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: Hilary Rosen - Greek Mythology in paint and print
    Course Date:  Mon 28 Jun 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Hilary Rosen trained at the Royal College of Art where she was a prize winner. She lives and works in London. On leaving the Royal College of Art, she has taught at City Lit and various arts schools around the country. She has a studio in East London and exhibits internationally as well as having work in many national and international collections. Hilary teaches watercolour, oil painting and drawing (including life drawing and painting). Her subject matter for her work draws from a number of themes, including cityscapes, still lives and the relationships of people to one another. She explores these themes through the media of oil painting, drawing and printmaking. Hilary is inspired by Greek Mythology, and this talk is based on her own work and that of other visual artists who have explored this subject through their work. In this talk, Hilary also discusses the construction of the monoprint by combining lino prints, stencils and layering.

    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. Artist talk: Adam Hogarth - DIY culture in Contemporary Art
    Course Date:  Mon 28 Jun 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Influenced by the DIY ethos associated with 1970's Punk culture, Adam Hogarth will talk about its legacy and the way it has helped influence his outlook on making artwork.

    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
  3. Artist talk: Carol Justin Wilhide - A history of Japanese woodcut
    Course Date:  Tue 29 Jun 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    This inspiring talk by artist and printmaker Carol Wilhide Justin will introduce you to the fascinating history and development of Japanese ukiyo-e prints during the Edo period. Find out about how Japan was almost totally cut off from the rest of the world for almost 250 years and uncover the beauty of their ukiyo-e prints that were eventually opened up to the West in 1865. Discussing selected prints this conversation will explain how Japanese ukiyo-e prints electrified contemporary artists and paved the way for Modern Art.

    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
  4. 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
  5. Artist talk: Grant Smith - Photographing the City: Challenges and changes in the City of London
    Course Date:  Mon 5 Jul 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    A talk by Grant Smith, photographer and tutor at City Lit. Smith has been photographing the City of London over the last 30 years and has enjoyed different perspectives on our historic centre. With photographs of buildings from Wren to Rogers, this illustrated talk will take you on a visual journey through the City of London architecture.

    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
  6. Artist talk: Suzanne Caines - Drawings/Installation of a meaningful location non-place
    Course Date:  Mon 5 Jul 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Conversations on meaningful locations transformed into drawings and large-scale installation pieces. This work was a durational project, where the studio-gallery/site-specific context became a live ‘laboratory’ for collaborative exploration. The exhibition was held at Saint Mary's Halifax Nova Scotia, Canada (2011) at the end of an artist’s residency. It makes visible elided histories and exposes marginal or oppressed experiences. Working with archives is one of the tactical moves in a strategy of decolonialisation; a political praxis-poesis to reclaim certain images and positions that would otherwise not be visible".

    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
  7. Artist talk: Rosie James - Stitch Draw
    Course Date:  Mon 5 Jul 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Rosie James is a textile artist working with machine embroidery and screen printing to create narrative works. Focusing on crowds and figures, she uses stitch to create drawings, leaving loose threads and lines. She teaches all over the world running workshops, and at City Lit, running a masterclass in the summer.



    This talk looks at illustrative narrative in embroidery looking at all sorts of examples from the Bayeux tapestry to the work of contemporary textile artists.

    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
  8. Reflecting on exhibitions: intention and experience
    Course Date:  Tue 6 Jul 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    How important is contextual knowledge when looking at art? To what extent, for example, do we need to understand the historical and political context of the time, or to know the biographical details of the artist? How do we apply such knowledge, and our own experience, in making informed subjective opinions of works of art?



    This workshop will build on some of these fundamental questions and assumptions, to examine how the visual arts are presented, and encountered. Alongside the context, environment, and design/production values of an exhibition, we will consider the target audience, visitor experience, accessibility, and so on. Beyond these questions, we will also consider a number of factors related to public policy and accountability. For example, how does the Arts Council assess the 'Artistic Quality' of the work it funds, and what are its criteria for assessing funded exhibitions, in terms of fulfilling their values (education, public engagement and access)?



    Referring to real case studies (either physical or virtual), the group will present and discuss experiences of visiting exhibitions or encountering works of art in specific contexts, and how these have informed, enlightened or affected individual thinking or practice, and served the needs of artist, exhibitor and audience.

    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. 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
  10. Artist talk: Keith James Clarke - Reflections on bright-eyed and bushy-tailed architecture
    Weekend
    Course Date:  Sat 10 Jul 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Keith is a tutor at City Lit and began his professional life working on multi-million-pound developments for an internationally recognised Cambridge practice. He questions the coherence and quality of some domestic refurbishment, by others, which has motivated him, from the mid-80s onwards, to specialise in designing small-scale residential properties. During this talk, he will explain his work practice, focussing on design generators, their relationship with 3D visualisation and how they aid design development and decision-making. Keith will refer to a couple of examples from his portfolio of work and outline his commitment to creating designs with strong architectural and environmental credentials.

    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
  11. Artist talk: Rod Judkins - How do you display your art work to show it at its best
    Weekend
    Course Date:  Sun 11 Jul 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Great art can look awful if poorly presented. Rod Judkins will explain the process of creating a portfolio for either fine art or design to show your work at its best. The slide talk will provide examples from outstanding portfolios of City Lit students who have applied to foundation courses, degree courses, and MA’s.



    The talk will explain the ideal content needed in a portfolio, such as research, the need for a personal portfolio where you show you are developing your visual language, and presentation skills. In addition, the talk will explain the preparation of both physical and online portfolios.



    This talk will give you an insight into City Lit courses such as Building an Art and Design Portfolio and Art and Design Portfolio Projects. Why not show your work to its best potential!

    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
  12. Artist talk: Lindsay Pickett - Feeling 'Othered'
    Weekend
    Course Date:  Sun 11 Jul 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Lindsay Pickett’s work explores the theme of hybridity, entangling the socio-political issues relating to genetic experimentation with animals and a world of sci-fi fantasy. Half-and-half species become alienated or classified as different to an accompanying herd of animals. Alongside his concerns around animal experimentation, the artist embraces and communicates aspects of the psychological mind-set of these hybrid animals, relating them to ideas of social rejection and absence where being different can cause alienation in the animal and human world.



    For Pickett, painting is a form of self-expression, allowing him to be himself not just as an artist, but also as a person. It gives him a voice to convey current concerns about the behaviour of elements of humanity.



    Often feeling 'othered' in social and work circumstances, Lindsay has found a voice through his animal hybrids which work as a metaphor for his way of 'not belonging'. Otherness is the key here. it should not always be seen as a negative thing, but as something positive and unique.

    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
  13. Artist talk: Charles Chambers - The unbuilt and the unbuildable: a history of the schemes that got away
    Weekend
    Course Date:  Sun 11 Jul 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    From Piranesi’s renderings of darkly foreboding and fictitious prisons, Boulleé’s gargantuan proposal for Newton’s cenotaph to Archigram’s ‘Walking City’ and Zaha Hadid’s unrealisable dreams; the history of architecture is littered with unbuildable fantasies and the also-rans of architectural competitions. Join Charles Chambers, lecturer in Architectural History and Theory for a stroll through the might-have-beens of an alternative cityscape.

    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
  14. 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
  15. 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

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