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Realist Art Resource

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    The following schools have been included based on their effort to supply students with a skill-based education that is generally modeled on studio art training prior to the turn of the century. Many of these schools offer different observational approaches based on Russian, mainland European, American, and English academic methods. These schools differ considerably in aesthetic, curricula, size, and schedules. RAR suggests choosing the appropriate school for youself based on the work of both the students and teachers.  

Do you run a school that isn’t listed? Contact us to be included. 

Europe, Asia & Australia

Alphabetically by Country


Ani Art Academies

The Valley, Anguilla


Atelier Art Classes

Brisbane, Australia


Julian Ashton Art School

Sydney, Australia


Flemish Classical Atelier

Bruges, Belgium


Ani Art Academies

Rio San Juan, Maria Trinidad Sanchéz, Dominican Republic

The Edinburgh  Atelier of Fine Art

Edinburgh, Scotland, UK

The Barnes Atelier of Art

London, England, UK


London Fine Art Studios

London, England, UK


London Atelier of Representational Art

London, England, UK


Realist Academy Manchester

Manchester, England, UK /

Northern Realist

Manchester, England, UK



Sarum Studio

Salisbury, England, UK


Conservatoire CDPP

Paris, France


Studio Escalier

Paris & Argenton-Chateau, France

The Paris Academy of Art

Paris, France

Academy of Art Bad Homburg

Bad Homburg, Germany



Angel Academy of Art

Florence, Italy


Atelier Canova

Rome, Italy


The Florence Academy of Art, Italy

Florence, Italy


Charles H. Cecil Studios

Florence, Italy


Atelier Di San Luca

Florence, Italy


The Florence Studio

Florence, Italy


Russian Academy of Art

Florence, Italy

Studio Donatello

Florence, Italy

Studio d’Arte Toscanella

Florence, Italy

The Drawing Studio

Dublin, Ireland


Milan Academy of Art

Milano, Lombardia, Italy


Oslo, Norway

The Dutch Atelier of Realist Art

Haarlem, The Netherlands

Atelier Arte Realista Porto

Porto, Portugal


Surikov Academy of Art

Moscow, Russia


Repin Academy of Art

St. Petersburg, Russia


Academy of Realist Art Edinburgh Scotland

Edinburgh, Scotland, UK


Barcelona Academy of Art

Barcelona, Spain


Barcelona Atelier of Realist Art

Barcelona, Spain

Tarragona Atelier

Tarragona, Spain


Ani Art Academies

Matara District, Sri Lanka


Swedish Academy of Realist Art

Simrishamn, Sweden


The Florence Academy of Art, Sweden

Gothenburg, Sweden


Ani Art Academies

Yao Noi Sub-District, Koh Yao District, Phang-nga Province, Thailand


The Welsh Academy of Art

 Cwmdu, Crickhowell, Powys, UK

Workshops & Part Time Programs


East Oaks Studio

Raleigh, North Carolina

Leo Mancini Hresko’s Studio

Waltham, Massachussetts

The Missoula Fine Art Studio

Missoula, Montana

Art Escape Italy

Tuscany, Italy

Ateljee Espoo

Espoo, Finland

Atelier School of Classical Realism

Oakland, California


Mapstone Studios

Devon, England, UK



Academy of Realist Art Online

Art Crit Academy

Art Mentors

Classical Art Online


LAAFA’s Art School Videos

Sadie Valeri Atelier!videos-and-online-class/qbzck

The Landscape Atelier

Watts Atelier Online




The Americas

Alphabetically by State/Country

Rees Atelier

Mesa, Arizona

Watts Atelier of the Arts LLC

Encinitas, California


Golden Gate Atelier

Oakland, California


Russian River Atelier

Santa Rosa, California

Art Mentors

Huntington Beach, California

Kline Academy of Fine Art

Los Angeles, California


Los Angeles Academy of Figurative Art

Van Nuys, California


The Safehouse Atelier

Los Angeles, California


Lance Richlin Atelier

Los Angeles, California


NUMU Atelier Los Gatos

Los Gatos, California


Atelier BACAA

San Carlos, California


Atelier of Fine Art

Los Angeles, California


JHess Studio

San Francisco, California


Sadie Valeri Atelier

San Francisco, California


The Neoteric Renaissance School of Art

Santa Cruz, California


Atelier de Brésoles

Montreal, Canada


Academy of Realist Art

Ottawa, Canada


Academy of Art Canada

Toronto, Canada


Academy of Realist Art

Toronto, Canada


Classical Realism Atelier

Vancouver, Canada

Mandy Boursicot – Classical Realism Atelier

Vancouver, Canada


Noah Layne Academy of Realist Art

Victoria, Canada


Real Academy of Art

Colorado Springs, Colorado

The Boulder School of Fine Art

Boulder, Colorado


Old Hollows Atelier

Longmont, Colorado

Taller Trescientosuno

Bogotá, Colombia


Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts

Old Lyme, Connecticut

Atelier del Sol

San Jose, Costa Rica

Carol Broman’s Atelier

Fort Myers, Florida


Chiaroscuo Studio of Art

Miami, Florida


Southern Atelier

Sarasota, Florida


Atelier Maui

Haiku, Maui, Hawaii


Zwick Academy of Fine Art

Honolulu, Hawaii

Palette & Chisel Academy

Chicago, Illinois


The Ravenswood Atelier

Chicago, Illinois


Vitruvian Studio

Chicago, Illinois


Schuler School of Fine Arts

Baltimore, Maryland


Academy of Realist Art Boston

Boston, Massachussetts

The Boston School of Painting

Boston, Massachussetts


The Great Lakes Academy of Fine Art

