Studio Portrait Course

19th – 23rd August 2019 – Book Your Place

Portrait of Jen Morris by Christopher Clements

Book Your Place

Learn how create well designed studio portraits by working through essential compositional elements.

A studio portrait is more considered than a study or sketch with particular attention to composition. This course will help you develop your portrait studies into studio portraits while learning a working process suitable for commissioned work. Christopher Clements will show you how to work though compositional elements in a structured way to design a finished studio portrait.

You’ll work through a structured approach including:

  • Mapping out initial ideas
  • Experimenting with variations
  • Working up a compositional study
  • Creating a working drawing
  • Executing a final piece

Studio Portrait Course Outline

Ideas and Development

Firstly you’ll explore a number of compositional ideas on a small scale. You’ll start by sketching ideas in pencil or charcoal then paint. You’ll make tonal and colour studies investigating:

  • Compositional Armature
  • Tonal Distribution
  • Visual Rythym
  • Colour balance and vitality
  • Scale and mood

Compositional Study

Bringing together the best of your initial ideas you’ll create a quarter scale compositional study for your final painting. The purpose of this is to get an overall idea of the finished piece but without out any detail. You’ll finalise your colour design and check that the overall idea is working properly. A study like this would be used to demonstrate your idea to a client if you were working to commission.

Working Drawing

Having worked out your composition you’ll make a full size working drawing, traditionally known as a ‘cartoon’.  This is where you’ll finalise the design in more detail using a grid and armature to check your accuracy and allow you to transfer the design to a canvas for the final painting.

Final Portrait

Having transferred the working drawing to canvas you’ll execute the final piece in three main stages. Firstly a block in of the main values and colours, this will resemble your compositional study. You’ll then paint in all the overall modelling, colour variation, accents, reflected light, smaller forms and features. Finally, with all the main elements in place, you’ll take your portrait to a finish. You’ll concentrate on the variety of lost and found edges as well as texture and detail to create a sense of focus in your completed portrait.

Studio Portrait Course Outcome

By the end of the course you will have a worked through a process designed to help you develop your portraiture in an organised way. This will help you use portrait studies and sketches as a starting point for more developed formal portraits.

If your goal is to work professionally, It will also provide you with a structure for commissioned work. Understanding what is involved will allow you to gauge how much time and effort a commission will involve, therefore helping you to realistically quote for your work.

The course only has seven places meaning there’s a lot of individual tuition and you can work at your own level a pace. You can use charcoal or oil paint depending on your experience and personal goals.

Essential Info & Booking

Dates: 19th-23rd August 2019 – Book Your Place

Course Length: 30 Hours over 5 Days

Hours: 09:45-16:30

Location: Northern Realist Studio, Manchester –  Map

Materials, Charcoal, Monochrome or Colour Oil Paint (Can be provided) – Use Contact form to request lists

Price : £375 Booking: Reserve your place on Eventbrite