Advanced Foundation Course in Medical Art

The one-year Advanced Foundation Course in Medical Art focusing entirely on traditional drawing techniques, starts in October

Open Day

Join our next Online Course Information Open Morning Event, on 3rd July 2024.

MAA 72nd Annual Conference 2023 – Liverpool

The 72nd Annual Conference of the Medical Artists’ Association of Great Britain will be held in Liverpool, United Kingdom on April 20-21, 2023.

MAET Webinars and Workshops

We will be continuing our programme of successful webinars and workshops during 2023. Dates and information can be found below

Autumn Interview 2024

Our next in-person Autumn Interview date will be on the 16th September 2024. Application forms are to be received no later than 2nd September 2024.

MAET Postgraduate Programme in Medical Art

We offer a unique opportunity to gain an education in medical art to an exceptionally high standard both in traditional painting and draftsmanship alongside contemporary digital skills.

MAET Newsletter

Please sign up to our newsletter to receive news of our charitable trust, educational courses and events. We have a full timetable of exciting learning opportunities open to students of medical art, professional medical artists and those interested in the field. Our online webinars, hands-on-workshops and event days will give you an opportunity to learn new things, upscale your skills, networking with colleagues in your field and join in friendly and lively debates about hot topics in medical art.

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Advanced Foundation Course in Medical Art

The one-year Advanced Foundation Course in Medical Art focuses entirely on traditional drawing techniques and starts in October.

Discover the extraordinary blend of art and science in our unique Advanced Foundation Course in Medical Art. Are you intrigued by the intricate details of human anatomy? Eager to capture the essence of life sciences through the strokes of your pencil? Look no further.

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Postgraduate Medical Art Course

Embark on a journey that will prepare you for a thriving career in the diverse world of medical art. The Postgraduate Medical Art Course, offered by the prestigious MAET delivers a comprehensive programme meticulously crafted to equip you with the professional skills needed to excel in the competitive and global medical art industry.

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Apply to the MAET Postgraduate Programme in Medical Art

If you wish to apply for our Postgraduate Programme in Medical Art, please complete the online application form.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Do you have a prospectus?

We include all the entry requirements, application forms and a course summary within the web site.

When do the courses start?

Both the Advanced Foundation Course in Medical Art and Postgraduate Programme in Medical Art Courses begin in early October each year.

Can we study from abroad?

Yes, if you are able to travel to London to attend the interview, the course seminars, additional events, workshops and assessments. Students abroad, may be offered remote learning options, considered on an individual basis in conjunction with attendance in person. Each prospective student should make an allowance for the additional time and cost for travel and accommodation if required.

How long will the courses take?

The Advance Foundation Course in Medical Art is a part-time, one-year course, starting in October and finishing in July of the following year.

The Postgraduate Programme in Medical Art is a self directed part-time course which  has been designed to take four years and includes the Advanced Foundation Course. However, if students wish to approach the course as a full-time course and do not have other commitments, they could finish the course within two years.

What are covered in the courses?

The Advanced Foundation Course is focused on teaching traditional techniques of observational drawing to obtain accuracy, realism and precision in artwork.

The Postgraduate Course is designed to prepare students for a professional career as medical artists,  with the skills to excel in a competitive global market. Topics include designing patient information leaflets, educational posters, animations and interactive learning tools.

What job opportunities are there?

Medical artists may become freelance or employed within huge variaty of fields worldwide. For example working within hospitals, publishing, advertising, forensic and police work, archaeology, e-learning, and animation.

What educational background do I need to apply to the courses?

Graduates entry requirements may be one of the following:

An Honors Degree in Art and Design
Higher National Diploma incorporating scientific illustrations, preceded by a Foundation year
Medical or Science background showing a portfolio of exceptional skill

If I am just leaving 6th form – what is the best education route to enter into medical art?

We recommend an initial art foundation course followed by an art degree which includes life drawing and observational drawing as a significant part of its syllabus; including the further options listed above.

Do we have to attend every seminar?

Yes, attendance to all the Seminars and Assessments are compulsory.

Do you do short day courses?

We organise regular online webinars and workshops for enrolled students. A further selection of webinars and workshops are also available to external attendees. Details can be found via the Home page.

Do you offer funding?

As a Charitable Education Trust, we aim to keep our fees extremely low, thereby supporting all students. Specific and/or occasional funding is given to support enroled students attending specific events, for example, the MAA Annual Conference.

When are your Open Days?

Information Open Days are held twice a year for interested students to come and find out more about our courses. We recommend all applicants attend.

These events are held in February and June/July each year. Dates and application forms are available via the website homepage.

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Webinars, workshops, open days, conferences and interview dates

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Purchase Exhibition Publication 2022

The thirty-two page exhibition publication, show casing medical artwork, is available for a nominal £5 donation to the Trust, and a copy will be posted to you.

Purchase  

The Medical Artists’ Education Trust

The Medical Artists’ Education Trust is a charitable trust whose primary focus is the advancement of education in medical art, through its Postgraduate Training Programme, workshops and webinars. This Programme teaches the skills required to understand and communicate visually and at all levels, aspects of science and medicine. To ensure the course is flexible and open to all, seminars are run on a part-time basis and fees are subsidised. It is intended for artists, or students of science backgrounds, who wish to progress to a professional qualification in medical art and gain membership to the Medical Artists’ Association.
The Trust provides Open Days twice a year. Here you can find out about the course and receive portfolio feedback. Written applications are then accepted, and followed by a formal interview with portfolio presentation at the Barber Surgeons’ Hall in London. Interviews are held in March and September with a view to beginning the course in October.

