National Drawing Day 2018 Events for Families

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kids drawing

National Drawing Day is an annual event initiated by the National Gallery of Ireland taking place in venues across Ireland. This year National Drawing Day 2018 takes place on Saturday 19th May, and here are some of the fun events for families taking place around Ireland: 

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Abbeyleix Heritage House, Laois

Saturday 19th of May 10am – 11.15am.

Join them for National Drawing Day in Heritage House and create your own magical, mystical, spooky or sweet tale! Illustrate your background, draw your favourite characters or create your own, give them props and tell their story! All materials will be provided for your budding Roald Dahls and Dr. Seusses to get creative! Booking essential. €6 per child, €5 per sibling.

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Butler Gallery, Kilkenny Castle

butler gallery national drawing day

Saturday 19th May 12pm

Butler Gallery will host its 10th annual National Drawing Day event on 19th May 2018. Ten artists will lead workshops in the grounds of Kilkenny Castle and indoors at various locations in the Butler Gallery and the Castle. In May 2018, the Butler Gallery and Kilkenny animation studio Cartoon Saloon will collaborate on an interactive, multimedia exhibition to celebrate the Irish release of the highly anticipated Oscar-nominated new film ‘The Breadwinner’. This film will be on general release from 25th May 2018. National Drawing Day 2018 will respond to this film and the exhibition at Butler Gallery, as a creative and colourful series of workshops for an age-diverse audience. All Welcome – FREE – No experience necessary!

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Castletown House

Saturday 19 May, 11am and 4 pm

National Drawing Day with Paul Woods, Visual Artist. Drop into the Stables to take part in National Drawing Day & then into the Abbey Art Exhibition in the Coach house also. Free family friendly event.

Crawford Art Gallery, Cork

crawford art gallery National-Drawing-day-2018

Saturday 19th May 11am – 3.30pm

Join them in celebrating National Drawing Day 2018 with a number of parallel art workshops for all ages and abilities! These will run in the morning and again in the afternoon of 19 May. Morning sessions: 11.00am – 12.30pm, afternoon sessions: 2.00pm – 3.30pm. Artist Gillian Cussen will take younger visitors on a journey from darkness to light in the Sculpture Galleries, and explore black and white lines, with charcoal and erasers! Whether you are an absolute beginner or a seasoned sketcher, join artist Helle Helsner and make your mark among the Heroes & Villains in the Long Room. No Booking Required / All Welcome

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Creative Spark, Dublin

Saturday 19th May 2-4pm

Creative Spark will hold a day of fun, free drawing activities. They have Petra Berntsson (Louth) joining them as Artist-in-Residence, and Art as Exchange will host some collaborative art activities during the day. Booking not required, this is a drop-in event.

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The Dock Arts Centre, Carrick On Shannon

the dock

Saturday 19th May, 11am – 2pm

Draw together. National Drawing Day is an opportunity for families and individuals to draw together in an interactive drawing day. The Dock will have three different workshops led by artists to let you discover, explore and experiment with materials and techniques. These workshops are suited for all ages and all materials will be provided. Free.

Dublin Castle

Saturday 19th May 12-1pm

National Drawing Day: Sketching the 19th century. For National Drawing Day, be inspired by the art and architecture of the 19th century, and by the temporary exhibition “Coming Home: Art and the Great Hunger”. Follow this tour around Dublin Castle and sketch your own masterpieces along the way. Materials provided. Join Laura Fitzachary and Dervilia Roche for this all-ages workshop. Free. Booking required. Suitable for all ages.

Farmleigh House, Dublin

farmleigh artzone national drawing day

Saturday 19th May 11am – 5 pm

To celebrate National Drawing Day Artzone Art Teachers will lead drawing workshops for children aged 5-7 and 8-12 years. Students will learn a variety of drawing techniques using the medium of pastel. They will create a textured, tonal piece inspired by imagery from the Farmleigh environment using secondary resources. Suitable for all children – no previous art experience required.

Free – limited places, allocated on a first come, first served basis. Workshops will take place at 11am – 12pm, 12.15-1.15pm, 1.30-2.30pm, 2.45-3.45pm, 4pm-5pm.

Hugh Lane Gallery, Dublin

Saturday 19 May, 2-3pm

National Drawing Day: Mini-Museum. Join them to create your own mini-artwork to be displayed in a mini-museum in this art workshop for 6-10 year olds with artist Rebecca Shelford. Fee €5. Early booking recommended as places are limited. To book please call 01 222 5550.

IMMA, Dublin

imma national drawing day

Saturday 19 May 2018 Session 1: 12pm to 1.30pm, Session 2: 2.30pm to 4pm

Drawing Day Workshops: To Look, To See, To Be Seen. In these workshops you can playfully explore different ways of approaching drawing, taking some of the exhibitions as a starting point. Several locations in the Museum will be the inspiring settings. These sessions will be facilitated by members of IMMA’s Visitors Engagement Team. The workshops are open to all ages and skill levels. All materials will be provided. No Booking Required, Drop-in & Free.

