Drawing, Illustration, Life and Portrait Adult Learning Courses

About this subjectDrawing

Explore a variety of drawing, sketching, illustration, life and portrait courses. All courses use a variety of mediums.

You will work with our expert tutors. They will teach you to use line, tone, composition, size, and perspective to great effect.

We also offer a variety of painting courses.

Our courses run over a period of weeks for a term. We have three terms in the year from September to July plus short courses at the start of summer. We also offer more specific one-day workshops throughout the year.

Enrolments open every term in March, July and November. If courses have already started you may still be able to join so please contact us.

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Course levels

  • Introduction courses will give you a taste of subject. You can then progress to a longer course.
  • Beginners courses are for those with no previous experience. They would also suit anyone who would like to refresh there basic skills.
  • Improvers courses are for those with some previous experience. They would suit anyone wishing to develop their skills further.
  • Advanced courses are for those who have lots of previous experience. They would suit anyone who can work independently. But, still want the support and guidance of a tutor to improve.
  • Mixed Ability courses are suitable for those with any level of previous experience.

Saturday and one day workshops

Workshops are short courses on a particular area. They are usually one day or less.

Saturday and one day workshops


We offer drawing for all abilities and life and portrait drawing. We also offer themed workshops. They cover urban sketching, drawing with painting, and illustration. All courses cover principles such as line, tone, colour, composition, proportion and perspective. You will be working from observation and photos.

Drawing courses


Learn how to draw and bring your creative ideas to life. Find your style. Do this through briefs where you explore different areas of illustration, from books to framed artwork to editorial. Courses introduce different colour media through a hands-on, non-digital approach.

Illustration courses

Life drawing

Develop and refine your observational skills. Practise to gain fluency in depicting the human form. Work directly from live models (clothed and unclothed) . Use a range of techniques and materials including pen, pencil, charcoal, and pastels.

Life drawing courses

Drawing and painting (watercolour, acrylic and oil)

Learn a range of techniques and methods of drawing and painting. Gain confidence through using sketchbooks, photographs, found images and direct observation. We offer a variety of classes. There is the opportunity to use acrylics and/or watercolour or oil and acrylics. You will learn oil and acrylic painting techniques. You will also learn about the use of materials and tools, the use of a sketchbook, direct observation, colour, tonal values ad composition.

Drawing and painting courses


Learn how to draw and sketch, focusing on drawing the natural world around us. Learn the basic principles of observational drawing and sketching. You will use line, tone, form, perspective, and composition. You will also learn how to use various dry mediums. These include graphite and coloured pencils, charcoal, pens and soft pastels.

Sketching courses

Discounts and support with fees

We have many discounts and fee support options. These include money off your first course if you are a library member, Surrey Heritage user, or over 66.

We include a small charge in the fees. It covers the cost of materials used by tutors for demonstrations. The fee does not include the cost of materials and equipment used by learners, unless stated otherwise. If you have any questions, please ask when enrolling. We advise you not to buy extra materials for a course until your enrolment is confirmed.

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