Japanese Black Ink Painting for Beginners Online Program

Learn brushstrokes and techniques for painting grasses, flowers, distant trees and mountains, landscapes and more in this beginner's online blended learning program membership.



Live Online Learning

Our live group learning online sessions include guidance and feedback to improve personal progress.

Pre-recorded Classes

Access the relaxing pre-recorded instructional videos and learn at your own pace in your own time.

Monthly Cafés

Join in our monthly online Zoom Cafés where you can meet up for a friendly cup of tea and a chat and show your paintings.

Learn at Your Own Pace

There are many different ways to engage with this online program membership, and each member can decide on their own way to engage with the learning to suit their own needs, level of experience and availability.

Try Something Relaxing, Creative and Inspiring.

Sumi-e: Japanese Black Ink Painting is unique art form using only black ink, handmade paper, and a special brush. It is a calming and relaxing activity. No previous art experience is necessary.


Our Community is Included with Your Membership

Enjoy our online Private Members' Art Community where members can make friends, share their art and keep in touch.


What People Are Saying:


 "What a great way to learn about the art of Japanese Black Ink Painting from a very knowledgeable teacher. I love the mixture of practical exercises, background information and interaction with the teacher and other students. Such a fun, calming, creative way to spend some time."

Denise, Tipperary


"Would highly recommend taking sumi-e with Karen, not only is she extremely welcoming, but her classes are informative and fun. There's a wonderful blend of theory and practice which I love!"

Aishling, Ireland


 "I completely enjoyed the first weekend course I took with Karen. She is a highly skilled artist and a born teacher. She is encouraging, patient and very organized. Highly recommend any teaching offered by her. She also manages to make it all fun-she is a joy to work with!"

Nuala, Dublin


"I started Sumi-e classes with Karen 3 years ago and I am hooked ever since. I find her classes so relaxing and also really interesting. Love my Sumi-e."

Colette, Co. Kilkenny

"Japanese Black Ink Painting is such a joy in my life. I became a student of Karen's last year on a week's retreat to study Sumi-e painting. She is a superb teacher, gifted in conveying the details and nuances of the art, with patience and humor. I am delighted to become her student again-and now that she is teaching on-line, I won't be flying over from New York for a class! (At least for now.)"

Linda, New York


"Delighted to be a founding member of Karen's online Japanese Black Ink Painting group... Her videos are clear, concise, aesthetically pleasing, precise and informative. Our live guided painting zoom meetings are relaxed and friendly... Really happy that I signed up for the year."

Barbara, Dublin, Ireland


"My experience with Karen's painting courses, both live and online, has been wonderful! She brings so many years of experience to the classes along with a very clear, calm, meditative and gentle approach. I enjoy each class immensely!"

Patricia, Co. Waterford


"Karen's classes are always welcoming and informative. A great balance between technique and a background to the Sumi-e painting. This style of painting is different from a western style, but Karen is always on hand with tips and encouragement."

Brian, Co. Tipperary

"I took part in a day long course with Karen earlier this year and really enjoyed the introduction to Japanese ink painting. I found it relaxing, engrossing and almost meditative in its gentle focus on brush and mark making. I am looking forward to learning more and developing a greater understanding of the processes involved in producing a Japanese ink painting."

Gillian, Ireland


"From the first notes of birdsong and measured introduction, and on through all aspects of sumi-e painting techniques, you will be enthralled. Karen will take you carefully through every process. Beautifully produced to inspire you, this is a real joy so please watch and fall in love with the art of Japanese Black Ink Painting!"

Wendy, Ireland


 "Karen's Sumi-e classes are my relaxation and meditation. Karen's teachings are excellent and supportive. Having no formal artistic tendencies, I have discovered a passion for this wonderful artform."

Karen, Wexford


 "It is interesting, with some good background stories. I am looking forward to applying it soon."

Anne, Ireland

Frequently Asked Questions

LIVE GROUP LEARNING ONLINE SESSIONS including guidance and feedback to improve personal progress.

ACCESS TO PRERECORDED INSTRUCTIONAL VIDEOS that you can watch in your own time.

MONTHLY ONLINE ZOOM CAFÉ where people can meet up for tea and a chat and, if they'd like, show their paintings.

PRIVATE MEMBERS' ART COMMUNITY where members can make friends, talk art, and keep in touch.

No previous experience is necessary: this online program is for complete beginners.

Yes, you will need some basic art materials. Details on what materials you'll need and where you can order them will be available.

The course instructor is Karen Colbert. Karen received her Master of Fine Arts Degree in Painting and later studied Japanese Black Ink Painting (Sumi-e) with Professor Emeritus Shozo Sato. She is a professional member of Visual Artists Ireland and has been exhibiting her work and teaching for many years.

There are monthly and yearly options for your Membership Subscription. To view price offers, CLICK HERE.

To become a Member, CLICK HERE and choose your Membership Subscription type.

"Japanese Black Ink Painting is a beautiful art form."

Karen Colbert
Visual Artist and Course Instructor

Course Instructor

Visual Artist and Course Instructor Karen Colbert was born in Chicago and has been based in Ireland for over twenty-five years. She received her Master of Fine Arts Degree in Painting and later studied Japanese Black Ink Painting (Sumi-e) with Professor Emeritus Shozo Sato. She has been exhibiting her work and teaching for many years. Karen is a professional member of Visual Artists Ireland, the Representative body for professional artists in Ireland, and IVARO, the Irish Visual Artists Rights Organisation. VAI is the Irish representative within the IAA (International Association of Art).

Keep in touch.

We'll keep in touch by sending you occasional newsletters and letting you know what's new and exciting here.

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