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How Much Do Online Art Classes Cost?

We often get asked, what do online art classes cost? The answer is, it varies greatly. This is a guide to help you understand and determine the value online art classes, as costs will vary depending on the type of class.


*Price references are in USD. Last updated Jan 2023.



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Types of online art classes


There are several types of online art programs – from live weekly classes that are held virtually, to asynchronous classes that you can do at your own pace, to single workshops that are more recreational in nature, to intensive art lessons meant to build skills quickly.


The costs for all of these can vary based on the number of students, bulk purchases, subscriptions, and a number of other factors that we'll dive into.


Here are some different types of online art classes, listed from most to least expensive:

Live Virtual Art Programs

  • Private art lessons

  • Semi-private art lessons (typically 2 - 3)

  • Small group art classes (typically 4 - 12)

  • Large group art classes or workshops (up to 200 people)

Online Asynchronous Art Programs

  • Art courses with instructor feedback

  • Art courses with community feedback (via Facebook or Discord group)

  • Membership-style art lessons with video content


Free Online Art Classes



Classes taught by famous artists or industry experts

Another variable when it comes to cost is the expertise and fame of the instructor. Well-known artists who don't often teach are sometimes invited as guest instructors and therefore paid more. Artists who have built up a large audience on YouTube may also charge more for private or live group classes. Industry experts such as working illustrators, animators, and designers may also charge more for classes because they can provide valuable industry insights, such as art portfolio and career advice, as well as connections within their field.



Cost of online art classes for kids vs. adults

Art classes for kids and beginners usually cost less than advanced classes for teens and adults. This is because it doesn’t require a highly skilled art teacher to teach the basics. Online art programs for beginners are usually about 40 - 90 minutes in length, and consist of a creative activity that’s guided step by step.


Although there are also beginner-level online art classes for adults, they are mostly offered as asynchronous art courses. This learning style provides more flexibility because lessons can be watched on-demand instead of committing to attending weekly classes. There is usually a one-time course fee or membership cost that can range greatly, depending on the length and profile of the program.


Adult group classes that are more advanced are typically longer in duration, ranging from 2 hours to a full day, and require more specialized instruction. These can range around $40 - 80 / class to $100 - $500 / day. Be sure to factor in materials in this cost as some programs provide materials, but most do not.


Adults and portfolio students pursing more advanced skills prefer art mentorships or private lessons, which include custom demos and personal coaching. These will typically cost between $50 - $300 / lesson.



General vs. specialty art class pricing

The more general or easy an art class is, the less it will cost. The most specialized the class is, the more it will cost. For example, a beginner drawing class will cost less than an advanced digital painting or art portfolio class. This is usually because of a more advanced curriculum, instructor expertise, and overall less demand (as well as supply). The more specialized the artist is, the more they can charge for teaching.



Cost of online vs. in-person classes

Online Art Classes

Generally, learning art online is a much more affordable option than learning at a physical studio because there are less costs like rent and insurance. However, online learning isn’t for everyone. Online art classes may be a good option for busy people who have trouble attending weekly classes, or people who live in rural or remote areas and don’t have access to local art studios.


Online classes may also be suitable for homeschoolers, students who like to learn at their own pace, or people who identify as more introverted and prefer online interaction. Although learning art online may never fully replace the experience of in-person learning, it’s a great modern alternative.


Online art classes may range in price depending on the learning level, number of lessons, and pricing model. You may pay a one-time fee of $50 - $500 for a fully asynchronous course, or $20 - $150/month for a membership. Virtual art classes that are live with limited capacity will cost more, from $20 - $80 for a single group lesson that’s 1 - 2 hours in length.


In-Person Art Classes

Learning art in person provides a more social and hands-on experience, and has been the traditional type of learning for centuries before video was invented! There are usually limited spots, and sometimes the benefits of provided art materials and a place to create, so the mess stays in the studio and away from home. Learning art in-person may be more beneficial for younger kids, who prefer more of a hands-on approach among peers, as well as the social interaction that comes with creating.


In-person (or studio) classes may range from $30 - $200 per session depending on the institution or venue. A casual local studio may charge $30 for a 1- hour class or workshop, whereas a university or specialty art school may cost $200 per lesson depending on materials provided, class length, teacher accolades, and class size.



Can I learn art for free?

If you’re a beginner who is just starting out, it’s perfectly fine to start learning with free options! In fact, there are thousands of free art tutorials and channels on YouTube that can help you get started. Subscribing to some art channels you like will help motivate you to create when new content is released.


Joining an online art community (like Winged Canvas' Discord server) is another great way to stay motivated and share your artwork, even if you are shy. This will allow you to try some techniques without any external pressure, from the comfort of home, or anywhere you happen to be.


Following an online art video tutorial can be a relaxing hobby, or a fun family activity with the kids, or even a creative date night idea! You can even learn by just watching first, and observing the techniques without even picking up a pencil. However, not all free content is good content – and it can be hard to level up your art skills without an artist mentor or teacher to give feedback on your artwork.



How do I choose an online art class that’s good value?

Learning from video tutorials can give you a head start in art, but the real value comes with having a professional artist give you guidance and individual instruction – and that’s definitely worth paying for. It’s crucial to be able to identify what you’re doing wrong, break bad habits, get feedback, learn shortcuts, and get corrections on things like proportions, perspective, and other techniques. Feedback cycles are usually more immediate in virtual art classes, but for those who are more patient, written feedback can also be given online upon artwork submission.


Identifying which type of online art class is right for you will help you find the best personal value. While some people prefer to pay for private lessons for on-demand support, others may find group lessons more enjoyable because they can learn from their peers. Lesson consistency definitely leads to faster improvement, so weekly classes may prove to be a better value than one-offs if you’re looking to level up quickly. And while some people are self-motivated enough to learn asynchronously with online video courses, most need the accountability of learning live.


Whatever you choose, be sure to consider your own personal learning style, and how you prefer getting feedback and support on your artwork!



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