The Paris Academy of Art offers a comprehensive selection of classes
that guarantees steady progress in students' work.
This is the core of how drawing and painting are taught.
The poses are "long" when they last from five to six weeks, three hours per day. Students learn to measure and organise values
in a precise order that takes into account
the many subtleties of human anatomy. Significant focus is placed on light and how
it flows over the model. The first drawings
are done in pencil on paper and with charcoal. Halfway through the second year,
students begin painting, first in grisaille
and later with a complete palette.
Studying still lifes is essential to further
one's study of colour, texture and three-dimensional space. In the third year,
a more extensive palette is introduced,
and students gradually learn to create
specific colours by choosing the correct
In-depth work allows them to obtain
the desired textures and effects.
Particular focus is placed on arranging
the parts of the still life in order to teach
the rules of composition.
During the third year, students will
carry out a progressive series of four
or six projects, taking on the following themes: bright red drapery (the most
difficult colour to paint), white glazed ceramics, writing, perishable goods
Drawing from casts is the study of casts
of ancient sculptures.
This course is taken early on in the program, after copying and before life drawing. Students practice transferring what they see in three dimensions to two dimensions
They work from a stationary object, allowing their eyes to practice halftones and to comprehend the tonal variations of light and shadows. Students progress at their own rate.
Artistic anatomy is the study of
the human body, in particular
of the skeleton, muscles, movement
and proportions. Understanding how
a body works helps students interpret
the many parts of the human form.
Students find reference points
in the general structure which allow
them to create their drawing
by transforming the human body's complicated form into clear structures.
Copying is an effective way to understand technical questions for a stationary subject that is nearby. In the first year, copies are made based on Charles Bargue's drawing course. Students then work off of drawings from the academies (from the same time period). In the final year, models are chosen from amongst the classical paintings of centuries past. These copies help students
to better understand ancient techniques
and to try them out in their own work.
They are based off of both reproductions
and on-site work at the Louvre and the Musée d'Orsay. The Paris Academy of Art is one of the only schools to offer such a programme in which copies of the masters are made
Sketching live models is essential for
students to become aware of proportions
and movement. This quick sketching develops students' observational skills
and understanding of the model and allows them to understand notions of anatomy.
The length of time the poses last ranges
from a few minutes to about fifteen minutes for the longer ones. In the first year, only pencils are permitted, with emphasis placed on getting the proportions right.
In the second year, other tools are experimented with, but correct proportions remains the main objective. In the final
year, students have more freedom as regards the models.
This class provides students with
general knowledge of art history.
Becoming familiar with historical
and contemporaneous artists and
their themes and techniques enriches students' work. The class also provides students with knowledge about
materials and techniques and where
they came from. The class covers
the evolution of political, religious
and social thinking and demonstrates
the influence that environment has
on the artistic production of a given
For additional information
see the Paris Academy of Art
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