Art & design

Art & Design Courses - Online & in London  

Explore new and exciting subjects within a range of art and design disciplines, develop your skill set, get the support required to change career or launch yourself as a freelance artist or designer. All this and more delivered through our practical and engaging art and design courses at City Lit.

Our range of part-time, weekend and evening art and design classes are taught by successful artists and practitioners to ensure you get the skills, knowledge and experience you want and deserve. From experimental painting and drawing to contemporary jewellery making, there is sure to be a course for you. Study from 1 day to 2 years, whether you are a complete beginner or a practising artist preparing for an MA. Our courses are designed with you in mind, so you get to spend more time doing what you love. New for 2020 we now offer a creative portfolio of live online courses as well as our face-face studio based teaching.

Set a new goal, start your next creative adventure with City Lit and let us support you to realise your ambitions.

Many of our courses are delivered online. For more information about our live online courses, please see our guide to online learning.

Any questions? Contact our visual arts team on visual.arts@citylit.ac.uk or call us on 020 7492 2700, Monday to Friday between 10am-12pm or 2pm-4pm.

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  1. 50 drawings in a day
    Course Date:  Fri 30 Jul 2021 (and 2 other dates)

    Location on this date:  KS - Keeley Street

    A high energy programme of directed and self-directed drawing projects, with rapid shifts in materials, scale, subject and focus. Strictly no discards - come ready to play, risk, invent and discuss! For those with some drawing experience.

    This course takes place in the classroom, please follow this link to find out what we are doing to keep you safe: Staying COVID-19 secure at City Lit
    Full fee £99.00 Senior fee £99.00 Concession £99.00
    Rating:
    90% of 100
  2. Artist talk: Emilia Netto - Inspiration and the design process: how the design process can lead to unique outcomes
    Course Date:  Mon 28 Jun 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Join Emilia Sutherland Netto, designer and maker behind the jewellery brand Ember & Ore. Emilia has a BA Hons Contemporary Crafts degree from Plymouth College of Art. She has worked in the jewellery industry since 2012 in various manufacturing capacities and has taught jewellery making since 2013. More recently she has obtained two diplomas in CAD/CAM with an emphasis on jewellery manufacture. Emilia believes in using a mixture of modern and traditional manufacture and design techniques to achieve highly detailed and sculptural outcomes.



    In this talk Emilia will discuss the sources of inspiration behind her work and the various stages of her design process. With useful approaches, techniques, and a live demonstration this talk will be valuable to all with an interest in art and design.

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £5.00 Senior fee £5.00 Concession £5.00
  3. Artist talk: Hilary Rosen - Greek Mythology in paint and print
    Course Date:  Mon 28 Jun 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Hilary Rosen trained at the Royal College of Art where she was a prize winner. She lives and works in London. On leaving the Royal College of Art, she has taught at City Lit and various arts schools around the country. She has a studio in East London and exhibits internationally as well as having work in many national and international collections. Hilary teaches watercolour, oil painting and drawing (including life drawing and painting). Her subject matter for her work draws from a number of themes, including cityscapes, still lives and the relationships of people to one another. She explores these themes through the media of oil painting, drawing and printmaking. Hilary is inspired by Greek Mythology, and this talk is based on her own work and that of other visual artists who have explored this subject through their work. In this talk, Hilary also discusses the construction of the monoprint by combining lino prints, stencils and layering.

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £5.00 Senior fee £5.00 Concession £5.00
  4. Artist talk: Adam Hogarth - DIY culture in Contemporary Art
    Course Date:  Mon 28 Jun 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Influenced by the DIY ethos associated with 1970's Punk culture, Adam Hogarth will talk about its legacy and the way it has helped influence his outlook on making artwork.

