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. 

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

We host exhibitions throughout the year at City Lit Gallery where our students showcase their amazing work.

Any questions? Contact our visual arts team on visual.arts@citylit.ac.uk

Courses available both in-person and online

We offer a range of courses allowing you to choose between online and in-person learning. All our courses are live, interactive, and taught by expert tutors. No matter how you prefer to learn, we've got the class for you. See our guide to online learning for more information about accessing our live online courses.

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  1. The design brief
    Course start date:  Tue 7 Feb 2023

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Andrew McCarten
    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, sometimes, 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. Basic materials will be provided, but you are welcome to bring and use your own as well.
    Full fee £69.00 Senior fee £69.00 Concession £69.00
  2. Sketching at the museum: National Gallery
    Course start date:  Thu 9 Feb 2023 (and 1 other date)

    Location on this date:  Off Site

    Tutors:  Diane Martin
    Explore the pleasure and challenge of sketchbooks: learn and improve your drawing skills and ‘ways of seeing’ and understanding by working from some of the iconic paintings in the National Gallery.
    Full fee £59.00 Senior fee £59.00 Concession £59.00
  3. Is meaning inevitable? Intention, action and interpretation
    Course start date:  Fri 10 Feb 2023

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Lily Markiewicz
    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.
    Full fee £69.00 Senior fee £69.00 Concession £69.00
  4. Creative arts for bookbinding II: leather dyeing techniques
    Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 11 Feb 2023

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Sue Doggett
    Spend a day experimenting with leather dye and dyeing techniques. You will be introduced to different dye types, methods of applying dye and a range of creative techniques such as resist, crackle and speckling, to use on bookbinding and other leather projects. Suitable for beginners.
    Full fee £69.00 Senior fee £69.00 Concession £69.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  5. Art and creative thinking with Rod Judkins
    Weekend
    Course start date:  Sun 12 Feb 2023 (and 1 other date)

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Rod Judkins
    Art is fundamentally about communicating ideas. If the idea is strong, the work of art is memorable.



    This exciting, one day workshop, led by Rod Judkins (artist, tutor and author of ‘The art of Creative thinking’ and ‘Ideas are your only currency’) will explore methods to create ideas and concepts and combine them with the process of making.
    Full fee £89.00 Senior fee £89.00 Concession £89.00
  6. 50 drawings in a day
    Course start date:  Mon 13 Feb 2023 (and 3 other dates)

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Charles Chambers
    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.
    Full fee £89.00 Senior fee £89.00 Concession £89.00
    Rating:
    94% of 100
  7. Photography colour management: 1 day masterclass
    Course start date:  Tue 14 Feb 2023

    Location on this date:  Kean Street Photography Studio

    Tutors:  Matthew Ward
    On this intense one day workshop in graphic arts and photography colour management, learn how to achieve consistent digital colour output for web and print.
    Full fee £59.00 Senior fee £47.00 Concession £59.00
  8. Reflecting on practice
    Course start date:  Tue 14 Feb 2023

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Marcus Richards
    “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.
    Full fee £69.00 Senior fee £69.00 Concession £69.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  9. Cyanotype printmaking in a day
    Course start date:  Thu 16 Feb 2023 (and 4 other dates)

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Adam Hogarth
    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.
    Full fee £89.00 Senior fee £89.00 Concession £89.00
  10. Digital fundamentals: imaging for print and 2D
    Course start date:  Fri 17 Feb 2023

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Rolina Elsje Blok
    As artists and designers, we generally tend to observe a number of fundamental 'rules' when working with digital media for print-based or other forms of 2D output. These relate to steps or settings for proceses such as scanning, saving, resolution, image or data format, colour modes, compression... To a certain extent, much of this is received knowledge, and we don't necessarily know why we follow these rules. Knowing what they are based on, and why, is, however, fundamental to technical proficiency, and expertise, and knowing what these principles are based on allows us not only to produce work to professional standard, but also to exploit them to their full creative potential. This workshop will be of value to any visual artist who uses digital technology in their creative practice, from painters and printmakers to photographers and graphic designers. Coverage includes: principles and concepts underpinning digital imaging for print/static delivery: pixel/vector; resolution, scalability, application; acquisition, modes, formats and real-world constraints; file sizes/compression/data integrity; relation to physical output (size, resolution, process).
    Full fee £69.00 Senior fee £69.00 Concession £69.00
  11. Scanning photography negatives, transparencies and prints
    Course start date:  Tue 21 Feb 2023 (and 1 other date)

    Location on this date:  Kean Street Photography Studio

    Tutors:  Dominic Harris
    Do you have boxes of old prints, negatives or transparencies gathering dust that you'd love to have digitised? Learn how to get your archive onto your computer using different methods from flatbed and film scanners to a digital camera.
    Full fee £89.00 Senior fee £89.00 Concession £89.00
  12. Sketching at the museum: Tate Britain
    Course start date:  Wed 22 Feb 2023

    Location on this date:  Off Site

    Tutors:  Mario Lautier Vella
    Explore the pleasure and challenge of sketchbooks: learn and improve your drawing skills and ‘ways of seeing’ and understanding by working from some of the iconic artworks at Tate Britain.
    Full fee £59.00 Senior fee £59.00 Concession £59.00
  13. Watercolour painting: artists and techniques
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 23 Feb 2023 (and 1 other date)

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Paul Dixon
    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 £99.00 Concession £99.00
  14. Beauty photography: 1 day masterclass
    Course start date:  Fri 24 Feb 2023

    Location on this date:  Kean Street Photography Studio

    Tutors:  Ed Gregory
    This is ideal as a first step into the specialism of beauty photography. This is a practical course. You will be working with the lighting and equipment that is associated with beauty photography. By the end of the one day course you will be well on the way to creating your first beauty image.
    Full fee £89.00 Senior fee £89.00 Concession £89.00
  15. Collage: colour and shape
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Tue 28 Feb 2023 (and 1 other date)

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Mario Lautier Vella
    This short online contemporary collage course will explore the possibilities of working with collage and mixed media – from creating simple, striking forms through to more experimental pieces that combine materials and techniques. Discover how collage has inspired a number of artists and how you to make it work exciting and dynamic work for you and others.



    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 £99.00 Concession £99.00

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