After-School Studio Arts Program

Free Classes for High School Students

This program provides high school students with opportunities for enrichment, skill development, and portfolio building in fine art with PAFA's stellar faculty.

Registration is by teacher nomination only. If you are a student or educator interested in this program, please reach out for more information about the nomination process. 


Students in the School District of Philadelphia have priority access to registration.

This program is designed for students who are excited to develop their artistic skills and receive guidance in applying to art school and developing a portfolio. All necessary art supplies will be provided. 

If you have questions, please reach out to or 215-972-7630

Classes offered in the Spring 2024


Tuesdays 4-6pm, Feb 6 – Apr 23rd, 2024. No Class on March 5 and March 26 

This class delves deeper into the tradition of oil painting. Students will explore the wide possibilities of color, brushwork, and composition, while creating work in different genres and working in the Academy’s historic collection of Greco-Roman and Renaissance plaster casts. Instruction will emphasize composition & design, values, textures, and color. 

Learning Objectives: 

  • A confident understanding of basic painting materials and techniques 
  • Good color mixing & value structures 
  • Strong designs and compositions 
  • Dynamic surfaces and paint textures 


ILLUSTRATION (Instructor Caitlin McCormack)

Thursdays 4-6pm / Feb 8 – Apr 25th, 2024 No class on March 7 and March 28 

Over the duration of this ten-week illustration course, high school students will be guided through a series of assignments encouraging out-of-the-box thinking and experimentation with sculptural and non-traditional media. Through fun and challenging prompts intended to introduce design, typography, branding, and conceptualization to creative and inquisitive minds, participants will craft imagery with clear communicative and narrative qualities. Students will engage in timed exercises, class discussions, collaboration, and friendly group critiques, all with a keen focus on developing a fundamental understanding of illustration.

Learning Outcomes:

  • A basic understanding of various illustration markets
  • Creative conceptualization and translation of verbal prompts into exciting imagery
  • An unconventional, fun approach to illustration media; students will be encouraged to experiment with sculptural, textile, and collage materials in the development of their artwork
  • Development of skills needed to create a strong portfolio

The After-School Studio Art Program is funded in part by grants from the FJN Foundation and the Milton and Sally Avery Arts Foundation. 

Contact Pre-College Programs

Studio art classes and education for high school students to develop their artistic passions and prepare for college.