Silverpoint Drawing

Process, Tradition and Legacy


Discover the Renaissance practice of Silverpoint Drawing and its legacy in these six live, online classes.

Six Wednesdays from 9th May 2024 – 13th June 2024, 11:00 AM – 13:00 PM UK / 06:00 – 08:00 AM NY

Six Tuesdays From 11th June 2024 – 16 July 2024, 18:00 – 20:00 PM UK / 12:00 – 15:00 PM NY


Explore the versatility and dynamism of silverpoint drawing by by learning the approach of the Renaissance Masters and their impact on history. These six practical drawing tutorials teach you how to use silverpoint to its full potential using traditional methods, materials and theories of design. You will discover the elegant and variable linear qualities of silverpoint as well as how to create effective tonal modelling with economy and precision. The practical focus of this course centres on the materials and techniques of Renaissance artists such as Raphael, Leonardo da Vinci, and Lorenzo di Credi. Your learning will be fostered by drawing from both historical examples of artwork and objects in your physical environment. This course allows you to participate in the Renaissance craft and tradition of silverpoint drawing while building on its legacy with an awareness of how silverpoint has been used in modern times. While this course focusses on drawing with silverpoint, and using a Silverpoint Stylus on Prepared Paper is recommended, it very much focussed on the process, principles and application of Renaissance Drawing generally. This means that you can take part and draw with whatever you like while learning in-depth about Renaissance drawing and the use of silverpoint.

You Will Learn:

  • Where Silverpoint Drawing came from and how it developed in the Renaissance
  • How to use silverpoint effectively with dynamic linear and tonal qualities
  • How silverpoint drawings were made in the Renaissance
  • Why drawing in silverpoint drawing requires a pigmented ground to work
  • How artists prepared paper and other surfaces for silverpoint drawing in the Renaissance
  • How to use silverpoint effectively for developing drawing skills
  • The ways silverpoint drawing can enhance your creative process
  • An historical process for drawing portraits, figures and plants
  • How artists have used silverpoint from the 19th century to today

Course Structure

Class 1 – The History and Origins of Silverpoint Drawing: The Line Within a Likeness | Drawing the Profile

Class 2 – Renaissance Learning and Workshop Practice: Acquiring a Foundation | Drawing the Features

Class 3 – The Renaissance Silverpoint Portrait Drawing: The Soul of the Subject | Drawing the Individual Face and Expression

Class 4 – The Renaissance Silverpoint Figure Drawing: The Body Positioned by the Mind | Drawing the Nude

Class 5 – The Form and Symbolism of Plants: Leonardo and the Delineation of Nature | Drawing an Organic Still Life

Class 6 – The Revival and Future of Silverpoint: From Renaissance to Modern Rediscovery | Drawing Visual Ideas and Compositions


All levels

You Will Need:

A Silverpoint Stylus and Prepared Paper is recommended but it is possible to take part with other drawing materials instead. This course teaches you about the historical materials and techniques employed in the Renaissance but does not demand that you have all of the materials, tools and substances used in the demonstrations and presentations. You can take part with a simple drawing pad and pencil if you wish.

If you are taking part on this course and intend to draw with silverpoint you will need a silverpoint stylus or a pointed measure of silver. Other metals like brass, copper and gold can be used as alternatives. You will also need prepared paper which can be as simple as a sheet of paper coated with watercolour, gouache or a modern commercial silverpoint ground.

The historical Silverpoint Styli and other Materials used in the teaching of this course and all demonstrations are available here


Start Date

Wednesday 9th May 2024 – 13th June 2024, 11:00 AM – 13:00 PM UK / 06:00 – 08:00 AM NY, Tuesday 11 June 2024, 18:00 – 20:00 UK / 13:00 – 15:00 NY

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