View Full Version : Fine art degree?

20-10--2008, 05:50 PM
I'm currently doing my foundation at newport (i live in cardiff)..... i KNOW i just want to do painting....but it was just a year to get better and get used to the place.....but i'm getting more and more pissed off with lots of modern tosh and decide if i'm going to pay mney and do a degree, i'd rather it be as painting based as possible...even though i am interested in lots of art forms... ultimately, painting is my passion................. i was sorted that i'd stay at newport and do fine art.............but now i've looked into newport fine art and cardiff fine art...........they both have a year of all aspects of art... which I'm starting to feel would be a waste... as I really just want to do painting...........

SWANSEA......do a painting degree....painting from day one.... but newports already a trek (caerleon) and swansea would be longer! (although not masses as it appears the campus is quite near the train station walking... wheras my campus at mo is half hour bus ride!) i'm going to book for an open day in a few weeks methinks and have a proper look....

the thing is its a brand new university.... and don't things go wrong in the first few years? what do you think? is it worth the risk?

who here studied fine art...particulary those who specilaised in painting.... how was it.... what did you do (bearing in mind all courses vary)..........

I'm feeling trapped and annoyed at the moment on this foundation as it was meant to be a year of getting better, but we dont pick up a paintbrush til after christmas... i feel i would have got better just practising at home....

20-10--2008, 06:55 PM
uhm, if you want to leave it's best to leave in first 21 days as u can then get ur money back from fees... but maybe think about a transfer so u dont have to reapply if that is possible? enough phone calls and arguements and you can generally get what you want..

if you are really hating it and it's making u not do the work and feel miserable/frustrated i'd say drop out, but if it's just a bit of an irritance, stick it through.. cos if u can't go back to uni til next year u need to get a job this year etc.. there's 2 unis at cardiff, have you checked them both out, and there's glamorgan too, all of which are closer than swansea or newport, you seem to spend a lot of time travelling and that must suck :(
hope u sort something out tho xxx

20-10--2008, 07:45 PM
oooh sorry i think i came across diferntly to how I tried....

i'm on a year long foundation course.... its free and not much trouble to quit whenever.... I don't like quitting though and after christmas it should get better.... meh its easy and i don't have "homework" so i have lovely free evenings! :D

but i'm asking more about next year, as thats when I'll be doing degree.........this course isnt depressing me, i'm just a bit bored thats all and feel i'm wasting time when i could be doing lots of self motivated drawing and life drawing/painting etc.........

I do feel at the mo that dropping out of university would be best for me but.........i guess its the other sides to it - purpose, motivation, social, routine, thats important, its just the work is boring....tempted to do a year after this out messing about with paintings and things...........but that'd just delay things another year....and i'm not sure i want to do that..............

i'm going to go to cardiff and swansea open days..... its UWIC that does art.............i looked round last year and thought it was SHITE...but keep hearing how wonderful it is???? odd!!! i think if i do fine art it will be newport...............but a whole course based on painting sounds fantastic!!!

20-10--2008, 07:51 PM
well if it might get better after christmas id stick with it! you'll have a long summer to do lots of ur own stuff too, rather than delay a year!!
good luck whichever course u pick next yr tho!

20-10--2008, 08:07 PM
Is it definately a whole year of all subjects?
Ive just started my degree and weve got three, three week projects ... Painting, printmaking and sculpture. After That we can work in what ever medium we choose, this term is just about introducing us to the disciplines so that we can see how we could intergrate them into our chosen practices if we ever wanted to.
A whole year of directed study does seem quite a lot, are they 3 or 4 year courses?

Anyhoo, id reccommend go to the open day and talk to as many students as you can, that what i did and their experiences were pretty reliable. Tutor guides are good for the ins and outs of submission dates etc but the students are the ones who really know what the course is about caus theyre doing it.

