Our Mission

Image of artist George Fredrick Watts, 1817-1904
"Study the past, live in the present, work toward the future."
-George Fredrick Watts (1817-1904)

Independent studies have shown that as early as age twelve many people abandon their artistic goals because they feel untalented and self-conscious about the work that they produce. Often this is due to a lack of technical training. In many art schools today instruction centers around experimental exercises with little or no reference to the technical process of creation. When this happens a problem occurs: students lack the substantive skills necessary to fulfill their creative vision.

American painter Eric Fischl (1948- ) commented on this very point: "Part of the problem is that artists of my generation were not educated. We were not given the equipment because it was generally believed to be irrelevant. Drawing, eye-hand coordination, art history – really fundamental stuff was considered unnecessary."

At The Art Academy we take this challenge seriously. We’ve structured our programs to advance technical skills, which are balanced with creative exercises designed to promote an in-depth understanding of the essential principles of art.

As students progress throughout our programs they are continually challenged with new assignments that take them to higher levels of understanding.

The teachers at The Art Academy follow the master/apprentice tradition that predates the Renaissance. In that system, apprentices improved in the craft of drawing and painting through systematic instruction based upon the study of the achievements of great artists of the past. In addition, the master/apprentice system encouraged instructors to take the lead in demonstrating proper methods and principles so apprentices could fully understand the task at hand.  By adopting this philosophy at The Art Academy students dramatically improve their skills and build confidence as they apply their newly acquired knowledge to their most dignified creations.

Small class sizes allow plenty of one-on-one instruction.

To support our teaching methods each of our instructors works with a small group of students. Most often our student/teacher ratio approximates 3-5 students per instructor. This classroom structure guarantees that all of our students receive consistent one-on-one attention as they progress throughout our program.

At The Art Academy our classes are sequential; each one builds upon the last to ensure steady growth. We offer courses in Spring, Summer, Fall and Winter quarters so students can progress quickly throughout the year.

Art Academy students advance at a level and pace that is comfortable for themselves as they practice the fundamentals of drawing and expand their knowledge of the principles of color, painting, and design. Our students also have the opportunity to develop a refined personal aesthetic when they are exposed to our extensive collection of historic illustrations, drawings and paintings.

At the Art Academy we always stress practice over talent. We believe that if students put forth their best efforts during each class their abilities will flourish – unlocking a level of artistic potential that goes well beyond their expectations.

We know how busy both children and adults are these days so we do not require work outside of class. Instead, we simply ask that all of our students try their best during each class session.

The Art Academy is nondenominational and nondiscriminatory. Our teachers work to encourage a positive atmosphere where students can enjoy learning in a non-competitive environment. In our children’s program, simple classroom rules assure a safe, fun workplace; while our adult classes foster camaraderie amongst like-minded individuals working to develop craftsmanship and creativity.

We're confident that many of the inquiries you may have regarding our school will be answered by perusing our website. If you still have questions feel free to call us at 651-699-1573. If we are not able to answer our phone, please leave a message. Our answering machine is checked often.

Thank you for your interest.