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Advice please??

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  • Advice please??


    I am currently studying on a BA (HONS) in Contemporary Crafts and am about to enter into my second year. I have chosen to spe******e in metalwork and ceramics with a view to becoming a jewellery designer/manufacturer. The problem is, I don't feel that this course is providing me with the skills that I would need/like to have for me to be able to achieve this. The course is biased to the more popular areas, and the metalwork area is trying to point me towards sculpture which I do not want to do.

    I am now considering leaving the university and either enrolling onto a Btec in jewellery at The City College Manchester, or entering into an apprenticeship scheme.

    Any advice that could help me to ascertain which would be more beneficial to me would be a massive help!

    Thanks a lot,


    P.S. Sorry about the long post!!

  • #2
    Hi Sophie, my philosophy would be to follow your heart, if it doesn't feel right, then it probably isn't right for you. With any artistic work, I believe it must come from the heart, so, being pushed in a direction that isn't right for you, may be more of an academic exercise than an artistic adventure. I would research all the other courses (even evening classes, or, weekend courses) and see if any of them are actually going in the direction that you want to go in, then make your decision. It may be viable for you to attend more than one course. I wish you lots of luck

    "One must have chaos in oneself in order to give birth to a dancing star."


    • #3
      Hi Sophie,

      Again Great advice from Poppy.

      I would also consider the pro's and con's of what you are doing now.
      What is the end goal? Does your Tutor say?
      If you changed direction, will the last year have been for nothing, or did you get something from it?? Also can you transfer what you have done so far to another course, I think some course allow this.

      Try to investigate as much as you can BEFORE making a decision.

      Best of Luck with it



      • #4
        I am a professionally qualified interior designer and although I am not currently working in that field, the skills of that qualification certainly are a huge benefit to me in the jewellery designing, and other craft wings of my life.
        To be fair, I didn't know the direction my life would take and it was my intention to continue to work in interior design until it became more of a sales role to make ends meet. It was only through clients demanding new jewellery lines that this side took off.
        I think that with all artistic persuits, then there is a lot more you put into your work than simply a skill and that's what makes each creator unique, we put our life experiences and our background knowledge into our craft.
        I do feel that a jewellery course would be putting all your eggs into one basket, whereas with the broader course, the skills you'll aquire will be wider spread and more versatile in the long run.
        Have a look around at courses over weekends, evenings that might offer other skills that you can incorporate, giving you the freedom to develop your own styles and direction.
        Let us know what you decide to do.
        full time mum and very very part time crafter.


        • #5
          I agree with Beadsby design here and want to add a little to what she has said. The skills, knowledge and experience you will gain by staying on the BA Hons course will I feel be invaluable. In addition. it's all the life skills and the social aspects of uni which are equally important.
          I can remember when I was going into my 2nd year feeling stifled by the curriculum but then began to recognise that there were ways to incorporate my own ideas as time went on. This was more obvious in the final year when they do begin to expect you to have original ideas and thoughts rather than prove that you know what's been covered.
          In doing the larger sculptures (eg form, balance, techniques, visual impact) it surely can prepare you for working on a finer level . I can also see how ceramics can fit inot jewellery - a friend whos is a potter is making some beautiful pieces).
          For now you feel that jewellery is your thing, but whos to know that you may be even more inspired by the new skills that you will acquire?
          Chris xx
          My Website
          My Blog


          • #6
            Sophie, the best thing about the BA (Hons) courses such as the one you are on is that they are multi-disciplined and usually encourage the students to 'make their own path'. Perhaps you can use the tutors of your current course to make contacts and arrange work placements or additional study that will teach you the other skills you are interested in? I know that the Three-Dimensional Design degree that I did was very flexible and supportive in helping the students become the sort of designer that they wanted to be, from craftsperson to industrial product designer. I'm sure that they would want to help you express yourself individually in your chosen area rather than churning out a lot of identical designer clones!

            Wood Tattoos
            Decorative Pyrography for all Occasions - Author of "Woodburning with Style" (2010) and "Learn to Burn" (2013)