21-10--2008, 07:06 AM
well if it might get better after christmas id stick with it! you'll have a long summer to do lots of ur own stuff too, rather than delay a year!!
good luck whichever course u pick next yr tho!

still not getting me:p

I'm starting degree next september regardless.... I have the qualifications... I just thought I'd wait a year to get more confident and better at painting....and doing a foundation course seemed the natural thing to do.... but it feels its more aimed to people who don't have a clue what they want to do... or have been out of education for a long time.... I feel fine and confident already... so kinda feel theres not much point in doing this...

thanks chegzy.... really need to go to the places and speak to the people... i never understand the stuff in prospectuses!

the gardener
21-10--2008, 09:08 PM
Swansea is a good town...lots of my friends did degrees there, albeit 25 yrs ago! The university is a good one too...well worth a visit to see what you think...look around too, go out to the Gower and check out the beaches:)

21-10--2008, 09:12 PM
Think for a mo before chucking the foundation course tho hun, universities do like them and they look good on your application form. And saying that you quit the course may not go down so well if the interviewer asks you.
As you already know what you want to do why not use the studio space and support to do just that :)? Make a cracking portfolio and get help with your ucas forms and go into university with a head start full of confidence. Twist the brief guidelines to suit exactly what you want to create, i turned a textiles brief into an installation last year involving a plant and a bunny cage and still got the mark.

But ... if youre not into it then it might be time to just do your own thing on your own timetable and spread your wings

22-10--2008, 07:55 AM
I did the exact same course as you are doing at the moment. And like you I wanted to be a fine artist and nothing else.

The introductory stage of the course seemed a bit long and boring for me, but I guess they need to get people to play with a lot of different materials and techniques. Some people may not have used silk screen printing or clay before and they could turn out to be very good at it.

At the time I really hated a lot of the course, but looking back I learnt a lot, and even though I wanted to come out of it all as a fine artist, I naturally moved to what I am doing now, and thanks to the other skills I learnt during the course I have managed to create what I do now.

If anything use it as a time to use all the different facilities that they have in the university. Now that I am not in education I really miss some of the stuff they had and am so glad that I used it all as much as I could.

22-10--2008, 08:39 AM
Swansea is a good town...lots of my friends did degrees there, albeit 25 yrs ago! The university is a good one too...well worth a visit to see what you think...look around too, go out to the Gower and check out the beaches:)

its a new univeristy though, Swansea Met, so it could be entirely different.

CHegzy - I don't think I'm going to quit this... I just feel like quitting....if that makes sense! I'm very stubborn so now I'm in it I'm not leaving! It's only 8 weeks of balls then it will be fine!

arlia - nothings.. "fun" though.... i'm doing a fine art unit at the moment but its techincal drawing and paper models.. all very complicated and hard... nto freedom of expression.... everything seems to involve paper actually.................

I found out about welsh assembly fee grants the other day, this has made me very happy!

I need to speak to the council.....and then I could get lots of free money! The finance lady also said its not too late to get stuff for this year....if I stay at newport they can put me down as a 3+1 rather than wait for the 3.........

theres a fine art talk from newport next week so i'll see what happens then....course leader also said i can make an appointment after if i have any other questions... :)

newport is wicked, I think i'm just having a random crisis of "arghhh what else is out there??" I keep feeling a bit glum about the fact anyone who is anyone has either got their degree or masters in London......

22-10--2008, 10:41 AM
hunny, trust me, London is a nightmare to go to uni in. i tried twice and hated it so much, and if you hate the environment, its so much harder to create stuff, im doing an OU degree now at my local college, and its brilliant. Brand new department means new equiptment, (they built us a whole new building, recording studio's live performance rooms, its amazing) and new staff who are excited about the place and the students, better in some ways than a well established place, and if its the right course for you...who cares what uni its at, its your skill and individuality that makes you popular or successful in the real world, not the name on the piece of paper your degree is from. if you wanna do whats always been done, then go to one of the traditional places, but if you wanna do your own thing in your own way, a new place might be the best place to do it.

there are always teething problems, but they work out, and your first years marks don't count towards your final classification anyway, you just have to pass them on most degree courses.

i'd say go and spend some time there, a few hours, get a feel for the place and the journey and see how you feel there, trust your gut hunny, if you walk away buzzing and excited....its probably the place for you. :)

goodluck. xxx

23-10--2008, 08:56 AM
thank enigma....

deciding today whether to quit this course and earn some money for a year..........

23-10--2008, 03:16 PM
argh i'm in such a dilemma...someone help!

I really want to leave this course but I don't know if it is the right thing to do... i FEEL it is the right thing...but everyone I have spoken to (apart from mum!) has said its the wrong thing...and its usually the other people who are right!

Advantages of leaving:
-Chances to learn more interesting skills (i'm enrolling for life drawing evening classes on monday and i've also got my eye on wood and stone carving, pottery and watercolour painting...none of which are on the foundation....its more things like animation and fashion which i have no interest in....

-oppertunity to get another job or make more selly things...maybe open an etsy account and ask more shops about selling things in...

