Art, Design, Media and Floristry at Newcastle-under-Lyme Collge

Thursday, 15 December 2016

Budding textile and fashion designers visit the Clothes Show

A Level Textile designers and BTEC Level 3 Fashion designers attended the last Clothes Show Live event at the NEC in Birmingham on Tuesday 6th December.  An inspirational day was had by all.   Particular highlights included the graduate catwalk show (see image), the knit and crochet drop in workshops and the University stands.

Thursday, 20 October 2016

All about paper

Year 1 A Level Textile Designers started their course in September and have just completed their first project 'all about paper'.  Each student worked from the same design brief to complete a hand bound sketchbook, design sheets and a half garment made from paper.  Ideas developed taking inspiration from images of paper garments found on Google and Pinterest.  These young designers were asked to manipulate paper in response to techniques and technical terms choosing which types of paper they would each upcycle.  Papers were folded, curled, creased, scrunched, woven, sewn and gathered.  Design ideas were tried, sketched and photographed on the mannequins before final designs were constructed.  The students also had the opportunity to visit Unit 12, a gallery and studio space, owned and curated by Jennifer Collier.  Jennifer Collier's work is made from paper which she exhibits and sells internationally.  It was such a fantastic experience to meet Jennifer and see her making.

An exhibition of the students work is on display at the MADE Here shop in Newcastle-under-Lyme town centre.  Please pop in and take a look.
For more information about studying A Levels in Art and Design subjects please call 01782 254254, email or visit

Tuesday, 18 October 2016

First year A Level Textile Design students visit Unit 12

First year A Level Textile Design students visited the fabulous studios and gallery ‘Unit 12’ owned by the talented designer maker Jennifer Collier on Thursday 13th October.

This was a fantastic opportunity for students to get further inspiration for their own projects ‘all about paper’.  A selection of which will be exhibited in our own NULC shop MADE Here in Newcastle-under-Lyme town centre later this week.

Meeting Jennifer Collier and some of the other resident artists alongside seeing work first hand is a really valuable part of their studies.

For more information about studying A Level subjects in Art and Design call 01782 254254, email or visit

Thursday, 14 April 2016

Students continue to work on 'Lost Boys' project

Students studying the BTEC Foundation Diploma in Art and Design at NULC have continued their involvement in the ‘Lost Boys’ project which is being run in collaboration with the British Ceramics Biennial and Professor Stephen Dixon from Manchester Metropolitan University (MMU).

The project aims to research the underage soldiers who were enlisted during WW1 with findings being explored and presented visually through a range of collaborative ceramic outcomes.  On Tuesday 22 March, students visited the Staffordshire Regiment Museum in Lichfield to gather further research through photography and drawing.  Students toured the reconstructed WW1 trenches and were able to obtain an insight into what it would have been like to be on the front line and the conditions that the soldiers had to live in.  Following this there was a talk on uniform and the firearms used in battle – this included a handling session which enabled students to examine and photograph the equipment for their research. 

To conclude the day there was a workshop on research techniques which explored how to examine documentation to find out more about an individual soldier when exploring the archives at the Library.  Research gathered during the visit will be applied through two further ceramics workshops which will be run by staff from MMU Friday 22 April and Friday 20 May.

The ‘Lost Boys’ project has enabled students to develop valuable research skills and independence through the many facets of the project that have been encountered.  These skills are essential for anyone pursuing a career in Art and Design and will undoubtedly provide an excellent foundation for further development at University and beyond.

For more information about studying the Foundation Diploma in Art and Design call 01782 254254, email or visit

Friday, 13 November 2015

Natural Ability

Student Emily Nicholls has produced a creative set of tile designs for Gradbach Outdoor Adventure. Emily, who studies the BTEC Foundation Diploma in Art and Design at Newcastle-under-Lyme College (NULC), was set the brief of producing door numbers in an unusual way to help guests identify the centre's 20 rooms.

Emily referred to Peak District wildlife as a guide to gain inspiration and began working in watercolour before enhancing her designs in Adobe Photoshop. Emily completed her designs by getting the design transferred onto elegant Minton tiles.

Mike Kelly, Assistant Head of Academic and Creative studies at NULC, said: "This has been a great 'real world' opportunity for Emily, and her tutors on the Foundation Diploma in Art and Design think it's going to be the first of many projects our students can get involved in for Gradbach Outdoor Adventure."

For more information about studying the Foundation Diploma in Art and Design call 01782 254254, email or visit

Wednesday, 16 September 2015

Photography students on fast track at Tour of Britain!

NULC students studying the BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma in Photography & Digital Imaging used the recent Tour of Britain Cycling Race to gain some real life photo journalism experience.

Course Leader, Alex Williams, said: “The Tour of Britain passing through the Potteries offered a fantastic opportunity for our second year students to add another string to their bow.  The students were set a live brief, which gave them some work experience in the fast paced environment of event photography. This gave our students a real taste of real world requirements for preparation and planning, as well as the quick turnaround time after capturing the images to edit and send them to the customer.”

