Art Classes

urture the artist within you — with a little help from acclaimed artists and artisans — in Yosemite Conservancy art classes.

Monday – Saturday, 10 am – 2 pm (April through October)

Nurture the artist within you — with a little help from acclaimed artists and artisans — in Yosemite Conservancy art classes.

  • Art classes are offered Monday – Saturday, 10 am – 2 pm. Perfect for those looking to explore the park’s natural beauty through painting, drawing and more.
  • Open to all experience levels. Suggested age: 12+ (adult supervision required for participants under age 18).
  • Online registration is highly encouraged; capacity is 15 people per class.
  • Develop a final piece during a four-hour class, using new techniques and guidance from your Artist-in-Residence, Volunteer Art Instructor. End the class by celebrating your art in an informal, optional show-and-tell.
  • Registration is $20 per person, per class. Some classes have an additional materials fee.
  • Supplies are not included in the registration fee, but are available for purchase at the Art Center. All proceeds benefit the park!

View the 2018 Art Class Schedule

Art classes are typically held outside (en plein air), weather and media permitting. Follow these tips for a perfect plein-air art experience:

  • Please arrive by 9:30 am to purchase supplies.
  • Drop-in and day-of registration is only available as space allows.
  • Bring your lunch, as well as any of your own art materials and equipment that you’d like to use (such as an easel or other hard surface). You can also purchase art supplies, borrow and/or rent equipment, including stools and easels, at the Art Center.
  • The Artist in Residence, Volunteer Art Instructors chooses the class location based on preference, medium, technique, season, accessibility and proximity to the Yosemite Valley free shuttle stops. Please consider that bathrooms are located throughout the park, but not necessarily near the class location.
  • Don’t forget to check the weather! During inclement weather, classes are held inside at the Art & Nature Center.
Alice Lee teaches students to draw and paint while developing their own personal illustrative style.
September 10, 2018 to September 15, 2018
Develop your own artistic style while drawing and painting in Yosemite.
Returning artist and instructor Jo-Neal Graves leads students on a beginner-level introduction to watercolor in Yosemite.
September 17, 2018 to September 22, 2018
Enjoy Yosemite’s changing seasons, as you capture landscapes in watercolor.
Jo-Neal Graves leads beginner watercolor artists on a journey through developing a final artwork.
September 24, 2018 to September 29, 2018
Enjoy Yosemite’s changing seasons, as you capture landscapes in watercolor.
Nature Drawing for Beginners with Sean Edgerton
October 1, 2018 to October 6, 2018
Join artist and educator Sean Edgerton as you learn the basic elements of drawing and painting outdoors in Yosemite Valley.
Steve Curl returns to teach watercolor basics for beginners en plein air. Learn the basics of watercolor in this enjoyable and easy-to-follow class.
October 8, 2018 to October 13, 2018
Explore autumn scenery and watercolor basics in Yosemite Valley.
Artist and Educator Fiorella Ikeue teaches students detailed drawing and painting of the natural wonders of Yosemite.
October 15, 2018 to October 20, 2018
Zoom in on Yosemite’s smallest natural wonders to create a unique illustration.

Contact Us

The Happy Isles Art and Nature Center is open from April through October. Art classes start April 2.


Location: Happy Isles Art & Nature Center, shuttle stop #16. Park at Half Dome Village and take the shuttle. Limited accessibility parking available at Happy Isles with valid placard.

Business Hours:  Open 7 days 9am-4pm

Art Classes (ages 12+): Monday – Saturday 10am – 2pm (starting April 2)

Kids Classes (ages 2-12): Drop-In available, 11am, 1pm and 3pm (June, July & August only)

Open Studio Drop-In Crafts: Available 7 days 11am – 3pm (April through October)


Questions? Email or call 209-372-0631.