game art degree students' work - robot next to car

Game Art Foundation Degree – FdA Game Art

Key information

Delivered in partnership with Nottingham Trent University.

Duration:
2 years full-time for FdA

Upon successful completion of this course you will have the option to join our BSc Games Production (one year top-up)

Location:
Confetti Institute of Creative Technologies, Nottingham

UCAS course code:
I630

Institution code:
N91

Entry & admission criteria:

  • 64 UCAS tariff points (160 points in old UCAS tariff) from A-Levels, BTECs, or equivalent
  • A* – C in GCSE Maths and English, or equivalent

Fees & funding

Visit our fees & funding page for more information

Introduction to the Game Art Degree

This Games Art foundation degree is designed for those who want a career in the growing games art industry. The game artist creates the visual elements of an interactive computer game, crafting assets like 2D graphics, 3D characters and environment models, surface textures and user interface components. A game artist may also be involved in conceptualising ideas to help communicate the proposed visual elements during the pre-production phase. This game art degree will give you the opportunity to experience a range of techniques and software used in the games industry, whilst developing specialist skills to support career goals within your chosen art role.

Our campus

We’re developing our campus to make sure you’re studying in the best facilities with the latest industry-standard equipment – find out more about our campus developments – including a brand new home for music & events at the Contemporary Music Hub, the new TV & Film facilities at Space2 and our £9.1m Digital Media space – the Digital Media Hub.

At Confetti our classrooms are unique. As part of their course, our students get the chance to go out into industry and Do It For Real at locations across the UK! Check out our interactive map to see how our classrooms are different and to get a taste of the kind of experiences you could take part in whilst studying at Confetti.

Connecting with the games industry

As a game art degree student, you will take part in Confetti’s Industry Week – a unique event that brings over 100 top names from the music, games, TV and film industries to Confetti for workshops, masterclasses, lectures and seminars. From artists to games developers, Industry Week is your chance to be inspired, make contacts and learn from the pros.

Our students have had the opportunity to meet and receive advice from established names, such as Ian Livingstone and professionals from Rockstarand Playstation to name just a few. Confetti partners with the National Videogame Arcade, giving our students unparalleled access to games industry professionals, as well as opportunities to network and showcase their projects.

Confetti’s Head of Talent Development also works closely with the course, linking students with opportunities across the local and regional music industry. Working on live projects throughout the course will help you gain industry experience, make contacts and build your portfolio and CV – making sure you are ready for a career in the creative industries after graduation.

Facilities

  • Industry Spec Workstation PC’s
  • Specialist software including Unreal Engine 4, Autodesk Suite (3DS Max, Maya, Mudbox), Adobe Creative Suite, Zbrush, Quixel 2.0
  • Wacom Cintiq 13HD Touch Tablets
  • Foley Recording Room
  • Audio Production and Recording Equipment
  • Games Consoles

Teaching & Learning

Teaching and learning is designed around developing your practical and technical skills, whilst also enhancing your critical and analytical thinking. Classes are a mixture of practical workshops, seminars and tutorials. During these sessions you will develop your expertise, working alongside Confetti’s expert tutors who are active professionals.

In some modules you’ll work on ‘live’ projects, where you’ll be required to complete work for industry clients, giving you the opportunity to demonstrate your developing professionalism and build a portfolio of work that will support your future career.

Guest lectures from professional artists and games developers will also help enhance your knowledge and experience of the gaming industry.

What you’ll study in year 1

Concept Art for Games (100 Credit Points)

This module introduces you to the principles of drawing and visualisation that form the fundamentals required for a career as a games artist. You will study idea generation and concept development and its essential use within a games development pre-production stage.

You will develop and refine your game art drawing skills from observation and imagination using both traditional hand drawn techniques and digital processes. The aim is to develop a visual language that will allow you to record information for future development of game art concepts.

On completion of your exploration you will refine your concepts by developing them through 2D and 3D digital processes. This module will introduce the use of 2D digital software and 3D modelling and sculpting software to create visual concepts to relevant industry standard specifications.

The module will introduce you to and develop your understanding of anatomy, form, composition and colour theory and how this can be applied in the creation of game art. You will study environments, architecture, figures and objects allowing you to visualise and incorporate these elements into original game design.

Games Art Critical Studies (20 Credit Points)

An understanding of the context of art and design is vital in the creation of games art assets and concepts. This module aims to provide you with the underpinning knowledge of art and design theory and historical context and how it will impact your professional practice within the modern games industry. You will look at both contemporary and historical art and design and its global impact socially, ethically and economically.

You are encouraged to investigate and research a broad range of art, games genres and the wider creative media industries (design, film, animation, illustration, graphic novels) and your research will be presented through your research journal and case study on art style within games.

On completion of your studies you will be able to deconstruct modern video games and critically analyse their design in terms of aesthetics. This module also aims to develop your understanding of the importance of the role of the audience within the games industry and how, as an artist, you are reponsible for considering the ethical and social context surrounding the creation of games art for commercial release.

What you’ll study in year 2

Games Art Production (100 Credit Points)

This module aims to build your knowledge and technical skill in the production of game art assets for computer games. You will study the integration of concept art within the computer games production pipeline and its value as part of the development of 2D and 3D art assets. Game art processes taught will include 2D digital software techniques, 2D to 3D workflow and the creation of graphical elements including GUI and HUD creation.

This module will further develop and consolidate your technical knowledge of 2D and 3D visual theory and practice that was initiated in the Concept Art for Games module in year one. This year, you will be introduced to modelling and sculpting techniques specific to the design of 3D game environments including industry standard workflow techniques and pipelines. The techniques taught will be relevant towards the integration of these assets into an industry standard games engine. This will result in you producing innovative environment designs for use within your industry portfolio.

You will be expected to undertake efficient coordination of resources and effective deployment of technology in order to create refined art assets intended for a prescribed professional purpose. You will be required to evaluate your own game art, assess its appropriateness for use within a commercial production and evaluate its suitability in informing your concept’s target audience.

Industry Practice (20 Credit Points)

During this module you will undertake appropriate self-directed projects, working collaboratively on creative work, allowing you to directly apply the knowledge and skills learnt throughout the programme in the context of the workplace. This module aims to develop your overall professionalism and provide you with the knowledge and resources to begin a career in the creative industries.

See our students’ work

Check out the work of our talented Games graduates and see the final year projects from our FdSc Games Technology, FdA Games Art and BSc Games Production (top up) students.