Alex added: “The students did extremely well in the task, achieving various images that fit in various genres of photography, including Social Documentary and Corporate work, understanding that a sports event can be captured in various different styles and ways. Many students also had their work liked, praised and re-tweeted on various social media platforms.”

To find out more about studying photography at NULC, contact, visit or call 01782254254.

Thursday, 7 May 2015

AS Theatre Studies programme

On Friday 1st May the AS Theatre students performed the first moderated work in the new Performing Arts Centre.  

The images show a performance of Matilda which was absolutely fantastic, the students attained 100% A-D grades with 61% attaining high grades (A-B) for the unit.  John Shortall our AQA moderator was very complimentary of our new facilities at the Performing Arts Centre and the superb acting ability of our cohort.  The unit is taught by Faye Matthews who has worked extremely hard with the learners to deliver a superb performance of the classic!

And on Friday 8th May A2 students will be moderated and we invite friends and family to watch a range of physical and creative adaption pieces which will start from 11am.

Thanks to Sue Bowdery who took some amazing pictures of one of the AS performances.

Monday, 9 February 2015

Expert Ex-Students Help Current Students on Final Project

Students are helping to signpost the new Lego Innovation Studio at Newcastle-under-Lyme College.
The Level 3 ED Graphics Design & Interactive Media students are working on a project which is set to complete on the 9th February. There are three tasks in this project which the students have to fulfil. The first task asks the students to produce several pages of evidence in a sketchbook, which shows evidence of a variety of methods used, including traditional, computer generated materials, also the techniques and process the students learnt during the projects.
The second task sees the students produce a number of thumbnail designs that can be refined. They must also produce a number of mock-ups for the final idea, using materials and the new processes and techniques they have learnt.
In the third and final task the students will research a number of supporting ideas that will inform the Lego Innovation Studio. They can then use these ideas as a starting point for their final project.
Over the duration of their task the students will produce a number of pieces for use in the promotion, branding and sign-posting of the room.
The students involved in this task have been split into three teams depending on their skills. One team, headed by lecturer Shannon Steyn, will be focused on graphics design. They will be producing promotional material for the Lego Studio, which includes posters aimed at staff and students. A second team, headed by lecturer David Burgess, are the illustration team and will produce three 2.5m x 1.5m prints to be placed outside of the Lego Studio. The last team is headed by lecturer Mark Smith and this team is the 3D computer modelling team and they will design a mural 265cm x 288cm in size to go along the wall outside the ED Graphics Design & Media staff room.
In order to produce these final pieces and coursework the students have been encouraged to bring in resources from home, from old toothbrushes to sponges. They were also given resources to use in college, including ipads, cameras and graphics tablets.

The students also had help from former students of NULC who have gone onto have successful careers: Tom Perry, a letter smith from PezandPencil of Stoke on Trent, Anthony Owen, the Creative Director at Delineo in Manchester and Jon Paul Green, lead Graphic Designer at Q Railing in Stoke on Trent. All three ex-students completed the Level 3 ED Graphics Design & Interactive Media course and Ant and Jon also completed a level 2 course in Art & Design prior to that.

Friday, 12 December 2014

Students attend Clothes Show Live

On Friday 5th December, students within the Faculty of Academic and Creative Studies attended the Clothes Show Live in Birmingham.

The day included a dedicated seat in the Fashion Theatre, a fashion career seminar along with the opportunity for students to speak to representatives from several Universities offering HE courses in Fashion and Textiles.
With opportunities to view the work of recent graduates on the small catwalks in the venue throughout the event.
The Clothes Show was a great chance to speak with industry experts, have a look at the latest trends and get a real insight into the world of fashion.

To find out more about studying an  A-Levels at NULC contact the Information Point on 01782 254254 or email

Friday, 24 October 2014

Students visit historic Spode site

Over ninety students from Foundation Degree in Contemporary Art Practice, Design and Graphics and Extended Diploma in Fashion visited the historic Spode site, based in Church Street, Stoke, to view the new exhibition Journeys, Pathway and Trackplans.

The exhibition features eighteen artists, including Newcastle-under-Lyme College (NULC) Foundation Degree in Contemporary Art Practice lecturer Joyce Iwaszko and ex-NULC students Rob Noble, Ali Reed and Andrew Branscombe.

Joyce Iwaszko said: "Journeys, Pathways and Trackplans has been an amazing opportunity for students to see such a diverse range of contemporary art in the city"

All the students who visited the exhibition are using the experience to inspire a visual communication as part of their courses it aims to show visitors art in a non-traditional white cube space.

The exhibition continues at the historic Spode site daily 11-5pm until October 25. A blog documenting the event can be found here.

For more information about Art & Design courses at NULC, you can email or telephone 01782 254254.

Images courtesy of Cristiana Cappelletti