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Royal Academy of Art attRAct one-year online programme of study

Nationally, all students aged 15-19 were eligible to apply for this prestigious opportunity. After their letter of application was received, the shortlisted students then had to prepare a response to a set task, ready for an online interview. Abby Wood and Thomas Atkinson (both in Year 12) secured places and embarked on this programme of study towards the end of January. The course includes workshops with well-known contemporary artists, discussion groups, work placement opportunities and the completion of practical tasks, all of which can be included in their A level Fine Art portfolio. This follows on from our success last year, when two of our Year 11 Photography students completed the attRAct programme of study.

Abby and Thomas have written a synopsis below of their experiences so far and included images of work undertaken.

Abby Wood Year 12

Recently I was accepted into the attRAct program at the Royal Acadeny (an art program for young artists). We have a Zoom call once a month with like-minded creatives; this experience has been amazing so far and has allowed me to broaden my skills and techniques, through exploring different pathways within art. It has been amazing to interact and learn from experienced artists who lead the sessions. Over the last six months we have looked at sculptures, paintings and materials, and the meaning of artwork; most recently, we had a session where we received direct feedback and critiques about our work, which helped us to refine and develop our art.

Throughout this course, I have become more confident in talking about and explaining the meanings and motifs behind my art work, and it has allowed me to see the process behind other people’s artwork and give feedback. This experience has already provided so many wonderful opportunities, as I have been lucky enough to be selected for an architectural work placement, which I applied for with the Royal Academy. This is a two-week placement where I will get to meet and learn from experienced professional architects and gain more of an insight in what architecture entails, as it is a subject I am very passionate about and have been considering studying at university.

Thomas Atkinson Year 12

The attRAct programme is a wonderful experience for anyone fortunate enough to get onto it. The classes are really beneficial to later life, and how art is portrayed, through many levels of education and the real world. The calls are once a month and range from improvement in different forms of art, to learning about why university courses are (or are not) the best route for further education. Additionally, the tutors and professionals are very good at teaching and engaging students in their specialist subjects.

The programme gives an insight into many levels of further education, with many past students coming on and telling us about their routes in education and what was beneficial about it, which is an opportunity often missing in the natural school environment. Overall, I feel the attRAct programme is an amazing opportunity, as it has furthered my knowledge of Art & Design, and what being an artist requires.


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