"I’ve taken JJ’s classes on watercolors and oils and he has helped me to make great progress in developing my abilities in both areas. JJ’s classes are not only fun but he encouraged us to stretch our skills, building up our confidence and achieving more success than we had imagined. I look forward to taking more classes from JJ in the future!"
"JJ Jiang inspires his many friends, especially his students, with his marvelous gifts of painting and teaching. His enthusiasm is contagious. Being in one of his classes is an opportunity to learn and grow, to become a better person as well as a more skilled artist."
"JJ brings the same characteristics of skill and sensitivity that you see in his paintings into the classroom, personalizing his instruction to each student’s needs. His critiques are kind and supportive, encouraging each student to grow from whatever level they are at to the next level to which they aspire. He frequently shares the wisdom of artists and poets who have come before us to inspire us to see the bigger picture and to accept that even the great artists had challenges!"
"JJ is an exceptional instructor. He was well prepared for each class clearly stating the day’s goals that included an introduction to the subject, the major challenges we may face and how to approach a painting. He inspired me to do my best work. I learned a great deal, and I have more confidence in my painting abilities. The course broadened my perspectives about art, and how to approach art with mental clarity, along with the necessary time needed for reflection."
"First of all, I thoroughly enjoyed the experience of being in your class. It was a challenge for me to say the least, but I needed that challenge personally. The 3 main things I learned from you are: to be bold and deliberate, that shadows aren't just gray but have reflected or cast colors that give them life, and the importance of a concept sketch to determine the focus and tonal values of my painting. There were many other things that you taught me, such as, a "mistake" is not the end of the world, that a painting should not be an exact replica of the reference you are painting from, and that we should take "artistic license" as needed to change or leave out things that don't add anything to the painting. I also appreciated hearing your thoughts about artists such as Michelangelo and Andrew Wyeth, and art in general. You are a gifted artist and teacher and I hope to take another one of your classes in the future."
"Since a child, I’ve loved to sketch and scribble. Being an artist was a dream “pooh-poohed" by my parents as ‘unladylike’ or ‘unproductive’. At 60 years of age I determined to finally follow my dream and enrolled in a painting class. I was a complete neophyte so nervous and - honestly- intimidated by the accomplished artists in the group. In any other setting it might have been a disaster. But JJ was incredible. He found ways to embed the very rudiments and basics of art into the flow of an otherwise advanced class and I never once felt discouraged. Indeed, I left the class feeling joyful and empowered; with confidence that - should I be willing to put the work into painting- JJ would support me and I might one day be an artist as well. He’s kind, compassionate, authentically in love with his craft, and as fine a teacher as you could wish for."
"I have studied both oil and watercolor with JJ Jiang since January 2018. JJ is a master painter in both mediums, and his talent is exceeded only by his gentle and humble spirit as a mentor. JJ provides students with a framework that relaxes students so they can access their creativity and not fear mistakes. My class notes from JJ's demonstrations are a source of inspiration and reference whenever I paint. JJ graciously shares his university training from the masters with whom he has studied and stresses the importance of mental preparation and planning before beginning a painting. He encourages students to develop a method for the practice of painting so that good results are produced more consistently. I am informed and inspired in every class."
"I loved JJ's watercolor sessions. It was awesome in all possible ways - from the quality of the classes to the knowledge and encouragement provided by JJ to the positive group interactions. I have come away with so much to think about and try out. JJ is an excellent teacher. I had so much fun in class that I wish the session had not ended at all!! "
"It has been my privilege to have studied with you over the past two years. You have kept to the basics of value, form, color and good drawing skills, which are so necessary. I have gained so much confidence due to your encouragement. You taught me not to "be afraid of the dark." I have appreciated you insight and positive philosophy".
"I was amazed at how much I learned in JJ’s watercolor class. His honest, instructive feedback and step-by-step demonstrations were tremendously helpful and inspiring. He is a wonderful and thoughtful teacher. I look forward to taking more classes with him in the future!"
"First of all I would like to say that I enjoyed your class very much and learned quite a bit. I found very useful your breaking down the image into helpful steps as to shape and value. I found you very skilled in interacting with all levels of painters and types of personalities , listening to everybody without getting bogged down in spending too much time with a demanding student, with the result of portraying respect for everyone and a class the moved right along. I find most useful anything that allows a student to be free and make mistakes on the way to learning and your having us all paint on your demo helped do this very well."
“JJ is a wonderful instructor. He always provides a great demonstration and is willing to answer all questions you may have. He is a warm and encouraging teacher who is willing to share all his knowledge along with his philosophy of art with you. I would highly recommend taking classes with him.”
