Which one of these online art schools can equip you with the fundamental skills you need to become a pro artist? How much will it cost? And what kind of support can you expect to receive for the tuition?
We've done the hard work for you!
Today, we’re looking at Milan Art Institute vs. Evolve Artist. We've done a deep dive comparing Milan's Mastery Program and Evolve Artist's Foundation Program.
At Evolve Artist, we’re on a mission to teach aspiring artists to create art without limitation … even if it’s not with us.
We back what we do, but everyone has their own learning style, goals, and budgets. That's why we're comparing top online art schools to what we offer here at Evolve.
A few disclaimers:
- We’ve done our research, but student experience is the most important factor! If we’ve gotten something wrong, let us know in the comments section or email us at email@example.com.
- We back what we do, but everyone has their own learning style, goals, and budgets. We genuinely respect any program that helps artists reach their potential.
- Always do your own research. In the end, it’s your time and your money. While this post is detailed, it’s not exhaustive and is based on publicly available information.
Comparing Milan Art Institute vs. Evolve Artist
Here is a summary of the main differences between Milan Art Institute vs. Evolve Artist.
Milan Art Insitute
MAstery Program + MENTORING
- Both Milan Art Institute’s Mastery Program and Evolve Artist offer comprehensive programs for artists to develop pro-level art skills to become professional artists. But each program has a different approach.
- Fundamentals - Evolve’s Foundation Program is focused on getting students to pro-level art skills by mastering the fundamentals of art, and does not skip to artistic expression until after this has been established (in the Advanced Program). Concepts of artistic expression are introduced earlier in Milan Art Institute's Mastery Program.
- Mediums - Milan Art Institute’s Mastery Program includes a wider range of mediums, including mixed media. While Evolve Artist is focused on oil painting.
- Business development - Milan Art Institute's Mastery Program includes lessons on building your business as a professional artist. Evolve does not include this as a part of the Foundations Program, but does have a separate course for artists wanting to take their first steps in selling their art.
- Time - Milan Art Institute’s Mastery Program is a greater time commitment than Evolve Artist’s Foundation Program. 20 hours a week for 1 year at Milan Art Institute vs. Evolve’s 7 hours a week for 1 year.
- Cost & Coaching - Both programs offer a one-time price for the curriculum. Milan Art Institute charges a monthly subscription for the benefit of coaching. Evolve’s pricing model is all-inclusive, which means 1-1s, instructor critique, and masterclasses are all included in the cost of the course.
- Our view - Milan Art Institute provides a very intensive program at a competitive price, however, students are largely left to self-navigate the program (beyond peer support) unless they subscribe to a costly monthly mentoring plan. Without instructor support, results can vary.
With Evolve Artist, you get a guided all-inclusive experience, which includes all the support and critique you need to get pro-level results.
Milan Art Institute vs. Evolve Artist: The Program
At Evolve Artist, we believe that technical mastery is the necessary foundation for producing art without limitation.
Our step-by-step oil painting program moves students from beginner to professional-grade art in one year.
The Foundations Program consists of 4 Blocks where we break down the fundamentals of art - value, edge, perception, and color. The Advanced Program is for those who want to go even deeper and learn advanced techniques and more stylized approaches.
Founded by professional artists Elli and John Milan, the Milan Art Institute Mastery Program teaches students to paint, draw, develop their unique artistic style, and build their businesses.
The Mastery Program is divided into four parts.
- Part 1 - Drawing & Oil Painting
- Part 2 - Mixed Media, Personal Aesthetic & Voice
- Part 3 - Portfolio Creation & Branding
- Part 4 - Marketing, Galleries & Launching Your Career
The Mastery Program syllabus is outlined on the Milan Art Institute’s website, week by week.
Evolve's Foundation Program builds oil painting skills across portraiture, still-life, and landscape paintings - the main focus of the program is on the mastery of the fundamentals of art before creative expression.
Business development is not part of the Foundation Program, but Evolve does offer a course - How to Make Your First $1k in Art - that outlines an achievable strategy to start your career in art.
At Evolve, Live Classes and Master Classes are all included in the program.
At Milan Art Institute, you can access extra classes via it's mentorship subscription or through subscribing to another service called, “The Art Club”.
Milan Art Institute vs. Evolve Artist: Coaching
Evolve's Foundation Program is all inclusive, and that includes coaching.
Evolve Instructors guide students through each step of their education.
Assignments are uploaded to our online Homework Tool and checked twice daily by instructors, so personalized in-depth feedback comes within 24 hours.
There is 1-1 mentoring, instructor office hours, live group chats, masterclasses, support groups, and homework rooms.
At Milan Art Institute, dedicated professional critique, 1-1 support, group live classes, and master classes can only be accessed with a monthly subscription.
The subscriptions are tiered. The lower level offers access to group mentorship with professional artists, while higher tiers provide access to dedicated mentors.
Students aren’t coached through the course and can progress at their own pace.
Both Evolve and Milan Art Institute offer active and vibrant online communities for their students.
