Welcome to the Art department, a lively and productive place where all students, whatever their age and abilities, are encouraged to develop their skills and creativity through the study of the basic elements of Art and through the study of artists’ work from different times and cultures.
You can see plenty example of our students’ work in the website gallery by clicking here.
We develop skills through special projects that aim to encourage students’ confidence with a wide variety of materials and processes. Individual creativity can flourish when founded on a strong skill set based on drawing and painting and as students progress through their Art studies, they are encouraged to express themselves with confidence. Students have the opportunity to experience a variety of processes including print making and ceramics.
Art in Years 7, 8 & 9
Students study the Formal Elements of Art: Line, Tone, Shape, Form, Texture, Pattern and Colour. Special projects are set to develop skills in using these elements so that students can approach individual projects with confidence and success. The work of relevant artists is studied, enabling students to understand how certain techniques and approaches can be used to create highly personal and meaningful artwork. As students progress, they are expected to work more independently, developing their own ideas and selecting and using appropriate media and processes to create a personal response.
The students develop an appreciation for the artwork of other times and cultures in order to help them to develop their own ideas and to aid them in the creative process. Many Art lessons follow a detailed structure, covering the development of skills using different media but eventually these give way to more personal projects, allowing students to express themselves independently. Research techniques are taught and students are encouraged to reference their own choice of artists, demonstrating how their choice has made an impact on their own work.
The nature of homework varies: sometimes we may set a specific task which should take pupils about 45 minutes to complete, but on other occasions we may ask them take on a bigger project which they come back to regularly over the course of several weeks and may have to complete within the Department at lunchtimes, when we have an “Open Door” policy, enabling students to extend their learning.
Useful websites for Lower School students include:
At GCSE, students have the opportunity to study Art & Design. The examining body for Year 11 is Edexcel specification code 2AD01, and for Year 10 it is Edexcel specification code 1ADO (in 2016/17).
Students are examined on their skill and their creativity. They will need to demonstrate an ability to develop their own response to a given theme, showing how their ideas form and grow from appropriate research into relevant artists, experimentation with media and processes and the ability to use these with fluency. There are four Assessment Objectives that cover all of these aspects and marks are awarded accordingly. The current course is divided into a coursework portfolio and a final externally set assignment. These are weighted 60% and 40% respectively.
Homework at this level should take 2 hours per week, although some students prefer to work at lunchtimes so that they can experiment with media that would be difficult to use at home.
Students are taken on a trip to Cambridge in the summer of Year 10, providing the opportunity to view the artefacts and artworks at the Fitzwilliam Museum and work with professional printers at the Curwen Press.
Useful websites for GCSE students include:
At A-level, students have the opportunity to study Fine Art. The examining body is AQA, specification code 7202.
Students at this level will be examined on their ability to work to a very high standard and to produce artwork that has been well developed and is highly personal. A level takes the subject to greater depth and focus and students are expected to show a high degree of individuality and creativity.
The time spent on homework varies at this level but should not be less than five hours per week. Students may use the Department during their free time to continue their practical work.
Extracurricular opportunities include a cultural study trip to New York which runs every 2 years and also an annual trip to London to hear professional artists talk about their creative processes.
Many of our A level students go on to study Art or Fashion at Degree level. Advice and guidance is available to help with personal statements and the preparation of portfolios for interview. A level Art also nurtures valuable transferable skills such as resilience, independence, creativity and problem- solving which will prove beneficial in any future career path.
Useful websites for A-level students include:
Page updated Sept 2016