Life in LA
Los Angeles is the second largest metropolis in the US and LAAFA is right there in the midst of it! With that said, you get the personal attention of being a student within a small, caring environment – with access to a huge community that offers a diverse and an incomparable amount of art, culture, food, industry, and commerce.
Over the past few decades, L.A. has solidified itself as an art mecca, and is home to a vast number of museums, galleries, artist’s studios, and commercial entertainment studios. LAAFA’s full time curriculum include classes where students regularly go on Field Trips to not only museums and galleries, but also to private studios of local artists as well as large commercial entertainment studios, such as Dreamworks and Disney. Opportunities and connections are available around every corner in L.A. Southern California’s varied landscape and weather condition allows for year-round recreation including snowboarding, skiing, hiking, swimming, camping, golfing and surfing as well as beautiful painting opportunities! With close proximity to the ocean and beaches, the campus is located within an hour’s drive to the desert and mountains. We take full advantage of the natural beauty and warm weather of this region in our plein-air landscape painting classes.
L.A. is the heart of the entertainment industry and many of our instructors work in this field as artists. As a result, our students have first-hand access to professional working artists who are currently active in their industry. In addition, a number of our teachers are also gallery represented artists and with their help, the gallery world of L.A. is demystified for the students. Studying in L.A. gives our students a diverse appreciation for art and the different ways to take their own art-making to a professional level.
Art in LA
The gallery scene in Los Angeles is incredibly diverse, and is continuously growing. From Classical to cutting edge, there is something for everyone here. Artists from around the world come to Los Angeles to begin, revitalize, and sustain their career. You may utilize the map key and/or the list by number below to locate galleries, museums and places of interest on the map.
- Grey circles refer to Galleries.
- Red circles refer to Museums and Places of Interest.
- Blum & Poe
- Corey Helford Gallery
- fette’s gallery
- François Ghebaly Gallery
- Koplin Del Rio Gallery
- Gallery 9
- George Billis Gallery La Inc
- Roberts & Tilton
- Honor Fraser Gallery
- Carmichael Gallery
- Mark Moore Gallery
- Cardwell Jimmerson
- Scion Installation L.A.
- WWA gallery
- Track 16 Gallery
- Bergmont Station
- Craig Krull Gallery
- Peter Fetterman Gallery
- James Gray Gallery
- Richard Heller Gallery
- Robert Berman Gallery
- Schomburg Gallery
- Frank Pictures Gallery
- Tag Gallery
- The Hive Gallery & Studios
- Sam Lee Gallery
- Hold Up Art
- Bert Green Fine Art
- Subliminal Projects Gallery
- Jancar Gallery
- Morono Kiang Gallery
- Los Angeles Center for Digital Art
- REDCAT | Roy and Edna Disney/CalArts Theater
- SABINA LEE GALLERY
- Merry Karnowsky Gallery
- Ace Gallery Beverly Hills
- Fahey-Klein Gallery
- Couturier Gallery
- Jack Rutberg Fine Arts Inc
- Nineteen Eighty Eight
- RIVERA & RIVERA
- Adamson-Duvannes Galleries
- Daniel Weinberg Gallery
- Acme Gallery
- Edward Cella Art+Architecture Gallery
- Timothy Yarger Fine Art
- Gagosian Gallery
- L.A. Louver gallery
- La Luz De Jesus Gallery
- The Ronin Gallery
- Jack Rutberg Fine Arts Inc
- Sam Lee Gallery
- Pacific Design Center
- Santa Monica Museum of Art – SMMoA
- Museum of Neon Art
- The Geffen Contemporary at MOCA
- Japanese American National Museum
- Pacific Asia Museum
- The Museum of Tolerance
- The Getty
- Skirball Cultural Center
- Hammer Museum
- California Heritage Museum
- Hammer Museum
- Museum of Contemporary Art
- Pacific Design Center
- Watts Towers Arts Center
- Norton Simon Museum
- Pasadena Museum of California Art
- Huntington Library Art Collections and Botanical Gardens
- C4 Contemporary Art / Center for Contemporary Art Los Angeles
- Griffith Observatory
- Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County
- California Science Center
- Autry National Center
- Museum of African American Art
Students come to LAAFA from all over the world; some from neighboring communities, many from other states and countries. Attracted by the climate and the allure of Los Angeles, they discover our little gem of a school here at LAAFA, where they get total immersion with like-minded students.
Our classes have a small student to teacher ratio, allowing for individual attention to every student. LAAFA is a personable environment. Each and every student is in close personal contact with all of the administrative and teaching staff of LAAFA. LAAFA’s instructors are all working professionals, bridging the gap for the students between school and professional life. This kind of networking is essential in the art world. Students here are able to rub elbows with the best in the industry.
Special guest lecturers and mentors, artists’ studio visits, museum and gallery trips, and sketching on location are all an important part of the student perks at LAAFA. Additionally, our Anatomy/Ecorché course provides the students with a rare and beneficial opportunity – the chance to visit a lab at a prominent university for hands-on dissection. Additionally, LAAFA students have “Carte Blanche” access to available Extension classes and workshops at no additional charge. We are busy here at LAAFA constantly striving to offer our students the best in resources and teaching opportunities, and with Los Angeles as our backyard, we are able to provide quite a full range of creative possibilities.
At LAAFA, the key qualities are “individual” attention and growth. We expect personal artistic growth from our students and our students expect personal attention and professionalism from our administration and instructors.
