Introductory Cold Wax Workshop with Jerry McLaughlin

March 20 - 24, 2019

Berkeley, CA


Jerry’s workshops, both introductory and advanced, have been described as 'enlightening’, ‘life-changing’, ‘transformational’, and more. With a deep passion for teaching and a certificate in adult education, Jerry gives his most to help artists develop to their fullest potential.

‘Jerry is mentor, friend, instructor, and teacher. Patient, intelligent, articulate and passionate about art and sharing his knowledge. By far the most beneficial workshop I have ever participated in.”
— Barbara S.

Jerry has made some changes to his 2019 workshops:

All workshops will be at least five days. This gives participants plenty of time to paint, practice, and incorporate the workshop topics.

All workshops include a 45-minute, one-on-one coaching/mentoring session with Jerry. Artists have the opportunity to address technical, artistic, or professional development issues specific to them.

To make travel more convenient, artist essentially need to bring only their tools, paints, creativity, and enthusiasm. Jerry provides all the following supplies:

  • Gamblin cold wax medium

  • Gamsol odorless mineral spirits

  • Arches oil paper

  • Painting surfaces (multimedia artboard)

  • Gloves

  • Paper towels

  • Waxed, non-stick, and a variety of other papers

  • Texture materials, PanPastels, dry pigments, sand

  • Palette paper

  • Inks and other water-soluble media

  • and more!

Thinking of taking Jerry’s workshop? Make it happen, no matter the inconvenience, cost, or timing.
— Judy V.
It was well thought out and more giving of experience and talent than any other workshop I have taken.
— Dana G.

Unless otherwise stated, Jerry hosts his workshops in his large, sunny, Berkeley, California studio. All tables are counter-height, and stools are provided. There is a refrigerator, microwave, and unlimited coffee and tea. There are many hotels, Airbnb, shops, and restaurants within walking distance or a short Uber/Lyft/taxi ride away. The SFMOMA, de Young Museum, Oakland Art Museum, BAMPFA, countless world-class art galleries, and some of the best food and wine in the world can be part of your experience.


Based on his groundbreaking book with Rebecca Crowell, Cold Wax Medium: Techniques, Concepts & Conversations, Jerry’s introductory workshops offer demos and hands-on experience with cold wax medium. Participants explore the basic materials, tools, surfaces, and techniques he and Rebecca employ in their own work. Participants paint with cold wax, oils, pigment sticks, and powdered pigments, and experience the expressive potential of layering, texture, and mark-making. In addition, Jerry helps artists address barriers to creativity, letting go, and working more freely. These introductory workshops are for artists new to cold wax medium or those with some experience who are looking to broaden or reinforce their skills.

Workshop topics include:

  • Basic tools, materials, surfaces, and safety

  • Understanding and mastering stages of dryness

  • Working wet-in-wet

  • Foundational layers and texture

  • Brayer techniques and veil of color

  • Mark-making for structure and expression

  • Stencils, masking, creating shape, and dividing space

  • Pigments, powders, and particulates

  • Mechanical and solvent reductions

  • Techniques for a dry surface

  • And MORE!

I can’t imagine getting better, more inspired instruction anywhere.
— Lynn

Jerry McLaughlin, MD, initially trained as a pediatric critical care physician. He began his artistic career as a fine art photographer, but realizing he had always wanted to be a painter, he abandoned photography and started painting. Although encaustic was his initial medium, once he discovered cold wax and oils, he quickly transitioned and has never gone back. His work has been collected across the US and internationally and has appeared in many publications. He works with HG Contemporary Gallery in New York, DZINE Gallery in San Francisco, and ARTERRA in Seattle. In 2017, Jerry, with co-author Rebecca Crowell, published Cold Wax Medium: Techniques, Concepts & Conversations. It is the first ever comprehensive book exploring the myriad techniques and ways artists are using cold wax medium. Jerry is passionate about teaching, and he holds a certificate in adult education from the University of Washington. His strength lies in identifying and addressing the individual needs of his students and helping them analyze and develop solutions to the difficulties they are encountering. Jerry maintains an active artist mentoring and coaching practice, working with artists around the world. He lives in Oakland, CA with his husband Mike and their dog Bert.