Blending innovation of new design principles and processes with hands on making the Contemporary Design Crafts course explores the adaptation of existing processes to arrive at new interpretations of materials, objects and ideas. Our students develop specialist material knowledge and visual language side by side on the journey towards becoming successful designer makers. Challenging the traditional notions, students become the explorers of the visual and material worlds, pioneering the new and undiscovered.
Materials and making is core to much of what we do. Our extensive workshop facilities provide the space to think, question and develop ideas. Here our students look beyond what is known; using sound knowledge derived from taught skills they are expertly guided by our workshop team to challenge and push existing boundaries into new realms. Our workshops represent the foundation and basis for skills, knowledge and processes. Masterclasses are delivered throughout the year by visiting lecturers specialising in a variety of material approaches and disciplines.
Our students continuously engage in critical discussion about contemporary crafts, in a context which is in constant flux. In this evolving environment our students are challenged to widen their conversations through regular critiques and one to one tutorials. Opportunity is provided at all levels to take these conversations into wider forums, engaging with others and bringing new perspectives.
As a group of makers we are nimble, we are the creators of opportunity. As a student at Hereford College of Arts, this means that projects often involve working within the booming crafts and design sector. Live briefs are available across all years, as well as a particular focus within the second year for gaining a work placement. Experiences such as these equip our students with the knowledge and understanding to develop fully structured business plans and professional portfolios. Networks and partnerships are part of the legacy our student’s graduate with; these provide support, challenge and continued opportunity for the development of success.
These studies are entirely focused around the students’ course area, providing a solid grounding in subject history and in critical ways of thinking about creative practice. The Critical Studies programme enables students to set their own work in a wider context, and also helps them develop a better understanding of how creative work can be interpreted and assessed. Click here
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Progression and Careers
Why take this course?
The course will inspire you, to make you question and to wonder. Your perceptions of the made world will be stretched and challenged. You will be supported in taking risks and pioneering new ways of making. We are interested in learning why something is made as much as how something is made. As a student at Hereford College of Arts, you will learn both practical skill and that of a critical reflective practice. It is this knowledge that will equip and define you as a designer maker within a contemporary context. To join us is to become part of an ever growing family of designer makers of international repute. Our students go on to do great things, and we are rightly proud of their achievements. As entrepreneurs they continue to be founders of new traditions in design and making well placed to take their place within the creative sector.
Once graduated, our students progress on to a variety of paths including:
- Running their own small business/Workshop
- Working as a creative design professional within a large company/Manufacturer
- Post-graduate study e.g. MA
- Exhibitions & gallery work
What you will experience
- We are a practice based degree, so students can expect to spend a large amount of time in workshops refining their skills and building new ones
- We have a strong emphasis on learning through doing and encourage experimentation
- All students are provided with their own individual design space, in large, bright design studios with unrivalled access to teaching staff
- We involve students in a wide range of live briefs and encourage them to enter into competitions both nationally and internationally
- You will gain experience of presenting your ideas and products to professional companies, galleries and crafts people within the creative sector
- You will regularly take part in exhibitions, gaining valuable experience
- There are many opportunities to be involved in masterclasses led by renowned professionals
- Trips abroad, which have previously included places such as Berlin, Rome, Barcelona, Paris and Venice
- Final year students all have the opportunity to exhibit their graduate work at New Designers, the UK's most important exhibition for emerging design
Workshops and studios
We have superb Design Studios and 3D Workshops both on site at the new College Road Campus and at our other Campus on Folly Lane. All workshops are run by expert staff who are able to fully support your needs and the development of ideas. We are uniquely placed to be able to offer students large individual workspaces throughout their three years of study. We have laser cutters, 3D printers, small metals, wood and plastic forming workshops, ceramics, glass, textile and drawing studios. We are proud that all our students, regardless of their chosen degree pathway are able to access all our workshops to develop and advance their practice. We also have dedicated IT suites with both Mac and PC’s, large scale digital printers and the full range of high end programmers adept in the latest software to support your practice.