Adapting to Life in LA
We understand that moving away from family, friends and your own environment is difficult. Coming to another country or state is a big move, especially when you are starting college. It is perfectly natural for you to be thrilled, worried, happy and sad, all at the same time and during different times of the year. Be assured that we are here to help and support you through your transition and beyond. We encourage students to communicate with us or others especially when feeling depressed or confused. You have choices such as talking to us, seeking counseling, talking with advisers, or joining a support group. We are here to assist you in any situation that might arise.
Listed below are a few phone numbers in case of emergencies. You can also see a list of helpful hints in the “Survival Tips” and “Resources” in this section.
California Department of Health Services
Los Angeles County Alcohol/Drug Program Helpline
Help Now Hotline – Referral for mental health
Suicide Prevention Center
Here is a list of steps and ideas to consider during this time of transition in your life:
Manage Your Time
- Write down your class schedule, personal appointments, and activities.
- Set a schedule for yourself. Although this schedule may change, try to stick to a basic regiment during the week.
- Create a daily “to do” list.
- Make time for homework, fun time, and rest.
- Avoid overuse of caffeine and other stimulants. This is only a temporary fix.
- Keep a well balanced diet. Try to incorporate fruits, vegetables and whole grain into your diet. Also, be sure to be well hydrated with water throughout the day.
- Motivate yourself to do extracurricular activities.
- Take naps or breaks during the day to revitalize your mind.
- Balance and adjust your schedule to accommodate your needs.
- Make friends and create your own support group.
- Try to keep a consistent sleep schedule of 7 to 9 hours per night. Unfortunately, chronic sleep deprivation can lead to many side effects including lack of concentration, irritability, and overreacting to normal situations.
- Pursue your goals and focus on what you need in order to be successful.
Class & Study Management
- Be early and prepared for class. You may think being late is not a problem, however this type of tardiness does not earn respect from your instructors, advisers, peers or school administration. You may be missing opportunities due to your lack of commitment.
- There are several ways to be proactive in your education. If you find that you are falling behind, talk to your instructors, advisers and other students. Get involved! You may find that other students have formed a study group that you can join. Talk to the administration office about available resources. Find out what LAAFA has to offer you.
- Be responsible. Choose to create good study habits. You may need to be flexible and have to adjust your schedule to accommodate your school load. Be sure to map out your weekly schedule with your calendar and allow enough time for studying. This will also elevate unnecessary stress.
Reach Out and Get Involved
- Talk with students, instructors, advisers, and the school administrators.
- There are international community organizations in Los Angeles to help and welcome you.
- Religious Institutions are a great way to feel welcomed in the community.
- Visiting Parks and Recreation, City Leagues, YMCA and local gyms are an easy way to meet new people and participate in your favorite sporting activities.
- You may take advantage of local community colleges that offer adult education programs for an inexpensive alternative. These classes can include: ESL (English as a Second Language), Computers, Cooking, Crafts and several other options.
American Culture & Customs
- Greeting people in social and professional situations: Students generally greet peers by using their first name. It is customary to greet instructors, professionals, and initial introductions by using a sir name (Mr., Mrs., Dr.) followed by their last name. Common greetings used in the US are “Hello”, “Hi”, followed by a “How are you”, “Nice to Meet you”. It is also customary to greet with a handshake for both men and women.
- Just as being on time for your class, punctuality is very important for your daily life. By being late you may jeopardize your appointments and may then need to reschedule for another date, which is not an efficient use of your time. This also applies to professional appointments. You never want to be late for a job interview.
- Personal hygiene is very important for personal and professional success in the US. Be sure to bath and brush your teeth frequently, and see a doctor if you have any medical issues that need to be treated.
- Personal space is also very important. Always allow enough space between you and the other person. If you notice that people are backing away, you will need to adjust your spacing. As equally as important is personal property. Always ask if you may borrow someone’s personal item(s). It is not considered polite to take anything without asking for permission first.
It is crucial that students feel comfortable to talk honestly about any situations or concerns that they may have or encounter. To promote a candid discussion with the administration office, all communications are confidential as specified by the state law.
If you are in need of health services and do not have health insurance, please review the list of local clinics available in the San Fernando Valley. Most clinics have free or sliding scale health programs to help students.
El Proyecto del Barrio Family Health Care Clinic
8902 Woodman Avenue
Arleta, CA 91331
(818) 830-7090, Extension #: 219
Mission City Community Network, Inc.
15206 Parthenia Street
North Hills, CA 91343
(818) 895-3100, Extension #: 601
Valley Community Clinic
6801 Coldwater Canyon Avenue
North Hollywood, CA 91605
Clinic: (818) 763-8836
Admin: (818) 763-1718
Tarzana Treatment Center, Inc.
18646 Oxnard Street
Tarzana, CA 91356
Languages: Armenian, English, Russian, Spanish
15232 Sherman Way
Van Nuys, CA 91406
When budgeting for each school year, the following fixed expenses should be considered in the calculation of your total budget. These expenses vary greatly depending on your lifestyle. The amounts listed below are general estimates. Once enrolled in the program, we will be happy to email you a budget worksheet with a more detailed list of expenses to help you manage your money wisely.
Tuition and Fees – $18,000 a year
Housing (includes utilities) – $7,000 to $12,000 a year
Food – $2,400 (eating in) and $5,400 (eating out) a year
Books and Supplies – $500 to $1,500 a year
Additional items to consider are transportation, personal and miscellaneous expenses. You should also have an Emergency Fund for unexpected expenses. Many local stores, retailers and movie theatres offer discounts to students. Have your student I.D. on hand!