Art and Design Foundation

Studying Art and Design at Bellerbys College

The UK is famous worldwide for producing high quality and cutting-edge art and design graduates. James Dyson, Terence Conran and Stella McCartney are just some of the talented designers who studied in the UK. If you want to work in the creative industries, our Art and Design Foundation will provide you with the ideal start to your studies. 

The Art and Design Foundation prepares you for university degrees in art, design and arts-related subjects. The course is modular in structure. It has core modules studied by all Foundation students, which develop academic and English language skills, and modules tailored for Art and Design students.

Where will this Foundation take me?

Some of our recent students of this Foundation have gone on to study illustration at University of the Arts London and Camberwell College of Arts; Fashion at the University of Leeds; Graphic Design at University of the Arts London; Central Saint Martins and Fine Art Photography at Glasgow School of Art. 

Destination universities

Students on this subject pathway will receive an offer of conditional progression* to study at the following universities:

  • Coventry University
    • Architecture
    • Automotive and Transport Design
    • Fashion*
    • Fine Art*
    • Fine Art and Illustration*
    • Games Art
    • Graphic Design*
    • Illustration and animation*
    • Illustration and Graphics*
    • Interior Architecture and Design*
    • Photography
    • Product Design*

    *portfolio required

  • Lancaster University
    • Architecture
    • Design
    • Fine Art
    • Fine Art and Design
    • Fine Art and Film
  • Leeds Arts University
    • BA (Hons) Animation
    • BA (Hons) Comic & Concept Art
    • BA (Hons) Creative Advertising
    • BA (Hons) Fashion Branding with Communication
    • BA (Hons) Fashion Design
    • BA (Hons) Fashion Photography
    • BA (Hons) Filmmaking
    • BA (Hons) Fine Art
    • BA (Hons) Graphic Design
    • BA (Hons) Illustration
    • BA (Hons) Photography
    • BMus (Hons) Popular Music Performance
    • BA (Hons) Printed Textiles & Surface Pattern Design
    • BA (Hons) Visual Communication
  • Loughborough University
    • BSc Urban Planning
    • BArch Architecture
    • BA Fine Art
    • BA Graphic Design
    • BA Textiles
    • BA Industrial Design
    • BA Design
  • Newcastle University
    • Fine Art
  • Royal Holloway, University of London
    • BA Video Games Art and Design
    • BA Digital Media Culture and Technology
    • BA Film Studies
    • BA Film Studies with Philosophy
    • BA Film, Television and Digital Production
  • University of Westminster
    • Animation
    • Contemporary Media Practice
    • Fine Art Mixed Media
    • Graphic Communication Design
    • Illustration and Visual Communication
    • Photography

Foundation key facts

Minimum age: 16.5+
Course length: 3 or 3.5 terms
Start dates: September, November or January. See term dates
Entry requirements:
  • Satisfactory completion of secondary or high school education. 4 GCSEs at C or above
  • A general art portfolio which can be used to assess your skills and range of techniques.
English language requirements: IELTS 4.5 (IELTS 5.0 for November and January starts)

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, we are now able to accept a wider range of English tests
Location: Brighton or London
Tuition fees: Visit our fees page for full details

Course modules

Art Skills

Art skills

Introduces the art discipline: studio practice, drawing, painting and media-handling skills, portfolio production, fulfilling assessment objectives, health and safety, working processes, beginning of a portfolio of work.


  • Basic Drawing Skills; Line, Form, Tone, Perspective and Proportion
  • Media Handling and Mixed Media Work
  • Orientation Walk
  • Introduction to Digital Arts Suite
  • File Saving for Web

Scale Door Project

  • Observational Drawing and Recording with Measurements
  • Documenting with Photography
  • Basic Model Making Skills and Working to Scale
  • Exploration and Experimentation with Media
  • Photography and Presentation of Final Work as Portfolio Pages
  • Basic Photoshop Skills
  • Power Point Basics
  • Using Fonts and Type Effectively 

Emotional Spaces Project

  • Visual Interpretation of Themes
  • Analysis of Contextual References
  • Exploration and Experimentation with Media
  • Photography with Lighting for Visual Communication
  • Evaluating Project
  • Presentation of Final Work as Portfolio Pages
  • Beginning of Digital Portfolio

Contextual Studies

Contextual Studies

Introduce the language skills required for visual analysis; contextualise practical studio work; establish the skills and process of systematic physical documentation and digital recording of project work, together with its critical evaluation; communicate the processes, outcomes, successes and difficulties encountered in practical work.

Studio projects are supported by contextual studies by means of:

  • Tutor-led Examples of Presentations
  • Tutor-led Presentation of Former Students’ Work, including Portfolio Pages, Models, Sketchbooks and Word Processed Evaluations
  • Support for Creating Portfolio
  • Field Study Visit(s) to Relevant Museums and Exhibitions
  • Application of Assessment Criteria in Review Processes
  • Homework Tasks
  • Life Drawing Workshops
  • Tests
  • Word Processed Evaluations of Projects
  • PowerPoint Presentations of Projects
  • Development of Digital and Physical Portfolios

Design Skills

Design Skills

Increases the variety of materials, media and processes used in art skills to develop larger projects. You will focus on the creative process and create alternative designs.

