“When we see a natural style, we are astonished and delighted,
for we expected to see an author, and we find a person.”

“Quand on voit le style naturel, on est tout étonné et ravi,
car on s’attendait de voir un auteur, et on trouve un homme.” – Blaise PASCAL, Penséés, 1669


LOCATION: Spring Portrait Painting will convene in in Argenton-Chateau (79150, France).

Please see our Facilities page for complete details on our campus and school facilities.
CLASS DATES: Arrive Thursday, 28 April 2016 – Depart Saturday, 21 May 2016

Group arrival at Angers/St Laud – Gare TGV will be Thursday, 28 April, at 4:00 PM
CLASS SCHEDULE: Studio sessions will be held for 3 weeks total, Sunday – Thursday with 6 hrs life model daily, 5 days per week.
CLASS SIZE: 9 maximum + instructors
WHO is ELIGIBLE? Entry by application only. Anyone may apply – There are no academic or other pre-requisites.

All Spring Portrait Program students must enroll full-time, for the entire three weeks.

TUITION PRICE: 2225 euros, for one 3-week term, shared 2BR housing included.

(Single apartments and small 1BR houses available in limited supply, for +250 euros.)

PAYMENT DUE: November 21, 2015.

WHEN to APPLY: Admissions for 2016 SPRING PORTRAIT PAINTING will open on August 15, 2015.

The priority application deadline is November 1, 2015.

HOW to APPLY: Please review the ADMISSIONS page for general information about the application process.




The Spring Portrait Program is a “hands-on” opportunity for students and professionals, unavailable in this format elsewhere. Students will observe and receive critique in portrait painting from Nicole Michelle Tully.

Students will profit from critique and lectures on portraiture and the features of the head, both in drawing and wet-into-wet oil painting techniques, including: drawing directly on canvas or panel, color thumbnail (“poster study”), chromatic underpainting (“colorwash”), and single-pass painting execution, wet-into-wet (“form painting”).

Critique and painting demonstration will be given 4 to 5 days weekly, and the studio culture offers daily opportunities for questions, discussions and impromptu “work-in-progress” demonstrations.


Nicole Michelle TULLY (b. 1972) is full-time faculty and co-founder of Studio Escalier.

Ms. Tully received her MFA degree in Painting from the Graduate School of Figurative Art – New York Academy of Art. She went to art school in New York City at the Art Students League and National Academy of Design, and in France at the Ecole Albert Defois under Ted Seth Jacobs (1996-2001). She holds a BA degree magna cum laude in Art History from New York University.

Ms Tully has been the recipient of grants, fellowships and exhibition prizes from the Elizabeth Greenshields Foundation, the New York Academy of Art, the Prince of Wales Fellowship, the National Academy of Design, the Circulo de Bellas Artes in Madrid, Spain, The Leslie T. and Frances U. Posey Foundation and the Stacey Foundation of Oklahoma City.

She was one of eight original members of the Jacob Collins Studio (1994-97) and was one of eleven founding members of the Water Street Atelier (1997-98), both in Brooklyn, NY.

She has shown her work in galleries in the United States and Europe, including Iliad Antik Gallery, NYC, the Sherry French Gallery, NYC, Klaudia Marr Fine Art in Santa Fe, NM and the John Pence Gallery in San Francisco. Her work has entered several distinguished private collections in the US and Europe, including the collection of Margot Gordon and HRH the Prince of Wales.

In 2012, Ms. Tully’s work was selected by ACOPAL (the America China Oil Painters Art League) to be included in the first major exhibition of contemporary American realist painting in China. The ACOPAL exhibition debuted at the National Arts Club in New York City in 2012, and will travel to several major musuems in China in 2013.