Introduction to still-life in pastels

Course Dates: 29/04/25 - 13/05/25
Time: 10:00 - 17:00
Location: Keeley Street
Explore a variety of techniques and approaches to making a still-life in pastels. Learn how to mix pastels on paper, choose suitable materials and supports to allow you to create a finished pastel drawing.
Book your place
In stock
Full fee £279.00 Senior fee £223.00 Concession £181.00
Choose a start date

Introduction to still-life in pastels
  • Course Code: VH361
  • Dates: 29/04/25 - 13/05/25
  • Time: 10:00 - 17:00
  • Taught: Tue, Daytime
  • Duration: 3 sessions (over 3 weeks)
  • Location: Keeley Street
  • Tutor: Ro Sylvester

Course Code: VH361

Choose a start date  

Tue, day, 29 Apr - 13 May '25

Duration: 3 sessions (over 3 weeks)

Please note: We offer a wide variety of financial support to make courses affordable. Just visit our online Help Centre for more information on a range of topics including fees, online learning and FAQs.

What is the course about?

Starting with an introduction to materials and techniques such as blending and overlaying you will then go on to make a series of studies exploring tone, colour and composition. You will draw inspiration from contemporary and historical artist’s approaches to still-life , helping you develop your own ideas and a more personal response to the subject. Having experimented with ideas and techniques you will be ready to make your final drawing.

What will we cover?

- A brief history including the properties and uses of chalk pastels
- Contemporary and historical artists using chalk pastels and their approaches
- Mark making and drawing techniques used to create different visual effects
- Colour mixing using a variety of techniques
- Composition building methods.

What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...

- Use a variety of mark making techniques
- Apply a colour system to create stronger drawings
- Build a composition using a variety of drawing approaches
- Select and explore suitable subject matter and supports for pastel projects
- Produce a still life pastel drawing from observation.

What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?

This course is suitable for all levels.

You should be able to follow simple written and verbal instructions which support demonstrations, hand-outs and for health and safety information, and will be invited to take part in group discussion.

How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?

You will be taught through practical exercises, some demonstrations, brief individual tutoring and some group discussion.

Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?

All drawing materials are provided. If you have your own chalk pastels, pastel pencils or soft pastels please do bring them along. If you want to experiment with pastel papers you’re welcome to bring some with you.

When I've finished, what course can I do next?

VH476 Mixed media drawing and collage
VH400 Start drawing, VH407 Drawing 1
VM501 Drawing into painting
VH743 Drawing: focus on tone
VH660 Draw, paint print.

Ro Sylvester

Ro Sylvester is a veteran of film and theatre, having made costume and props for productions such as ‘Hellraiser’ and ‘Legend’ back in the ‘80s. She ran a costume studio in Covent Garden for some time, supplying the Opera House and other West End Theatres with costumes and props. Ro also made many props and costumes for pop videos including Eddie Grant, Supertramp and New Order. From the early ‘90s, she worked in secondary and 6th form teaching, delivering exam courses in Design Technology, Textiles, Graphics, Computer Graphics and Model Making. Having retired from secondary teaching in 2017, Ro has worked to private commission in retail display, commercials and theatre. She has also worked as a tutor at City Lit, teaching; Model Making, Prop Making, Perspective, Pastel drawing and general creativity skills. She continues to create bespoke lightweight jewellery, window displays and props for theatre and film. Ro runs a lively and fast moving classroom, helping students to explore their potential and progress onto other courses where applicable. You can see much of her work and that of her students on her website.

Please note: We reserve the right to change our tutors from those advertised. This happens rarely, but if it does, we are unable to refund fees due to this. Our tutors may have different teaching styles; however we guarantee a consistent quality of teaching in all our courses.