ideas - Portfolio Oomph - Julie Read

ideas Tag

We had a greatly inspiring workshop over the weekend of Off the Rails Arthouse in Fife. We call the workshop 'Ideas and sketchbook development' and much of what we cover is the sticky issue of getting inspired to make art. Although our main aim is to work with students making applications to art college this goal is not essential to study one of our courses. In fact on this particular workshop we only had one student making an art college application. The other participants were all artists are varying stages and abilities, some having graduated a few years ago, who were all looking to kick start their creativity during a difficult time.

On Thursday evening we attended the Advanced Higher art and design exhibition at the Tramway in Glasgow. For those of you not familiar with the Scottish education system, the advanced higher art and design is the final award studied at school if chosen to. It's ranked slightly higher than A levels by UCAS and many students who study advanced higher art then go on to apply to art college. Having never attended this event before (it's been running for 4 years) I was quite excited to be seeing the best of the schools' talent. Also in a greatly inspiring venue, the Tramway Centre, Glasgow.

sketchbook ideas.Great news once more! Our 'Idea and sketchbook development' at Off the Rails Arthouse in Ladybank is running again in November 2014 due to the success of the previous workshops in July and October last year.

Individuality of ideas or even just generating art sketchbook ideas and what to work from can be a real problem when creating artwork. Once you've decided what you are going to work on there also comes that really scary question of 'what I am I going to do with it?'

I've heard it so many times "but I just CAN'T draw". If you want to improve your drawing skills, read on. It's almost like someone has resigned themselves to not being able to draw or believes that you either can draw or you can't. I don't believe that anyone can't draw, learn how to draw or improve their drawing skills. It is a skill and like any skill it can be learnt. Being creative is perhaps someone a little more complex and I can understand more why some believe they aren't very creative. However, there are still ways that creativity can be encouraged and nurtured rather than just accepting that you're not a creative person.

Life drawing or not, that is the question?! You might be wondering what to put in an art portfolio for success. I feel compelled to write this blog post as we've been running a portfolio preparation workshop which included life drawing classes in Haddington for school pupils applying to art college. This is a great opportunity for students as it is a thorough academic session in developing and strengthening looking and recording skills. This is relevant to any art or design project to varying degrees.

Portfolio Oomph focuses very much the on the art education of the applicant (usually a young adult) when applying to art college but it can also be a tricky time for the parents of these applicants. If you have a child who is keen on pursuing an art education and is doing well in their exams, the whole idea of an art portfolio can be quite confusing. This is especially so if you haven't had an art education yourself or you're not connected in some way to the art world. It can feel like banging your head against a brick wall trying to find out information from a reliable, independent source.