Press Release: Art short courses for beginners at West Dean College

The stunning landscape, architecture, art and history at West Dean College provide an immersive atmosphere and fresh inspiration for art lovers. The new summer Short Course brochure features courses where you can try your hand at drawing, painting or printmaking. Be inspired by the landscape and the architecture at West Dean and excite your artistic aspirations. West Dean offers the opportunity to enjoy home cooked food and relax in a country-style house with like-minded people. During your stay you can also explore the inspirational award-winning gardens.

In A Sussex sketchbook - drawing course with Paul Cox Visit Sussex sites, students will look to West Dean House and gardens to record observations and develop visual ideas (15 - 18 May £322 Suitable for all).

Discover key techniques to create accurate drawings from observation. Working with pencils on paper, investigate composition, measurement, tone and line. Realism - a drawing course with Andrew Fitchett (12 - 15 June £324 Beginners/Intermediate).

Explore the practicalities of outdoor work and ways of representing specific qualities of light, form and spatial relationships in the landscape with oils. Oil painting for beginners with Tom Benjamin (10 - 12 July £223 Beginners/Suitable for all).

Discover how to use screenprinting techniques to produce multi coloured design, using paper cut stencils and water based inks. Introduction to screenprinting with Jane Sampson (21 - 23 August £251 Beginners).

Visit and draw local horses to gain an understanding of their physiology. These studies are then used in the studio to generate individual responses as you experiment with exciting interpretations of the horse's power and movement. Drawing the horse with Kate Dicker (4 - 6 September £220 Beginners/Intermediate).

Discover the potential of this small-scale, black and white art form for detail, atmosphere and dramatic graphic impact. Develop a design, transfer it onto an end-grain wood block, engrave and then print it. Wood engraving with Harry Brockway (23- 25 October £220 Suitable for all)


Wake up to beautiful views over the Sussex Downs in the stately splendour of a country mansion. The bedrooms are a mixture of contemporary and traditional styling. Student rates from £55 Bed & Breakfast.


For more information about Short Courses at West Dean and to browse the digital brochure visit First time bookings receive a 10% discount (telephone bookings only call 02143 818300).


Notes to editors:

  • West Dean College is part of The Edward James Foundation which also comprises West Dean Gardens, West Dean Estate and the West Dean Tapestry Studio. Charity No. 1126084.
  • The award winning Gardens are open from 1 February - 20 December with special event days throughout the year; Mother's Day in the Gardens (15 March), Easter Egg
  • Trails for children (1 - 6 April), Annual House Opening (9 & 10 May), Design and Craft Fair (19 - 21 June), 20th Anniversary Chilli Fiesta (7 - 9 August), Half Term Halloween activities (26 - 31 October) and Father Christmas visits (12 & 13 and 19 & 20 December).
  • The College runs over 700 short courses in arts, crafts, gardening and music each year as well as full time postgraduate programmes in Visual Arts, Conservation, Making Stringed Musical Instruments and Creative Writing.
  • All photography is free to use for editorial purposes.
  • Any journalist interested in visiting the Gardens, attending a course or an event for news or review purposes or filming at West Dean should contact the Media Relations team.
  • West Dean College is situated on the A286, six miles north of Chichester and within easy access of Portsmouth, Guildford, Brighton and London.

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Art short courses work by tutor Andrew Fitchett
West Dean College work by Harry Brockway
West Dean College work by tutor Tom Benjamin

Media contact information

For media accreditation or high-resolution digital images, please contact:

Irene Caswell, Senior Media Relations Officer +44 (0)1243 818301


West Dean College and Gardens, Chichester, West Sussex, PO18 OQZ

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West Dean is part of a registered charity and relies on the support of generous donors, friends, legacies to help us deliver world-class education in conservation and the creative arts and maintain our award-winning gardens.

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