The Art department have six very experienced teachers, two of which are actually ex – students of Danum.
We are highly successful and our students at GCSE and A level gain excellent results. They work very hard and so do we, often after school. My whole team and I are fascinated by our subject. Britain leads the world in creative subjects and our interest and passion is matched by our students who produce fantastic finished outcomes.
We offer three different courses at both GCSE and A level these are:
Key Stage 3
Art in year 7 and 8 is a skills based course which concentrates on drawing and painting techniques on the work of famous artists.
50 % coursework
GCSE students start their coursework in Year 9 and finish the course in year 10.
A level students will follow “Linear” course which is assessed at the end of year 13. Only students wishing to complete only the A/S course will be entered for the exam in year 12
The A level “Art Package”
The “Art Package” is designed for students who want to “specialise” in visual arts A levels. These students study all 3 of our A level sources i.e. Fine Art, Graphic Communication and Photography. They follow a full time timetable and have their own dedicated studio space which they occupy permanently. They become full time members of our “Arts Family”. It is highly successful.
The personal project
All our courses at GCSE and A level revolve around the student’s “personal project”. This is usually chosen and driven by the students and demands a large degree of commitment and responsibility. This means students can and do engage with themes and ideas they are interested in. As a result they will remain committed to this for long periods.
Occasionally students prefer or are suited to a more guided and prescribed project and if students need this we will set this on an individual basis.
The externally set exam – February to May GCSE and A level
Exams in the Arts subjects, Fine art, Graphic communication and photography take the form of a new extended project based on a series of themes set by the exam board (AQA) Although students need to explain their ideas using annotated notes there is no formal written element such as an exam paper.
In simple terms both GCSE and A level exams are a new project which finishes with a final piece (a painting, set of photographs or poster for example) produced under formal exam conditions.
Fine Art GCSE and A level
This course is primarily a drawing and painting course, although many students also choose to supplement this with digital photography.
What makes our fine art courses so successful is there concentration on oil painting, often on a very large and ambitious scale. Oil paint is often messy, problematic, expensive and very time consuming but is also leads to the most amazing results and final outcomes for our students. They produce some of the most amazing paintings you will ever see without visiting art galleries in London.
Graphic Communications GCSE and A level
This course is primarily an Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator course, students also support their work with digital photography.
Photoshop and Illustrator are extremely powerful professional design programmes and students use these to produce highly convincing design outcomes. This means our students are highly successful and gain a great deal of confidence in design techniques.
Most of our GCSE Graphic Communication students also complete the full GCSE Photography course as they learn the skills needed as part of their design studies.
Photography GCSE and A level
Modern photography is almost digital based and students will become very confident with the use of Adobe Photoshop. Our photographers produce large and extensive portfolios of what we call, “Exhibition Prints”. They are examples of best practice and are produced in both colour and traditional black and white.
We organised trips for our students to go out with us to gain “image capture” but there is a strong expectation that “photographers” will go out into the world, often their local environment and look for their own photographs independently.
A level students will also produce a series of dark room based photographs and become familiar with a more traditional method to produce photographic prints.
A personal invitation from Mr Devonport, Head of Art
Please see this website as an introduction to the art department. However, the best thing you can do is come and see our students work, talk to us, meet our students and our staff. We all look forward to meeting you and showing you in person what we think makes our art department very special indeed.