Life Drawing: Subject and Object

In this course, the model and the object will jostle for position as the subject. From an open drawer in a Chardin painting to Tracey Emin’s unmade bed, objects in art are inextricably linked to human presence. Sometimes those objects take centre stage and sometimes they operate more subtly. This course explores the territory between drawing still life and working from the figure. Every two weeks there will be a new set-up with a model relating to a selection of objects. Each ‘peopled’ session will be immediately followed by the same scene recreated without the model. How do the objects change with this absence? How does the memory of the model’s interaction inform our new drawings? Symbolism, metaphor and narrative will be woven into the class with set-ups taking their inspiration from wide ranging sources, from film tableaus to contemporary poetry. Students will be encouraged to experiment with scale, pace and materials, and one-to-one feedback will guide individual responses. All levels welcome, including beginners.


Please note that Monday 6th and 27th May are bank holidays; no classes will be held.

Full-time BA students studying for a degree in Fine Art receive up to a 75% discount. Those studying on design or applied arts degrees may also be eligible on a case-by-case basis. Student ID and proof of enrollment must be submitted.

Full-time practising fine artists under 40 years of age in need of financial help may apply for a 75% discount on a maximum of two courses; applicants must submit a portfolio of ten drawings and fill in an application form which can be downloaded from the website. Please find the submissions dates here. Please contact the office in advance of submitting your application to reserve a place on your chosen course and check the portfolio submission dates. 

Primary and secondary school teachers who teach art receive a 50% discount; to apply participants must submit proof in the form of a letter from their head teacher or the head of the art department.

Individuals on job seekers allowance receive a 50% discount; to apply participants must submit proof that they are currently on the job seekers register.

Postgraduate alumni of the Royal Drawing School receive a 50% discount. 

Individuals who receive disability support are eligible for a 50% discount; to apply participants must submit proof that they are currently receiving this allowance.

Tower Hamlet and Hackney residents are eligible for a 25% discount; to apply participants must show proof of living in these boroughs. 

Individuals over the age of 60 may apply for a 10% discount.

All of our course rates are subsidised and we also offer a comprehensive concessions scheme. View all course fees and concessions.