N. Michelle TULLY / NG – oil on linen (tondo) – 2013 Timothy STOTZ / New York Belvedere – charcoal – 1995

ADMISSIONS | HOW to APPLY – Guidelines to the Application Process

“What artist ever looked at the Belvedere Torso without feeling a warmth of enthusiasm, as from the highest effects of poetry?  From whence does this proceed?  What is there in this fragment that produces this effect, but the perfection of this science of abstract form?”

–  Sir Joshua Reynolds, Tenth Discourse to the Royal Academy, 1780


STUDIO ESCALIER has been privileged to enroll over 1000 studio seats in the last 18 years — including professional artists and art teachers; emerging talents from some of the most competitive schools, art studios, and creative companies; career-oriented beginners of all ages; 
and people who simply love to draw and paint the human figure.

See our COURSE SCHEDULE page for the most current information on upcoming studio courses and online courses, news about our 2022-23 course schedule, and links to online applications.

From the beginning, our application process has remained exactly the same:

1) All Studio Escalier courses are enrolled by online application only, including portfolio submission.

Our upcoming COURSE SCHEDULE is published online only, one year in advance. You will find all courses listed there by date, subject, location, and application deadline — with links to course descriptions, and to online application forms.

Course descriptions are normally published online at least 12 months before the first day of class.

Online application forms are normally published 6 to 8 months before the first day of class.

2) We normally ask to see just 2 examples of your best figure drawing or figure painting, or 2 of your best artworks from observation (‘best’ judged by your own standard).

Please do not make the mistake to think that you “have to get better” before you apply! We are here to teach, and to share the knowledge that we have. We do not expect you to already know what we know.

Every class is intentionally unique in its artistic mix, and in its average levels of experience and skill.

3) If a course is currently open for admissions, you will see two blue buttons on its course description page.

Desktop and laptop computer users should click the “Apply Online” button to go directly to the online application form:


Smartphone and tablet users should use this button to request an application form via e-mail:

The Summer Intensive and Autumn Intensive courses in Argenton-Chateau open for online application 8 months before the first day of class. 

All Paris Drawing Programs and Special Programs in Paris or Argenton-Chateau open for online application 6 months before the first day of class.

There are no waiting lists, and it is impossible to apply earlier.

We reserve the right to modify the dates, price and description of any course until it opens for application.

4) For most courses, anyone may apply. (Check the course description page online.)

Alumni must re-apply for re-entry.

No students are admitted outside of normal admissions competition, no students are “pre-enrolled” or wait-listed beforehand.

The average percentage of returning alumni enrolled in any course is 50%.

But alumni students may be returning after a pause of any length: 2 weeks, 3 months, 7 months, a year, or longer.

5) The earliest priority application deadline is normally 5 months before the first day of class.
Most courses are now fully enrolled after their priority deadline, but not all.

All applications and portfolios are reviewed in double-blind competition with one another, immediately after a priority deadline passes — not before. 

6) Admissions decisions are sent by e-mail, within 5 days after the deadline.

Admitted students should reply to accept or decline their admission offer within 48 hours of notification. Failure to reply at all within 7 days will be automatically considered a decision to decline admission.

Tuition payment is due paid in full within 10 business days of admissions notification. See individual course descriptions on the COURSE SCHEDULE page for prices and payment details.

If any course is not fully enrolled by the priority deadline, then a final application deadline date will be set, and the process repeats. See the COURSE SCHEDULE page to learn more about current and upcoming application deadlines.

7) Admission can be competitive. But the applicant pool does vary, in both size and strength, from season to season and deadline to deadline.

Please apply. There is no advantage in delaying your application, no matter what your level or experience.

It is normal that both the least experienced and the most talented are equally certain they’re not good enough to get in.

Portfolio submissions are requested so that faculty may evaluate student needs as well as talents. They allow faculty to better imagine the curriculum of every course in advance, and to structure the enrollment accordingly.

8) You must be at least 18 years of age to enroll.

 There is no upper age limit. We enroll 100 to 125 students annually, across all programs.

The average student age in our Intensive Courses and Winter at the Louvre program is 27 years old. (Approximately two-thirds are age 18 to 29, one-third are age 30 and up.)

The average student age for our shorter Paris drawing programs and various special programs is 36 years old. (Approximately one half are age 18 to 29, one half are age 30 and up.)

9) Alternates are also nominated as part of the admissions process, in order to fill any last-minute student cancellations, should they occur. Alternates are reviewed, notified, and admitted as soon as one is needed.
If more alternates are needed, a special


button and alternate deadline will be listed on the course description page, as well as on the COURSE SCHEDULE page.

For all these reasons, it is effectively impossible to enter most of our courses at the last minute.

10) Our historic studio home, museum lectures, and our campus in Argenton-Chateau are not open to the general public.

Individual interviews — in person or by telephone — and personal portfolio review are not a part of the admissions process.We appreciate curiosity, but personal tours and studio visits are not offered to prospective students for any reason.

To protect our (and their) privacy and concentration, our classroom studio is open to currently enrolled students only. We spend alot of quality time with our students. If you are enrolled in an upcoming program, that’s when we’ll meet you.

Thanks in advance for your comprehension.