UAL Foundation Diploma in Art & Design

Here you will find all the information you need before you join us for your enrolment day on Friday 1 September. This includes a break down of what will be happening in your induction week, materials you might need to bring, any any trips that are planned and social media links to get you connected. 

If you have any questions or concerns, please get in touch with course team or the admissions team (admissions@pca.ac.uk) who will be able to help you further. 



Summer 2017


Welcome to Plymouth College of Art, and a very special welcome to the Foundation Diploma in Art and Design. We have an exciting year ahead! Below you will find a range of information relating to your registration, induction and your Summer Project. To access this information digitally, please visit our blog at pcapalace.com.


Your registration date is Friday 1 September. On this day you officially become part of Plymouth College of Art! Please refer to your individual Summer letter for exact times.

The registration process will take approximately half a day and you will register, undertake initial assessments and have a briefing from your Subject Leader.

Your qualifications

Your offer is subject to you meeting the entry requirements of 5 GCSEs at C (or 4) or above, including English and an Art related subject (if you have taken one this year), as well as two A Levels at grade C or above.

We need to see your results before registration; you’re welcome to bring these to our drop-in days on Thursday 17, Friday 18 or Saturday 19 August between 10.00 am - 3.00 pm. This will be at Tavistock Place where you had your interview. If you cannot come in then please email admissions@pca.ac.uk with a scan or photocopy of your results and we will call you back. If you do not achieve the entry requirements please come in or call us to talk through your options.



In the first few weeks you will be participating in enrolment, inductions, acclimatizing & familiarisation sessions including IT induction, a local trip, experimental drawing, contemporary craft, photography, laser cutting, bingo and much more! On your first day on Monday 4 September (timetable week 6), please arrive for a prompt 9.00 am start. Come to the ‘Info Point’ just inside the Tavistock Place front entrance where FAD staff will be there to welcome you and to direct you to the Studio Theatre for your introduction. There is a list of things to bring with you at the end of this letter.



After your induction week, you will undertake a series of one week and two week workshops called carousels. This is an opportunity for each of you to explore the different pathways on offer on the course before you decide on a specialism. As these pathways are taught across the week, your timetable will change each week during weeks 7 to 10. In weeks 11 & 12 and 14 & 15 you will get to choose two pathways which interest you and explore your project further within that specialism. Please be aware this will also mean your timetable will change depending on your choices. From week 15 you will choose your final pathway and your timetable will be confirmed for the year.

Pathways are taught for 2.5 days each week running from Monday - Wednesday and Wednesday – Friday. Please see taught session times below:

Monday & Tuesday: 9.00 am - 4.15 pm
Wednesday AM: 9.00 am - 12.00 pm, PM: 1.00 pm - 4.00 pm
Thursday & Friday: 9.00 am - 4.15 pm

When you are not in college, the other days of the week are considered as self-directed study times and should be viewed as an opportunity to continue to develop your work independently - this time is crucial for you to progress quickly.



The course offers several trip opportunities:

Induction Trip

On Wednesday 6 September, we are running a day trip to St Ives to explore the local creative community and develop ideas around your first project. Travel cost is £15.00. This will need to be paid before the trip - staff will advise where and how to pay it on Friday 1 September. Please be advised that this does not include lunch.

Cross Course Trips

Each year we embark on a range of trips with our students. In 2017/2018 we are planning trips to London, Berlin and New York! Our trips are planned to give our students the best mix of museums, history, culture and experience.

These are open to all students but are popular trips and there are limited places. If you wish to secure a place you can by contacting the Info Point at 01752 203434 and paying a deposit which is non-refundable if you change your mind or can't go.  Please see the Trips banner menu for more information.

Although these are not compulsory trips, they will help you to develop friendships with your peers and enrich your learning experience; it will enhance your confidence, research and contextual knowledge and project work and will help prepare you for Higher Education interviews. There are a limited number of places on all trips – so are on a first come first served basis.


Summer Project

Please complete your summer project (continue scrolling) between now and the start of your course and bring all your work with you on Monday 4 September for a group critique session. It is an essential part of the course and your first project so it is very important that you complete it and bring it with you in your first week!



What you will need on your first day:

  • One new sketchbook (A4) and one new smaller sketchbook to use as a reflective journal (A5 or A6)

  • Bring something to write on and with.

  • Visual recording device – such as a camera or quality smartphone camera

  • A flexible and open mind :-)

  • A completed medical declaration form (compulsory if you intend to go on the trips)

The FAD group is made up of students who will end up one of 4 different pathways (Visual Communication, Media, Fine Art and Fashion & Textiles).

With this in mind, there is no ‘cover all’ set of materials that would be needed for everyone, but to complete experimental work (projects and tasks that are yet to be revealed!) digital work, sketchbook work and life drawing - which all students take part in, you may need these things.

