Masterclasses & Workshops

Cian McLoughlin, Tronie (Head of a Man), Oil on canvas, 17 x 14 inches. Image courtesy of the artist.
Painting the Head from Life
By: Cian McLoughlin
18 Nov 2017 - 19 Nov 2017
Fee Application Deadline
€250 October 27, 2017
Sorry, we are no longer accepting applications for this workshop.

This course will be broken into four parts, each covering a different aspect of painting the head from life. Cian McLoughlin will perform a demo at the beginning of each part after which the participants will be able to apply the principles as they work on their own versions. Individual feedback will be given throughout the course.

The class will cover impasto, wet into wet painting, using non-conventional implements, composition, colour choice, blending/modelling and thoughts on figuration, abstraction and semi-abstraction. The technical implications of working with larger amounts of material (paint, mediums etc) will also be addressed.

Cian McLoughlin is a Dublin based artist. A graduate of architecture, he went on to complete a Masters in Film Studies in UCD before dedicating himself full time to painting. His work is largely focused on portraiture and urban landscapes. He has had four solo shows in Dublin and the most recent was his first solo show outside Ireland in the J. Cacciola Gallery in New York. He has featured in many group exhibitions including the National Portrait Gallery in London, the RUA, Art Miami, Art Toronto, King’s Palace London and the Annual Exhibition in the RHA where he won the Niccolo D’Ardia Caracciolo RHA Gold Medal in 2013 and showed as an invited artist in 2016. He is currently working on a series of abstract heads under the title of Tronies. The first of these Tronies was exhibited in the Hennessy Portrait Awards 2014 in the National Gallery of Ireland. In May 2015, this body of work was the subject of a talk he delivered, also in the National Gallery, titled Defamiliarization: Portraits and Tronies, as part of the Sean Scully Lecture Series on Contemporary Art. The first solo exhibition of this series will take place in November 2017 in the Molesworth Gallery in Dublin.


Artists interested in participating in this masterclass should apply by completing the online application form.

  • A short CV (PDF documents only. Maximum file size 500K);
  • Up to three low resolution images of their work. Preferably recent representational works (JPG format only. Maximum file size 500K);
  • Please note that places on this masterclass are limited.


As part of the RHA School Access Programme, two free places on RHA School Workshops, Courses, Life-drawing sessions and Masterclasses will be offered. One to an artist currently enrolled at any of the third level art colleges in Ireland. The second free place will be offered to an artist of merit at any stage of their career. This additional free place has been made available through the generosity of an anonymous donor. Artists and art students who wish to be considered for these places should include a CV, three images of current practice and a cover letter providing a short statement indicating how they would benefit from attending any of the RHA School activities as part of their online application.

Queries about any of the RHA School classes, workshops or masterclasses should be forwarded to the Academy Co-ordinator, Kate McBride. Phone: 01-6612558 or email: