Thursday, 19 March 2015

Foundation Diploma in Art and Design (my review)

Today I finally finished my Foundation Diploma in Art and Design! I really didn't enjoy it very much and think that if you are 70% sure of what you want to do as a degree whilst you're doing your A-Levels, you should apply for uni straight away. Then, if you don't get in you can still apply to do the Foundation Diploma. This is something I wish I'd done, as this past year I have been pretty bored and have hated the 'weird' angle of the whole course which is very experimental and the staff generally wanting you to produce very abstract Fine Art based work (plus the amount of students that were accepted meant that a couple of times I only spoke to a teacher for about 5 minutes of the whole day!). 

Luckily, I'm very motivated to do well, even if I dislike the course, and so have persevered and got good grades in each unit. The course requires a lot of analysing and comparison of your own work with other artists and other broad research; controversial subjects seems to be a favourite of the course leaders.

The first couple of weeks were VERY experimental, drawing with our eyes closed, not being allowed to look at what we were drawing and even drawing with our feet. This creating peculiar outcomes, the majority of which I wanted to put straight in the bin.
We did learn a couple of interesting techniques such as screen printing, glass blowing and making ceramic tiles but having to do this alongside left handed drawings, still didn't make the course 'thrilling'.

'Shoe Sculpture' in which we had to take apart a shoe and literally make it into a sculpture (I hated this btw, far too abstract for me!

Group activity- creating a '3D' drawing of a member of the group's blind drawing, made with wool. (this was okay...)

 My 'blind drawing'- we had to feel our face and then draw what we felt                                                 (whilst keeping our eyes shut. (I also disliked this extremely)

Granted, as the course progressed, I enjoyed being able to produce work that I actually WANTED to do and had an interest in (Illustration is my thing!) although... there was still that snag of having to be very experimental and trying every technique on the planet, be it interesting to you or not.

I agree that to be accepted into a prestigious art course at a top University, you generally NEED a Foundation Diploma and so you might as well just crack on with it. I also agree that by doing a Foundation Diploma, my portfolio increased vastly and I showed that I can work in a number of different styles (this is what uni's want!). This body of work helped me to get a place at all the uni's I applied for to do BA Illustration (Falmouth, Plymouth, PCA and Norwich).

I've just read this post back and have realised its basically just me ranting on and I'm sorry about that for any of you about to start a Foundation course..... but, if you are the kind of person who likes to learn and try different techniques, no matter how wacky, then this course will be perfect for you! And if you're under 19 when you start the course, at least its free!

In September I am going to be starting my Illustration degree and hope to write regular posts about it in order to help anyone else who is thinking about studying in this subject area!

Below, is is from the last two units when we were given a bit more freedom!
'Is Anybody Out There?'- Text taken from a newspaper article about UFO's which I then recreated into a collaged piece
Artist Research on Sara Fanelli in my Sketchbook
Small model I made using the back of a phone as the main body and then added collaged legs as well as making him a little jacket and top. Although I'd never done anything like this, I really enjoyed it (they did not suggest it however, it was my own thinking that gave me the idea!- wow I'm so cynical)

Working with found words on the street and shadows. I actually enjoyed this 'workshop' we were basically shown some examples of using type and shadows and then set free to experiment. By dangling the letters by thin strands of thread, the letters almost appear to be floating, giving them a graceful appearance.

Group Activity- Making a 'sculpture' using paper shapes (ours became a dress as everyone else in my group wanted to do a fashion degree)