Introduction to drawing portraits

Course Dates: 07/07/20 - 11/08/20
Time: 10:00 - 17:00
Location: KS - Keeley Street
Brian Sayers

Making portraits continues to fascinate artists, trying to capture appearance and personality in a single image. This course offers a solid introduction to drawing and the human head and some aspects of the figure in a variety of media with the aim of getting a 'likeness'.


What is the course about?

Explore portraiture through the wonderfully versatile medium of drawing. Drawing can provide quick and accessible methods to look at elements like structure, likeness and mark-making, independent from the skills particular to painting such as colour-mixing. Drawing is usually the basis for painting and this course would be ideal taken alongside or before a painting portraits course.

What will we cover?

We will learn practical techniques including the use of proportion, tone, how to convey structure and volume, expression and likeness. Looking at a variety of artists' work we will also learn how different mark-making techniques can produce lively and expressive drawings.

What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...

1) Draw the portrait head with improved accuracy
2) Understand how to use tone in drawing
3) Convey basic structure in the human head
4) Use a variety of drawing techniques for expressive effect.

What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?


You will receive regular feedback from your tutor throughout the course, as and when appropriate. At the end of the course you and your tutor are asked to assess the progress you have made.

How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?

Talks, practical work, demonstrations, individual tutoring and group discussion.
We will visit the National Gallery to draw from selected portraits.

Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?

All drawing materials are provided, although an A4 sketchbook is necessary for National Gallery visit and your work at home.

If you would like to buy art materials for your personal use outside of the course, Build students receive 10% discount off everything* from Cass Art, the UK's leading art supplies retailer. Your tutor will advise you on what you should buy. You will need to show your enrolment receipt in-store to receive your discount. Visit the Charing Cross shop at 13 Charing Cross Road WC2H 0EP or find your local shop at *Terms and conditions apply, visit

When I've finished, what course can I do next?

You may wish to enrol on any of the Portrait 1 Drawing and Painting courses which run throughout the year including during the Summer school, such as:
• "Portraits 1" VH497 – starting in September
• VH656, VM575, VM597 and VM791 in October
• VM720 in November
• VM498, VM632, VM599 and VM667 in January
• VM601 in February
• VM672 and VH502 in May
• VH759 and VM673 in June.


Customer Reviews 1 item(s)

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Reviews below are by students who have attended this course, regardless of the course teacher. Please be aware you may not be booking onto a course with the same teacher.

Highly recommend this course. The tutor is encouraging and an excellent teacher.
Course Rating
Review by Anonymous / (Posted on 04/06/2019)
Tutor Biographies
We’re sorry. We don’t have a bio ready for the tutor of this class at the moment, but we’re working on it! Watch this space.

Book your place

Course Code: VM672

Tue, day, 07 Jul - 11 Aug '20

Duration: 6 sessions (over 6 weeks)

Full fee: £399.00
Senior fee: £319.00
Concession: £243.00

Or call to enrol: 222-66-889-99

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Any questions? [email protected]
or call 020 7492 2700/2703

Please note: we offer a wide variety of financial support to make courses affordable. For more information visit our online Help Center. You can also visit the Information, Advice and Guidance drop-in service, open from 12 – 6.45, Monday to Friday.