Help pages

Help pages

What do I need to bring?

We stock all the materials you need and provide an online as well as shop-front service. If you already have materials you are welcome to bring them with you and our teachers will advise where and if you need to supplement them. It is preferable not to go out and buy materials beforehand as they may well be more expensive and not the quality you need.

Must I begin the program in the Autumn?

Students may begin their studies either Term 1 (January), Term 2 (April), Term 3 (July) or Term 4 (October). Full orientation is provided to all new students at the beginning of each term. Subject to availability it is possible to start mid term.

May I skip the Foundation and go directly onto the Diploma course?

Normally all students are required to have completed the Foundation in Fine Art in order to be accepted onto the Diploma. The purpose is for the student to acquire the necessary skill base before confronting more complicated problems in advanced drawing or painting. On occasion, students with prior training in a classical atelier may gain advanced entry on to the Diploma in Fine Art. Their level is determined by the faculty during the application review, and the portfolio meeting the criteria assessed on the Foundation in Fine Art.

Is the School accredited?

Not yet, no. We are working on this...

Are there any age or experience restrictions?

There are no restrictions on experience. However, you have to be 16+ years to apply. Beyond that, there are no age restrictions.

How much do I need to cover costs of living in London?

Please note that the figures below are just an estimate that might serve you as a guide, and will vary depending on the area of London you live in, and on your personal lifestyle. Rough estimates of cost of living per month:

  • Accommodation: £600 
  • Bills (electricity/gas/council tax): £60
  • Transport: A monthly 18+ student travel card for bus and underground covering zone 1-2 is ca.£85. The Art School is located in zone 2. You might not need access to zone 1 if you live in other zones of London, or might only need to use buses for your commute, so for more details, please refer to the TFL website 
  • Please note that you also need to consider food and telephone (mobile) expenses, which will greatly vary depending on your lifestyle and telephone plan.

How long is the Diploma Course?

After completing your Foundation (3 terms), you are automatically accepted onto the Diploma. The Diploma curriculum includes further drawing, painting and advanced painting and consists of 6 terms of study. Painting study begins at completion of the drawing curriculum (which takes on average 6 terms including the Foundation) and then, when a student is ready, advanced painting. Students who have completed the Diploma may choose to stay for an additional year of specialisation if they have completed the required exercises on the curriculum.

How do I register for a course place?

To book a place on our full-time courses or short courses simply contact us, call +44 (0) 800 0867296, or book directly on our website.

How can the School help if I have Special Educational Needs?

The School is a small organisation, which is totally self-funded and does not receive funding from government. As such it is not in a position to provide the range of facilities and support services that can be expected from larger educational institutions. That said, our small size allows us to offer a personalised, supportive environment and the flexibility to address individual needs in a simple and straightforward way. We encourage all students to contact the office if they have had learning support before, are concerned about or have a condition or disability that might impact upon their learning experience, in order to assess the students' situation and develop a plan for support.

Do I need to submit images with my application, if so what kind of images should I submit?

We require applicants to send us five photographs of recent drawings, paintings or sculpture. This allows our faculty to determine who is best suited for study with us; during the selection process, they want to see if a student's work reflects an interest in figurative realism, if he or she is attempting to draw or sculpt from life, has looked at or studied from the old masters, and finally, exhibits some raw talent. It is a good idea to submit examples of work done in the materials we use, like charcoal or pencil, or possibly oil. These suggestions are not meant to imply the student must already be working at an advanced level, or has had prior training in classical techniques, but simply demonstrate that he or she is interested in working figuratively, and in the realistic tradition.

Do I get an officially recognised qualification at the end of the course?

LARA does not yet offer a government accredited qualification. The atelier believes that students want to receive clear, practical instruction in the principles and methods of drawing and painting. Therefore LARA can only work with an appropriate awarding body who understands our methods and approach to teaching. Thanks to the quality of the teaching we have gained the support of foundations, galleries and museums and we continue to develop new partnerships for the studios and our artists, many of whom are represented by galleries both in the UK and abroad.

Can the School help with finding accommodation in London?

The School does not have Halls of Residence, however, a list of contacts is available from the office which will help you in your search for accommodation.