Classical Art Atelier

Classical Art Atelier

Established in 2015, Adrian Cooke's Classical Art Atelier offers evening courses and weekend workshops in classical drawing and painting in the south of Ireland.

These courses are suitable for any artist or student who is interested in learning or improving their skills in drawing and painting. So whether you're a complete beginner, an art student, or a more experienced amateur or professional artist, this timeless 'classical' approach to drawing and painting will benefit you.

As well as prescribed exercises, students are given the freedom to choose their own subject matter to complete different exercises in method and technique. These courses and workshops are in group setting, but students will also receive one-to-one tuition tailored for their own individual work and level of ability.

The classical drawing courses aim to highlight the principles and practise the techniques underlying classical drawing and then apply what’s being learned to your own work. Each of the four key components of pictorial representation - design, line, value and form - are covered through a series of theory, exercise, and practical application.

Classical painting courses start in September 2017. Beginning with a review of key classical principles, you will start by working with grisaille - a monochrome oil medium - to understand and learn about composition and value. Slowly, colour will be introduced with warm-and-cool studies, until finally, you will be ready to handle a full palette of colours.

Classes include live demonstrations, slide and video presentations, and detailed hand-outs, which contain all of the images, diagrams, methods and techniques being covered. All materials are supplied, and each class includes a short break during which refreshments are provided.

"The careful study, the constant and repeated drawing of Bargue’s Cours de Dessin has given me more insight into figure drawing... What used to seem to me to be desperately impossible is now gradually becoming possible."

Vincent Van Gogh


Here's a list of our current courses and workshops from April to July 2017.
Please click on one of them to find out more.

# WORKSHOPS Duration Dates Venue Cost
>> Find Out More
2 Days Saturday 07 & Sunday 08 May 2017 Triskel Arts Centre,
Cork City
Fully Booked
>> Find Out More
2 Days Saturday 10 & Sunday 11 June 2017 Belltable Arts Centre,
Limerick City
€ 175
>> Find Out More
2 Days Saturday 08 & Sunday 09 July 2017 Wexford Arts Centre,
Wexford Town
€ 175
1 The next INTRODUCTION TO CLASSICAL DRAWING course begins in September 2017. Find Out More >>
2 The next CLASSICAL FIGURE/LIFE DRAWING course begins in September 2017. Find Out More >>
3 The next CLASSICAL PAINTING course begins in September 2017. Find Out More >>

Note: All materials and detailed hand-outs as well as refreshments are provided.
Classical Figure/Life Drawing courses include two hours with a live model every week.

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Courses & Workshops

Classical Drawing and Painting 2017

Introduction to Classical Drawing
10-Week Drawing Course
Classical Portrait Drawing
2-Day Weekend Workshop
Classical Figure/Life Drawing
10-Week Drawing Course
Introduction to Classical Painting
10-Week Painting Course NEW SEPTEMBER 2017
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The Atelier Method

Traditionally, the training a young artist received followed a set course, usually lasting four years, under the supervision and tutelage of a master artist at his atelier (or ‘studio’).

In the first year, the student apprentice copied master drawings and plaster casts using charcoal on paper. In year two, he would transfer his skills to live models. In year three, he would continue the same work but now using a black-and-white palette of oil paint known as grisaille, which allowed him to become acquainted with this new medium. Finally, in year four, he would use full palette of colour. This became known as ‘the atelier method’.

Until the mid to late nineteenth century, classical methods and techniques continued to be the standard by which art was taught and judged, and art academies modelled their tuition on this traditional atelier training.

Classical Drawing

Classical drawing is not so much a style but rather an approach to drawing that favours order, beauty, harmony and completeness. It follows principles that emerged from ancient classical civilizations and relies on methods and techniques that render subject matter in a realistic style. Perfected and codified during the Renaissance, these skills and ideas around design, line, value and form became the bedrock of artistic practice for many centuries.

Classical Realism

Although Modern Art triumphed over the academic style, many of its greatest figures - Van Gogh, Cézanne, Matisse, Picasso - were classically trained. In the 1960s, Classical Realism - a new style based on the old tradition - emerged, and since then there has been a growing resurgence of interest in these traditional methods and techniques of drawing and painting.


Read what some of our students say.

“I loved the class. It has given me a new lease of life, honestly, and I am seeing everything in a new light.”
“Fantastic class! Thank you for this amazing course and experience! You are a fabulous teacher!”
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Find out more and see which course or workshop suits you.

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