Available academic courses

The aim of the drawing program is to teach students how to work with speed and efficiency. Our methods are based on short exercises designed to train our visual muscles. Each exercise builds on the last creating a solid foundation for future study.

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Portrait Painting is considered one of the most difficult artistic disciplines. Armed with the right knowledge and working practice it’s possible to overcome the challenges of portrait painting, building confidence and proficiency as we move towards the end of the year.


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RAM has helped hundreds of students at all levels – Amateur and Professional

Our goal is to pass on the knowledge to make you a better artist

Realist Academy Manchester

Two year part time study

This is a part time study program that teaches the complete process as taught on a full time course.

We encourage self reliance because at some point you will have to face the challenges of portrait painting in your own time.

Realist Academy Manchester

Learn the secrets

Learn the secrets of Portrait Painting. This knowledge was almost lost due mainstream institutions abandoning the tradition over 100 years ago.

Lucky for us their were a handful of artists willing to pass on the craft and keep this tradition alive.

Realist Academy Manchester

Build your skills with tuition

The class sizes are kept to a maximum of 10 people allowing more time to be spent with each student. Louis believes in leading from the front, demonstrating each lesson in front of the class. If a student is struggling with their work he is willing to guide them out of any difficulty.

Our mission statement

The principles taught at the Realist Academy Manchester are the foundation of traditional art techniques. Even if you just learn the basics, you will see an improvement in your work. The program will be structured to accommodate anyone wanting to learn or professionals looking to improve their skills. The aim of this course is to cultivate a confident approach backed up by some sure footed knowledge. Learning the right habits are key to developing a solid working practice which could improve your skills well beyond your current ability.

art classes

Students can quickly see the benefits in their own work

Tony’s Story

Here is a before and after sent by Tony Williams.  He attended a 3 day portrait painting workshop and has applied some of the techniques taught on the course shown in one of the images above.  After the course he sent us an email showing his improvement.

Hi Louis,
I just wanted to show you this. I can reliably draw a likeness from a photo, and I can usually get a reasonable likeness of a model from life, but self portraits from life are a total mental block, I’d not progressed at all in months (probably years). The attached shows a self portrait from about a year ago, and I’ve not improved one bit at self portraits since then. Except this week, when I drew the one on the right. It’s still not perfect, but I think you’d agree that it is a significant step up from the earlier one? I attribute this to your portrait course which did as I hoped and snapped me out of that psychological tread mill I was on. So thanks again and hopefully the improvement will continue!

“Drawing trains the eyes, practising drawing trains perception to a high degree and sets the foundation for painting – when the student has mastered perception of form, he is able to switch to colour”.

Charles Bargue