"That JJ Jiang is a highly gifted artist is beyond dispute. But far above his artistic talent is his compassionate heart for people. I have know JJ for several years and have personally witnessed, on many occasions, his genuine desire to share his knowledge and abilities with the people he comes into contact with, whether a student in his classes or a visitor to the gallery. His joy in sharing makes him a natural teacher. His compassion makes him an exceptional teacher. My participation in his oil painting class was the highlight of my year."
"I join art classes in order to expand my approach to painting. Having studied fashion illustration my work was a far cry from “painterly”. Over the years I have studied painting at SUNY (New York State University , Stony Brook New York); at the Pensylvania Academy of Fine Art in Philadelphia; took many classes in ART History. As an artist I was told that I must study the history of art. To my point JJ gave me a good perspective on improving my work and I now look forward to completing several paintings. JJ’s class is always stimulating because he does include art History."
"Jj is amazing not only as an artist but as a teacher of art as well. I am in awe as I watch his demos and his creative way of knowing just the right colors and just the right strokes to make a great painting. He is kind and patient with everyone and a joy to learn from, I feel I've come so far but still can't wait for his next class."
"I attended the 6 week spring 2018 session of Jj Jiang's Oil/ Acrylic class, and felt my understanding of many concepts grew. Jj does a live demonstration of the class project before the class begins painting on their own. This style helps the student better understand the thought process in developing a good painting. He explains temperature, value, color, reflection to enhance relationship in painting, and much, much more. His explanation as he paints, helps the artist to understand more fully the concepts, and apply it to their own paintings. I highly recommend Jj's class."
"JJ is a wonderful artist and is able to convey his techniques in painting to the students in his classes. He is a gentle and kind individual who is sensitive to the efforts of his students who wish to master new techniques in drawing and painting. Thank you JJ for all the inspiration that you give to those of us in your classes."
"JJ Jiang is the consummate art instructor. He imparts a wealth of knowledge with an approach that allows the student individual creativity. His drawing classes covered charcoal and graphite, using plaster cast busts. Intense, filled with technique. A must for all. His watercolor workshops is all about water, and lots of it. The result...a piece of expressive art that illuminated the medium. I will attend any instruction this man offers!!!!"
"I thoroughly enjoyed the watercolor class that I took under JJ's instruction. He is truly a master at watercolor techniques, and I really learned a lot. JJ is very positive and encouraging, so the atmosphere of the class was upbeat and non-threatening."
Jill Ciccone Pike
"I have had a wonderful experience in the watercolor class this fall. I have learned so much watching you paint. I especially liked seeing how you used your squirrel brushes. I also enjoyed hearing you talk about the soft edges and just letting the paint flow! You have been very encouraging! I hope you will continue teaching and I can get in your class!"
"I have taken two water color classes and a drawing class with JJ. He is great! I would never have attempted wet in wet without his guidance. I look forward to learning more from him - he is a wonderful resource. We are fortunate to have him here."
"Having JJ work with me in one of his drawing classes was very educational. He presented skill approaches I had never thought of or heard of before. I know my drawing will improve as I go forward, remembering his advice."
"JJ Jiang is a versatile artist, highly accomplished in a variety of media. As an instructor, he is rigorous but encouraging, effectively guiding students toward the improvement of their artistic techniques and expression."
“I was so happy to find truly classical watercolor instruction from JJ this past winter. I learned a great deal and received just the right amount of help on my paintings... I look forward to returning to his studio.”
“I thoroughly enjoyed JJ’s watercolor classes that I attended at the Village Art Circle. JJ is a fantastic teacher who provided step by step demonstrations on unleashing the secret of watercolor paintings through multiple washes. I often refer back to the lessons learned during JJ’s class while working on current paintings.”
“As a member of the Annapolis Watercolor Club I've taken my share of Watercolor Work Shops and JJ's Autumn Work Shop of 2013 was excellent. JJ has a gentle, yet energetic way of helping his students solve their watercolor painting problems...”
“JJ’s class is inspiring and fun. He is a wonderful teacher with a lot of emphasis given to color, value and technique. His critique at the end of the class is worth the wait!”
“JJ creates an aesthetically-pleasing and supportive atmosphere for his students; then he demonstrates his own excellent practices in applying watercolor to paper; and then he provides encouragement and sound instruction to each and every person in the class. Wonderful experience..."
“I have taken two of JJ's watercolor classes. It was a wonderful and inspiring experience. He is both an amazing artist and dedicated teacher. Love his demos, especially! We are so fortunate to have him in Cary.”
“JJ's class challenges me to paint and draw at a higher level. His critiques are invaluable for helping me become a better observer and a more nuanced painter.”
“JJ's work speaks for itself, but he is also a very talented teacher! He has the ability to reach students on all levels, and does beautiful demos to encourage and inform his students.”