Kerry County Museum

Saturday 19th May

Kerry County Museum would like to invite all visitors to Doodle a New Museum as part of National Drawing Day. Simply grab a clipboard at Reception and start doodling your favourite object, exhibition or even an object or exhibition you would like to see in your Museum. Enter their doodle competition and you could win a 1-2-3 Tralee Family ticket.

Lismore Castle Arts, Waterford

Saturday 19th May

Running in association with National Drawing Day we will be hosting a drop-in workshop for visitors of all ages. Come join in the fun and add your own creative air to a collaborative group project. A number of professional easels will also be made available throughout the gardens for anyone who wishes to take part. Booking info: 058 54061 / info@lismorecastlearts.ie

Monaghan County Museum

Saturday 19th May 1pm – 3pm

National Drawing Day event for 6 – 12 year olds. Participants will have the opportunity to
release their creativity, with innovative and unusual art activities. All will be revealed ont he day. Booking Essential.

Muckross House, Gardens & Traditional Farms, Killarney

muckross house national drawing day

Saturday 19th May 1-3pm

Come and enjoy an afternoon of Life Drawing for Children with Egle Saladziute at The Schoolhouse, Muckross Traditional Farms. Admission is FREE.

National Design & Craft Gallery, Kilkenny

Saturday 19 May 2018, 11am – 3pm

Join them on May 19th at the National Design & Craft Gallery and experience lots of FREE creative family fun and artistry this National Drawing Day.

  • Sheila Jordan will teach you how to be creative with textiles. Learn to create with felt and make your own bird drawings! (Suitable for Children & Adults)
  • Try your hand at something different and learn a new skill by experiencing drawing on metal through the art of Repoussé to make coasters with Marie-Therese Walker (Suitable for Children & Adults)
  • Go on a weaving journey with Carrie Lynam and build a wonderful Woven Garden (Suitable for Children & Adults)
  • Learn the skill of fabric Screen-printing and create colourful textile prints to take home from the textile print workshops with Sandra McAlister. (Separate Children & Adult workshops)
  • Have a go at drawing on glass and create interesting Window Doodles (Suitable for Children and Adults)
  • Drop-in and get involved in the various workshops that will be happening throughout the day!

National Gallery of Ireland

ngi national drawing day

Saturday 19 May

Join in National Drawing Day 2018 at National Gallery of Ireland for a celebration of drawing and creativity, with events and activities for all ages. Admission to Drawing Day is free of charge and all events are FREE, but some must be booked in advance on their website. All materials are provided.

  • 11am-3pm: Drawing Live (Drop-in; throughout the Gallery) Artists, designers and illustrators responding to the collection & building in their own unique way: Nick Roche, Eve Parnell, Chris Judge, Sarah Ward & Jack Hickey.
  • 10-10.45am: The Sensory Session (Ticketed; Room 20). This tailored family session will appeal to children with heightened sensory awareness and is ASD friendly.
  • 12 – 2pm: Drawing for the Virtual World (Drop-in; Lecture Theatre). Meet award winning Dublin based animation studio Pink Kong and experience the magic of Aurora, the first ever virtual reality animation produced in Ireland.
  • 11am-1pm: Life Drawing (Drop-in; Room 44) Artist Fintan Mahon is back to facilitate this life drawing session for teens and adults.
  • 1-3pm: Illustrate Together (Drop-in; Room 22). Illustrator Tarsila Krüse will facilitate this fun, inclusive family activity inspired by the new exhibition Drawing Dublin.
  • 11am-4pm: GUM Open Studio (Drop-in; Millennium Wing Studio) Join the artists from GUM Collective for drop-in sessions inspired by #NoldeColourIsLife.
  • 12.30-2.30pm: Teen Events (Drop-in; Rooms 1–5 and the Maples and Calder Creative Space in the Atrium). The fantastic students from the 2018 Transition Year work experience programme will run two special activities – ‘Time Trial Challenge’ in Rooms 1-5 and ‘Creative Wall’ in Atrium.
  • 11am-12.15pm: Drawing Dublin (Ticketed; Print Gallery and Merrion Square) Join art historian Dr Katy Milligan and artist Sarah Edmondson for a tour of the #DrawingDublin exhibition followed by a sketching workshop in Merrion Square.
  • 2-3pm: Sketch the Sky (Ticketed; Merrion Square) Sarah Edmondson and Katy Milligan will show families how to make their own personal umbrellas in a drawing activity that defies the Irish weather!
  • 12pm-3pm: Emil Nolde: Colour is Life. Free entry to the exhibition from 12pm-3pm on #NationalDrawingDay

National Museum of Ireland – Archaeology

ardagh chalice National Museum of Ireland

Saturday 19th May 2018, 11am – 12pm and 2-3pm

National Drawing Day!: Storyboard how the Ardagh Chalice was lost and found! To celebrate National Drawing Day, join award winning children’s illustrator Mark Wickham to storyboard how the Ardagh Chalice was discovered. The chalice and its hoard were hidden away in the 9th century; a time when the Vikings first travelled to Ireland and raided monasteries in the search for treasure and precious objects. The hoard was rediscovered 150 years ago by a boy digging potatoes at a ringfort and today, remains one of Ireland’s most iconic objects.

