Due to COVID19, all classes are presently held live online.

We offer continuing education courses in both theory and practice for professional development and personal enrichment.  Classes are held during evenings and weekends throughout the year and are taught by accomplished design professionals, artisans and craftsmen, fine artists, historians, and faculty from allied institutions. Courses are generally open to all, regardless of experience, and many fulfill continuing education requirements and credit towards completion of the ICAA’s Certificate in Classical Architecture.  In addition, many of our classes qualify towards continuing education units with the American Institute of Architects (AIA).

Classes focus on various topics including drawing, the Classical Orders, moldings, watercolor, and field sketching, to name a few. Students develop a broad array of skills and knowledge essential in becoming fluent in classical architecture and design.  Lectures cover a wide range of topics appealing to our diverse audience, including architectural history, interior design, theory of proportion, and landscape architecture.

The Certificate in Classical Architecture (CCA) program provides architects and designers with a working knowledge of classical architectural design. Requirements for completion ensure participants build a broad foundation of skills and knowledge in the ICAA core curriculum. The CCA serves as a catalyst for deeper appreciation and understanding of the classical tradition.

There are four paths to earning the Certificate in Classical Architecture certificate:

  1. Completion of the ICAA Summer Studio in Classical Architecture;
  2. Completion of the ICAA Intensive in Classical Architecture plus elective Continuing Education (CE) courses;
  3. Continuing education courses in approved classes in ICAA’s core curriculum plus additional elective CE Courses;
  4. Completion of one of the above options plus approved programming offered through an affiliated institution.

Upcoming Continuing Education courses are listed on both the SoCal and National ICAA calendars.  To find out more about our Education programs, email



Course Descriptions

Classical Primer:  As a primer on the language and rationale of classical architecture, this class is an introduction to the classical orders and offers an overview for beginners and interested laypersons. It offers an excellent prequel for students who intend to continue their education with more focused study of the individual orders as offered by the Institute.

Introduction to the Classical Moldings: This class provides an introduction to understanding the use and rationale of the classical moldings. Moldings are the basic building blocks of classical buildings, the “atomic units” at the very heart of the classical language of architecture, and a working knowledge of moldings is the starting point for a thoughtful approach to design. Whether your goal is to lay out a correct Doric column, or to design a beautifully embellished formal room, a practical understanding of the classical moldings and the rationale for their purpose and use is indispensable to the design practitioner.

PLEASE NOTE: This course is a pre-requisite to the Classical Orders (Tuscan, Doric, Ionic & Corinthian)

Introduction to the Classical Orders: This class provides an introduction to understanding and laying out classical architecture through a study of each of the Orders (Tuscan, Ionic, Doric and Corinthian). Students of all abilities learn the proportions, details and essential parts of classical architecture with the class culminating in a sketch problem.


Past Classes

Classical Primer II: This two-hour sequel to the popular Classical Primer is a detailed examination of the classical language, and how it can thoughtfully address our modern lifestyle. Students explore how contemporary architects and designers are employing this language to seamlessly respond to how we live today and meet design challenges.

Measured Field Drawing: This lecture and field drawing class delves into the history, purpose and method of architectural measured drawing. The class begins with an informative lecture on the legacy and importance of documenting historical architecture, followed by students doing measured drawings of details from historic buildings.

Basic Watercolor Technique: This studio class is intended to help students become acquainted with watercolor as a medium for the first time, or as a refresher course if they have had limited experience. Students explore the merits of certain kinds of paper, watercolor brushes, practical applications of watercolor paint including varying wash techniques, color mixing and paint selections.

Basic One-Point Perspective & Rendering I & II, Elements of Perspective Drawing for Freehand Sketching: This class focuses on the basic elements of one-point perspective, including techniques to add interest and the illusion of depth to your drawings. Through hands-on exercises and image studies students gain an understanding of perspective elements, and improve confidence and ability in sketching – whether to communicate design ideas, or for urban/ travel sketching.


