Course outline

The course aims to help you examine and develop your photographic skills, regardless of
level of previous knowledge. It is intended to be exploratory and flexible, taking into account
your areas of interest and any past experience. Practical photographic technique and digital
image manipulation will be supported by analysis of particular artists’ working methods,
exploration of a personal area of interest and development of a personal portfolio. By the end
of the course you will have experienced using a variety of styles and methods of working as
well as expanding your understanding of how these have been used by artists both past and

Learning Activities

  • Hands on practice (please bring your own camera)
  • Demonstration
  • Examples from books
  • Individual tuition and feedback from tutor
  • Discussion


  • To explore a range of different photographic styles and genres
  • To develop digital image processing skills in Adobe Photoshop and Lightroom
  • To understand the use of composition, exposure, light, lenses, and seeing as part of
    the artistic process.
  • To develop individual skills through hands on practice.


  • To demonstrate an understanding of the range and methods available to the
    photographic artist.
  • To have applied those skills practically through individual projects, portfolio
    development and an extended Personal Investigation essay (1000-2000 words).

Assessment process

Assessment will be continuous in the form of discussions and feedback from the tutor. However, students will also be encouraged to keep a detailed ‘journal of progress’ throughout the course. Students will work with their tutor to select a topic for their Personal Investigation essay in an area of interest, (i.e. a style, movement, artist, technique, etc…). They will also be expected to build up and complete a detailed portfolio, featuring several examples of styles and techniques explored throughout the course.

Grade Breakdown
50% Portfolio
30% Personal Investigation Essay
20% Response to feedback and discussions

Assessment Criteria

Grade A
Student understands the full range of artistic styles and concepts, and has a highly sophisticated ability to demonstrate that knowledge through practical application
Grade B
Student understands a wide range of artistic styles and concepts, and has a relatively sophisticated ability to demonstrate that knowledge through practical application.
Grade C
Student understands a range of artistic styles and concepts, and has a clear ability to demonstrate that knowledge through practical application.
Grade D
Student understands basic artistic styles and concepts, and some ability to demonstrate that knowledge through practical application.
Fail None of the criteria listed below followed

Recommended reading


Higgins, Jackie, Why it doesn’t have to be in focus, ISBN 978-0-500-29095-8
Carroll, Henry, Read this if you want to take great photographs, ISBN 978-1-78067-355-6

All texts should ideally be read before the course begins.

Additional notes

Please note, a £300 materials fee is required for this course.

This subject can be taken as a core or an elective module.