Professional war artist Paul Brandford from the Royal Academy of Arts ran an all-day portraiture workshop with GCSE and A Level Art students. They investigated a range of approaches to portraiture working in charcoal, white and coloured chalk.The girls responded to a painting of an old woman and an owl by Frans Hals.

Posing for the girls was a former Doctors and Coronation Street actress Carol Holt, who together ran the Royal Academy Outreach portraiture workshop.

Harriet Wrobel, Adcote’s art teacher, said: “The girls were working well out of their comfort zones. It was astonishing to see what they produced.

“It was quite intense – the girls produced so much work. Paul gave them character descriptions and got them to respond. The tasks were anything from two minutes to 10 minutes long. Paul didn’t put boundaries in, which the girls found difficult initially.

“By lunch time, the difference between them was remarkable – that initial apprehension had gone and they were well and truly engrossed. For Year 10 and 12, they will go away and do portrait projects now. For the Year 13s were already doing aspects of portrait within their personal projects. They were learning to capture lots of detail in a short space of time. They often think a drawing in a sketchbook has to be complete and finished. Now they know how to do an outline quickly and put the detail in later.”

See http://paulbrandford.co.uk/gallery/the-world-at-war-stockport-war-memorial-art-gallery/ for examples of Paul’s work.