Short courses


Colour in Practice: Understanding Colour (Summer School Short Course)

  • 60 hours
  • 2 weeks


This two-week course will help you better understand the many aspects of colour and develop colour skills within your own artistic practice.

The course weaves aspects of colour science together with colour practice. This will give you an in-depth knowledge of colour theory and its practical application.

The course runs from 9.30am to 4.30pm each day. You'll also have the option of attending extra-curricular events such as talks and exhibitions on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday evenings.

This course is part of the annual summer school run by the Slade School of Fine Art at UCL.

Course content and structure

This course explores the subject of colour through lectures and seminars, practice and critiques.

There will also be workshops hosted by invited artists whose use of colour plays a key role in their work.

A series of morning lectures will examine the:

  • physics and chemistry of colour
  • history of colour in art
  • role of our culture and language in colour concepts
  • psychology and emotion of colour

Through practical projects you'll explore the interaction of colour, colour mixing, the relationship between form and colour, and the spatial effects of colours. 

In the second week you'll develop your personal work, with support through individual tutorials. The emphasis will be on developing ideas, preparation and process, and using a variety of approaches and techniques.

Who this course is for

The course is open to anyone interested in developing skills in relation to colour and their own artistic practice. It's suitable for all abilities.


You can request an attendance certificate after completing the course. These can only be supplied during the year you take the course and can't be produced retrospectively.


This two-week course costs £800.

A 10% discount is available for UCL current students and staff. You'll be asked to enter your UPI number (available on your UCL ID card) when booking.

Course fees must be paid in full at the time of booking.

Only basic materials will be provided. Once you've been accepted onto the course you'll be sent details of the materials you'll need.

Slade Summer School

The Slade Summer School offers a unique opportunity for you to work within the studios and vibrant atmosphere of the Slade - a world-renowned school of fine art. 

You'll become part of a wider community of artists and will have a real sense of studying in an art school environment among Slade students and alumni. You'll test your abilities while learning new skills and different approaches to making art.

You can take part in a lively range of extra-curricular activities, including: 

  • art history lectures and artist talks introducing the varied contexts and histories of fine art
  • exhibition openings and talks by Slade undergraduate and postgraduate students about their work
  • a series of artists' projects run by Slade tutors, alumni and recently graduated student residents - you'll be invited into these studio spaces to discuss the works with the artists 

Evening events take place at 5pm on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays. 

Take an extended programme of multiple courses

Many different one, two and three-week courses are available. You can build a personalised programme of study by taking a series of short courses over the ten-week period. 

Please call the Summer School team if you'd like do this - they have detailed knowledge of the curriculum and can help you plan a programme.

All the Summer School courses available are listed on the Slade website.

Further information

Read more about this course and others on the Slade website, which provides information about booking and cancellations.

Course team

All tutors are practising artists

All tutors are practising artists

Course leader: Caroline de Lannoy.

Learner reviews

"It was a wonderful structure. Had a great experience, really enjoyed the cosmopolitan, diverse atmosphere."

Course information last modified: 23 Oct 2019, 12:02