I know there’s plenty to paint here but I haven’t the slightest desire to work locally. - L.S. Lowry

If every student of art felt the way that native son did about scenes in and around Manchester, we wouldn’t have two whole art galleries or the Lowry Art Centre in Salford Quays!

There would be no art programmes offered at university, no workshops on how to draw a life figure or a still life; nor would there be other art classes on offer from anybody, anywhere!

Thankfully, not everyone feels the way Mr Lowry did and, in fact, the art community is thriving in Manchester.

If you are a student learning fine art at University of Manchester, you might be on the lookout for extracurricular classes on how to draw a proportionate human form or still life.

If you have always longed to try your hand at creating art – not just fine art, you may enjoy some of the venues in and around the city that promote the culture and creation of art.

Let Superprof help you find the best ones!

If you are a first-time painter, watercolours is a great way to learn
Painting with watercolours is a great way to learn brush control Source: Pixabay Credit: Uello

Art Classes in Drawing and Painting

If, as an art student – either studying for your A-Levels in art history or already enrolled in a university art program, you need to get away from it all, you may find serenity at the Didsbury Parsonage Trust.

Not because it is a sanctuary of any sort but because it offers classes in art for art’s sake.

Isn’t art supposed to be for art’s sake? We’ll talk about that in just a minute!

Whether you seek to master brush control through their watercolours class or just need a little extra tutelage while working on your own projects, you can find the help and support you need at Didsbury.

In such a creative environment, surrounded by people who only want to make the world more beautiful, you might build a portfolio sure to land you a summer job as an artist!

Perhaps painting portraits or... wouldn’t it be great to land a commission to execute a landscape painting or draw a still life?

If you are not a student in a university art programme, you may still enjoy these classes.

If you have a bit of a travel bug, you might enjoy art classes in London!

Their watercolor art workshops are generally meant for the intermediate painter, but you are still welcome to join them if you’ve never held a paintbrush, especially if you have a knack for quickly picking up on instruction.

Their Art for Art’s Sake workshop is open to everyone from the beginner at sketching to the more advanced artist with experience mixing colours on a palette.

Check for available online art courses here.

Do you know how to mix colours?
If you have experience mixing colours, you will fit right in at Didsbury! Source: Pixabay Credit: Lee Seonghak

Art for Art’s Sake: a Bit of Philosophy

There exist many forms of art: visual art includes painting, sketching and photography, for example.

Performing arts would be acting, dancing and singing.

Architecture, pottery and quilting would fall under the header of applied art – art that is both functional and beautiful.

You could also learn pottery by taking art classes in Leeds!

Do you get the idea that art takes many forms and, as long as the work is original and contributes to the aesthetics of its environment, its value increases exponentially?

This is not a debate on whether beauty is or is not in the eye of the beholder.

We simply want to point out that art, in its purest form, is meant to enrich the human experience.

From the culinary arts – tempting our palates with food to fill the senses, to the martial arts, primarily a means of self-discipline albeit graciously executed, we adorn ourselves, our spaces and our lives with perceived beauty.

Thus the designation art for art’s sake is totally apt: it need not have any purpose other than to enrich and beautify.

Where does fine art fit in?

Contrary to popular belief that the fine designation is meant to represent the social status of said persons who enjoy such art, that descriptive signals a work executed to certain standards, namely the traditional Western European canons.

If you wanted to learn fine art techniques but do not wish to enrol in art school, you could take an array of art courses that cover everything from pencil sketching to creative drawing.

You could learn all of those skills and more at AWOL Art Studios.

You might also learn how to execute a fine painting by taking art classes in Birmingham!

Creative Art Courses

If you have long wanted to learn painting and drawing but feared your window of opportunity has passed you by, you can let go of those fears and unchain your creative energy at AWOL.

Manchester is most renown for its contributions to the Industrial Revolution.

Why not partake of art education in a historic building – Hope Mill, one of the repurposed textile mills that made the city so rich and famous?

The multitude of windows provide plenty of ambient light and Brian, the lead tutor, brings over 20 years of experience in teaching art to anyone desiring to know the feel of a paint-laden brush, whose strokes bring imagery to life.

He teaches, among other courses:

  • kids classes

  • adult classes

  • Introduction to Creative Drawing

  • Introduction to Watercolors

  • Life Drawing – how to draw the human form

  • Drawing techniques

Naturally, he is not the only instructor there.

