Art and Visual Design

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How to Apply

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Be dynamic and combine two arts subjects for a broad experience of creative practice.

  • Study and combine two areas of creative practice

  • Taught by staff who are practising artists and researchers

  • Excellent workshops and technical support

Why study Art?

Art is studied as a subject within the Creative Arts course, so you’ll select another subject to study alongside it. The way subjects interact varies, so the shape of the course depends on the subject you combine with Art. For example, if you decide to combine Art and Creative Writing the subject may function differently than if you study Art and Dance.

You’ll choose one of the following subjects to study alongside Art:

Course structure

You can study and practice in a wide range of disciplines from painting, sculpture, photography, printmaking, video, performance and drawing. As the course progresses you’ll find the emphasis is placed on you; you’ll pursue your own areas of interest, with support from specialist academic and technical staff.

Your first year concentrates on developing your practical skills and thinking. Through practical projects and lectures on art theory and history you’ll gain new knowledge and hands-on experience.

In years two and three we’ll encourage you to develop your individual areas of practice and contextual research through weekly group seminars, critiques, lectures and individual tutorials.

Modules

Year 1

Attend practical project led workshops and historical and contextual studies lectures, complemented by optional modules in print and photography.

Year 2

Undertake self directed studio practice in your chosen area.

Year 3

Complete self directed studio practice, working towards your degree show exhibition.

Course assessment

You’ll be assessed by practical portfolio submissions or exhibitions of coursework, supported by research/context folders. At various stages of the course you’ll be required to give presentations, curate exhibitions and work collaboratively.

As part of your historical and contextual studies programme, you’ll be required to demonstrate your understanding and research through short written tasks and group presentations.

Opportunities

Study abroad

You’ll have the opportunity to study in a wide range of locations around the world. Our students have completed Erasmus+ and Exchange programmes in a variety of countries including Norway, Germany, Japan, Australia and the USA

Field trips

You’ll have opportunities to participate in regular field trips across all the Creative Arts course modules. As a department we run at least four London study trips per year. We also organise international study visits to places like Berlin, Paris, New York and Venice (please note that you’ll have to pay for some study visits).

Work placements, industry links and internship

There are opportunities for you to undertake work placements as part of the wider Creative Arts professional practice programme. Past Art students have worked with artists such as Gavin Turk and Martin Creed.

List of current alumni careers

Graduate careers include:
self employment as practising artists and makers;
curatorship;
gallery administration;
teaching;
art administration; and
community based art work.
90% of students go on to work and/or study in the Art subject area.

Competitions/awards

We’ll encourage you to participate in competitions such as the Porthleven Prize and the Gane Trust Travel Grant among many others. Our students have been nominated for, and won, awards such as the Threadneedle Prize, the Lynn Painter-Stainers Prize and the Royal West of England student drawing prize.

Each year we offer three prizes to our second and third year students:

  • The ‘Beyond the Studio’ Student Prize for Entrepreneurship in Art
  • The Outstanding Art Student Prize
  • The Excellence in the Creative Arts and Contemporary Arts Practice Development Prize

Facilities and resources

The subject is taught in workshops and studios at Dartmouth Avenue and Sion Hill.

Workshops you’re able to work in are: paint prep, woodwork, metalwork, sculpture, casting, plastics, etching, screenprint, photography, 3D print, digital print and bookbinding.

We run free evening life drawing sessions at Dartmouth Avenue in winter and spring terms.

Teaching methods

You’ll be taught by staff who are practising artists and researchers through technical demonstrations, individual tutorials, group critiques, lectures and seminars. Teaching takes place in workshops (year 1) and individual studio spaces (years 2 and 3).

You’ll benefit from a programme of visiting speakers who’ll talk about their own practice and their experience working as contemporary ceramicists, curators, designers, makers and publishers within the creative industries.

Application method

Full-time applications are through UCAS.

Interview and portfolio guidance

Your portfolio is an important part of the application process, it gives us an insight into who you are as a practicing artist. You’ll need to show us a range of finished pieces of work. We also ask that you include a wide variety of supporting work in your portfolio (preparatory work, sketchbooks and research). We advise that you do not simply pick your favourite pieces but consult tutors, friends and family to ensure the work you include showcases your talent. If the work is too large to bring – photograph it.

Research contemporary artists, visit exhibitions and be prepared to discuss them.

Use a sketchbook to draw, collect found or photographed images and make notes – look carefully at things, reflect on things you encounter.

Course enquiries

For more information please contact Martin Thomas on m.thomas2@bathspa.ac.uk.

Entry requirements

We’re looking for creative and committed individuals who are curious, reflective and interested in their subject areas. You should be able to take risks and have an open mind. We value the ability to think critically and reflectively just as much as we value the ability to create.