ICAA SoCal Instructor Bios

Erik K. Evens is Principal of Evens Architects, a boutique studio of the KAA Design Group. He is a licensed architect in California, with over thirty years’ experience in residential, commercial, hospitality, and institutional work. He is a founding member and past President of the ICAA SoCal, and a Fellow of the ICAA.

Domiane Forte earned a Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Arts, focusing on classical philosophy and mathematics, from Thomas Aquinas College, CA, and a Master of Architecture, focusing on classical architecture, from the University of Notre Dame, IN. He is an accomplished oil and watercolor painter, and a master draftsman dedicated to teaching and maintaining the craft of manual drafting and traditional watercolor illustration in an era of computer aided design and CGI rendering. He is a member of the California Art Club, and his art is shown at various galleries around Southern California and beyond. He is a certified instructor of classical architecture with the ICAA, where he has been teaching for the last 12 years, and is a member of the ICAA National Curriculum Committee.

Patti Poundstone is an illustrator and licensed architect, specializing in hand-rendered illustrations for architecture, interiors, and landscape projects since 2008. She serves on the board of the American Society of Architectural Illustrators, and is a three-time recipient of an Award of Excellence in the ASAI annual Architecture in Perspective competition. Additionally, she serves as a juror for the annual UCLA Extension Landscape Architecture program student show. She teaches sketch drawing classes for design firms in the Los Angeles area and the ICAA SoCal, including the New Heights program for middle-school students.

Andrea Keller served on the faculty of USC School of Architecture for seven years, teaching Studio (Architecture), Ecology as a basis for Urban Design, and Landscape Architecture History. She was also a Senior Lecturer in the Architecture/Landscape/Interiors Department at OTIS College of Art and Design. She is founder and principal of AKA architecture + design. She has lectured on a variety of topics for the ICAA, including ornamentation, The Architecture of the French Enlightenment, and modernism.

John P. Margolis was born in Boston, Massachusetts into an academic family full of intellectual and artistic diversity. He holds a bachelor’s degree with a Major in Architecture from Washington University in St. Louis, and a Master of Architecture from the University of California, Berkeley. He is a member of the AIA and is licensed in Massachusetts. His passion for classical and traditional architecture led him to the ICAA in 1990. Since then he has held numerous Board positions and also served as New England Chapter President of the ICAA for five years. He was recently elected as a Fellow of the ICAA and has a certificate in classical architecture. In 2019, John joined Appleton Partners as a Senior Project Manager in their Santa Barbara office where he interprets traditional approaches to the Southern California climate.


New Heights

The New Heights Program is made possibly in part by a grant from the Dwight Stuart Youth Fund.

The New Heights Program immerses middle-school students in the dynamic world of Classical Architecture, by expanding their understanding of the built environment through a new perspective.

ICAA guest instructors facilitate interactive activities, exploring everything from the basic building blocks of Classical Architecture to its role in our society. Topics cover the origin and evolution of classical architecture, building & design, and the study of the Classical Orders. Students create their own plaster molds of the Classical Orders, and learn about the physics of construction. They draw landscapes and buildings using one-point perspective, and explore the theme of proportion, order and beauty in architecture. The program culminates in a field trip to various Southern California landmarks, including The Getty Villa, Greystone Mansion, and downtown Los Angeles.

Entering its fifth year, the program partners with the Girls Academic Leadership Academy (GALA), a middle and high school in LAUSD.  Due to the demand from the high school students at GALA for additional coursework in architecture, the high school recently created a two-year course sequence in architecture as part of its school curriculum. The impetus for this tract was based not only on the desire for additional instruction but also the need to provide a clear pathway for girls, particularly girls of color to the architecture and design fields.

GALA graduating senior Gabriela Arevalo-Montoya (Class of 2021) has been accepted to the Southern California Institute of Architecture (SCI-Arc). The recipient of SCI-Arc’s Equity & Inclusion Scholarship, Gabriela’s passion for the field of architecture blossomed as a student in GALA’s architecture program as well as participating in a six-month architectural bootcamp through the local chapter of the National Organization of Minority Architects. The ICAA SoCal Chapter congratulates Gabriela for her achievements and wishes her the best as she pursues her studies in architecture!

For more information about New Heights, please email