‘Wish you were here?’ Summer School 2016

June 8, 2016

Avoid busy airports and congested roads this summer and exercise your imagination on a creative week drawing in London…


This summer we launch our ‘Wish you were here?’ Summer School 2016 staycation. With a wide-range of one or two-week intensive holiday courses running throughout July, this is your chance to immerse yourself in drawing, painting and printmaking with expert tuition from the Royal Drawing School. Combat the unpredictable British weather with courses which make the most of London out of doors, exploring hidden gardens and parks, galleries and museums, and our sun-lit studios in Shoreditch and South Kensington, each with their own unique history and architecture. Summer School 2016 offers the perfect “staycation”: an opportunity for friends and family of all ages and abilities to learn new creative skills together, exercise the imagination, and rediscover London.


drawing in london

As part of our ‘Wish you were here?’ staycation, we are calling on all students attending the holiday courses to enter our summer postcard drawing competition. We all know the ‘Wish you were here?’ moment, when you receive a postcard showing off a stunning vista or exotic location and turning you green with envy. But a postcard also prompts an imaginative leap: a vision of the sender in a destination far from home. Witty or whimsical, romantic or picturesque, the postcard and its image speak volumes… and you don’t have to leave London to send one.


Our competition takes inspiration from the touring exhibition of artists' postcards, Wish you were here? Artists’ Postcards from 1960 to today from Jeremy Cooper’s Collection. The collection features postcards from over 200 modern and contemporary artists including Richard Long, Bruce Nauman, Joseph Beuys, Yoko Ono, and Mark Wallinger, and reveals the variety of ways in which artists have appropriated the postcard as an artistic medium in itself. Ranging from collaged and manipulated images to original productions, in this collection the postcard functions as a frame for historical and social commentary, visual humour and experiment, and a promise of rare intimacy with the artist. 

postcards2         Richard Long, Richard J. Long. Sculpture [1968]; Paul Morton, Thatcher Therapy. Dot to Dot Puzzle No. 1 [1984]; Jeremy Deller, Mimesis [1994]; Gilbert & George, Human Sculpture and Gentlemen [1972]; Julie Cockburn, Always You [2010]; Richard Hamilton, Reminder [1979] (top left to right, clockwise)   

So this summer make the most of drawing in London and use this small scale but exciting space for creative experiment. Pick up a postcard from the Royal Drawing School or find one enclosed within the pages of the Summer School 2016 flyer. Send your signed postcard drawing to Royal Drawing School Shoreditch before 29 August. The three best postcard drawings will win a free drawing course in the autumn term and their drawings will feature in an online exhibition. 

You won’t fail to find inspiration for your postcard drawing at the Royal Drawing School Summer School. Join The Drawing Marathon, one of the highlights from our summer holiday programme, where students eat, breathe and sleep drawing for one or two weeks. Taught by a range of specialist tutors, this course offers a wide range of classes in and around London and in our Shoreditch studios. Open to all abilities, over 100 people joined this intense and immersive marathon last year.

Painting in the Park 2

Craving inspiration from the natural world? You don’t need to leave London to explore the diverse ways in which flowers have been represented in Western and Eastern art and poetry on our new course, ‘Inspired by Flora: From Botanical Gardens to Persian Carpets, Matisse and O’Keeffe’. Students will draw flowers from life at Kew Gardens and in the studio, and from art at major summer exhibitions, including the Georgia O’Keeffe retrospective at Tate Modern. This course offers a journey from East to West, and from antiquity to the present, taking in flowers in the work of Persian poet Hafiz, Indian miniature painting, English Jacobean embroidery, and artist-poets including William Morris and David Jones. For another drawing adventure in London’s green spaces, join our new ‘Painting in the Park’ course, where Royal Tour landscape painter James Hart Dyke will provide on-to-one tuition in en plein air oil painting in Kensington Gardens, taking inspiration from art history’s greatest landscape painters, from Constable to Richard Diebenkorn.

Flora Jenny Smith                                                        Drawing by Jenny Smith

Do you have a story to tell this summer? Drawing Comics and Graphic Novels is a course for even the most seasoned of yarn spinners. This is an ideal introduction to graphic storytelling, offering guidance on everything from choosing tools to generating ideas, and contemporary examples will be used as a starting point for exploring the huge potential of the form. Drawing from life, imagination and memory, by the final day students will have drawn and inked their own graphic short story. This is also an opportunity to for those with projects already underway to experiment with technique and receive feedback.

 For the full programme or to book a course click here. Courses cost between £285 - £350, and are open to all ages and abilities.


'Wish you were Here' Postcard Competition
Royal Drawing School Shoreditch
19-22 Charlotte Road, London, EC2A 3SG                                                                                                                     Closing date for entries: 29 August

postcard comp

‘Wish you were here? Artists’ Postcards from 1960 to today from Jeremy Cooper’s Collection’ tours The Atkinson, Southport, MAC Birmingham, The Granary Gallery Berwick Upon Tweed, and Hestercombe House, before its donation to the British Museum Prints and Drawings Department in 2018.