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Beginners Drawing

Beginners Drawing

Central Saint Martins
Taught by
Ilga Leimanis, Alice White


Drawing heavily on experimentation and individual development, this course will provide you with the fundamentals skills required for understanding drawing tools and approaches. Structured around the life model, the course will introduce materials and  techniques that are crucial for those who wish to carry on exploring painting and more advanced drawing techniques. It culminates with the study of combined practice, in which all acquired techniques are brought together, forming a basis for you to further develop your creativity.

Topics covered

  • Introducing drawing materials
  • Mark-making techniques
  • Studying human proportion
  • Building composition skills
  • Using drawing inks, both with the nib and the brush

Who should take this course?

  • Absolute beginners
  • Those keen to strengthen their portfolio application to further studies
  • Students with some previous experience wishing to reinvigorate their practice

Entry requirements: None

Level: Beginners


'The tutor was just great in every way - never failing to find some good even in my worst artistic attempts! She was inspirational, fun, helpful and extremely patient. Her explanations were clear and well explained. I would definitely return or another course. It was thoroughly enjoyable and I feel I have gained a lot of knowledge and helpful techniques to enable me to progress further as a fledgling artist - K W Fisher', May 2017.

'It was great to have 3 different life models for 3 of the sessions, and to spend one session at the British Museum. It was also really good to use different mediums and papers' - P Edwards, May 2017

Please note: This course is for students aged 18 and older

Tutor Description

Ilga Leimanis MA is a London-based artist and writer. She is a member of Five Years, an artist-run gallery, and her own practice is collaborative and interdisciplinary. Her teaching experience of 10 years is varied and extensive. She helps prepare students for degree courses and many of her previous students have gained places at their preferred schools. She also works with professionals looking to develop their communication and creativity skills, as well as people taking courses for personal interest.

Ilga delivers workshops for the University of the Arts (UAL) Academic Support department, working across six UAL art and design colleges. She teaches manual drawing skills for architects and engineers working at leading offices in London, including at Foster+Partners, and she also works internationally.

Ilga is author of three chapters in Creative Sketching Workshop, published by Apple Press (UK), North Light Books (North America) and Tan Yang International (Asia).

See Ilga's websites and

Alice White is a professional oil painter based in London. She has many years of experience teaching painting at Central Saint Martins. Courses that she teaches include Beginners Painting, Painting the Nude, Still Life and Contemporary Oil Painting.


Please bring with you to the first session:

  • You will need an A3 portfolio or tube to carry work home with you
  • Pad of A3 Paper - suitable both for drawing and watercolours
  • Pencils- H, HB, 2B, 4B, 6B
  • White chalk
  • Willow Charcoal sticks
  • Fixative Spray
  • Putty Rubber
  • Masking Tape
  • Dip Drawing Pen and various drawing nibs
  • Drawing Ink- Sepia, Brown Umber, or Black preferred
  • Round Wash Brush, large
  • A4 sheets of coloured paper- black, brown, or any dark colour preferred
  • Water Pot
  • A Palette
  • PVA Glue
  • Small sketch/note book
  • Piece of cloth or rag.

Available dates