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £5.00 Senior fee £5.00 Concession £5.00
  5. Looking at artists: focus on lithography
    Course Date:  Mon 28 Jun 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    In this short course you will look at how and why artists make use of the printmaking technique of Lithography. The tutor will guide you through what lithography is, how it developed historically from its invention by Senefelder, looking at artists such as Daumier, Toulouse-Lautrec, Bonnard, Vuillard and Picasso and its revival by artists such as Robert Motherwell and how it is still relevant for contemporary artists such as George Shaw and Diane Victor. There is no practical element to this course.

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £29.00 Senior fee £29.00 Concession £29.00
  6. Artist talk: Carol Justin Wilhide - A history of Japanese woodcut
    Course Date:  Tue 29 Jun 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    This inspiring talk by artist and printmaker Carol Wilhide Justin will introduce you to the fascinating history and development of Japanese ukiyo-e prints during the Edo period. Find out about how Japan was almost totally cut off from the rest of the world for almost 250 years and uncover the beauty of their ukiyo-e prints that were eventually opened up to the West in 1865. Discussing selected prints this conversation will explain how Japanese ukiyo-e prints electrified contemporary artists and paved the way for Modern Art.

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £5.00 Senior fee £5.00 Concession £5.00
  7. Artist talk: Bettina Reiber - Painting in the Wild
    Evening
    Course Date:  Thu 1 Jul 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    I paint outdoors. I go to wild places, the Alps, the rugged coast of Devon, caves where Stone Age people created their figurines and flutes 40,000 years ago. I connect with spirit, animals come and engage and teach me, I breathe the air, brave the storms and fall gladly into the expanse without losing my footing. From these immersions stem my paintings. Images come through that resonate with the web of life. Let me take you on a journey and show you my studios in the wild, paintings I create out there and let me give you a taste of the world view that informs my approach.



    I love sharing my passion for art, and teach occasionally at the City Lit, at Central St. Martins (UAL) and in my own capacity as a mentor and in group settings in the woods.

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £5.00 Senior fee £5.00 Concession £5.00
  8. Artist talk: Chris Gray: What is Art School? Education through the ages
    Evening
    Course Date:  Fri 2 Jul 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Art schools have changed dramatically from the Renaissance era of apprentices studying under the guise of the master to the liberal expressive freedoms that students enjoy today. In this talk, Artist Chris Gray will take you through the historical developments and transitions, presenting a lineage between these 2 seemingly separate worlds. Drawing on his own personal experiences as a student that moved from contemporary to traditional art education, this talk will truly highlight if there are lessons we can learn from the schools of old.

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £5.00 Senior fee £5.00 Concession £5.00
  9. Cyanotype printmaking in a day
    Course Date:  Fri 2 Jul 2021 (and 3 other dates)

    Location on this date:  KS - Keeley Street

    Cyanotype is a photographic printing process which produces a beautiful deep blue print from a variety of artwork, including drawings, photographs, physical objects or combinations of all of these. All levels welcome.

    This course takes place in the classroom, please follow this link to find out what we are doing to keep you safe: Staying COVID-19 secure at City Lit
    Full fee £79.00 Senior fee £79.00 Concession £79.00
    Rating:
    96% of 100
  10. Is meaning inevitable? Intention, action and interpretation
    Course Date:  Fri 2 Jul 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Does every creative act have meaning? Is there a statement – conscious or unconscious – inherent in everything we do as artists? Should we interpret or analyse what we see, what we do, what we’ve done? In this one-day workshop, we will examine a range of specific works, considering the question of whether and how meaning has been embedded (intentionally or otherwise) and can be identified and interpreted. This will, to some degree, touch on how individuals and societies make and ascribe meaning, perhaps as an attempt to process and come to terms with, for example, otherwise seemingly arbitrary events like a natural catastrophe or suffering. We will discuss and workshop these themes in the larger group, draw on examples presented, and the experiences of the members in the group. Other questions that may be considered include: discerning meaning as an attempt to find order in chaos, and whether or what we might lose by attempting to impose meaning, by attempting to explain within the confines of critical analysis, that which may, in fact, be critical to the character or intention of a work of art.