Free but booking required, please email educationarch@museum.ie or call 01-6486 332. Located in the Learning Resource Room. Not Wheelchair accessible.

National Museum of Ireland, Decorative Arts and History, Collins Barracks

national drawing day

Saturday 19th May 2018, 2pm & 3.30pm

National Drawing Day 2018: Tapestry Tales. To mark National Drawing Day 2018 we invite you to drop in and discover the joys of drawing with their workshop Tapestry Tales. Join them to create a large scale tapestry drawing inspired by stories from the Museum’s collection. Tapestry Tales is a collaborative workshop for all age groups that looks at the practice of drawing through observational and drawing techniques.

No booking required. Drop-in-Activity. All Ages. Free Admission.

National Print Museum, Dublin

Saturday 19 May, 2-5pm

A range of self-guided drawing materials will be provided for families who visit to celebrate National Drawing Day. For adults and young people there will be a number of sketching stations available, with inspirational sketches of the collection on display to get the creative juices flowing! Free Admission. Please note this is a self-guided activity

Presentation Arts Centre, Wexford

Saturday 19th May 1:30 – 3:30pm

Another Look at Drawing In association with the National Gallery of Ireland for National Drawing Day. Suitable for ages 6+. If you think drawing is an old, dusty skill then think again! We will celebrate National Drawing Day 2018, by experimenting with new, contemporary approaches to drawing. There is no right or wrong process here, and children of all skill levels are welcome to join in and create. In this workshop, we will invent new, unique ways to draw, re-thinking the traditional processes, and have a great time doing it! This event is free to the public.

Rathfarnham Castle, Dublin

rathfarnham castle national drawing day

Saturday 19th May 12pm

To celebrate National Drawing Day you are invited to draw and sketch in the elegant surroundings of Rathfarnham Castle. Stop off at their art table too and add your Family Portrait to their themed pop-up exhibition and join the themed art tour. To encourage you to join in the fun, admission will be FREE! All welcome!

Solas Art Gallery, Ballinamore

Saturday 19th May 11am and 2pm

Solas will host two drawing sessions on National Drawing Day 19th May. Morning Session (in the gallery) led by Jennifer Kelly starting at 11am. Afternoon Session led by Brendan Dean starting at 2pm. Meet at the gallery. This will be a plein air session in and around the town, weather permitting. If weather is unfavourable, it will go ahead in the gallery.
Both sessions are free and materials will be provided. Each session expected to last 1.5 – 2 hours.

The Chester Beatty Library

chester beatty library national drawing day

There are a number of events to celebrate National Drawing Day 2018 at the Chester Beatty Library:

  • 12noon – 1pm. Gather your family and come along this National Drawing Day to explore the city through drawing. Roxana Manocheheri will introduce blind drawing and other sketching exercises while exploring Georgian elements of Dublin. Suitable for 6 – 106. Materials provided, free no booking required.
  • 11:15am – 1:30pm (12 – 14 years) Creative Teens Lab: Drawing workshop. Celebrate National Drawing Day, with a workshop dedicated to drawing. Join illustrator Philip Kennedy as he explores the rich and vibrant work in the Chester Beatty collection and presents some fun, unusual and creative approaches to drawing. Limited to 15 teens per session. Free, booking essential.
  • 2.15–4.30pm (15 – 17 years) Creative Teens Lab: Drawing workshop. Join illustrator Philip Kennedy as he explores the rich and vibrant work in the Chester Beatty collection and presents some fun, unusual and creative approaches to drawing. Limited to 15 teens per session. Free, booking essential.

The Hunt Museum, Limerick

Saturday, May 19th 11am – 3pm

On National Drawing Day participants can explore the connection between the Hunt Museum collection and the symbolism of using ‘walking drawing practice to remember’. This site specific work is part workshop and relational art.

VISUAL Centre for Contemporary Art

visual carlow national drawing day

Saturday 19th May, 11am-5.30pm

Celebrate National Drawing Day by exploring the gallery spaces through drawing or just come in and draw in their gallery space. They provide all the materials, so just come along with all the family. The best bit is that it’s all free! Fun for all ages.

Wexford Arts Centre

Saturday 19th May 1pm

Another Look at Drawing In association with the National Gallery of Ireland for National Drawing Day. Suitable for ages 6+. If you think drawing is an old, dusty skill then think again! We will celebrate National Drawing Day 2018, by experimenting with new, contemporary approaches to drawing. There is no right or wrong process here, and children of all skill levels are welcome to join in and create. In this workshop, we will invent new, unique ways to draw, re-thinking the traditional processes, and have a great time doing it! This event is free to the public.

Over to you now. Do you know of or are you running a National Drawing Day 2018 event for families that’s not on our list? Tell us in the comments below. 

National Drawing Day 2018 Events for Families

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