Duluth, Minnesota



The Atelier Studio Program of Fine Art

Minneapolis, Minnesota


Ingbretson Studio of Drawing and Painting

Manchester, New Hampshire


The Art Academy

Hillsborough, New Jersey


The Florence Academy of Art

Jersey City, New Jersey, USA

The Princeton Academy of Art

Princeton, New Jersey


The Ryder Studio

Santa Fe, New Mexico


Beaux-Arts Atelier

New York City, New York


Chelsea Classical Studio

New York, New York


Decorus Atelier of Figurative Art

New York, New York /


Grand Central Atelier

Long Island, New York


Leah Lopez Atelier

New York, New York


Long Island Academy of Fine Art

Glen Cove, New York


The Teaching Studios of Art

Brooklyn & Oyster Bay, New York


New York Academy of Art

New York, New York


NYK Academy

New York, New York

The Atelier At Flowerfield

Saint James, New York


Ani Art Academies

Red Bank, New Jersey


Academy of Classical Design

South Pines, North Carolina


The North Carolina Academy of Art

Charlotte, North Carolina


The Conservatory for Classical Art

Edmond, Oklahoma

Bucks County Classical Arts Center

New Hope, Pennsylvania


Cambridge Street Studios

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Carlin Academy of Fine Art

Kennett Square, Pennsylvania


Studio Incamminati

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania


Ani Art Academy

Bear Creek Township, Pennsylvania


Atelier San Juan

San Juan, Puerto Rico


The Townsend Atelier

Chattanooga, Tennessee

The Landscape Atelier

Clarksville, Texas


Texas Academy of Figurative Art

Fort Worth, Texas


The Coppini Academy

San Antonio, Texas


Loza Studio & Atelier of Figurative Art

Apison, Tennessee


The Igor Babailov Institute of Realism

Brentwood, Tennessee


The Masters Academy of Art

Springville, Utah


Hein Academy of Art

Salt Lake City, Utah


Georgetown Atelier

Seattle, Washington


Gage Academy of Art

Seattle, Washington


Tacoma Academy of Fine Art

Tacoma, Washington


The Academy of Fine Art

Denmark, Wisconsin


The Atwood Atelier

Madison, Wisconsin


Concept Art EmpireConcept Art Empire

aaron blaise interview
Aaron Blaise video

Top 5 Online Art Courses That Are Worth Paying For

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. That means if you buy something we get a small commission at no extra cost to you( learn more )

Self teaching is a completely viable route for learning to draw and paint. There are so many great courses you can watch from your home computer that it’d be foolish to ignore this potential.

But there are way too many video courses online that promise to make you a great artist. The truth is that you need to make yourself a great artist; these videos can only act as guides. And with so many options to choose it can be tough knowing where to start.

This post specifically covers the best paid courses that can be streamed online or downloaded to your computer. There are plenty of free tuts on YouTube but this post will be looking solely at paid options for aspiring artists.

1. Proko

I cannot think of a better place to start than the Proko video courses. Stan Prokopenko is an accomplished fine artist who studied(and now teaches) at the Watts Atelier in California.

Stan publishes a few video series online teaching artists different techniques that he’s learned over the years. Every video is extremely high quality and I recommend you check out his YouTube channel for free video previews.

proko gesture drawing figure art
Proko figure drawing

Every video he uploads to YouTube is free, but these free videos are only a small part of his full premium courses.

I started with the figure drawing course and still get immense value from those lessons. You can read my full review if you want more details. But this is the best course for beginners to start with because it teaches the basics of form and how to apply form onto the human figure.

When first starting these lessons I was skeptical. But after practicing them I have seen a tremendous improvement in my work, and it’s so easy that even a complete beginner could follow along.

Stan also has a full anatomy course which so far is exquisite. This may not be perfect for a beginner because it’s very detailed. But it is the best video course for teaching yourself human anatomy. I also did a full review of that course if you wanna learn more.

But every new Proko course has incredible recording quality and plenty of detail in the subject matter.

If you were to only learn from one premium course then Proko should be your choice. There are many other great options but Stan has a way with teaching that just makes sense and gets the message across to artists of all skill levels.

Check Out Proko


2. Aaron Blaise

Long-time Disney artist Aaron Blaise has his own series of courses teaching art & animation—and they’re worth every penny.

He worked on a number of animated films like Aladdin, Pocahontas, and The Lion King. He has a passion for drawing animals which you can tell by looking at his tutorial library .

aaron blaise artist instructor teacher
Aaron Blaise lessons

Aaron has different video courses cheaper than others based on depth of information and number of video lessons.

