Advanced practice

Advanced Art Practice Courses in London & Online

City Lit’s Centre for Advanced Practice is where you can find advanced courses from across all subject areas in our School of Visual Arts. In many cases, this means well established courses of a year or longer, with outstanding reputations for preparing students for study at Bachelors or Masters level. Equally, their quality and depth makes them a viable alternative to the conventional Higher Education route, for many learners, into careers as creative practitioners.

To continue to support learners from a range of backgrounds, with diverse requirements, we have several new courses, recently launched – with more appearing soon – that build on our long-standing fine art and contemporary craft provision, and bring traditional practices up to date to ensure learners have the relevant skills for the contemporary creative industries. This is supported through increasing connections with external organisations and practitioners in many courses, for example through real-world project briefs, public exhibitions, or visits from industry professionals.

For Autumn 2021, we are introducing new titles in contemporary media and communications-based creative practices, and new courses running across a range of patterns and modes (weekly, monthly, studio-based, online or blended), to ensure that our advanced provision remains accessible and manageable alongside learners’ existing commitments. Alongside these developments, we are progressively refreshing many of our well-established courses, with an increased emphasis on critical discourse, and contemporary cultural debate, in keeping with the advanced level of study and focus on professionalism that are the common characteristics of all advanced practice courses.

In addition to our expanding range of advanced long courses, a new and growing range of advanced one-day workshops is now available (launched November 2020), aimed at providing knowledge and insight required to support specific aspects of professional practice. These can be taken individually, according to need or interest, or as complementary components of your own, pick-and-mix modular course. In common with our long courses, these will provide you with the skills, knowledge and confidence you need to take your advanced creative practice forward.

Any questions? Contact our visual arts team on visual.arts@citylit.ac.uk or call us on 020 7492 2700, Monday to Friday between 10am-12pm or 2pm-4pm.

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  1. Artist talk: Chris Gray: What is Art School? Education through the ages
    Evening
    Course Date:  Fri 2 Jul 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Art schools have changed dramatically from the Renaissance era of apprentices studying under the guise of the master to the liberal expressive freedoms that students enjoy today. In this talk, Artist Chris Gray will take you through the historical developments and transitions, presenting a lineage between these 2 seemingly separate worlds. Drawing on his own personal experiences as a student that moved from contemporary to traditional art education, this talk will truly highlight if there are lessons we can learn from the schools of old.

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £5.00 Senior fee £5.00 Concession £5.00
  2. Is meaning inevitable? Intention, action and interpretation
    Course Date:  Fri 2 Jul 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Does every creative act have meaning? Is there a statement – conscious or unconscious – inherent in everything we do as artists? Should we interpret or analyse what we see, what we do, what we’ve done? In this one-day workshop, we will examine a range of specific works, considering the question of whether and how meaning has been embedded (intentionally or otherwise) and can be identified and interpreted. This will, to some degree, touch on how individuals and societies make and ascribe meaning, perhaps as an attempt to process and come to terms with, for example, otherwise seemingly arbitrary events like a natural catastrophe or suffering. We will discuss and workshop these themes in the larger group, draw on examples presented, and the experiences of the members in the group. Other questions that may be considered include: discerning meaning as an attempt to find order in chaos, and whether or what we might lose by attempting to impose meaning, by attempting to explain within the confines of critical analysis, that which may, in fact, be critical to the character or intention of a work of art.

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £89.00 Senior fee £89.00 Concession £89.00
  3. Presenting and exhibiting: photographing your work 1
    Course Date:  Fri 9 Jul 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Photographing your work properly is important, whether for the purposes of promotion, for your own records, or to document your own exhibitions or installations. While smartphones offer convenience and immediacy, and allow us to share images instantly, to our audiences on social media and potentially anyone around the world, there is much more to consider both in terms of equipment and set-up, if you want to document and archive your creative work to a professional standard.



