The portrait is an integral part of the LARA curriculum. Throughout the program students are encouraged to work with portrait models on increasingly complex projects of their own devising. Whether the portrait is painted or drawn depends on how far they have progressed within the framework of the curriculum.
With the assistance of tutors, attention is paid to posing and lighting the model, establishing a composition and mood, and achieving a convincing depiction of the likeness and character of the sitter. Students are expected to make preparatory studies to explore their ideas before beginning a full-scale project. It is the aim of the program to not only develop the student’s observational powers and technical ability, but also to enable them to apply critical thinking when realising their intentions.