You may learn acrylic painting from Brigid, cartooning and manga from Paul; or you may choose to enjoy a lecture from Heather Spears, author of The Creative Eye.

Indeed it appears that these creative art courses could be your one-stop shop for everything that deals with drawing and painting.

Isn’t there more to art?

Throwing a pot is a fairly popular activity in Manchester
How very Manchester to throw a pot! Source: Pixabay Credit: Lubos Houska

Art Classes in Pottery

Admittedly, Manchester is far better known for its music scene, that Madchester Vibe, than for its art scene.

Unlike opportunities to learn various forms of art in Leeds, Mancunians are a bit limited in their artistic learning outlets!

Nevertheless, continuing with this city’s long history of manufacture, you may enjoy taking a pottery class with Seven Limes Pottery.

It is unknown whether the limes in question refer to argillaceous minerals – a clay-like composition that is nevertheless lime, or the green citrus fruit.

However they settled on that fun name, they are quite serious about their art and wish to bring as many into the pottery fold as possible.

Did you know that the Scottish Potters Association teaches pottery art classes in Glasgow? 

Should you be looking for something to do of a weekend, you may meet them for an introductory workshop on Saturdays.

If you like what they’re all about and the art they practise, you could commit to a six-week beginners course, held on Monday evenings.

Prior to visiting with them, you may have thought that throwing a pot meant tossing cookware about in an angry fashion.

Look up for art courses near me now.

After a weekend in their tutelage, you will be happy to learn that you do not have to be angry to throw a pot.

Quite the contrary!

That act consists of gently manipulating clay on a spinning wheel until it approximates a vessel of whichever sort you were trying to create.

If you are plagued by stress and your confidence has recently taken a hit, you may find yourself restored through exploration of this relaxing and sensual activity.

Their facilities are not suitable for smaller hands, though, so if you wanted to make pottery a family affair, let us direct you to Clay Studio.

There, you will find a popular family ceramics course whose instructors are ready to welcome parents, grandparents and/or other caregivers, and their children.

What an opportunity for quality time together!

You might wonder about the difference between pottery and ceramics; a distinction that Caroline, Robert or Stephen, the instructors, will be happy to elucidate.

The facility is clean and bright, and is equipped with no fewer than three kilns!

Besides those pieces of equipment so vital to ceramics, you will find a multitude of pottery wheels, lathes, and a range of materials to work with.

What we particularly liked about the clay studio is that their class size is limited to only five people!

That way, you get the individualised attention you need to quickly master the art of pottery, ceramics and glazing.

Also, if you wanted private tuition in throwing and glazing, you could book a series of three classes. Should someone want to attend with you, their fee would be discounted by half!

Whether you are looking to refine your painting techniques or are just looking to learn to draw; no matter if you are looking for an art class for kids or hoping to improve your own drawing skills, finding an open studio in Manchester is not difficult.

Unlike Mr Lowry – whose figure drawing is likened to matchsticks, with a bit of imagination you may find that there is a wide variety of subjects to inspire you.

Once you learn to draw and paint, once you gain a measure of technical skills, you may find yourself haunting the art supply store!

Are you about to conduct an Internet search for art classes near me?

You might book yourself into drawing classes, practising bold experimentation in colour mixing, to come up with a masterpiece that expresses your particular brand of creativity.

Read our other posts about finding art classes in other UK cities such as, Glasgow, Edinburgh Belfast and Cardiff.

Superprof hopes that, from this table, you can find the art instruction and painting classes that will lead to your self-expression and, one day, to your hosting an exhibition of your own artwork!

Facility NameType of ArtPhysical AddressWeb Address
Didsbury Parsonage TrustDrawing, watercolour painting, open coursesStenner Lane Didsbury Manchester M20 2RQhttp://www.didsburyparsonagetrust.org.uk
Creative Art CoursesDrawing, painting in acrylic and watercolour113 Pollard Street, M4 7JAhttps://www.creativeartcourses.org
Seven LimesPotteryUnit 5, Windrush Millennium Centre, 70 Alexandra Road, Manchester M16 7WDhttps://7limes.co.uk
The Clay StudioPottery and Ceramics
Family courses
61 Old Birley Street Hulme Manchester M15 5RFhttps://www.claystudio.co.uk
Need an Art and Design teacher?

Did you like this article?

5.00/5, 1 votes


A vagabond traveler whose first love is the written word, I advocate for continuous learning, cycling, and the joy only a beloved pet can bring. There is plenty else I am passionate about, but those three should do it, for now.