New course: Visual Exploration - The Open College of the Arts
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New course: Visual Exploration

The course unit ‘Visual Skills 2: Visual Exploration’ is now live and available for enrolment. This is a core Level 2 (HE5) unit for students on the BA (Hons) Graphic Design programme, and is also available as an option for students on both the Visual Communications and Illustration degree programmes. The Visual Exploration unit supports a self-directed approach to exploring and articulating your personal creative voice by extending a process-led approach to how you generate ideas, develop visual and technical skills across a choice of media and technologies, and by establishing new ways of working by undertaking self-initiated projects and reflecting on the creative processes of other practitioners.

Part One of the unit examines concepts key to visual thinking like flow, play and how they can be used to develop thinking and making processes, and Part Two examines a number of historical approaches to show how ideas can be generated through controlled, randomised and accidental working methodologies like Process and Systems Art, Chance, Cut-Ups and Montage. Part Three offers you a range of possible creative approaches to explore duration and scale in creative making with exercises themed around ideas of ‘Fast’, ‘Slow’, Big’ and ‘Small’.

Part Four gives you an option of three themes to develop your own visual research, experimentation and creative process culminating in a body of original artwork, and Part Five is an opportunity to create your own theme or focus for research, continue to develop your ideas experimentally and unconventionally and produce a body of work for your assessment.

Exercises and assignments focus on the creative use of photography, moving image and animation, image and mark making through painting, drawing and printmaking, typography and letterforms, and 3-Dimensional work through assemblages and modelling to extend your creative practice off the page. The unit has been designed and written to greatly expand the range of potential contexts and outcomes for your artwork, visual understanding and creative process.

Image: James Pyman, Zero to One (2002) Image courtesy of the Author.


Download the course sample here and find out more about the OCA’s Graphic Design, Illustration and Visual Communication degrees.

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Posted by author: James Pyman
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