Author Archives: Julie Read
8 Mar 2019
Aileen Keith artist
Meet the artist Aileen Keith

As part of our new blog post theme, that of ‘Meet the art teacher/artist’ each month we will highlight either an art teacher/tutor, artist or designer maker and ask a handful of questions, nothing too serious but something that could encourage some interaction between art teachers, artists also college tutors.

Welcome artist Aileen Keith. I worked with Aileen for 10 years at Edinburgh College of Art where she taught predominantly drawing.

If you would like to take part or know someone who would then download the questions here and fire them back to us at:


18 Feb 2019
top universities for fine art
What do artists do all day?

Considering the top universities for Fine Art? – get clued up!

It can be difficult to imagine what you might end up doing if you study Fine Art at Art College / University.

And there is always the concern from others that there are no jobs in the arts. There will always be people who don’t pursue a career in the arts having studied for 3 or 4 years, but that really is your choice.  (more…)

19 Jun 2018
Glasgow School of Art fire
Glasgow School of Art fire – again

First of all we wanted to write about the events over the weekend – Glasgow School of Art fire. The affects on the Glasgow community, Glasgow School of Art (GSA) students, staff, past and present, have rippled through the creative communities throughout Scotland and beyond. Consequently, to anyone in the world who has an interest also connection to the arts, culture and architecture. (more…)

6 Apr 2018
Rosanna Dyke - textiles
Advanced higher art or further education?

So, you've just finished 5th year at school (here in Scotland) and you've achieved your Highers. So that means that you're possibly qualified for entry for art college in Scotland.

Each year, when I have students visit for their mentoring sessions, more often than not they are at school in the 6th year studying for their Advanced Highers. I wanted to write this blog post for those of you who aren't quite at that stage yet, maybe you're in 4th or 5th year. (more…)

16 Mar 2018
Employability and transferable skills eBook
Art and design employability skills

We've been thinking a lot of about art and design and how it sits in the school curriculum. We hear from some students telling us that art and design is always the subject that suffers if a student has to catch up time with another subject, time is usually asked to be taken from the art studies first. Now why is this? Are the skills learnt in art and design not seen to hold as much value as those in other subjects? Hold on….what skills do art and design teach you anyway?


21 Feb 2018
Dyslexia and Creativity
Creative Dyslexic Network

We're getting very excited about our event on dyslexia and creativity, a new partnership with Dyslexia Scotland – Creative Dyslexic Network.

This event (details below) is being held for Dyslexic creatives who need support forwarding their creative futures and/or generic job searches. (more…)

29 Dec 2017
Royal Conservatoire of Scotland
Royal Conservatoire of Scotland: Production Art and Design – Set and costume design

We received a really insightful email recently from a parent of one of our students from last year, who is now studying on the Production Art and Design – Set and costume design course at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland.

This was the first student that we'd worked with who had applied to the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland so it was new to us as well as this student and her parents.


5 Oct 2017
Making your own drawing charcoal
Making your own drawing charcoal

We had a fabulous day last week in the beautiful autumn sun, in the woods MAKING OUR OWN DRAWING CHARCOAL can you believe! Why don't you have a go too?


5 Oct 2017
Are you still working from photos?
Are you still working from photos?

Why it's good to get out of this habit

I know you're probably thinking that it's easier to work from photos and it might be much more convenient too. However, a testimonial that we received the other week from a student's Mum said:

"Before Portfolio Oomph came into our lives Emily was happy drawing, painting but she was not creating. She clearly had the skills but was copying from photos, paintings etc. Although her teachers were very encouraging they weren’t helping her think for herself." (more…)

4 Oct 2017
Getting dates and procedures in order

Use our chart to check what's required and when.

We had a couple of great evening seminars over the past couple of weeks, one at Stills Gallery and one at Dundee Contemporary Arts. The general feedback was that there is SO much to consider between the Colleges with different requirements, procedures, dates etc.  (more…)


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