His most popular series is the Fundamentals of Animation coupled with the Scene Approach course for animators.

Aaron’s lessons also veer into subjects like anatomy and digital painting. But he is a Disney veteran having worked in the industry for 20+ years. He knows how to animate and does it well.

If you’re looking to become a concept artist then Aaron’s videos may not be as useful.

But if you have any interest in animation whether movies or TV then I highly recommend his growing library of video courses.

Check Out Aaron’s Courses


3. CGMA Classes

Most artists know about the CGMA online classes run through their website. These classes run at a fixed rate of $699/class which can be very steep for new artists.

But if you’re looking to focus on one specific topic then CGMA is likely worth the price. Every class is run online with personal critiques from the teacher. It operates like an online school with a spring, summer, fall, and winter semester.

2d cgma master academy
CGMaster Academy

You’ll find classes on everything from basic sketching, character art, environment design, lighting, painting, storyboarding, almost everything related to entertainment art .

The toughest part of getting in is having enough money and signing up before the classes get too full. There are only so many seats per semester and with master teachers like Peter Han it’s reasonable to expect a heavy load of registrations.

Again I’d like to say these courses are not geared towards complete beginners. Some have prerequisite skills you must understand before signing up.

And the more skilled you are the easier it’ll be to learn from each course.

Think about paying for CGMA once you’re a bit past the beginner’s stage. These courses will teach you a lot, but they’re also fast-paced and you need to be diligent since you’re studying by yourself over the Internet.

Check Out CGMA


4. Pencil Kings

Professional artists from Marvel, EA, DreamWorks and other major studios all use Pencil Kings to sharpen their skills.

This site is great because it’s aimed towards everyone from complete beginners to professionals looking to expand their horizons. You can pick from dozens of courses teaching the absolute fundamentals of art, traditional drawing/painting, and modern digital painting for concept art  entertainment art.

This is practically a complete online art school at a significantly reduced price.

pencilkings video preview
Pencil Kings course

One great thing about joining Pencil Kings is getting access to their premium art forum. It’s only for paid members and it’s full of artists from all backgrounds  skill levels.

You can get direct critiques on your work, find advice for practice regimens, and connect with instructors to find out about any new courses coming in the near future. Pencil Kings is constantly updating their library so for the small monthly fee you get direct access to everything.

Currently their library has over 70 courses on topics like anatomy, construction, character design, interior design, and pretty much everything you’d ever want to learn about concept art. But Pencil Kings has lots of courses on related entertainment fields like comics, animation, visual development, and general illustration art.

Take a peek at their site for a full list of courses and membership benefits. This is a cheap online course to demo for a month and there’s something here for absolutely everyone.

Check Out Pencil Kings


5. CG Spectrum

CG Spectrum is an online art school much like CGMA. But CG Spectrum/s courses are more in-depth and you can even pay extra for one-on-one classes.

This site is still geared towards entertainment art so you’ll find courses on digital painting, chraracter design, animation, 3D modeling and a lot more.

cgspectrum intro concept art
CG Spectrum course Intro to Concept Art

That’s one difference about this school from the others: it’s not 100% art-driven.

Instead it’s entertainment industry driven with the goal of teaching you the stuff you need to land a job.

Each course includes Q&A’s with the instructors and detailed video lessons. Most courses run for a few weeks but others offer diploma programs where you’ll have a full year’s worth of course material. Talk about intense!

If you go with any of their courses you’re pretty much guaranteed to improve as an artist. Plus CG Spectrum is a great way to build connections with artists in your class and even instructors. Who you know is huge in the art world.

Unfortunately I can’t say that absolute novice artists will find much in CG Spectrum’s course load. It’s more for artists who already know some fundamentals and want to push forward in one area like concept art . In that case CG Spectrum will take you from a meager artist to a professional in no time.

Worth the money? Absolutely.

Just make sure you read up on their website before joining so you know what you’re getting into.

Check Out CG Spectrum

So these are the digital courses that I think offer the most value, especially for aspiring entertainment artists.

Too many art education sites offer junk repetitive content that simply isn’t worth the money.

Places that I would avoid are Lynda, Udemy, and Skillshare. Granted none of these sites are 100% bad.

But they’re much better at digital design  software courses rather than art courses.

If your goal is to radically improve as an artist then I would highly recommend the courses above.

Either way I hope this list helps on your journey of growth and self-improvement. The most important thing with learning is to just keep practicing and never give up.

Related Posts:

Review of Proko’s Portrait Drawing Fundamentals CourseReview of Proko’s Portrait Drawing Fundamentals Course
Online Figure Drawing Classes  Courses For Practicing At HomeOnline Figure Drawing Classes  Courses For Practicing At Home
Best Free YouTube Channels For Teaching Yourself How To DrawBest Free YouTube Channels For Teaching Yourself How To Draw
Review of Proko’s Figure Drawing Fundamentals CourseReview of Proko’s Figure Drawing Fundamentals Course
Full Review of Bloop Animation’s Premium Course LibraryFull Review of Bloop Animation’s Premium Course Library
Review: Proko Anatomy of the Human Body Premium CourseReview: Proko Anatomy of the Human Body Premium Course

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