Creative Arts at Graduate Level: An Introduction

Master’s degrees in creative arts subjects, such as fine art, design and fashion, allow graduates to turn their passions into careers.
The creative arts industry is dynamic, exciting and offers plenty of opportunities to hard-working creatives. However, it can also be extremely competitive. A graduate qualification can help you stand out, as well as allowing you to hone your technical and creative skills. Here’s our guide to master’s level creative arts programs, and the paths on which they can take you.

Graduate courses in creative arts
The University for the Creative Arts in England has an extensive range of graduate programs in film, photography, ceramics, textiles, architecture and contemporary crafts. It also offers unique gallery and exhibition space at each of its campuses, enabling students to showcase their work to the community.

Sveinung Skaalnes, a graduate student at the University for the Creative Arts, chose to study photography at the University’s Farnham campus. Originally from Norway, Sveinung has just graduated with a BA(Hons) in Photography and found the course very professional: “Although we were in an educational setting rather than in the workplace, things were done properly and to an industry standard,” he said. “I gained a lot of experience on the course and also through my work as an assistant for photographers. I’ve also come away with a greater insight into my own work”.

Sveinung said his course had a large practical element to it, which was very well handled. “Everything from day one that was hands on was very focused,” he said. Another college offering graduate programs in the creative arts is The Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design in London ( Courses in design studies, fashion, fine art and textiles, which combine business and creative practices, ensure graduates are qualified and business savvy at the end of their studies.

La Trobe University in Australia has a School of Communication, Arts and Critical Enquiry which offers an Honors degree in Creative Arts. The qualification combines the “study of imaginative, performance, critical and theoretical practices…and covers subjects such as creative writing, autobiography, writing for the screen and media, performance, production, critical and theoretical subjects.” The University of Wollongong has a Masters of Creative Arts, which takes one year to complete full time, or one and a half to two years to complete part time. It covers subject areas such as graphic design and new media, music performance and composition, theatre, visual arts, and creative writing.

Admission requirements:
If you’re interested in the creative arts, chances are that you’ve already studied, or are studying, an undergraduate degree in this field. If that is the case, you’re almost guaranteed entry into a postgraduate creative arts qualification. However, the admission requirements for postgraduate qualifications will depend on the university that you are applying to so make sure you research their specific websites. In some instances, if you do not hold an undergraduate qualification in the creative arts or an approved subject area, you may be required to complete some extra papers incorporating relevant subject areas to gain extra credits. You may also need to have professional experience within your chosen area of study.

Skill sets you will acquire:
Studying for a graduate qualification in the creative arts will help you to develop an independent way of thinking. You’ll be encouraged to think outside the square and obviously get creative. As the University of Exeter’s program in the UK identifies, students will become “knowledgeable, critical, creative and confident professionals able to meet the wide-ranging and changing demands of the workplace with integrity, vision and intelligence.” Students will also be able to “recognise and develop their existing professional knowledge and experience.”

These skills are invaluable in the work place. If you can show your future employers that you are capable of thinking and working independently and coming up with new ideas, you’re already one step towards your dream job.

Post-qualification careers:
Creative arts graduates are well equipped to pursue a wide range of careers in the creative industries, from portrait painters to advertising exec roles, and beyond, says a spokesperson from the University of the Arts London. “As well as learning and exploring the technical and creative elements of their chosen fields, the rigours and challenges of successfully completing an arts degree equip graduates with key transferable skills including:

> The ability to work within a team
> Time management skills
> Project management skills
> Organisational skills
> The ability to effectively promote both oneself and one’s organisation
>Presentation and networking skills
… and an ability to hit the ground running due to extensive real life work experience secured during study.”

There is certainly no shortage of work but the art world is highly competitive from student to professional level and it takes ambition, hard work and a strong character to succeed. It is also an industry where many jobs don’t even exist yet. They’re still being created! However, for starters you may look at jobs such as a graphic or web designer, visual artist, painter, sculptor or performer. You may choose to go into policy work, devising strategies, creating business plans or developing arts programs.

You could work for someone, or work for yourself. Work in an office, or work from home. All you need is ambition and attitude. Just get creative!


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Source by topuniversities