Why did you choose HCA for your degree?
I was living in Oxford when I signed up for the degree course, so initially I chose HCA because my mother lives nearby in Ross-On-Wye and I planned to move in with her for my first year of study. After looking at other courses though, my other reason for choosing HCA was that I liked that it’s not a sprawling educational establishment crammed full of students.
As someone who has struggled with anxiety, I was comforted by the prospect of studying in a more intimate and less overwhelming classroom environment. It was a learning environment in which I was able to flourish without the intimidation of crowds.
What did enjoy most about studying Photography at HCA?
Aside from really enjoying the course structure and the impressive variety of visiting lecturers, it would have to be the lecturers and technicians. The staff are all so knowledgeable and passionate about photography.
I particularly enjoyed the weekly lectures from course leader Alex Thimm, they were always so engaging and inspiring. Whilst they all have their specialist areas, there isn’t a house style, and individuality is respected.
My own practice was always very much more fine art and that didn’t pose a problem at all – I was encouraged to find my own creative voice.
What advice would you offer students joining HCA?
Make the most of the availability of one-to-one tuition, be it technical or academic. From speaking to friends about their experiences of different universities, it’s become clear that the support available at HCA is rare.
The availability of staff for tutorials and advice is fantastic and it’s never a problem arranging a tutorial. The collective wealth of knowledge is there to tap in to and take inspiration from. Make the most of the creative social scene.
The art school community in Hereford is close-knit and fun, and there are always plenty of opportunities to get involved in creative events and pursuits.
What is the best thing about studying in Hereford?
Perhaps the size of the city. Hereford is very bijou and it was a good thing! It’s more of a town than city in size, but there’s plenty to do and as a small city with a significant art school population.
There’s a wealth of creativity and the social scene and events calendar reflects this. Sitting as it does on the edge of the Wye Valley, it’s also a very beautiful area, so, foregoing the big nightclubs and bigger events for awe-inspiring nature aplenty on your doorstep is no bad thing.
What are your plans for the future?
I’m entirely focused on a few self-led projects at the moment but I’ll certainly be exhibiting more in the near future. I have a tendency to get over-excited and work on too many things at once and so more recently I have temporarily shelved a few projects to focus more intently on just two. Two projects on the go seems more sensible than four!