    In this one-day workshop, approaching from the perspective of the exhibiting artist, craftsperson or designer, we address the factors involved in documenting your work for or in an exhibition, and demystify the process to ensure you will always be able to obtain images of your work that serve as a faithful reference even after you have sold the original piece. We cover selecting lenses and filters to ensure an appropriate image quality; use of appropriate photographic equipment and why you need to ensure appropriate lighting and metering; understanding and selecting camera modes and settings to ensure appropriate image quality; why is your smartphone is not good enough to document your work to the standard required (although it can still have a role in the documentation process)



    Although not a requirement, this workshop will be of particular benefit to those who are also doing VPP850-1 Presenting and exhibiting: curatorial perspectives.

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £89.00 Senior fee £89.00 Concession £89.00
  4. Artist talk: Kate Hardy - Ways of working
    Evening
    Course Date:  Fri 9 Jul 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Kate is a painter and printmaker who works at Chisenhale Studios in East London. She likes being surprised by materials and tries to make them behave in new ways. Kate’s talk will be a virtual studio visit. She will introduce her work and ideas, and describe how her studio practise is a thought process which comes out of real and imagined memories, dreams, films and the crumbling buildings of London.

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £5.00 Senior fee £5.00 Concession £5.00
  5. Presenting and exhibiting: photographing your work 2
    Course Date:  Fri 16 Jul 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Photographing your work properly is important, whether for the purposes of promotion, for your own records, or to document your own exhibitions or installations. Having spent hours ensuring that you have captured perfect photos of your work, you need to be sure you can process them for the purposes you have in mind (eg: print, web, publicity), edit them non-destructively, and archive them appropriately for future reference.



    Working from the premise that you have already photographed your subject (your own work or exhibition/installation) to an appropriately professional standard, using suitable equipment and data formats, this one-day workshop covers: processing and archiving photographic records of your work, selecting and organising the best shots, using non-destructive data formats and working with specialist photography software and formats to ensure commercial standard image quality, and the integrity of the original image files in the editing process. We also look at considerations involved in processing your images to the required specifications for galleries, promotional materials, websites or publications, and effective systems for archiving images non-destructively, for your own future use and ensuring access to a growing body of work in perpetuity.



    Although not a requirement, this workshop will be of particular benefit to those who have completed VPP861-1 Presenting and exhibiting: photographing your work 1.

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £89.00 Senior fee £89.00 Concession £89.00
  6. Presenting and exhibiting: copyright and IP for artists
    Course Date:  Fri 23 Jul 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Copyright and intellectual property are not interesting subjects – until you discover that someone has stolen your idea, or, maybe, that someone else is accusing you of infringement of their rights. Then, they become very important! You can avoid distressing and potentially expensive disputes and possible legal action by making sure that you know the rules, and understand how to make and present your work without falling foul of any laws or regulations. You can also judge when your own ideas might have been stolen, or ‘appropriated’. Copyright and IP applies in situations and contexts that you might not be aware of. This workshop, primarily for the practitioner who is intent on developing their profile or career as a creative professional, considers the most relevant laws, points out where you might be at risk (but might not be aware), and advises, through hypothetical scenarios and case studies, how disputes might arise and be resolved. Amongst the subjects covered are: protecting your intellectual property, copyrighting or trademarking your images or other intellectual property; quoting or attributing in creative practice; plagiarism and legal cases; sampling/quotation/referencing; digital watermarking; performing rights for screening/playback in public events/contexts.

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £89.00 Senior fee £89.00 Concession £89.00
  7. Digital fundamentals: media and protocols for creative practice
    Course Date:  Fri 17 Sep 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Whether or not we use digital media in our creative work, we rely on digital tools and resources to disseminate, communicate and organise, both in our art or design practice and in our lives, generally. While most digital and social media tools now allow us to do most of what we need to without understanding how they work, it is sometimes still necessary, and important, to know how to work with the technology to ensure the right results, so that we can archive, present and collaborate effectively. This workshop provides a thorough grounding in digital media concepts and principles for visual artists, including: the fundamentals of how real world information is encoded in data and saved in file formats; how digital data is accessed, transferred, processed, archived, manipulated, both locally and via the cloud or sharing services; how and when to use different data formats and how these affect quality or accessibility; technical principles, and creative potential.

