This article is brought to you by Epsom College in Malaysia.
Epsom College in Malaysia (ECIM) has created a highly successful and vibrant Visual Arts Department. Encouraging their students to experiment and explore new materials, techniques, media, and technology that will equip them for their future careers in the creative industry, they have a large number of students continuing with their journeys to higher education creative arts courses in the UK, US, and Europe. It’s certainly no surprise when the recent A-Level results of 69% A*-A (100% A*-B) suggest that the fast-paced creative media and communication revolution is something they want to be a part of.
Students have left the College to continue on to University courses such as Architecture, Textile Design, Fine Art, Illustration, Fashion, Visual Communication, and Graphic Design.
“I have thoroughly enjoyed working towards my Art A-Level at Epsom. We have been privileged to work with a fantastic range of mediums, equipment and techniques that have supported our portfolios. We are lucky to be part of the creative community and have produced collaborative projects as well as our own independent ideas and portfolios. Along with the highly experienced staff we have developed our skills and improved our confidence to produce high quality work at both GCSE and A-Level.” (Natasha, 2017)
The staff at Epsom College Visual Arts Department have a wealth of teaching experience that includes technical drawing, fine art painting, 3D sculpture, ceramics, printmaking, photography (digital and manual,) illustration, graphic design, digital manipulation, art history, CAD/CAM, 3D printing, and laser cutting. They are able to deliver therefore a highly rounded and fulfilling curriculum from Key Stage 1 to Key Stage 5.
The department has also created some large scale projects in coordination with a number of charities, one of which was for Jane Goodall’s ‘Roots and Shoots’, where Year 10 GCSE students collaboratively created a giant 8 foot turtle from recycled materials that was on public display at Berjaya Time Square in 2016. This was publicly recognised and highly commended, and was part of students’ GCSE portfolios. As a result, the students gained outstanding GCSE grades : 58% A*-A, 100% A*-C.
One of Epsom College collaborations is with Round Square. The Round Square mantra is to keep a focus on environmentalism, something they take very seriously, particularly duty of care to the world we live in. Key Stage 3 students have produced 20ft murals within the College highlighting a number of specific messages, about our dying rainforests as one example. Another is looking at new age sustainable cities around the world influenced by the book ‘The Magical City’. This is a topic their students thoroughly enjoyed exploring, but also with important global messages.
The Technology Department also represented Malaysia in the UK’s Land Rover 4×4 2016 Challenge, applying their wits against other schools from around the globe, through designing, building and marketing the new generation of all terrain vehicle. They fully deserved the 1st prize in the successful marketing and sponsorship of their design- a title that the college is proud to defend this year.
Combining thinking creatively with practical creativity and taking the best aspects of old and newer technologies is a focus for students at Epsom College. In the Visual Arts Department students are encouraged to to be willing to try things and push the boundaries, to be original- essential skills for life.
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