Let’s face it, if you’re an artist, you’re an artist! So there could be no better way than to spend your life working in the field you love. Visual art is all about creative thinking. So if you see the world around you in shapes, shade, color and texture, then you surely owe it to yourself to nurture those skills and embrace the talents you’ve been given. Visual arts covers every medium imaginable; from painting to ceramics, graphic design and digital arts through to film and video. So if you perceive the world in a visual sense, and know that in one way or another you just have to express yourself in this manner, then a degree in visual arts will provide you with the ideal grounding to decide the area in which you want to specialize.
What’s it all about?
A Visual Art Degree – sometimes also called a Fine Art Degree – is about embracing all aspects of art as a single discipline. You’ll be encouraged to discover many different facets of the art world, including sculpture, drawing, video, film, performance and photography and to evaluate many different critical approaches. The degree course will encourage you to develop an open and questioning mind with regards to the different forms of art, and this in turn will help you to hone your own natural skills. Of course, a degree of this nature will involve a great deal of practical work, and you can expect to build your own unique portfolio of work as your degree course progresses.
What will I learn?
The exact structure of learning will differ depending on which college or university you attend. However, you can expect a degree in visual arts to cover the following:
- Exposure to a broad and varied range of different art practices. These will include, but is not limited to, painting, drawing, sculpture, video, the written word, animation, printmaking and photography.
- Discussion and understanding of disparate theoretical and philosophical concerns regarding the world of art.
- The art of self-reflection and the understanding of both your own and the work of other artists.
- The definition of your own unique working methodology and working artistic practices.
- The building of a portfolio of your own work in various different art mediums.
- The understanding of the theoretical aspects of art.
- The skills of debating and research into all types of media and art forms.
How will I learn?
By necessity a degree in visual arts will involve a good amount of practical work. However, the theory of art in all its forms will also be discovered in-depth, along with critiquing of your own work and that of your fellow students. Various techniques will be employed, all with the aim of helping you to discover and develop your individual talents. These will include self-reflection and an analytical approach to your own work. You’ll be encouraged to become self-motivated and to further understand exactly what it is that makes your own artwork unique. Expect to give regular presentations of your work, along with theoretical written assignments for your tutors to assess your progress. By the end of your degree course you will have amassed your own portfolio of work – something that will be a valuable asset for you in your future career path.
After gaining my degree, what options are open to me for employment?
After graduating with your visual arts degree there are a vast number of career paths you can choose from. These include the more obvious ones, such as an illustrator or artist, along with photographers, film makers, teachers, writers, performers, curators, art critics or art administrators to name but a few. In fact the skills that you’ll learn during your degree course lend themselves favorably to many different employment options. Problem solving, team work, time management and creative thinking all add up to key career skills that can see you moving into many different types of employment.
We all know that competition for employment is at an all-time high. That’s why taking a degree in visual arts is an excellent way to make your chances as great as possible for securing the career path you desire. It’s a sad but true fact that many employers won’t even consider a candidate for a position unless they hold a degree. Not only does a degree show that you have the talent and ability to work in your preferred field, but it shows that you’re a committed and professional person who can apply themselves to their chosen career and work towards a common goal. That in itself places you way above any other potential candidates who have not already shown this dedication towards their career.
A visual art degree is the ideal choice for anyone who has not yet decided exactly which career path in which they wish to specialize. Knowledge is a very personal thing, so you owe it to yourself to fully discover the opportunities available to you, and a broad degree such as this is one of the best ways to do this.