Portrait Drawing | Masterclass

Create a fully-realised portrait drawing on this five day Short Course.

Date & Time

Multiple Dates | Monday to Friday | 10.00-17.00


LARA London
371 Clapham Road
London SW9 9BT
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In just five days you will learn and apply the fundamental principles of drawing from the live portrait model. You will leave this Masterclass with a finished portrait drawing which you can frame or submit to a number of open call exhibitions.

During this course you will be using the sight-size technique, an effective way of measuring and assessing your work, to create an accurate and realistic portrait with a great likeness.

As well as giving you a solid grounding in drawing, this course will take you through the key concepts in portraiture. Many students take this course as a stand-alone experience but you may wish to consider using it as a stepping-stone to a Portrait Painting Masterclass.

This course requires a minimum number of enrolments to run.

Aims of this Course

This course will address:

  • Proportions of the head and face
  • Value and tones
  • Composition
  • Using the sight-size technique
  • Drawing techniques
  • Recreating the effect of light on paper

The Facilities

The Workshop Room is located within the main studio, allowing for the use of the facilities of the full-time school.

Each portrait model is lit with individual high-quality professional CRI light options, all the way from soft to hard artificial lights of differing temperature. The results are the truest skin tones and the recreation of lighting conditions used in atelier studios for centuries. Our lighting set-ups provide you with a steady, unchanging environment from which to observe all elements of portrait drawing.

Each class is limited to 8 students working from two models in sight-size.


Please bring the following materials with you. Items marked with an asterisk are stocked in the LARA shop. Please call ahead if you would like to reserve items to ensure availability.

  • Nitram charcoal* – H, B, HB
  • Faber Castell White Pitt pencil*
  • Faber Castell putty rubber*
  • Masking tape*
  • Fixative spray* – for use outside only
  • 1 sheet of pre-toned Arches watercolour paper per student* (provided)
  • White mirror*
  • Black mirror*
  • Plumb-line* You can read how to make your own plumb-line here: http://www.aristidesatelier.com/blog/making-plumb-line (provided)

And these items are useful, although not necessary:

  • Mahl Stick*
  • Paper stubs
  • A sturdy portfolio for you to carry your work home


“Sofia’s observation and guidance was very informative” – Peter Faulkner, Portrait Drawing Masterclass student 2018

“Sofia was always on hand to support and encourage everyone” – Linda Green, Portrait Drawing Masterclass student 2018

Learn from the best tutors

Sofia Welch

"Studying at LARA enabled me to acquire the fundamental visual skills, and gave me the confidence in both my work and myself to pursue a career I had always dreamed of."


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