Alice Neel is masterly at making the dress her sitters wear tell their story. Nice slithery paint, no sense of deliberate, sloppy carelessness, it is the reverse and it comes out of the profoundest thought and attention to the sitters’ life. We understand them from their stripes, 70s trousers and frocks. I so admire her paintings of Harlem and its people. Hilton Als writes on her exhibition at Victoria Miro 2017, “Alice Neel’s paintings fight against the status quo’s determined stance to forget the living whom they feel contribute nothing to their lives, even as they make so much life around them.” This class devotes itself to drawing dress, thereby creating identity and narrative. We respond to contemporary performances of film, dance and opera and reference current gallery exhibitions in London from Bonnard to Sorolla and Rego. Each week, we have a different model. Textile history is included; clothes are theatrical, fantastical and even absurd. Our models are actors, dancers and designers. Some days there will be an all-day pose, other sessions will be shorter.

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.