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Why Study Photography?

Art and Design gives students the opportunity to actively engage in the creative process of art, craft and design when exploring and making images, artefacts and products to produce their own portfolio of art and design work.

Students will develop confidence in taking risks and learn from experience when exploring and experimenting with ideas, processes, media, materials and techniques, demonstrating safe working practices. They will develop an awareness of the purposes, intentions and functions of art, craft and design in historical and contemporary contexts, societies and cultures and as appropriate to their own work. Students will gain experience in a broad range of Photography areas, e.g. digital processes, time-lapse photography, stop-frame animation, video, photomontage and digital manipulation.

What will I learn?

Knowledge and Understanding

All students will need to:

  • Understand the work and approaches of photographers from contemporary and/or historical contexts, periods, societies and cultures.
  • Explore contemporary and/or historical environments, situations or issues.
  • Know the ways in which meanings, ideas and intentions can be communicated through visual
  • and tactile language, using formal elements of colour, line, form, tone and texture.
  • Know the characteristics, properties and effects of using different media, materials, techniques and processes, and the ways in which they can be used in their own creative intentions and chosen area(s) of photography.
  • Understand the different purposes, intentions and functions of photography in a variety of contexts.


All students must demonstrate the ability to:

  • Develop ideas through investigating, selecting and critically analysing sources.
  • Apply and understand relevant photographic practices in the creative and cultural industries to their work.
  • Refine ideas as work progresses through taking, selecting, editing and presenting image(s) / artefact(s) / personal outcome(s).
  • Record their ideas, observations, insights and independent judgements, in ways that are appropriate to the photography title such as, recording still and moving images with lens-based media.
  • Use appropriate specialist vocabulary, as work progresses.
  • Use visual language critically as appropriate to their own creative intentions.
  • Use drawing skills for different needs and purposes. Drawing may take the form of recording in light, storyboarding and image manipulation for using appropriate media and materials.
  • Realise personal intentions in photography through the sustained application of the photographic process.

How will I be assessed?

This is a GCSE qualification and is graded from 9 to 1.

  • 60% portfolio of artwork
  • 40% practical examination at the end of Year 11

What can I do after I’ve completed the course?

A GCSE in Art and Design - Photography is a strong foundation for further progression to Art and Design related courses and college and university.

For more information please contact Mr Sharp at the Academy on 01384 253722