Whats in the course?

This series of seven videos shows how to create the wood finishes most used by scenic artists and scenic painters working in the entertainment industry. Each video explains how to build the paint effect and looks at the tools and materials used.
Mahogany Woodgrain created at Scenic Painters.

Who's Teaching?

James Rowse has worked as a scenic artist and painter for over thirty years. He has extensive experience painting scenery and backdrops for theatre and worked on a number of films including the Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. James has taught at The University of Creative Arts and has run courses from his studio since 2009. His students are working in all parts of the industry.
Weathered wood created at Scenic Painters

Anything else?

Sample sheets for each video show how the materials build in layers to create the effect. There are also sourcing sheets to show where to access the materials and tools needed and a glossary to explain any new terminology. Discussion groups around each video mean that you can get feedback and help when you need it.

Course curriculum

  • 2

    Mahogany Finishes

    • Simple Mahogany

    • Mahogany Crotch Figure

    • Mahogany Sample Sheet

  • 3

    Oak Finishes

  • 4

    Parquet Flooring.

    • A Stained Parquet Floor

    • Parquet Flooring Sample Sheet

  • 5

    Exterior Wood Finishes

    • Exterior Painted Wood, to look like an old shed door

    • Exterior painted wood Sample Sheet

    • A Weathered Fence Post

    • Weathered Wood Sample Sheet

  • 6

    Other Resources

    • Wood Course Glossary

    • Wood Finishes Course Shopping list.

    • Sourcing Tools and Materials

    • Wood Finishes Quiz


Melanie Siddall


Thoroughly recommend this excellent course! So many useful tips which you can revisit again and again and a super easy to use site. Tools/paints arriving Monday-can’t wait to get started and give it a proper try.