We accept a wide range of qualifications for entry to our undergraduate programmes. The main ones are listed below:

  • A Level - A Level grades BCC including Grade B in Art & Design or related subjects preferred. Applicants will be invited to interview and will be required to bring high quality portfolio
  • BTEC - Extended Diploma grades Merit, Merit. Merit (MMM) in a related subject in addition to other qualifications or evidence of experience in Art.
  • International Baccalaureate - A minimum of 27 points will be required in addition to evidence of further experience in Art & Design.
  • Access to HE courses - Typical offers for applicants with Access to HE will be the Access to HE Diploma or Access to HE Certificate (60 credits, 45 of which must be Level 3, including 30 at merit or higher). Any selection procedure/further requirements will also apply. Access courses accepted in addition to evidence of further experience in Art & Design.
  • Diploma in Foundation Studies (Art & Design) - Diploma in Foundation Studies (Art & Design) Merit Grade is preferred in combination with the qualifications listed above. Applicants will be considered without this.

English Language Requirements for International and EU Applicants

IELTS 6.0 - for visa nationals, with a minimum score of IELTS 5.5 in each element.

Applicants will be invited to interview at our Sion Hill Campus and will be required to bring high quality portfolio. More details will be supplied to applicants who meet the entry criteria for the course.

Course enquiries

For further information about the programme or other enquiries, please email us at admissions@bathspa.ac.uk.

Career opportunities

Typical career opportunities include gallery administration, media, community-based art work, art administration, teaching or self-employment in the creative industries.

A course that will develop your visual and graphic design ability and skills.

Why study Graphic Arts?

This course will enable you to express and articulate your ideas and study interests through a confidence in design. You will experience publishing your work in a variety of media (print, web, lens-based) and develop specialist areas of knowledge and ability by the end of the course.

As part of the Creative Arts programme you will select another subject to study alongside Visual Design, and your other subject will no doubt have a strong influence on your choices within the course. Visual Design can complement other routes by giving you the techniques and abilities to confidently express and communicate your ideas in a visual context.

You will choose one of the following subjects to study alongside Visual Design:

Course structure

In Year 1 the subject starts with the basics of design related to typography, image and layout. You will be taken through design principles and become familiar with concepts to help you learn how to layout text and graphics with confidence and knowledge. You’ll be shown how to use industry standard layout software in readiness for creating printed publications, such as magazines and books.

By the middle of the first year you will be introduced to aspects of web design, including developing personalised blog sites. This will allow you to develop research skills and methods of gathering and interpreting information. Your online presence is also increasingly vital way of self-marketing and you will develop this over the period of the course. Online publishing is also a rapidly expanding area with the electronic book and website enabling people to self-publish to the world.

The first year ends with an introduction to creating printed publications, making you aware of how to create books and binding techniques (how books are physically put together). You will have gathered content from research to make a publication of your own.

Year 2 will allow you to study a subject area of your choice related to visual design, for example typography, publications, visual design, lens based media. An emphasis will be placed on design narratives and you will be guided through your projects. In addition you will study how graphic designers work and how theory influences contemporary design.

Year 3 expects you to contextualise your work with increased sophistication. You will have a knowledge of contemporary design and be able to apply it to your own study area with independence. Supported by regular tutorials you will develop a body of work, a portfolio in readiness for a professional career, or self-employment.

Optional professional studies based modules allow you to increase your awareness of professional practice and improve your chances of gaining the career you want upon graduation.

 This subject is part of the Creative Arts programme, so you will select another subject to study with Visual Design.

Course assessment

Continuous assessment (100% course work)

You will benefit from specialist resources to equip you for eventual employment in this fast-moving field.

 

Teaching methods

Lecturing staff have a detailed understanding of the industry, and there is a strong practical element to the course in areas such as  typography, publications, visual design and lens based media. There is also an important emphasis on the support of practice by theory.

Application method

All full time applications are through UCAS

Course enquiries

For more information please contact Martin Thomas on m.thomas2@bathspa.ac.uk

Entry requirements

If studying A Levels: 260 UCAS points from A Levels, including a grade B in an art/design related subject

If studying a BTEC Extended Diploma: Overall Merit grade (Merit Merit Merit)

Art Foundation Diploma:  Merit

If applying for a combination of Art, Textiles, Ceramics and Visual Design, then we would invite you for an interview and ask you to bring a portfolio of creative work with you to support your application.

Career opportunities

Career areas directly related to Visual Design include graphic design, web design, art-worker, publishing, artist, book illustrator. However, combined with your other subject, a wider choice is available allowing you to uniquely position yourself within the jobs market, or develop a successful freelance or self-employed career.

 

% going on to work and/or study for courses in this subject area: 90%