First to Third Forms – compulsory for all pupils
Fourth and Fifth Forms – optional GCSE subject
- The course has a controlled coursework unit worth 60% and an exam unit worth 40% of the final mark.
- In the Fourth Form, pupils work across all areas of fine art before picking one area to specialise in.
Lower and Upper Sixth Form – optional A Level subject
- AQA Art and Design: Fine Art Endorsement (Photography Endorsement is also available). The course has 2 components. Component 1: Personal Investigation (60%), which includes a 3000 word essay. Component 2: Externally-set assignment (40%) to be completed in Feb to May of Upper Sixth Form year.
Fine Art students will be introduced to at least two artistic disciplines, such as painting, printmaking or sculpture. Painting and drawing are taught with the emphasis on observational skills, with reference to markmaking through print making and life drawing sessions. Within Photography, camera craft is an essential skill taught throughout and all Photography students must own their own DSLR camera
- OCR Art and Design: Critical and Contextual Studies. The course has 2 components. Component 1: Personal Investigation in to Art Theory (60%), which includes a 3000 word essay. Component 2: Externally set assignment (40%) - to be completed in Feb to May of Upper Sixth Form year.
In the Lower Sixth Form, students study works of Art that contain a narrative. They explore the imagery and unravel the story behind the piece. In the Upper Sixth Form they build on this early research to develop their own area of study. The most essential skill that is developed is the ability to analyse artwork. This entails asking questions, such as: Who produced it? How was it made? Why does it look the way it does? Students will be using Art History knowledge to put artists and their work into context, as well as analysing the concepts and stories behind the art pieces. It is a fascinating, broad and complex subject.
7th Period Super-Curriculum (Fine Art / Photography): Using departmental specialists we intend to extend a student’s knowledge of industry software packages such as Adobe Creative Suite and Indesign. In addition we will be developing art history skills of analysis and understanding by researching artists that individually connect with each student’s practical work.
7th Period Super-Curriculum (Critical and Contextual Studies): We will be extending a student’s independence within art history by linking them to modern art historians and current affairs. Watching, listening and following personalities such as Andrew Graham Dixon, Simon Schama, Waldemar Januszczak and Grayson Perry, by using newspapers, twitter, radio 4, BBC4 and Sky Arts as starting points.
Regular Trips, Visitors and Competitions
- Our First Form joint visit to Kirby Hall with the English Department allows pupils to draw in the landscape.
- All Examination groups visit galleries at least once a year.
- In the Sixth Form we take students on a three day residential trip to Burwell House, near Anglesey Abbey. This trip enables students to try life drawing and film making as well as painting, printing and sculpture.
- In the last three years there have been optional art trips to Paris, Florence and Venice, during February half term.
- We have strong links with the Fitzwilliam Museum in Cambridge and regularly visit the galleries in London.
- We often use outside artists and speakers, and run an annual Summer Art Competition which is open to all ages.