This two-day practical workshop is in-person only and will take place in the Museum's Learning Studio and galleries

Please note this event is FULLY BOOKED

Booking is essential

With artist Kieran Stiles

At the centre of many art forms is drawing and mark-making, where creative ideas spring into life. Over two days, learn about some of the mark-making methods and ideas behind the work of inspirational artists and explore how to develop your own creative process through drawing and portraiture. 

Day 1, Wed 1 May: Renaissance Mark-Making

This workshop highlights the significance of drawing as a concept and as a practice in the artistic life during the Renaissance, revealing a variety of aims, purposes and techniques of artists, including Rubens, Bruegel, Tintoretto and Raphael. 

Detail of a drawing
Studies of Two Apostles for the Transfiguration (detail) by Raphael
Rubens Henry IV
Renaissance style portrait by Kieran Stiles (left). Middle & right: details of chalk drawings by the masters Raphael and Rubens © Ashmolean Museum
Working with graphite from direct observation of the sculptures around the Museum, explore the method of chiaroscuro - the study of the contrasting effects of light and shade which create the illusion of three-dimensionality in a drawing. These studies are then developed on coloured paper, working from the paper base tone towards the lights using white chalk and gouache, and then towards the dark tones to create solidity and depth by using opaque ‘bodycolour'.

Day 2, Thu 2 May: Contemporary Mark-Making

In our second workshop, discover the influence of Da Kooning and Giacometti on the work of Jenny Saville, where the focus is on capturing energy and movement.

Colourful portrait with red background by Kieran Stiles in the style of Jenny Saville

Portrait by Kieran Stiles in the style of Jenny Saville

Working on board prepared with a red ground, learn how to depict the sculptures in the Museum using a combination of acrylic paint and expressive layers of mixed media drawing materials including pigment sticks. This very immediate way of working allows for a lot of control where corrections can easily be made by over-drawing, so it's great for experimenting with surprising colour combinations without worrying about mistakes. 

All materials are provided and you'll be able to take home your creations.


This event is in-person only in the Learning Studio

Tickets are £175 for the two-day workshop

This event is now FULLY BOOKED

If you have any questions, please email us at