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Student stories Blog Posts - Page 3 of 10 - The Open College of the Arts
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Student stories


Notes from home thumb

Notes from home

When I began my studies with the Open College of the Arts six years ago, I never could have imagined having my own music performed in a public concert. Yet, that is the situation I find myself in at the culmination of the final unit of my music degree.

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Student stories: Johnathan Hall thumb

Student stories: Johnathan Hall

feel this story shows that with dedicated networking (and a bit of luck), valuable opportunities can arise from the work placement. Without doing the work placement I would probably not have met this artist and I wouldn’t have the chance for my first solo exhibition.

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Student stories: David McGuire thumb

Student stories: David McGuire

David McGuire is a Level Three painting student. He has recently had work exhibited in group shows organised by arts societies of which he is a member. In this short interview he speaks a little about that process and what it means for his wider practice.

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Exhibition in situ – Drifting by the Leeds & Liverpool thumb

Exhibition in situ – Drifting by the Leeds & Liverpool

As well as presenting my exhibition, I look back near the end of my OCA time, after years of assignments and assessments, highs and lows, applause and disinterest, and ask was it worth it? I suspect the percentage of those starting that finish is small – a flip-side of open access and the many obstacles life can throw during years of part-time study. Though, I of course was hoping for more than an endurance test and good fortune! 

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Student stories: Geraldine Leahy thumb

Student stories: Geraldine Leahy

OCA Painting student Geraldine Leahy successfully completed her Major Project this year and is now embarking on her final course – Sustaining Your Practice. Geraldine currently has work featured in an online publication as well as other platforms. Her Major Project tutor, Clare Wilson, asks her to discuss these opportunities and the of impact of getting work seen by a larger audience. 

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Researching the photography industry – the blogger thumb

Researching the photography industry – the blogger

As a mature photography student, after lifetime of working, the thought of finding work experience as part of my SYP course felt uncomfortable. That is not to say that it wouldn’t have been helpful, but I think of it as something for young who have never experienced the workplace, let alone a multitude of them. Fortunately, the OCA foresee this predicament and offer a research-based alternative that must include discussion with a practitioner in a chosen area. In this post, I share my pseudo-work experience.

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Student stories: Photography thumb

Student stories: Photography

Once again I’m delighted to share that some of our OCA photography degree students have just been selected as finalists in 2021 AOP Student Awards. Huge congratulations to our Judith Bach, Andrew Fitzgibbon and Andy Be.

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Student stories: From Big Draw participant to Psychogeographer thumb

Student stories: From Big Draw participant to Psychogeographer

Nina is an Investigating Place with Psychogeography student, in this piece she writes about her journey in the OCA.

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Student stories: Emma Arandjelović thumb

Student stories: Emma Arandjelović

One of the most useful elements of OCA study visits is the chance for students to gain an insight into real-life creative scenarios and experience the complexities of day-to-day professional practice. In addition, study visits can often sow the seed for further projects and opportunities.

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