Suggested basic materials list

  • USB Memory Stick 8 -16Gb is a decent enough size, ideally 16 and up.  Kingston or Sandisk are reliable brands

  • A4 sketchbook

  • Range of graphite pencils - HB through to 8B

  • Eraser and Pencil Sharpener

  • Small cutting mat – A3 or A4 is very useful but not compulsory

  • 30cm metal ruler

  • Good quality craft knife or Stanley knife

  • Some of you may want a metal handled scalpel (not a barrel handle scalpel) for more detailed/delicate cutting – Including extra blades

  • Good quality scissors

  • Range of black fineliner drawing pens – for drawing and writing in sketchbooks

  • Roll of masking tape

  • Pritt Stick

At a later stage of your course you will want to gather together other materials and equipment appropriate to your chosen pathway, (Fine Art, Visual Communication, Fashion and Textiles, and Media etc.)

You may also eventually need a portfolio case; the recommended size will depend on your pathway and personal preference.

If you already have materials and equipment that may be useful to you (paints, brushes, palettes, charcoal, pastels, range of paintbrushes, cameras, hard drives etc.) then please do bring these with you when needed.

Please label all of your personal items with your full name!



Here on our campus blog, pcapalace.com, you will be able to find information on payment timetables and typical itineraries for our trips as well as further helpful information for your course if required, such as suggested equipment, resources, social media links and a downloadable version of this letter.

We can't wait to see you at the beginning of term when we will begin what will be a thrilling one year experience. Until then have an amazing summer and should you have any questions, please contact admissions@pca.ac.uk or call on 01752 203400.  


Maddy Blyth

Course Leader

Foundation Diploma in Art and Design

Foundation Diploma | Summer Letter (online view + download link)





Journeys – Fine Art | Visual Communication | Fashion & Textiles | Media


The Journeys project is an extremely important starting point preparing you for the course you will research and gather information through drawing, photographing, videoing, collecting and measuring. Your journey must last at least 20 minutes long at walking pace. You need to view your chosen journey in different ways and record what you see, hear, feel, and think on each occasion.

How will you choose your journey? Will you go somewhere unfamiliar? Take a favourite or repeated journey? Take a bus and get off at the third stop? Make a random or informed choice. Consider these suggestions - Walk your journey backwards, in the dark with a torch, only take photographs whilst looking up/down, restrict your view, only make left turns, distort your view, take a photograph of one letter from every road sign, a leaf from every tree, the cracks in the pavement, door handles, broken windows, record overheard conversations, make rubbings of letterforms or textures.

You need to do at least all the following tasks plus your own ideas, to give yourself enough to work to develop ideas from, bring all the work back, present it, discuss it, reflect upon it etc. You will not know how it may be useful.... having very little to discuss will limit your ideas and therefore your progression and ultimately your portfolio.

You will be expected to bring in all of your outcomes to college in the first week.


  • At least 15 drawings - Line drawings, blind drawings, draw from memory. Do not draw landmarks, buildings, landscapes - look for small details that may go unnoticed or overlooked.

  • Take at least 20 photographs. Concentrate on detail - typography, textures, colour, patterns and unusual objects, shapes. Photograph only from the hip, strap a camera to you head, arm or foot, close your eyes and shoot!

  • Collect small objects, stones, dirt, plants, discarded objects.

  • Record sound at specific times in the same place every day - while it's busy, while it’s quite. Find and record everything red/blue (your choice of colour)

  • Make numerical observations – number of steps you take, how many cars you see, pass, hear?

  • Describe the smells and take a photo of their location. 

  • Record typographical occurrences/ record individual words/ record individual letters

  • Make moving images.

  • Collect all the street names, house numbers – photograph them

  • Measure the height of objects and marks on the road/on buildings/park benches.

  • Record data – think tally charts, number of seagulls, number of cars that drive past.

  • List everything you see on your journey…everything you see!! Kerb, windows, brick…think about expanding your vocabulary – use a thesaurus, synonym etc. Create a large glossary of words.

All of the outcomes from these tasks will be used and developed during the Carousel weeks.



Foundation Course Leader, Pathway Leader | Fashion
Maddy Blyth
email: mblyth@pca.ac.uk

Foundation Pathway Leader | Media
Matt Skelly
email: mskelly@pca.ac.uk

Foundation Pathway Leader | Visual Communication
Sarah Thomas
email: sthomas@pca.ac.uk

Foundation Pathway Leader | Fine Art
Laura Edmunds
email: ledmunds@pca.ac.uk

Admissions team

Student Finance

For general enquires please contact the college on 01752 203434 or via our main website: www.plymouthart.ac.uk