Skip to main content
Smithsonian Associates - Entertaining, Informative, Eclectic, Insightful

Studio Arts: Drawing Classes

Studio Arts Course
Saturday, October 9, 2021 - 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. ET

Impressionist artists favored working in the vibrant medium of pastel because of its luminosity and color-layering effects. Working in the U.S. National Arboretum, capture the colors of nature and the interaction of light and shadows using Cezanne’s color-blocking style to produce brilliant and subtle effects. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1/2 credit)

Studio Arts Course
Saturday, October 9, 2021 - 1:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. ET

The nation’s capital is a perfect place to draw outdoors. It’s filled with countless subjects: magnificent monuments and memorials, exquisite architecture, numerous parks, and neighborhoods. Bring your sketchpad and explore the city’s sites with instructor Paul Glenshaw.

Studio Arts Course
Tuesday, October 12, 2021 - 10:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. ET

Popular theory on right-side brain activity holds that the right brain is primarily responsible for the intuitive understanding of visual and spatial relationships. Designed to improve the way people see and record objects on paper, a set of visual exercises helps build the ability to draw. If you doubt your artistic ability or were told as a child that you could not draw, this is your opportunity to challenge that perception.

Studio Arts Course
Tuesday, October 12, 2021 - 6:30 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. ET

Learn to see like a scientist as you use watercolor and ink to illustrate specimens from nature. Gain confidence in observing form while documenting and interpreting what you see.

Studio Arts Course
Wednesday, October 13, 2021 - 1:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. ET

Get a grounding in the basics of this exciting medium in a course that will have you painting in vibrant new colors—and perhaps developing ideas for your other works. Group technique demonstrations and one-on-one instruction are part of the class, which welcomes both beginners and seasoned artists.

Studio Arts Course
Wednesday, October 13, 2021 - 6:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. ET

This workshop is designed for students interested in sharpening their figure drawing skills by focusing on the most challenging and expressive details of the human figure. Working from photographs, students employ both wet and dry media to experiment with line, modeling, foreshortening, structure, expression, and varied rates of drawing.

Studio Arts Course
Saturday, October 16, 2021 - 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. ET

Create a personal and powerful record of experiences by drawing and painting moments from your life that you include in your sketchbook.

Studio Arts Course
Sunday, October 17, 2021 - 10:15 a.m. to 12:45 p.m. ET

This course, a valuable introduction for beginners, teaches the basic skills needed as a strong foundation for drawing.

Studio Arts Course
Sunday, October 17, 2021 - 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. ET

For centuries, religious and secular Islamic manuscripts have contained beautiful geometric decorations. Explore the history and construction of these traditional designs with Sughra Hussainy, a graduate of Turquoise Mountain Institute in Kabul, Afghanistan. 

Studio Arts Course
Wednesday, November 3, 2021 - 6:30 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. ET

Learn the fundamentals of drawing the human body through an exploration of the skeleton, planes of motion, gesture, musculature, and other key elements. Virtual anatomy software, a digital figure drawing site, and a variety of props allow students to discover how to convey motion.

Studio Arts Course
Saturday, November 6, 2021 - 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. ET

The jewel-like pigment of soft pastels is perfect for capturing the glow of sunlight as it illuminates the landscape. Guided by a master pastel painter, create artworks as you learn the medium’s techniques and nuances.

Studio Arts Workshop
Thursday, November 18, 2021 - 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. ET

Learn a mindful-drawing approach to botanical sketching. This workshop emphasizes freedom to interpret botanicals with line sketching by observing the geometric and organic shapes of plants.

Studio Arts Course
Tuesday, November 30, 2021 - 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. ET

Use traditional botanical illustration techniques such as continuous tone, parallel line, and scumble to build 3D shading and texture, to create a realistic line drawing working with graphite.

Studio Arts Course
Thursday, December 2, 2021 - 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. ET

Bring an animal portrait to life—and add a new skill to your drawing toolbox. Describe a form on toned paper using contour line and highlights while considering negative and positive space.