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £89.00 Senior fee £89.00 Concession £89.00
  8. Digital fundamentals: imaging for print and 2D
    Course Date:  Fri 1 Oct 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    As artists and designers, we generally tend to observe a number of fundamental 'rules' when working with digital media for print-based or other forms of 2D output. These relate to processes or settings such as scanning, saving, resolution, image or data format, colour modes, compression... To a certain extent, much of this is received knowledge, and we don't necessarily know why we follow these rules. Knowing what they are based on, and why, is, however, fundamental to sound technical proficiency, and expertise, and knowing what these principles are based on allows us not only to produce work to professional standard, but also to exploit them to their full creative potential. This workshop will be of value to any visual artist who uses digital technology in their creative practice, from painters and printmakers to photographers and graphic designers. Coverage includes: principles and concepts underpinning digital imaging for print/static delivery: pixel/vector; resolution, scalability, application; acquisition, modes, formats and real-world constraints: file sizes/compression/data integrity; relation to physical output (size, resolution, process).

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £89.00 Senior fee £89.00 Concession £89.00
  9. Advanced figure and portrait
    Last Few Places
    Course Date:  Fri 15 Oct 2021

    Location on this date:  KS - Keeley Street

    The human form offers inexhaustible potential for communication and expression of ideas; this is an exciting advanced course for those with experience of working with the figure and/or portrait who would like the challenge of exploring new perspectives on the figurative tradition in drawing, painting and mixed media.
    Full fee £2,149.00 Senior fee £1,719.00 Concession £1,461.00
  10. Making a statement: how to write a strong application
    Course Date:  Fri 26 Nov 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Almost everything we apply for as artists or designers has to be supported by a statement. Once we have identified that an opportunity or a proposal is right for us, we have to present a compelling case, which convinces the reader that we are a potentially suitable candidate. This is a different approach to talking about our interests or motivations as artists. In this workshop, you will learn how to consider your statement within the wider context of the application. What are the needs of the organisation behind the opportunity? How does your statement match them? This workshop will help you to see your statement from another reader’s point of view, so that you can communicate your ideas and points to the person reading it. You will learn how to consider the structure of your statement and to target it to the specific requirements of the application, whether for a course, job, residency, funding or an exhibition.

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £89.00 Senior fee £89.00 Concession £89.00
  11. Children's book illustration: advanced projects
    Evening
    Course Date:  Fri 14 Jan 2022 (and 1 other date)

    Location on this date:  Online

    An intensive highly focused follow up course to develop design, drawing, imagination, characterisation and narrative skills. Ideal if you’re planning to prepare a portfolio for presentation to publishers or wishing to further develop your skills and imagination.

    See what you could create –
    view a selection of work made on our children’s book illustration courses

    .

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £399.00 Senior fee £399.00 Concession £271.00
  12. Collaborative creative projects online
    Course Date:  Fri 22 Apr 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Recent advances in technology and communications provide creative practitioners and communities with opportunities that, in historical terms, are unique. We have never before had the capacity to react to events and engage with issues that, in some cases for the very same reasons, can no longer be confined, in terms of their impact, to the location in which they occur. Consider, for instance, climate change, Coronavirus, the BLM movement and the global reaction to inequality and injustice. Artists and designers have at their disposal, through these same resources, the capacity to respond to these developments, and to effect change, and with this, inevitably, comes the imperative of social responsibility. This workshop looks at how creative individuals engage with notions of online or distributed models of practice and collaboration, through the production or propagation of ideas, movements, memes or artefacts, with individuals one has possibly never met, or perhaps does not even know. Besides collaboration in making, we consider the potential of social/viral media as a disruptor or organisational tool, (for example in events, happenings, flash-mobs, and organised protests or movements such as Anonymous, Occupy, XR, BLM and others).

    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £89.00 Senior fee £89.00 Concession £89.00

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