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.

Some of our courses take place in the classroom — learn more about Staying COVID-19 secure at City Lit.

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  1. Reflecting on practice
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 9 Dec 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    “What is your work about?” is a question many artists struggle to answer easily. The cycle of activity and reflection is a fundamental principle of creative practice, in which, as part of any attempt to address this question in any meaningful way, it is valuable to develop a paradigm for articulating one’s motivations, interests, processes and practices. Examining and analysing these points supports the creative practitioner in defining their areas of concern, and leads to deeper understanding, which is helpful in articulating a position to explain, support or contextualise one’s practice, or to define specific research questions. That said, there is perhaps something of a paradox inherent in articulating visual thoughts in words. This professional practice module is designed to support artists in identifying where and how to begin articulating concepts, defining appropriate contextual frameworks, and identifying suitable comparators. By the end of this workshop, you will be able to define your interest and identify further appropriate research into specific themes, questions and areas of interest, culture or knowledge – all in order better to understand and explain what you do, and why.



    For this workshop, please prepare to show a piece of work from your own practice that you consider to be unsuccessful, or alternatively a piece of work (in any creative medium) that you do not like, or do not understand.



    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
  2. Printmaking in a day: photographic screenprinting
    Last Few Places, Weekend
    Course start date:  Sun 12 Dec 2021 (and 5 other dates)

    Location on this date:  KS - Keeley Street

    On this fast paced 1 day printmaking workshop, you will be taught how to register and print a four-layer CMYK screen print. Screenprinting is a highly creative and interesting process, recreating photographs and other digital artwork with endless possibilities. You will learn all the basics of screenprinting alongside some basic Photoshop skills in how to prepare your artwork. 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 £89.00 Senior fee £89.00 Concession £89.00
  3. The artist's statement
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Wed 15 Dec 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Building on the ability to reflect on one’s own practice, and the identification of interests, themes and relevant contexts, this professional practice module is designed to help visual arts practitioners to develop the ability to talk or write about their own work in coherent ways, and to articulate their intention, meaning or reflection in declarative or discursive statements. All artists are required to make statements at certain times, whether for exhibition, application for funding or study. In this session, we examine and discuss approaches to constructing a statement, based on specific requirements, and how to write or speak about one's work in terms of target audience, level of knowledge, and the length and depth required to articulate what work means and how it relates to ideas, themes and contexts. Although open to anyone on a standalone basis, this workshop will be of particular value to those who have completed 'Reflecting on practice' (VPP410).



    For this workshop, please select an image that you feel illustrates your 'subject'. This needn't necessarily be heavy on content, or meaning, you should just be able to make a connection between the work, and what you intend it to communicate.



    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
  4. Cyanotype printmaking in a day
    Course start date:  Thu 17 Feb 2022 (and 5 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 £89.00 Senior fee £89.00 Concession £89.00
  5. Explore life drawing
    Weekend
    Course start date:  Sun 13 Feb 2022 (and 3 other dates)

    Location on this date:  KS - Keeley Street

    Try drawing the unclothed life model from observation; you’ll be guided by an experienced tutor through simple exercises to draw proportion, gain confidence and explore different drawing materials.



    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
  6. Explore watercolour painting
    Course start date:  Wed 16 Feb 2022 (and 1 other date)

    Location on this date:  KS - Keeley Street

    Experience the radiant qualities of watercolour painting. Through simple exercises, we'll explore watercolour techniques and mediums. The perfect way to start using watercolour. Suitable for absolute beginners. Tutor: Diane Martin.



    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
  7. Funding for artists and designers: how to make a strong application
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Wed 9 Feb 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Thinking about funding is more closely related to thinking about your practice than you might imagine. This workshop looks at how to get ready to apply for public funding so that when you come to writing, all the planning has been done and your idea has improved in the process! We will examine how funding will help you to develop your work, in the short, but also medium and long term, and how to find the sweet spot between what you want to do and what the funders are looking for. Public funding means that our work has to have a public benefit, so we need to show how it does this. The challenge of funding can make you reconsider your project in exciting ways. We will look at applying for Arts Council England project grants, partnerships and a quick look at local trusts and foundations. Finding a fit between your need and funding criteria is key; from there we will look at how to write an application to make a compelling argument.



    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
  8. A short introduction to free editing software
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Mon 14 Feb 2022 (and 1 other date)

    Location on this date:  Online

    You don’t have to spend money to get editing. This is a short introduction to video editing using DaVinci Resolve, a free but highly professional editing package comparable to Final Cut X, Avid and Premiere Pro. Please note: the Da Vinci Resolve software needs to be downloaded and tested before the first class.



    https://www.blackmagicdesign.com/uk/products/davinciresolve/whatsnew



    The software is not suitable for use with a phone, tablet, iPad and some older computers.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £99.00 Senior fee £79.00 Concession £60.00
  9. The design brief
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Tue 15 Feb 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    This workshop provides a forum for exploring and discussing the process (and sometimes challenges) of working with clients over a commercial design brief or commission. While some design briefs are relatively straightforward, and perhaps require a simple rendering of the client's vision, at other times the client can be unsure of what they actually want, and it can be a frustrating, uncertain and time-consuming process for the designer to identify and produce a solution to what is, perhaps, a poorly-defined question. Referring to real-life examples and case-studies, this workshop will take learners through the process of making a pitch, deconstructing a brief to be certain of what the client wants and needs (and whether these are same thing), presenting proposals, and working within time, resource and financial constraints. These are invaluable skills for the design professional that are equally applicable, for the student, to project briefs and coursework.



    For this workshop, you will need to have access to A3 or A4 plain paper, and a range of coloured marker pens, as well as a notebook.



    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
  10. Is meaning inevitable? Intention, action and interpretation
    Course start date:  Tue 15 Feb 2022

    Location on this date:  KS - Keeley Street

    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 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 £89.00 Senior fee £89.00 Concession £89.00
  11. Scanning photography negatives, transparencies and prints
    Course start date:  Tue 22 Feb 2022

    Location on this date:  PS - Photography Studio

    This technical workshop in photography, will provide you with the skills and equipment required to digitise old prints, negatives or transparencies that you may have. Learn how to get your physical photographic archives onto your computer using different methods from flatbed and film scanners to a digital camera.



    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
  12. Focus on: the art of Siena
    ONLINE, Weekend
    Course start date:  Sun 27 Feb 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    The golden panels of the Sienese masters are immediately identifiable but why was their work so different? Today we explore the art of Siena, its world, its symbolism and how it was made.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £69.00 Senior fee £55.00 Concession £42.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  13. Watercolour painting: colour mixing techniques
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Mon 28 Feb 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    This online Watercolour course will introduce you to different approaches to mixing and working with your palette of watercolours. You will also explore textural mark making and how to use colour in your work to showcase details. Build confidence in mixing colours, understanding how to work with a lmited palette and create beautiful watercolour work.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £99.00 Senior fee £79.00 Concession £60.00
  14. Creative arts for bookbinding I: decorative paper techniques
    Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 11 Dec 2021

    Location on this date:  KS - Keeley Street

    Try out a range of decorative techniques for paper including paste papers, dip dyed papers, rubber stamps and Japanese marbling for bookbinding use or as individual pieces. 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:
    100% of 100
  15. Make a willow basket in two evenings
    Course start date:  Tue 14 Dec 2021

    Location on this date:  KS - Keeley Street

    Make a small bread or fruit basket over two evening sessions. Suitable for beginners as an introduction to traditional willow basketry techniques, or for those with some experience wanting to refresh their skills.



    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:
    90% of 100

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