Life drawing – beginners with Zara Drummond

Ref: S2D31605

Location: West Dean
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About this course

An introduction to the fundamental techniques of drawing as well as how to make a faithful representation of the figure.

Course Description

Drawing is the basis for all art, and this course is an introduction to the fundamental techniques of drawing, as well as how to make a faithful representation of the figure. The tutor will guide you through each stage of the process, starting with a few short model poses leading to longer poses.

On this structured course you will learn:

- How to observe and measure the figure to achieve accurate perspective

- Drawing with different mediums, including charcoal, pen and ink, plus different papers

- Light and shade (chiaroscuro) and how to use tonal differences

- Gesture and basic anatomy

- Observation techniques to help you get effective work down quickly

The tutor will demonstrate the different stages, and support you with one-to-one tuition and group discussion, to help you make the most of your course.

By the end of the course, you will have gained knowledge on different perspective techniques, on using different mediums, mark-making and brushwork, qualities and effects of different kinds of paper, and the use of light and shade. You will have completed studies of the figure, and improved your observation and drawing skills.


Arrival Day - this is the first date listed above

Courses start early evening. Residential students to arrive from 4pm, non-residential students to arrive by 6.45pm.

6.45pm: Welcome, followed by dinner (included).

8 - 9pm: First teaching session, attendance is essential.

Daily timetable

Classes 9.15 - 5pm, lunch is included.

From 6.30pm: Dinner (included for residential students).

Evening working - students may have access to workshops until 9pm, but only with their tutor's permission and provided any health and safety guidelines are observed.

Last day

Classes 9.15am - 3pm, lunch is included.

Residential students are to vacate their rooms by 10am please.

(This timetable is for courses of more than one day in length. The tutor may make slight variations)

Course Materials


  • The course fee includes the cost of providing a life model and some materials shared amongst the group, including some ink, willow charcoal, newsprint, cartridge paper, and some sanding paper. You may need to purchase more materials as required, such as paper, which will be available from the shop.

What students need to bring

  • Please bring any of the items listed above, if you have them.
  • Pen and nibs
  • Ink (e.g. sepia), if you wish to, although some Indian ink will be provided
  • Brushes for ink
  • A2 sketchpad
  • Charcoal (some will be provided), putty rubber and a plastic rubber
  • Chamois leather

Available to buy

  • Available from shop:
  • A good variety of art materials including pens and nibs, inks, sketchpads, charcoal pencils and charcoal, rubbers and any extra paper as required

Additional information

Please wear appropriate clothing/aprons for the workshop or studio. This includes stout covered footwear, i.e. no open-toes or sandals.


Zara Drummond

Zara Drummond changed career from award-winning Industrial Designer to Fine Artist after a riding accident. She re-trained at Chelsea College of Arts, and studied drawing at the Royal College of Arts. With paintings in private collections all over the world, Zara Drummond is best known for her portraits over the last twenty years.


Residential option available. Find out accommodation costs and how to book here.

Courses of interest

Further study options

Take the next step in your creative practice, with foundation level to Masters in Fine Art study. 

Depending on your experience, start with an Online Foundation Certificate in Art and Design (one year, part-time), a Foundation Diploma in Art and Design made up of 10 short courses taken over two years (part-time) or advance your learning with our BA (Hons) Art and Contemporary Craft: Materials, Making, and Place (six years part-time). All will help you develop core skills, find direction in your practice and build an impressive portfolio in preparation for artist opportunities or higher-level study. See all degree and diploma courses.