Classical Art Atelier

Master Portrait Drawing Svetlana Cameron

2-Day Portrait Drawing in Conté & Charcoal Masterclass

This workshop, focused on portrait drawing, in Conté and charcoal, will introduce you to the ‘three-colour’ technique inspired by the Renaissance portrait drawing tradition. You will learn how to create life-like skin tones with a limited palette of only three colours – black, red and white, and discover different ways of handling the medium to achieve a range of realistic-looking textures.

The Master Portrait Drawing Workshop will be held at Nano Nagle Place, Cork, on Saturday 26 and Sunday 27 October 2019. Limited Places! Please BOOK EARLY to ensure a place on this workshop!


This workshop will cover important aspects of portraiture such as creating a balanced composition, setting up and lighting the model, and achieving likeness and expression.

During the workshop you will complete a number of exercises which will introduce you to the key principles of naturalistic portrait drawing – value and colour temperature, as well as help understand the anatomy of the head. You will also learn how to use the sight-size drawing method, which was widely practised by the Old Masters and is taught in many classical ateliers today.

Svetlana's Technique

Svetlana Cameron is known internationally for her original use of pastel. She has developed the so-called 'three-colour' drawing technique, which has received critical acclaim in Great Britain, France, USA, and Russia. Inspired by the coloured chalk drawings of the Renaissance period, Svetlana’s method involves use of only three colours for creating realistic flesh tones - black, red, and white. Mixed and blended on neutral toned paper, the 3-colour palette produces a wide range of semi-translucent lifelike skin tones which the artist often juxtaposes with bright opaque colours in the sitters’ clothes – a visual effect that has become hallmark of Svetlana’s technique.

Materials List

  • Live models
  • Basic materials included*
  • Detailed handouts
  • Practical exercises
  • Live Demonstrations
  • Refreshments provided

*Students will be required to bring certain materials.


Svetlana will demonstrate each of the key steps involved in the portrait drawing
and will individually assist each student as they progress.

Conté Pastel Step-by-Step

Conté Portrait Drawing Step-by-Step by Svetlana Cameron © 2019


A brief introduction to the key principles of Classical Portraiture and concepts of chiaroscuro and value. Materials and drawing tools: conté, charcoal, paper, handling, etc.

Day One

Short Exercise 1 (morning): Sphere drawing - which allows students a chance to get used to handling the medium as well as understanding value and form. Anatomy and proportions of the head. Long Exercise 2 (afternoon): Working from photographic reference (printed handouts will be provided by the instructor)

Day Two

Introduction to the 3-Colour drawing method: principles of colour temperature. Short Exercise 3 (morning): Palette mixing, skin tones. Setting up the model: posing, lighting, etc. Introduction to the Sight-size method. Long Exercise 4 (afternoon): Working from the live model

Workshop Details

The Master Portrait Drawing in Conté & Charcoal Workshop will be held in Cork City in October 2019.
See the dates and details for this workshop below, or contact us to find out more and to enrol.

# Venue Duration Day Time Dates Cost
1 Nano Nagle Place, Douglas Street, CORK 2 Days Saturday & Sunday 10.00am - 5.00pm 26 - 27 October 2019 € 250

Important Notes

  • Fees are non-refundable and non-transferrable.
  • Classical Art Atelier reserves the right to cancel any workshop at any time if the minimum number of students required is not reached. In such cases, your fee will be fully refunded.
  • It is recommended that you take out insurance to cover travel and accommodation costs in the event that this workshop is cancelled.

About Svetlana Cameron

Conté & Pastel Instructor

Svetlana Cameron is a Russian-born British portrait painter dedicated to the study and revival of classical art. Trained in the methods of the Old Masters, she is known internationally for commissioned oil portraits of distinguished people and delicate lifelike portraits of children in pastel.

Svetlana holds the title of a “Living Master” awarded to her in 2016 by the Art Renewal Centre (USA) and is included in the ARC online museum of realist art. Three of her official portraits are part of the UK national collection of oil paintings and are featured on ART UK.

She is a much sought-after portrait painter whose works can be seen in public and private collections worldwide. Notable sitters: General Sir Timothy Granville-Chapman KCB GBE (Royal Artillery Regiment), Natalia Osipova, Principal of the Royal Ballet, Clare Christian OBE, President of Tynwald, Tony Brown OBE, Speaker of Parliament of the Isle of Man, Robert Paterson, Lord Bishop of Sodor and Man (St German’s Cathedral).

Svetlana is based in East Sussex, UK, where she works out her private studio near Hastings. Visit to see her work.

Materials List

Conté & Pastel Drawing Workshop

All materials and equipment are available at Cork Art Supplies, where you will be entitled to a 10% discount upon enrolling for this workshop, or at Jackson's Art Supplies UK

  • 1 x Conté charcoal H
  • 1 x Conté charcoal HB
  • 1 x Conté charcoal 2B
  • 1 x Conté white
  • 1 x Conté sanguine
  • 1 x Derwent pastel dark sanguine
  • Canson Mi-Teintes for pastel
    55x 75 cm sheets
    Colour: Moonstone
  • Paper stump, small or medium in size
  • Fan Brush
  • Putty rubber
  • Masking Tape
  • Sharp Craft Knife
  • Sandpaper 400 grade
  • Plumb Line
Master Portrait Drawing in Conté & Charcoal Workshop

Learn the ‘three-colour’ technique inspired by the Renaissance Masters

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