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £89.00 Senior fee £89.00 Concession £89.00
  11. Artist talk: Grant Smith - Photographing the City: Challenges and changes in the City of London
    Course Date:  Mon 5 Jul 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    A talk by Grant Smith, photographer and tutor at City Lit. Smith has been photographing the City of London over the last 30 years and has enjoyed different perspectives on our historic centre. With photographs of buildings from Wren to Rogers, this illustrated talk will take you on a visual journey through the City of London architecture.

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £5.00 Senior fee £5.00 Concession £5.00
  12. Artist talk: Suzanne Caines - Drawings/Installation of a meaningful location non-place
    Course Date:  Mon 5 Jul 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Conversations on meaningful locations transformed into drawings and large-scale installation pieces. This work was a durational project, where the studio-gallery/site-specific context became a live ‘laboratory’ for collaborative exploration. The exhibition was held at Saint Mary's Halifax Nova Scotia, Canada (2011) at the end of an artist’s residency. It makes visible elided histories and exposes marginal or oppressed experiences. Working with archives is one of the tactical moves in a strategy of decolonialisation; a political praxis-poesis to reclaim certain images and positions that would otherwise not be visible".

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £5.00 Senior fee £5.00 Concession £5.00
  13. Artist talk: Rosie James - Stitch Draw
    Course Date:  Mon 5 Jul 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Rosie James is a textile artist working with machine embroidery and screen printing to create narrative works. Focusing on crowds and figures, she uses stitch to create drawings, leaving loose threads and lines. She teaches all over the world running workshops, and at City Lit, running a masterclass in the summer.



    This talk looks at illustrative narrative in embroidery looking at all sorts of examples from the Bayeux tapestry to the work of contemporary textile artists.

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £5.00 Senior fee £5.00 Concession £5.00
  14. Artist talk: Tanvi Kant - Textile Tales: Personal and collective histories
    Evening
    Course Date:  Tue 6 Jul 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tanvi Kant’s textile jewellery practice began by unpicking the woven threads of her mother’s silk sari in 2004. Looking for ways to prolong the life of fabrics and clothing no longer worn she developed sculptural cords through wrapping, coiling, knotting and stitching. She began delivering workshops alongside solo exhibitions of her work and now has over 13 years’ experience in delivering workshops within a variety of settings including galleries, museums, higher education, women's charities and residential care homes. She has been a jewellery tutor with City Lit since 2013. Her practice demonstrates how readily available materials can be transformed with unashamedly simple techniques. In this illustrated talk, Tanvi will follow multiple threads traversing both personal and collective narratives that intersect with her practice. Join us this evening to hear and see how a sari in the mid-west of the USA, microscopic worlds, cotton spinning in Lancashire and an empowered social reformer in British India spin together in expected and unexpected ways.

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £5.00 Senior fee £5.00 Concession £5.00
  15. Reflecting on exhibitions: intention and experience
    Course Date:  Tue 6 Jul 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    How important is contextual knowledge when looking at art? To what extent, for example, do we need to understand the historical and political context of the time, or to know the biographical details of the artist? How do we apply such knowledge, and our own experience, in making informed subjective opinions of works of art?



    This workshop will build on some of these fundamental questions and assumptions, to examine how the visual arts are presented, and encountered. Alongside the context, environment, and design/production values of an exhibition, we will consider the target audience, visitor experience, accessibility, and so on. Beyond these questions, we will also consider a number of factors related to public policy and accountability. For example, how does the Arts Council assess the 'Artistic Quality' of the work it funds, and what are its criteria for assessing funded exhibitions, in terms of fulfilling their values (education, public engagement and access)?



    Referring to real case studies (either physical or virtual), the group will present and discuss experiences of visiting exhibitions or encountering works of art in specific contexts, and how these have informed, enlightened or affected individual thinking or practice, and served the needs of artist, exhibitor and audience.

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £89.00 Senior fee £89.00 Concession £89.00

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