=more money = possibly learn to drive and save up for good camera

-meet a variety of people at evening classes (or day classes if i decide to leave)

- more time to pursue hobbies such as learning to play fiddle

- don't feel i'm wasting time doing things i dont enjoy..and travelling back and forth every day...

-more time to practise drawing and painting...maybe even go differnt places to do this...or to photogrpah and bring images home...

- can still apply for degree to start in september


-if I realise it's Newport I do want to do fine art.... they won't look too kindly on me buggering off their foundation course

-potential rutness stuck in house

- getting out of the "swing" of things... though this course is much slower paced than college I already feel I'm loosing my "swing!"

23-10--2008, 03:22 PM
argh i'm in such a dilemma...someone help!

I really want to leave this course but I don't know if it is the right thing to do... i FEEL it is the right thing...but everyone I have spoken to (apart from mum!) has said its the wrong thing...and its usually the other people who are right!

I wanted to leave my uni course in Southampton after about a month. Most people thought it was a really bad idea, but I did it and it was the best thing I ever did. I worked full-time for a few years then when back to uni when it felt right. The second time round it felt natural and I knew I'd made the right decision about leaving the first time. Do what you know deep down is right for you NOW.

Good luck with whatever you decide!

23-10--2008, 03:29 PM
still not getting me:p

I'm starting degree next september regardless.... I have the qualifications...!

If you've def got a place on the course that you want to do then... It doesnt seem that theres too much to be gained by staying on this one.

However, are you self disciplined enough to use the time profitably or will you end up just chillin til the course starts? -by then you may have got into the habit of taking it easy and having to adjust to going to college again my be tricky.

My money says: There isnt that much contact time left on your course so you'll soon be doing all the painting that you want and perseverence is a good habit to develop (so they tell me:whistle:)
so stick with it but wtf! it wont be the end of the world if you dont, youre young enough to put it all right.

23-10--2008, 03:45 PM
it's not so much "i'm bored i want to leave" but moreso, thinking of a better way to fill my time....be more productive......

when its work i'm forced to do i can be a bit crap at getting it done but when its stuff i've chosen i can go for ages really working hard at it.........

i was getting quite exciting about this wood/stone carving course but i've just heard back and the only one left is in the daytime..... maybe thats the deal clencher...

I feel like leaving is "dropping out" and failing....but looking at it logically it isn;t.... it's being proactive to get more done.....

theres not much chance of me lunching out.... doing nothing depresses me.... i'd probably have to have martin take the internet cable to work though!

I haven't got a place on a course, I'd be applying soon.... I want to have a look around UWIC (cardiff) univeristy very soon.....

23-10--2008, 04:28 PM
argh and now i'm thinking I should stay!!!

this is doing my head in...... I thikn i've decided to stay but also do evening life drawing....but i dont feel happy about it.... but when i decided to leave I didnt feel happy about it..... I'm so stressed and feeling shite lately... I'm behind on work and I'm going to miss the start of the next task on Monday as I'll be signing up for this life drawing....


each time i make a decision it feels like the wrong one...............help!

23-10--2008, 07:26 PM
Art degree courses (well all the ones here at UWE) all go on about how great it is to get a foundation first as it really helps you get used to the academic stuff and research and everything else. They hardly ever accept anyone who hasn't done a foundation.

It's worth talking to people at the university - go to open days, talk to teachers etc

24-10--2008, 06:58 AM
Yeah its weird, everyone emphasised how important foundations are but this one is slower paced and at a more basic level than my national diploma... in fact the national diploma felt very foundationy - lots of techniques and fast paced learning...maybe my college was just awesome...

I feel more level headed and I'm pretty sure I'm going to stay there.... at least for the time being... the "see how it goes" doesnt really go with me as the further I am in the more I am wanting to stick it out even if I hate it!

I'm going to try and do the best points from my two options.

So do uni.....I'm enroling for life drawing evening classes next week.....once i've got the violin basics nabbed i'm going to start having those lessons....and I'm checking out the "soul centre" on saturday for "krishnafest - an eclectic fusion of live music, meditation and spiritual discovery - is known toproduce intense happiness and can be addictive!" so I'll see how that goes........... so I'll be doing other things and being sociable too :-)

what do people think about a year off between foundation and degree? is it best to wait til after degree for a break? theres a few gappy things which have caught my eye (although may be possible to do in summer) such as community painting in ghana....