Presents Masterclass #1.1-8 Series Certificate Course on

The Transformative
Power of Art

with Van James 

|Artist, Author Educator| 

 Hawaii, USA

“Art must become the lifeblood of the soul.”— Rudolf Steiner ​

These eight classes will take one through a visual artistic curriculum of self-development with exercises useful for working as a parent, teacher, therapist, artist, art educator, development coach, counselor, or nurturer of any kind. Mostly these sessions are for one’s own inner development and self-transformation. We will explore how drawing and design work, figure and portrait studies, form, symbol and mandala practices bring about changes in the way we look at the world and have confidence in our own visual artistic ability. 

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Session Details:

29th August 2020 (Past Recording Available)

In this presentation on the importance of art, Van James will introduce a broad overview of how art, throughout time and across world cultures, is a picture of the evolution and transformation of who we are and what our potentials are as human beings. 

 26th September 2020 (Past Recording Available)

This session will incorporate figure drawing in a very elementary manner for all levels of beginners, nurturers, and accomplished artists. We will render the human figure from two different developmental perspectives using this experience as a basis for further visual art studies into human development. 


24th October 2020 (Past Recording Available)

In this session, we will shift from the full figure portrait we practiced last class to the facial portrait. We will explore the traditional Renaissance approach to portraiture as an adolescent apprentice would and take further steps through art history in order to awaken our own sense for humanity.

28th November 2020 (Past Recording Available)

With the experience we have gained working from the Old Masters we will move from traditional portraiture to create a self-portrait in the style of the Modern Masters. How do we move from Impressionism to Expressionism and yet find our own middle ground?

19th December 2020 (Past Recording Available)

This class will move from the portrait in terms of outer aspects to those of an inner nature. We will investigate the history and dynamics of the Mandala as an “essence container” and window of the soul. Can we find our self-portrait in a mandala?

Saturday, 23rd January 2021(Past Recording Available)

Can we learn to communicate meaningfully in the visual language of form and color in order  to tell the stories we have upon our heart? This session will delve into the open secret of form so we might better picture the World and our Self.

Saturday, 20th February 2021(Past Recording Available)

Here we will put together the various Mandala elements that effectively tell a story and we will work on themes with specific goals. Dealing with personal biography or global concerns we will practice Mandala as the art of Self and World.

Saturday, 27th March 2021


This session is solely for those enrolled in the certificate course in order to plan, work-on, and complete a self-chosen final project dealing with what has arisen for them out of the previous seven sessions. This class will conclude the series.

About Van James

Van James is an international advocate for the arts and a guest tutor at numerous teacher training colleges and Steiner-Waldorf schools. He is a council member of the Visual Art Section of North America, land representative for the Anthroposophical Society in Hawai’i, mentor for the Academy of Himalayan Arts and Child Development, and a former long-time teaching artist at the Honolulu Waldorf School. He is editor of Pacifica Journal, as well as an active artist, graphic designer, and author of numerous books on culture and the arts, including:

  • Spirit and Art: Pictures of the Transformation of Consciousness
  • The Secret Language of Form: Visual Meaning in Art and Nature
  • Drawing with Hand, Head and Heart: A Natural Approach to Learning
    the Art of Drawing
  • Painting with Hand, Head and Heart: A Natural Approach to Learning
    the Art of Painting
  • Teaching Art History Engaging Adolescents in Art, Cultural History and
    the Evolution of Consciousness.
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