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Making Art Work: Classes with Class

“Making Art Work” Series:

Classes with Class: How an artist can present their courses -


“Welcome to the “Making Art Work” Series! Through this accumulating and growing collection of resource articles, we hope to give insight and suggestions to artists in their journey to becoming their most successful creative selves! These articles also serve as key content for our Grumbacher Art Program.”


Teaching classes can be fun, but can sometimes be challenging. How do you keep things fresh in the classroom? How do you keep students engaged, or better yet how do you present your classes in a way that attracts new or differently skilled students? By changing the format or style of your class offerings, you can achieve many of these solutions! Take a look at the list below to see the different ways you can advertise and market your classes to all kinds of students!

1.)   The “Experience” Format: Paint Parties have been a mainstay for the last five years running, and it should be an option for any art instructor. There is a bigger focus on the experience over the education, but you can easily do both.These classes are light,  fun, can fit more students than usual (meaning larger enrollment) and are great for socially networking your other classes to students that enjoy your work.

Suggested Attendance: 10-20+

Audience: Families, Couples, Groups of Friends, Birthday Parties, Holiday Parties



2.)   Lesson-Based: Lesson based classes (create a painting in one class) are more education-focused with the class learning to paint one image taught by the instructor. This generally favors smaller enrollment to allow for more one-on-one instruction (but can be as many as an instructor feels comfortable with), and is more structured in terms of content and productivity. These types of classes have been very popular in art supply store chains with classroom space, general public spaces (YMCA, Community Centers, etc.) and home or studio classes.

Suggested Attendance: 6-12

Audience: All-Aged Art Students, retirees, hobbyists, casual artists



3.)   Skill-Building Based: These classes are more academic in nature, favoring classic exercises such as observational and figure drawing using traditional materials. These classes are more focused on the mechanical education of art skills and require a more communal classroom experience. These classes can range in enrollment to fit the instructor’s comfort level and last anywhere from 2-6 hours depending on the space. This option is also great for community spaces, home studios or other local venues in your area (rental spaces, local bars/cafe’s, storefronts, etc.)

Suggested Attendance: 6-12

Audience: All-Aged Art Students, retirees, hobbyists, Professional Artists



4.)   Open Studio Format: Open Studios are just that, a time when art students are able to bring in their personal projects and work on them in a community space with direction and assistance from a coordinator. It is fairly freeform and can require some additional attention to your students, but it can also be an inviting environment for someone looking to work on their own while still being a part of a group.

Suggested Attendance: 6-12

Audience: All-Aged Art Students, retirees, hobbyists, All-level artists



We hope this list helps get you started on thinking about how your classes can be run! If you have your own ideas or would like to let us know if we forgot anything, comment below so we can add to the list! Thanks for checking out this installment, and keep an eye out for the next entry in our “Making Art Work” Series!