• Established Method

    Art teachers Gary (Mast. Art Educ/ Bach. Art Ed.) and Rowena (Bach. Art Ed.) have run the hART stART studio in the Balmain/Rozelle area for over 20 years.

    Gary and Rowena have researched and developed their teaching method over 20 years. Because they run the classes together, one tutor is always available to continuously assist you during the first few months.

    Their ability to explain complex ideas is the result of both Gary and Rowena being artists as well as qualified art educators.


  • Caters to all levels

    hART stART studio caters for both beginners and experienced painters.The course is equally challenging and stimulation to all levels of experience due to the unique nature of the method.

    The course employs modernist painting techniques and methodology grounded in psychological concepts to help you to explore your own unique way of seeing the world.

    Using carefully crafted steps they expertly demystify the modernist approach to art.


  • Art for everyone

    Members come from a broad mix of careers and experiences. We encourage acceptance and support between our members and acknowledged this as an essential ingredient of hART stART studio.

    Through a supportive atmosphere our members are freely able to explore the techniques of art making combined with their own experience of the world.

    Working together we form a friendly, mutually supportive collective of painters.

  • About your tutors

  • Gary Notley-Smith

    Gary Notley-Smith
    (Mast.Art.ed/Bach.Art.ed.)

    Gary Graduated from Alexander Mackie CAE in 1980.
    His major was in Painting and Sculpture. He completed his Masters degree at COFA in 1980 completing his thesis on the impact of visual art practice upon psychological growth.

    He has spent his professional life developing a process by which Art can be taught; he came to realise that this necessarily involves a shift in the way an individual thinks.

    Gary paints and exhibits annually. His great passion is guiding others into a greater realisation of themselves.

  • Rowena Gibbs

    (Bach Art Ed)

    Since graduating in 1980, Rowena has been committed to the process of creating her own Art and inspiring others to create. A specialist Painter/Printmaker, Rowena has had numerous solo and group shows in Sydney and Newcastle and been the recipient of a number of prestigious awards, including the Sydney Morning Herald Bicentenary Art Prize.

    Underpinning her own passion as a practitioner is Rowena's belief that the skills necessary to create art are quite distinct from those needed to teach art to communicate to others and understanding of an intangible and subjective process. Rowena has spent a lifetime honing her capacity to do both

  • Mindfulness through Painting

    "People need a safe place free from the judgement of others, to make 'time out' for ourselves, to spend time with people who welcome us and accept us as we are.

    We need insights that lead to self-awareness and self-acceptance; visual experiences that stimulate our imagination, and creative challenges that help us grow as individuals.

    And if all that sounds too ideal to be possible....
    We'll see you hART stART studio"