Historical Background

The Medical Artists’ Association was founded as a result of a meeting of practising medical artists in Oxford in April 1949. Selecting and training new entrants into the profession formed it to gain recognition for the profession of medical art and to safeguard standards. It has endeavoured to maintain and improve the contribution the artist can make to medical teaching.
In its short history the Association has seen medical artists take a recognised and respected place in the field of medical education. In 1994 the Association received a bequest on the death of one of its former members, Miss. Charlotte S. Holt, with her express wish that this fund be used to help train and educate future students of medical art. At the same time the Association applied to the Charity Commission of England and Wales to seek charitable status, which was granted in 1997 solely for its training and educational activities.
Photo: Miss Charlotte S. Holt (in red)
The Medical Artists’ Education Trust was thus founded to administer a postgraduate programme in medical art, as a self-governing educational body with charitable status, separate from the MAA itself. On successful completion of this programme the candidate will be awarded full professional membership of the Medical Artists’ Association of Great Britain.
The MAA produces a newsletter and holds an annual conference. It is actively involved with other professional institutes and associations, both in the United Kingdom and Europe. It remains, however, a small friendly group of artists working in and for the continued development of this historic profession.

Hover Box Element

Hover Box Element

Photo: Miss Charlotte S. Holt (in red)

The teaching supervisors of the MAET Courses are qualified and seasoned medical illustrators who bring a unique blend of expertise to the learning journey of their students. With their guidance, it is our aim to inspire students to create visuals that bridge the gap between art and science, fostering a profound appreciation for both.

MAET Course Supervisors

Ms Catherine Bone
Mrs Joanna Cameron
Miss Francesca Corra

MAET Education Committee

Ms Catherine Bone (Director of Education)
Mrs Joanna Cameron (Foundation Director)
Miss Mandy Miller (Trust Treasurer)
Mrs Francesca Corra (Course Secretary)
Mr Jenny Halstead
Mrs Philip Ball (Academic Advisor)

MAET Examining Board

Dr M. D. O’Brien (Chairman)
Professor J. S. P. Lumley
Dr R. H. Whitaker
Mrs Catherine Bone
Mrs Joanna Cameron
Mr Matt Briggs
Mrs Jenny Halstead

Administration Staff

Mrs Catherine Bone
Mrs Joanna Cameron
Mrs Mandy Miller
Miss Francesca Corra

The Medical Artists’ Association

The Medical Artists’ Association of Great Britain, was founded in 1949 by a small group of people who came together to form an association that would give recognition to medical artists.

Up until then a limited number of artists had been working in the field of medical illustration, primarily as freelancers employed by individual medical consultants in surgical units and teaching hospitals. The two world wards had increased the need for accurate illustrative medical records. With war injuries and plastic surgery, many more doctors surgeons and medical auxiliaries needed training as new procedures and surgical operations were being developed. Each technique required illustrations and medical artists became integral members of medical teams.

Audrey Arnott studied at the Royal College of Art and was employed as an artist by Hugh Cairns, a neurosurgeon at the London Hospital, who arranged for her to study under Max Brodel in the USA. Here she learnt the carbon dust technique, which she brought back to the UK. It was adopted by many medical artists for several decades. Arnott trained Margaret McLarty who worked alongside her and who later wrote Illustrating Medicine and Surergy (published in the 1960s).

Dorothy Davidson became well known for many neurological carbon dust artworks she produced while working for neurosurgeon Geoffry Jefferson (1986-1961). Davidson already knew Audry Arnott and Margaret McLarty, as well as Clifford Shepley, a medical artist at Edinburgh University. Together they set about organising and forming an association by seeking out and vetting medical artists who could form a nucleus of potential members. Ultimately thirteen medical artists met at Nunnery Close, the home of Arnott and McLarty in Oxford, on 2nd April 1949. Here the Medical Artist’s Association (MAA) was born. The MAA held its 50th-anniversary conference in 1999 back in Oxford and celebrated by visiting Nunnery Close once more.

Presidents of the MAA

  • 1949-1950 Professor Sir Jame Learmouth KCVO FRCS
  • 1951-1978 Sir Cecil Wakely PPRCS FRCS
  • 1978-1991 Sir Francis Avery-Jones CBE MD FRCP
  • 1991-2005 Air Commodore Ronald Brown MA FRCS
  • 2005 – present Sir Barry Jackson FRCS FRCP FRCSGlas

MAET News

Advanced Foundation Course in Medical Art

The one-year Advanced Foundation Course in Medical Art focusing entirely on traditional drawing techniques, starts in October.

Congratulations to Charlotte Donald Wilson for passing her final exam!

Congratulations to Charlotte Donald Wilson for submitting a great portfolio for her final exam which she passed on December 1st 2022. She is now a full member of the Medical Artists' Association of Great Britain and will receive her certificate at the Liverpool conference in April 2023. Well done Charlotte!

Congratulations to Emily Paul for passing her final exam!

Congratulations to Emily Paul for passing her final exam with flying colours and for becoming a full member of the Medical Artists' Association of Great Britain! We wish her all the best in her freelance work!

MAET Alumni student Jennifer N. R. Smith shortlisted for Association of Illustrators 2022 awards

Huge congratulations to Jennifer Smith for being shortlisted for Association of Illustrators 2022 awards and the V&A Illustration 2022 Awards for the BBC History Magazine cover image about endometriosis. Well done Jenny! For more information about her artwork visit her website Wonder Theory and see her entry for the AOI and V&A.
MAET Student Gallery

Current and alumni student gallery

A gallery of all our current and past students artwork portfolios.

Gallery