Illustration is about expressing ideas through images, telling stories in a visual way and exploring a personal visual language. The aim of this course is to create artwork based on themes and stories, and to investigate how one can apply their creative skills to illustration.


Throughout the course we will look at how to structure a short illustration project from initial sketches to the final design. We will do short drawing exercises, composition tests etc, as well as producing finished illustrations.

You will be learning and experimenting with many different techniques, from pen and ink to stencils, from pencil and pen drawing to collage etc and you will be helped in the developing of your own style.


To get the most out of this course it is preferable to have some previous drawing experience; most importantly though, students should enjoy the experience of drawing! 

Each term is different and students will get a lot of one to one teaching and advice. 

Beginners in illustration are very welcome, as well as returning students.

Material list:

  • cheap paper for sketching and experimenting (or a sketchbook)

  • a pencil (no harder than HB) and a rubber

  • 1 pot of waterproof indian ink (such as the Winsor and Newton one with the spider on the packaging)

  • 1 or 2 watercolour brushes, preferably round, size around 5 to 9 (I think the daVinci ones with the bright green handle that you can get at the Dundas Street art shop are good for example, and not too expensive. Synthetic ones are fine).

  • Heavy weight cartridge paper (A2 if possible, no smaller than A3), a pad or around 10 sheets.

  • a holder and a couple of nibs for drawing (not calligraphy). The post office nibs and the copperplate nibs are good. 

  • a brush pen (preferably black, or a very dark colour).

  • It would be great if you could collect paper of many types. magazines, newspapers, wallpaper, colour paper , paper with patterns, etc etc. Anything that could be interesting for you and others for doing collage.

  • PVA glue (and a brush to apply it) 

  • A craft knife and a cutting mat (or a piece of cardboard on which you can cut), and a pair of scissors.

  • acrylic paints (small tubes of student quality are fine and you don't need many colours: red, yellow, blue, white and black). 

  • a kitchen sponge and a plastic tub that you can use as a palette (such as a takeaway plastic container)

  • carbon paper

  • a couple of sheets of black paper

  • a white pencil (the Derwent 'DRAWING' pencils are very good, or anything similar)


with artist and tutor Cécile Simonis

Tuesdays from 6.30pm - 9.00pm

10 Weeks from Tuesday 14th January

to Tuesday 24th March

(No class Tuesday 11th February)

13a Great King Street, EH3 6QW


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The Edinburgh Drawing School,

13a Great King Street, Edinburgh, EH3 6QW

0131 556 0971  |   07791 121313

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