art board with gray's painted on

Visit Us

A Week in the Life of Art School

Experience a week in the life of art school at Gray’s this summer. We invite *senior pupils from North East Scotland to a free 5-day interactive programme, offering workshops, artist talks, and a chance to exhibit their artwork

Our interactive programme invites *senior pupils from schools across North East Scotland to engage. The programme aims to support the transition from school to university and provides a practical insight to what students experience in their first year of study at Gray’s School of Art. A Week in the Life of Art School is free to attend and will take place this summer at Gray’s and will run across 5 days from Monday 5 August - Friday 9 August. 

'A Week in the Life of Art School' is created in collaboration with ACCESS RGUEngageMobile Art School and Look Again Aberdeen and is fully funded by Gray’s School of Art, Robert Gordon University and Access to Creative Education Scotland.


About the week

You are invited to join a variety of different art and design workshops; these are delivered by alumni of Gray’s and explore different 2D and 3D disciplines. You are also invited to join an artist talk and group crit in which an artist will talk about their creative practice as well as their educational journey through art school before introducing the concept of ‘group crits’. Furthermore, you can exhibit one piece of artwork created during the week as part of a ‘Mini Revel’ through which you can showcase work to friends and family. 

You can apply to join just one workshop but are encouraged to join several across the week. 

Workshop timetable

Workshops will run for 2 hours each with a lunch break:

  • AM: 10.00 - 12.00 
  • Lunch: 12:00 - 13:00
  • PM: 13.00 - 15.00 

Monday 5 August

Tuesday 6 August

Wednesday 7 August

Thursday 8 August

Friday 9 August

About the workshops


Experimental Life Drawing - Figurative

Monday 5 August 10:00 - 12:00 or Wednesday 7 August 13:00 - 15:00

Join this playful life drawing workshop which involves a live model. Throughout the session you will observe the human figure in different poses and be asked to respond in a playful manner by sketching with different mediums and experimenting with line, form, colour and tone to convey movement.


Clay Creations - Hand build a ceramic sculpture

Monday 5 August 10:00 - 12:00 or 13:00 - 15:00

Learn three basic hand building techniques that can be used to build a simple shape or an abstract sculptural form. Methods include pinching, coiling and slab building. Following construction participants will learn how to prepare their work, ready for bisque firing using one of the kilns located within our ceramics workshop. 

Once fired ceramics can be collected at a later date / following exhibition.



Visual Art Installation - 3D Cardboard building

Monday 5 August 13:00 - 15:00 or Thursday 8 August 13:00 - 15:00

Design and build a large-scale sculpture as part of a group task. Learn how to turn your initial sketches into a 3D construction using a cardboard construction kit called ‘makedo’. This collaborative artwork will feature in our Mini Revel; an exhibition scheduled to take place within Gray’s at the end of the week. 


Cyanotype Photography - Develop a photograph under the sun

Tuesday 6 August 10:00 - 12:00

Learn the process of cyanotype photography; a camera-less technique that involves laying object(s) onto light sensitive paper before being exposed to UV light in order to form a blue print A4 in size.



Expressive Mark Making - Drawing & Painting

Tuesday 6 August 13:00 - 15:00

Experiment with different mark making techniques via a series of timed drawing and painting exercises. Play with shapes, colour, texture, movement and sound using media such as graphite, charcoal, chalk, erasers, ink, oil pastels and acrylics. 


TOTEally Inked - Textile screen printing

Tuesday 6 August 10:00 - 12:00 or 13:00 - 15:00

Explore the basics of screen printing; learn how to transfer a colourful pattern onto a tote bag (provided). During the workshop you will look at the importance of surface design, textile design and the use of abstract shapes used to form pattern.



Pinhole Photography - Capture and Develop your own photographs

Wednesday 7 August 10:00 - 12:00

Learn how to build your own pin hole camera and the basic steps involved to capture and develop your own photo. Images will be captured throughout the art school and photos will be developed in our darkroom. During the workshop you will need to consider composition, lighting and timing. 


Abstract Colour - Paper based screen printing 

Wednesday 7 August 10:00 - 12:00

Learn how to design and create your own summer inspired print using our screen-printing facilities. During the design stage you will be asked to concentrate on shape and the use of two colours only. Following this you will be shown how to produce your own physical print on paper, A5 in size.



Artist Talk and Group Crit

Wednesday 7 August 13:00 - 15:00

You are invited to meet an Artist from Gray’s School of Art, who will share with you their artistic practice as well as their educational journey through art school. The conversation will also introduce the concept of ‘group crits’ which form a fundamental part of life at art school. 


Cut & Collage - Build your own zine

Thursday 8 August 10:00 - 12:00

Zine (pronounced ‘zeeen’) is short for magazine or fanzine. The aim of this workshop is to create your own zine that could be self-published (if you want to). To produce this you will work with found imagery and text. In addition, you will be taught how to craft your own paper-based booklet called a chapbook; typically used as a low-cost publication method. 

Participants are encouraged to bring their own sourced imagery and text for the workshop. 



Digital Design - Create a poster

Thursday 8 August 10:00 - 12:00

Develop your digital skills in graphic design and illustration using Adobe Creative Suite software. The design brief will ask you to create an A3 exhibition poster which will be used to promote the ‘Mini Revel’ exhibition; scheduled to take place within Gray’s at the end of the week. The workshop will take place in the mac lab. 


Block & Bind - Letter printing and book binding

Thursday 8 August 13:00 - 15:00

Learn the craft of traditional block printing using wooden blocks as a medium to transfer designs onto card. During the workshop the focus will be text and you will be shown how to print a word of your choice onto card. Alongside this you will learn the basics of book binding and you will be given the opportunity to create your own sketchbook. 



The Install - Prepare for an exhibition

Friday 9 August 10:00 - 12:00

Following your participation in workshops throughout the week, you are invited to be part of the installation team, who together will install artwork in preparation for an exhibition called the ‘Mini Revel’. 

All artworks must be ready to install at Gray’s School of Art for 10:00 Friday 9 August 2024. 


Mini Revel - The exhibition

Friday 9 August 13:00 - 15:00

As a workshop participant you are invited to exhibit one piece of artwork from the programme as part of a ‘Mini Revel’. This exhibition is a celebration of your week in the life of art school and is a chance to meet different participants. You are encouraged to invite friends and family to celebrate your first exhibition at Gray’s School of Art. 


Apply Now!

Applications close 21 June 2024.

*Applicants must be 16 years at point of joining us on 5 August.

Spaces are limited and subject to availability. Applicants who meet wider access criteria will be prioritised.

Cookie Consent