There’s no denying that art students get a bad rep. Constantly in a state of existential crisis and broke, you could complete the stereotype with a cup of coffee and a really artsy instagram account. But what people don’t realise is that not only is there way more to the art student than that, but we actually have a pretty great deal in terms of student experiences. Get ready to be enlightened.
1. You get to collaborate with your classmates
At an arts university, we do things a little differently. You’re not tied to your desk, forced to listen to lectures day in, day out – you actually get to interact with the people around you! Most classes revolve around working at a large table surrounded by your classmates, and you are actively encouraged to talk to your friends and share ideas and suggestions with each other so that you can continue to improve your work.
2. You get awesome opportunities
Ok so, sure, you get to go on course trips, have visiting lecturers and study abroad on other, more academic courses. But unlike most other industries, the arts are notably different, not only from country to country but also from practitioner to practitioner. We get all the fun experiences that other courses do, but we have the added awesome opportunity to expand our understanding of the possibilities within our field.
3. You can create your own career path
You’d be forgiven for thinking that there aren’t many creative jobs available in today’s job market, but you couldn’t be more wrong. In 2015, the creative industries in the UK were worth an estimated £87.4 billion, increasing at almost twice the rate of the rest of the UK economy between 2010 and 2015. Not only that, but as a rapidly expanding industry, many creatives are making their own niche market within that. So no, successful careers are not all about STEM subjects. You can check out more statistics about the creative industries in the UK here.
4. There are loads of opportunities to showcase your work
Unlike more academic subjects where your progress is measured in essays and exams, creative courses rely heavily on coursework, meaning that there are tons of exciting things being created every day. UCA provides an excellent hub for all of this work with constantly changing exhibitions lining nearly every wall we can get our hands on. This is not only an awesome opportunity for you to showcase your work, but also gives you a chance to see what your friends were up to when they were too busy to come out to the pub with you.
5. You get to sell what you make
Now this doesn’t apply to every creative course, but as an Illustration student, I’m constantly producing work in class that I then go on to sell. Last year, my friend and I went to the Farnham Maltings Christmas Market to sell our work, and I’ve since set up an Etsy shop to sell my work. Nothing is quite as rewarding as someone paying money to have something that you made.
I hope this has helped you realise how wicked creative courses are, and if you’re not studying a creative course right now, maybe feel a twinge of regret and start looking into applying here. I wouldn’t blame you!
If I've intruiged you and made you want to know more, sign up to one of our up-coming Open Days!