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Overview Continuing Studies / Portfolio Preparation Portraiture Sculpture Painting & Printmaking

Diploma in Portraiture

Sustained Courses in Portrait Painting

At the beginning of the 21st century, Britain stands pre-eminent in maintaining the tradition of portrait painting. Nowhere else in the world is this specialist art form a more significant feature of cultural life.

Portraiture is a record of individuals seen through the relationship between artist and sitter – a symbol and vehicle for the transmission of ideas and comment on the human condition.
Course Description
The Heatherley Diploma in Portrait Painting is a two year, full time course with an average attendance time of three days per week. The core projects of the course take place on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. In addition, there is a lecture programme. The majority of the course takes place in structured classes with a tutor. Work from the model is an integral part of the course activity. The aim of the course is to prepare students for professional practice as portrait and figurative painters. The emphasis of the course is on the practical application of techniques used in painting and drawing. In conjunction with this the discussion of ideas and philosophy of artists and art movements will help instil a profound understanding of the subject.

On completion of the course, students will have learnt to develop their ideas in a variety of media and to plan their work schedule. Experience will have been gained in understanding the artist/client relationship. There will be guidance in the presentation and marketing of work and self employment status for artists so that the fullest preparation is given to both the practical and business aspects of being a portrait painter. The Royal Society of Portrait Painters nominates one of its members as an external assessor.
The Society of Portrait Sculptors also acts as external assessor to the course.
Course Content
The main emphasis of study will be in drawn and painted images from the model using a wide variety of media. Printmaking, photography and work in three dimensions will constitute essential elements of the course. Human anatomy, methods and materials, history of portraiture, pictorial composition and the construction of pictorial space will also be studied. Usually three full days (Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday) will be devoted to a specific project, with additional time in drawing, lectures and research.
Admission Requirements
APPLICANTS FOR SEPTEMBER 2018: Interviews will be held during May 2018. Please complete the full time application form and post or email to the school by 7 May at the latest. You will then be contacted by the school.
Applicants need to be highly self-motivated and must bring a portfolio of recent work for interview. Work should reveal drawing and painting ability together with evidence of intelligent and imaginative visual exploration – not necessarily confined to portrait subject matter.
Successful applicants will be informed by 1 June.
Assessment and Tuition
Studio tuition will be supported by a personal tutorial every six weeks. Students will be required to produce some written work. There are two assessment stages during the course with the award of the Heatherley Diploma in Portraiture being dependent on a satisfactory second-year final assessment. The student will produce a body of work containing both course projects and ones devised personally. Tutors on the course include members of The Royal Society of Portrait Painters and National Portrait Gallery, John Player and BP Award winners. Students frequently exhibit at the Royal Portrait Society Show and at the National Portrait Gallery exhibition.

Term Dates

AUTUMN 2017 - 12 weeks
Monday 25 September - Saturday 16 December
SPRING 2018 - 11 weeks
Monday 8 January - Saturday 24 March
SUMMER 2018 - 13 weeks
Monday 16 April - Saturday 14 July
The school is closed bank holiday Mondays 7 May and 28 May 2018.
FEES 2017-18
1st Year £8,895
2nd Year £8,810

Days of Study: Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday 10am-4pm + additional life drawing class from 4.30pm-7pm either Tuesday or Wednesday.
FOR MORE INFORMATION or to arrange an interview please telephone:
020 7351 4190 or

Full Time Application Form
Download and complete the application form for full time courses at Heatherleys
About Heatherley's
Founded in 1845, The Heatherley School of Fine Art is one of the oldest independent art schools in London, and is among the few art colleges in Britain that focus on portraiture, figurative painting, printmaking, illustration and sculpture.
Heatherley’s is controlled by The Thomas Heatherley Educational Trust.
Registered Charity No. 312872
BAC Accredited
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Tel: 020 7351 4190
Fax: 020 7351 6945
75 Lots Road
SW10 0RN
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