The A Level Art course allows for a very broad base of types of art and design. On the course, there will be opportunities to explore printmaking, drawing, painting, sculpture, 3DD, mixed media, film, photography, digital art, graphics and illustration work. Practising drawing, painting and printmaking skills is the key to doing well on this course. The course will help to develop skills, knowledge and understanding that are valuable to those who wish to progress within the creative visual arts industries.
We have put together the following Getting Ahead work to help you prep for your course over the summer.
We look forward to you starting College with us soon!
In preparation for your Art A Level, please try to carry out the following task outlined below. The task is designed to help you maintain your practical skills by investigating primary source imagery over the summer. The imagery you collect will support the development of your work in your introductory project on the course. You are being asked to gather primary source imagery on the broad theme of Windows and Openings. Interpret this theme in whatever way you choose.
Here are some suggested starting points:
The activity imagery below will hopefully inspire you to start collecting your own imagery.
Exploring colour shadows and light
Windows and openings are ideal places for exploring the play of light and shadow. Lots of potential here for painterly mark making and exploring colour, soft lighting or vibrant shadows cast by directional light. There are a multitude of shapes, patterns and forms that can be explored.
View point – room with a view
Dramatic views over rooftops, fields or woods searching for colours and the complexity of shapes, detail, expressive or impressionist landscapes.
Figures and portraiture
The window provides the opportunity to create drama and narrative. To intrigue the viewer whether on a train or in a cafe. Capturing the moment of drama emphasizing through the use of shadow and silhouettes, looking into the window or looking out. The lighting on the face, the surrounding space and the interaction of figures can create a stillness, sense of loss, longing, contemplation and a whole range of different emotions. Expressing emotion can help to make portraits more powerful and evoke meaning in the mind of the viewer.
Looking into or out of a door/window at the shapes and structures day or night provides potential for abstracting. Identify what you find interesting or unusual in the space around you. Maybe you have never really stopped to look at telephone cables and power lines before. Try to look and see things with a new or different perspective. Colour, patterns, shapes and textures can be explored. Simplifying, cropping and leaving out the information that is not necessary in the image or emphasizing and changing it to produce a stronger abstract composition.
Opportunity to explore architecture forms and structure, opportunity to explore perspective 3-dimensional form using tone. To explore weight and mass and negative space in structures.
Movie suspense thrillers
Opportunity to explore illustration styles and narrative interpretation. Using locations to help with the narrative and trying to give your characters a sense of heightened identity. Strong shadow to create drama and mood for concept storyboarding.
Exploring different genres and their styles and conventions, comic strips and storyboards. Exploring the drama and the stylisation of drawing imagery and interpretation of narrative ideas within different cultures.
Using surreal imagination to consider the theme of windows and openings. This imagery is still supported by primary sources but the experimentation and juxtaposition of imagery creates ideas of different worlds or heightened states of psychological tension. Illusions are used to stimulate imaginations using shadows, perspective, scale where objects, materials and spaces present an alternative reality.
First, you must gather some photographic source imagery for your project. You will need a range of photographs to use as starting points for your work in other media as the project progresses.
At the outset of the project, we will focus on drawing. In class, we will be producing sustained and expressive drawings based on the photos you take. You will need a selection (6-10) of your photographs printed out at a reasonable size (A4/A3) to work from.
We are not expecting you to make a large collection of new work over the summer. Some of you may not have access to space or materials for making paintings and large scale drawings.
We do expect you to take x 30 photos and some sketching from observation. If you feel inspired then do something substantial, try to produce a sustained image from direct observation and your photos.
Look at the artists below to inspire you within this project.
Drawing and Printing References
Hoping you have a good summer and looking forward to seeing you in September.
I’m really happy and pleased with my grades. I really loved my time at the college, I have also made lots of friends, it’s a really nice place to be, I don’t want to leave.Lauren Piper, A Level student
“HSDC provided me with the opportunity for autonomous study and the choice of subjects that I wanted to study, which helped me develop relevant knowledge as well as relevant skills for the workplace.”Lucas Ratcliffe, A Level and CTEC student
My experience at the College was great, it’s very different to school, and I think it’s a good step to going to university. The support was amazing, I loved all of my teachers, they helped me through everything. The College is friendly and you will succeed.Heidi Adamson Brattland, A Level student