Milan Art Institute has developed their own social learning app called "Art Social.” Students can post their work and assignments for feedback. Milan mentors are on the platform and can choose to comment.
Evolve offers the same experience using Facebook.
Milan Art Institute vs. Evolve Artist: Cost
Evolve's Foundations Program (Blocks 1-4) is $249/month on a 12-month plan, or a $2,500 one-time payment, saving $488.
The Advanced Program (Blocks 5-8) is the same, $249/month on a 12-month plan, or a $2,500 one-time payment.
Evolve Artist's pricing is all-inclusive.
When you sign up, you receive all the materials you need (high-quality paint, canvas, brushes, references, etc.) - with free worldwide shipping.
And again, all instructor critiques, 1-1 meetings, study groups, live classes and master classes are included.
There are no extra complicated subscriptions. Just everything you need to get pro-art skills fast in an all-inclusive program.
Milan Art Institute’s Mastery Program costs 12 monthly payments of $200, or an annual payment of $2040 (saving $360).
To receive support (beyond peer support), students must subscribe to a membership plan.
These memberships come with access to live group classes, master classes and the “Art Club.”
There are three tiers of mentoring plans.
- Student Mentoring PLUS, $99 a month - group mentoring with professional artists, and unlimited live group classes, and membership to the Art Club.
- Student Mentoring PRO $199 a month - the above plus access to a dedicated mentor, and access to the Art Club Pro course library.
- Student Mentoring PRO (With Elli and Dimitra) $499 a month - the above plus exclusive mentoring from Elli or Dimitra Milan.
If you opt for the more expensive Pro membership, you can message your mentor as often as you’d like but video calls are limited to once a month.
Milan Art Institute vs. Evolve Artist: How long does it take?
We've streamlined our program so our students can get pro-art skills fast. If you dedicate only 7 hours a week to the program, we estimate you can complete Evolve Artist’s Foundation Program in 1 year, and another year for the Advanced Program.
At Milan Art Institute, the Mastery Program is a 1 year program (52 weeks of content plus 1 week of orientation) based on 20 hours a week. While breaks are built into the syllabus, at 20 hours a week, this is an intensive program.
Both Evolve and Milan Art Institute don’t have set timelines, so you take the program at your own pace.The calculator on Evolve's website shows you what results you can achieve based on the number of hours you can commit per week.
Evolve Artist Pros and Cons
Milan Art Institute Pros and Cons
How much would it cost to get the Evolve experience at Milan Art Institute?
One of the biggest differences between Evolve Artist and Milan’s Mastery Program is access to dedicated 1-1 support.
To get the Evolve Artist experience at the Milan Art Institute, you’d need to subscribe to a Mentoring Pro plan, and even then there is a limit to how often you can video call your mentor (once a month).
If you take more than one year to complete the Mastery Program, you would only need to subscribe to your mentorship plan after your first year.
- The Mastery Program $2,040 (one-time fee) + Mentorship Plus $2,388 ($199 a month) = $4,428 in a year.
For subsequent years, you'd pay for Mentorship PRO only.
If you want a lower tier of support, you could opt for the Mentoring Plus plan, but this is further away from the level of support you’d receive with Evolve Artist.
- The Mastery Program $2,040 (one-time fee) + Mentorship Pro $2,188 ($99 a month) = $3,228 in a year.
For subsequent years, you'd pay for Mentorship Plus only.
In theory, you can subscribe for mentoring only on the months you need it, but it would still be costly and reoccurring.
Materials are not included in the program cost at Milan. They can be purchased separately through the Milan Art Institute store.
Our final word: Which program is best for you?
Which program you choose is down to which one you believe can prepare you best for a career as a professional artist.
At Evolve, we believe that mastering the fundamentals of art is a pre-requisite for creative expression and career in art. Skipping ahead to artistic expression will result in inconsistent work. It’s like trying to write poetry without first learning the alphabet. Art is the same. It's a language.
To reach mastery, coaching is essential. This is why it's so hard to learn how to paint on YouTube or other platforms where there is a lot of free content. You don't know what you don't know, and a skilled instructor can give you the objective critique you need to get unstuck and unlock your skills.
If you agree, then Evolve's all-inclusive guided experience represents the best program and value for money. We give our students everything they need to get pro-level art skills fast.
- All our students get access to dedicated coaching and critique, masterclasses and online community to set them up for success.
- All our students receive the high quality materials, so they are equipped with the tools they need.
- We focus on mastering the fundamentals of art so our students have the skills they need to make their artistic visions become a reality. We don't skip ahead to expressions prematurely.
Of course, we're biased. Milan Art Institute's Mastery Program just follows a different philosophy.
If you are committed to a career as a professional artist, feel confident in your skills, and want to explore different mediums, the Mastery Program could be for you. Though we believe without additional coaching (which is costly), your results would suffer.
If you want a taste of what the Evolve is all about, register for our FREE Masterclass - CLICK HERE. Kevin Murphy, Founder of Evolve, will walk you through how you can create realistic art through our proven program.
Happy Painting everyone!
Ready to join Evolve?
Begin your journey to pro-art skills with our proven, hands-on program.