This course will prepare you for a variety of careers in the creative industries and for further study. Recent graduates work as freelance visual artists and designers, in arts administration, as gallery technicians and as curators. Others now teach, run small businesses and artists' spaces, or work in the advertising and publishing industries.
Check out what our graduates have gone on to do and how studying at Kingston helped them achieve their goals.
Name: Katy Culbard
Course: Fine Art BA(Hons)
Year of graduation: 1997
Current job: Visual Arts Access Officer, Angel Row Gallery
Katy's love of contemporary art made fine art an obvious degree choice. Since graduating she has forged a career in galleries and now enjoys a job which allows her to use her creativity and bring art to new audiences.
"I excelled in art at school and became very interested in its alternative or cutting-edge contemporary aspects. I chose this degree course because of the freedom it offers to focus on a particular area of interest. Also, it provides access to new media equipment, enabling you to learn about video, filming, editing and animation, as well as installation art and other contemporary art forms.
"I thoroughly enjoyed the practical side of the course and there were lots of highlights during my time at Kingston. A group of us co-curated an exhibition. The department sometimes employed successful artists to lead one-off workshops and these were inspirational. I first started to make animations. I exhibited video work in a group exhibition in Gloucestershire and at a festival in Glasgow. However, the most resonating highlight is that I met Ian, my future husband and father of my child, who is now a successful animation director and comic-book artist... had to get that one in there!
"After Kingston, I studied to gain a masters in Fine Art Combined Media at Chelsea College of Art. During this time I took part in an exhibition at The Pump House Gallery in Battersea Park and, as is the case with a lot of art jobs, I worked there voluntarily for a short period of time. Then, when a suitable job arose, I took the position and stayed there for nearly two years, gaining experience in all areas of gallery work.
"This led me into a more specialised job working as Visual Arts Access Officer at Angel Row Gallery in Nottingham which is East Midland's leading gallery of contemporary art. My role is to programme educational provision for all sectors of the community with particular attention to enabling socially-excluded or disadvantaged people access visual arts. This includes projects, workshops, events, training courses and voluntary placements.
"My job allows me to enjoy making a difference in people's lives through art and to use my creativity and artistic skills. I also enjoy making contemporary art relevant and understandable to new audiences.
"The course gave me experience of being an artist and focusing solely on creativity and ideas, so I have an empathy with the artists I work with and know how to enable them to become involved in participatory arts activities.
"If you're into art, a fine art degree is excellent for allowing freedom, decision-making and total creativity, but be aware that there are so many arts jobs that you can go into, other than solely being an artist, that are equally creative and rewarding."
Name: Paul Dix
Course: Fine Art BA(Hons)
Year of graduation: 1997
Current job: Location co-ordinator, LocDown South (own business)
Paul was not sure what he wanted to do when he graduated but, after trying a few different fields, he found his forte in TV and film production. He is now successfully building his own location business.
"I chose this course because it covered the media I wanted to explore. My artwork was going through a lot of changes and the course allowed me to decide the best medium for my concepts.
"At the time, the degree was quite young and the course's students were involved in its development. I was lucky enough to win the Pickerfellow Travel Scholarship and went to the US to research and create some work. This also greatly helped my final year dissertation. However, I think my favourite times were working on exhibitions. As a year, we created our own galleries. This was a great lesson in organisation and teamwork. I also helped put together and market the final degree show.
"Initially, when I left university I considered training for art therapy, but it was very competitive. Then I started a PGCE (teacher training) in art and design, but I wasn't convinced I wanted to be a teacher in the long term. So after a brief period of travelling I got a job renovating and refurbishing a Victorian house. This allowed me to use my love of art history to great effect. Realising there were more opportunities to work creatively, I decided to seek employment in the film industry. It was hard and very competitive, but luckily I got a job as a producer/director at a small production company.
"When that contract ended, there followed a spell working in marketing. I then got some work in art departments for TV programmes and commercials. This wasn't as creative as I had hoped, so I went on to be a runner on film shoots which was great fun and an incredible learning curve. I worked on about eight films over two years and then moved into music videos and commercials which increased my interest in locations.
"I am now self-employed and have developed a website promoting my services. I scout and manage locations for creative events and filming as well as co-ordinating and assisting shoots. I enjoy working with different people and finding interesting locations. I also enjoy the team spirit and common goal which unites a production crew.
"I feel my degree has helped to define who I am as an adult. I think my understanding of art helps me photograph locations to maximum effect. It also helps me to discuss jobs with the creative individuals involved in production. But, first of all, filming is a teamwork exercise and my involvement with the exhibitions and degree show at Kingston probably prepared me most for my current vocation.
"When looking for a degree, I would suggest you choose something you love doing, but keep your options open and make sure you consider all the different careers that your degree could lead to."
If you are interested in registering a property or location with Paul's website, then please contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
In addition to building expertise in your own discipline, our courses will also help you to develop key transferable skills that you'll need for professional life or further study once you graduate.
As well as a range of careers and employability activities at Kingston, we also offer you the chance to apply and develop your skills in live contexts as an integral part of your course. Opportunities include:
In your final year, you'll get the opportunity to complete a major 'capstone' project where you can apply the knowledge and skills you have acquired to a range of real issues in different contexts. This is a great way to learn and is a valuable bridge to employment or further research at masters level.
If you decide that you would like to go on to postgraduate study after your undergraduate course, we offer a 10 per cent discount on our postgraduate course tuition fees to our alumni. Here are some courses that might interest you:
Award nominations for documentary and short animation films.