Metamorphosis Project

  • Illustration and Observational Drawing
  • Mixed Media and Collage Studies
  • Documenting work with Photography
  • Developing a Sketchbook
  • Visual and Written Analysis and Interpretation of Themes, Symbols and Text
  • Research Appropriate References Showing Understanding of Context and Technique
  • Design and Create Alternative Storyboards
  • Print Making with Lino
  • Presentation of Final work
  • Generating a Digital Portfolio

Distorted Heads and Faces Project

  • Observational Drawing and Recording from Museum Exhibition,
  • Mixed Media Painting, Mono Prints and Drawings from Art History Research
  • 50 Self-Portraits in a Range of Media
  • 3D Cardboard Heads from Test, Photographed for Portfolio
  • Subject Specific Research for Project Development
  • Digital Arts: Selecting and Cropping, Typography, Filters, Editing and Transforming, Layers and Blending Options
  • Generating a Digital Portfolio

Experimentation and Development

Experimentation and Development

Study creative processes and develop independent project skills; research, analyse and creatively explore media; problem solve to realise project outcomes.

Lazarus Project

  • Text Analysis and Visual Interpretation
  • Making Swatches and Textiles Experiments
  • Typography for Communication
  • Combining Research and Studies from Exhibition
  • Visual Communication; Mood Boards
  • Contextual References; Paper Engineering, Designers and Construction Examples
  • Exploring Pop Up Construction
  • Basic Typography Skills
  • Creative Book Making Skills
  • Creative Responses for Documenting Final Fork

Vice Versa Project

  • Exhibition Research Exercises
  • Drawing and Painting from Observation
  • Contextual Analysis of Elements from Research
  • Sculptural Responses from 2D Recording
  • Visual Communication as a Mood Board
  • Development and Creation of an ‘Ideas’ Book
  • Documentation of the Creative Process with Photography showing 2D and 3D Investigations
  • Production of Final Response in Relevant Subject Field

Group and Independent Design

Group and Independent Design 

Work from project briefs, both independently and in a team, and have greater freedom to interpret and develop your individual work.

Self-Directed Project

  • Recording of Research from First and Second Hand Sources
  • Written and Visual Analysis Underpinning Design Proposals
  • Generation of 2D and 3D responses Exploring and Developing the Project Brief
  • Documentation of Final Outcomes
  • Presentation of Developing Work
  • Project Evaluation and Presentation of Final Work in Portfolio
  • Pre and post Production, Enhancing Digital Photography, Appropriate digital Arts

May Ball Project

  • Group Design Proposal and Presentations in 2D and 3D to scale
  • Research and Analysis Boards
  • Ideas Development and Planning as a team
  • Collaboration with Extra Departmental Contributors
  • Realising Design Proposal as a Collaborative team
  • Documentation of Working Process, Project Evaluation and Final Work for Portfolio



Develop an understanding of both film and digital photography as an essential part of studio practice. For the documentation of work, as a medium in its own right and also as a foundation for the further study of the subject as a medium in its own right.

  • Practical Digital Photography
  • Pinhole and Manual SLR Black and White Film Photography
  • Metamorphosis – Looking at Constructed Photography
  • Documentary – Thinking of Your Country
  • Portrait, Mirror, Masquerade - Art History Influences in Photography

Core modules

Academic English Skills with IELTS

Academic English Skills with IELTS

Academic English Skills provides thorough training in the language and related academic skills which will enable international students to best achieve their academic potential at University. Key skills include:

  • Reading effectively and critically
  • Making notes in lectures and presentations
  • Delivering presentations and participating in academic seminars
  • Researching, planning and writing academic essays
  • Students are also supported in developing the accuracy and range in written and spoken language required to express themselves effectively and appropriately, with clarity and confidence.

Digital Arts Skills

Digital Arts Skills

Improving IT literacy and creativity using MS Office, Business and Media applications; develop internet research skills.

*Offer of conditional progression is subject to meeting all academic & portfolio requirements, submission of completed UCAS application, academic reference, personal statement meeting required standard, and passing the Foundation programme with the required grades and English language level. Please note that the letter in itself is not a Conditional Offer from the university. You will receive a conditional offer if you meet all the requirements through your submission of a completed UCAS application.

A Levels

Bellerbys Cambridge students in a Foundation Media class at the College

A Levels are British qualifications, accepted by all universities in the UK and recognised in the USA and Australia. Students who are with us for five or six terms will typically study up to four A Levels. This gives you a world of choice.


Bellerbys London Star Student Mark Lee

A one-year course for international students that builds specialist subject knowledge and language and study skills. It is more focussed than A Levels making it good preparation for university. It is recognised for entry onto a range of degree programmes at more than 100 universities in the UK.

International Year One

Students looking for books in the library

An International Year One course is a one-year course equal to the first year of an undergraduate degree. Taught in Brighton and London, this course prepares you for the second year of a related degree at university.