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Course Feature: Pre-Foundation Portfolio Preparation for 16 - 18 Year Olds

Written by Jasmin Woolley-Butler
Published date 08 October 2019

This week we’re taking an in-depth look at our Pre-foundation Portfolio Preparation for 16 - 18 Year Olds. This 5-day course can help take the mystery out of making your application to an art and design foundation. If you are thinking about making an application this January to begin a Foundation in Art and Design in September 2020, this course will be a useful starting point.

The course gives you the unique opportunity to familiarise yourself with ‘art school life’ and meet one of our experienced tutors. Course tutors all have the knowledge and an understanding of the foundation application process and will support you with developing a diverse range of work to form an impressive portfolio. You will also receive guidance as you prepare for an interview.

By the end of the course, you will have a new understanding of the foundation course environment and feel confident about your decision to apply. You will have experienced new approaches, new methodologies needed for this type of study and have increased confidence when talking or writing about your own work. The course is also a great opportunity to meet new people, with a similar passion for art and design.

Day-by-day on a typical session of Pre-Foundation Portfolio Preparation for 16 - 18 Year Olds.

Day 1

You will begin with introductions; you will meet your tutors and fellow students, as well as getting to know the college environment. You’ll take a trip to the college library and make selections of artists and designers work you like - these can be referenced throughout the week as you make work during different activities. This forms what is known as ‘contextual studies’.

Following a tutor demonstration, you’ll get stuck into your first hands-on task, preparing surfaces, creating texture and working on line drawings. This will be followed, depending on your interests, by a self-portrait or an architectural study in your sketchbook.

Day 2

You’ll start the day out and about in London, visiting a museum or gallery. Here you will add field drawings to your sketchbook and collect visual source material in the museum and surrounding area - you will take all you have gathered back to the studio to inform your course projects.

Day 3

Back in the studio, you’ll work on a mixed media piece, thinking about how you can transform and translate the collected items and drawings from your morning in the museum or gallery into a single piece.

Day 4

Today you’ll be working in 3D. Following a tutor demonstration, you’ll be using paper and cardboard to build a sculptural piece. Then, in the afternoon, you’ll work collaboratively with your peers on a project based on your urban drawings.

Day 5

You’ll work in the morning to finish the week’s projects, then display all your amazing work for a group review, with your tutor. You will spend time learning how to photograph your 3D or large pieces to add to your portfolio. The course will conclude with a group chat lead by your tutor, who will share further tips for assembling your portfolio, writing your personal statement and preparing for an interview.

Student reviews

“[The course] really helped me get to know what a portfolio is an all its uses. [The tutor] was also a good listener. The use of sketchbooks in public spaces was fun and a great learning moment. I will greatly improve my art and life. And also built a portfolio.” – Rafael

“[The tutor] was very nice and encouraging, always seeing the good in artworks, but not afraid to improve our art” - Shaskia

“Lots of creative variety. The Printing was very fun and interesting. I will expand on these skills in my portfolio work” – Emily

“The chance to visit the library and spend lots of time creating art outside of school was a wonderful experience” – Luke

You can study Pre-Foundation Portfolio Preparation for 16 - 18 Year Olds at Chelsea College of Arts, throughout the year or at Camberwell College of Arts during the Summer. The deadline for applying to The Camberwell, Chelsea, Wimbledon Foundation Diploma is 31 January 2020.