work of botanical art​.
Level: Beginner to advanced
Prerequisites: Botanical Drawing I and II, Watercolor I or Colored Pencil I

Making time to concentrate on your art can be tough! Join fellow botanical artists at these open studio sessions, and find the inspiration and support to start, continue and finish projects. Work on class work, your portfolio or something totally new. Current Flora students may attend as part of their Flora Project fee. Bring your artwork and materials and enjoy the time to create.

Guided Open Studio: Botanical Textures | Melissa Fabian

Sunday, Nov. 10 | 9:30 a.m. – 1 p.m.

$15 members | $20 nonmembers (price is per session)
Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

Nov. 10: Melissa Fabian | Botanical Textures

Objective: To have improved technique in creating a work of botanical art​.
Level: Beginner to advanced
Prerequisites: Botanical Drawing I and II, Watercolor I or Colored Pencil I

Making time to concentrate on your art can be tough! Join fellow botanical artists at these open studio sessions, and find the inspiration and support to start, continue and finish projects. Work on class work, your portfolio or something totally new. Current Flora students may attend as part of their Flora Project fee. Bring your artwork and materials and enjoy the time to create.

Phipps Flora Project: An Alphabet of Native Plants in Southwestern Pennsylvania | Robin Menard

Student orientation: Sun., March 31 | 10 a.m. – noon
Botanical lecture: Sun., March 31 | 1 – 3 p.m.
Hunt Institute visit: Sun., June 9 | 1:30 – 3:30 p.m.
Guided open studios: Sundays: July 14, Aug. 11, Sept. 15, Oct. 13 and Nov. 10

$135 members | $155 nonmembers
Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

Objective: To be able to create a botanical illustration from the beginning to end
Level: Intermediate to advanced
Prerequisites: Botanical Drawing I and II, Watercolor I or Colored Pencil I. This pre-requisite is a requirement to enroll in this course. If you feel you have alternate botanical art training that would satisfy these requirements, contact Phipps at slind@phipps.conservatory.org. Phipps will require you to supply samples of your work. Please allow a minimum of two weeks for review.

Learn how to research and produce a beautiful and accurate painting of a native plant. In this long-term collaborative project, create a watercolor or colored pencil painting, a copy of which will be catalogued into the Phipps’ Allegheny Highlands Flora Project for future educational or marketing uses. Botanical Art and Illustration Certificate elective

This class is now filled. Please call 412/441-4442 ext. 3925 or e-mail with questions, or to get an email alert about spaces in this class.

Illumination Techniques | Christine Hutson

Thursdays: April 4, 11, 18 and 25, May 9 and 16 | 10 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.

$220 members | $250 nonmembers | Specialty fee: $17; if you attended Kandy Phillips’ class, you do not need to pay for the specialty fee
Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

Objective: To be familiar with a variety of illumination techniques
Level: Intermediate
Prerequisite: Watercolor I (or equivalent watercolor experience). This pre-requisite is a requirement to enroll in this course. If you feel you have alternate botanical art training that would satisfy these requirements, contact Phipps at slind@phipps.conservatory.org. Phipps will require you to supply samples of your work. Please allow a minimum of two weeks for review.

Discover several different styles of medieval book illumination and explore them using modern materials, including watercolors, imitation gold leaf and gold paint. We will even cover watercolor illumination on black paper. Create illuminated initial letters, as well as other decorative styles and motifs. Botanical Art and Illustration Certificate elective

Colored Pencil I: Techniques | Amy Lindenberger

Sundays: April 7 and 14 and Sat., April 27 | 9:30 a.m. – 4 p.m.

$220 members | $250 nonmembers
Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

Objective: To be able to create a gradual transition of tone and color with colored pencils
Level: Intermediate
Prerequisites: Botanical Drawing I and II. This pre-requisite is a requirement to enroll in this course. If you feel you have alternate botanical art training that would satisfy these requirements, contact Phipps at slind@phipps.conservatory.org. Phipps will require you to supply samples of your work. Please allow a minimum of two weeks for review.

Using different techniques, you can make colored pencil tones look like a drawing or a painting, providing you with the versatility to create a wide variety of surface textures. Develop your color perception and become familiar with colored pencil tools, color applications and color theory fundamentals. Learn to layer colors to achieve different hues and densities and master a variety of techniques, including burnishing, impressed line and sgraffito. Botanical Art and Illustration Certificate core course

Drawing and Identifying Trees | Melissa Fabian

Sunday, April 14 and Saturday, June 8 | 9:30 a.m. – 4 p.m. (please note new date)

$145 members | $165 nonmembers
Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

Objective: To be able to illustrate deciduous trees in four seasons
Level: Intermediate
Prerequisites: Botanical Drawing I and II (Foreshortening and Pen and Ink I would be helpful but are not necessary). This pre-requisite is a requirement to enroll in this course. If you feel you have alternate botanical art training that would satisfy these requirements, contact Phipps at slind@phipps.conservatory.org. Phipps will require you to supply samples of your work. Please allow a minimum of two weeks for review.

Creating the mass of leaves on a sugar maple or the many branches of a river birch in winter can be daunting. Sharpen your ability to illustrate local deciduous trees throughout four seasons, starting with late spring and early summer. Learn drawing techniques involving shadows, highlights, perspectives and more using various mediums, including graphite, ink, charcoal/pastel and washes. Examine tree identification keys and practice using them for further classroom/field illustration. Choose to illustrate or keep a journal of one tree throughout the four seasons. New students are welcome to participate, along with the original students from last summer and fall. Botanical Art and Illustration Certificate elective