2 years full-time for FdA (Foundation Degree)
Upon successful completion of this course you'll have the option to join our BA (Hons) Games Art and top up to a Level 6 qualification.
Confetti Institute of Creative Technologies, Nottingham
UCAS course code:
Entry & admission criteria:
- A-levels – DDE; or
- BTEC Extended Diploma – MPP; or
- 64 UCAS Tariff points from three A-levels or equivalent qualifications; and
- GCSE - English and Maths Grade C / 4
- We also consider equivalent qualifications and combinations.
This course is not suitable for international applicants requiring a Student visa.
Please note: This course does not meet the UK Visas and Immigration requirements for Student visa sponsorship. Therefore we cannot progress applications from candidates who require a Student visa. If you require advice on alternative courses please contact our international team.
English language entry requirements
If English is not your first language, you need to show us that your language skills are strong enough for intensive academic study. We usually ask for an IELTS test and we accept some alternative English language tests.
- For a list of our language, requirements please visit our English language page.
- If you need to do a pre-sessional English language course to meet the English requirements, please visit our pre-sessional English course page.
Fees & funding
Visit our fees & funding page for more information.
Your course fees cover the cost of studies, and include loads of great benefits, such as the use of our library, support from our expert Employability team, and free use of the IT equipment across our campuses.
We advise you to budget £60 - £250 (minimum) for an entry level graphics tablet. You are also recommended to obtain a personal computer to complete digital artwork on. Whilst there are free versions of software and open source art software available it would also advisable to budget for a student Creative Cloud license (starting at £9.88).
Most study modules will recommend one or more core text books, which most students choose to purchase. Book costs vary and further information is available in the University’s bookshop. Our libraries provide a good supply of essential text books, journals and materials (many of which you can access online) – meaning you may not need to purchase as many books as you might think! There may also be a supply of second-hand books available for purchase from previous year students.
All essential field trip costs will be included in your course fees. There may be the opportunity to take part in optional field trips, which do incur additional costs.
If you're undertaking a placement year, you'll need to budget for accommodation and any travel costs you may incur whilst on placement. Many of our placement students do earn a salary whilst on placement which can help to cover these living costs.
Print and copy costs
The University allocates an annual printing and copying allowance of £20 depending on the course you are studying. For more details about costs for additional print and copying required over and above the annual allowance please see the Printing, photocopying and scanning information on the Library website.
How to Apply
This degree is validated by Nottingham Trent University and all applications must be submitted through the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS).
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.
Teaching and learning experiences will include:
- group tutorials
- personal tutorials
- presentations and pitches
- independent learning
- visiting industry professionals
95% of our degree students would recommend studying at Confetti to others. (National Student Survey 2019)
We arrange some fantastic trips for students throughout the year - recently, these experiences experiences have included a trip to EGX Eurogamer in Birmingham, the Warner Brothers Studio Tour plus many more.
What our current students think
Advice from our alumni
Assessment is 100% through coursework. You will receive feedback throughout.
Forms of assessment include:
- practical assessments
- portfolio building
- case studies
- lab report
- reflective journals
- formal essay
A two year Foundation degree is a great choice if you want to have the option to graduate with a Level 5 qualification and start your creative career early. With an accessible UCAS tariff – this type of degree is perfect for you if you prefer a more practical approach to your studies.
After completing two years you will graduate with an FdSc/FdA qualification and choose whether you want to continue and enroll on a top up year for a full BSc/BA qualification or whether you would rather stop your education and start your creative career.
Topping up your existing qualification
Each case will be considered individually, but if you have passed an FdA from Confetti and decided you want to continue your studies, you’re automatically entitled to enter into the 3rd year of the equivalent BA degree to ‘top up’ to a full honours degree.
What you'll study in year 1
This module introduces you to the principles of drawing and visualisation that form the fundamentals required for a career as a games artist. You'll study idea generation and concept development and its essential use within a games development pre-production stage.
You'll 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'll 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'll study environments, architecture, figures and objects allowing you to visualise and incorporate these elements into original game design.
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'll look at both contemporary and historical art and design and its global impact socially, ethically and economically.
You're 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'll 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
This module aims to build your knowledge and technical skill in the production of game art assets for computer games. You'll 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'll 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'll 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'll 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.
During this module you'll 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.
On this course you'll study at Confetti HQ - our brand new £9.1million digital media hub:
- 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
- Wacom Cintiq Pro 16: Creative Pen Display
- Games Consoles
Every year we welcome family, friends and industry professionals to watch, listen, test and play the fantastic work of our degree students.
Our Games Art degree students have put together this fantastic exhibition of industry-inspired artwork to raise awareness of SpecialEffect; a UK-based charity who use video games and other technologies to enhance the quality of life for people with disabilities.
At Confetti, we offer students the chance to ‘Do It For Real’ – get out into real industries and experience working in various roles that take their interest.
Our Talent Development team work closely with Course Leaders to link students with opportunities across the games industry. Have a read of one of our alumnus’ stories, and how studying at Confetti helped him land a job as a freelance Colour Commentator in the Esports Industry.
Throughout the year, students are invited to attend various talks and events with visiting industry experts. Not long ago, the British Esports Association visited, along with Head of Education at Twitch, to deliver a fantastic talk for students about the growing industry of gaming.
The British Esports Association also held their 2019 Winter Championship Finals at Confetti’s very own Metronome – have a look through the gallery of images from the event.
Like no other, we go off timetable and invite some of the biggest names in the games industry to deliver talks, workshops and seminars for our students. It’s a great opportunity for our students to gain invaluable insights and industry connections.
Past Industry Week guests have included:
- The Oliver Twins
- Games Workshop
- Award-winning games industry legends - Brenda and John Romero
Check out our OnDemand service here
Continue your studies
Each case will be considered individually, but upon completion you’re automatically entitled to enter into the 3rd year of our BA (Hons) Games Art to gain a full BA qualification.
You can also move straight into your career, in areas which might include:
- Concept artist
- 2D/3D artist
- Environment artist
- Weapon designer
- UI designer
- Technical artist
Previous games students are working at companies, such as:
- Rockstar Games
- Riot Games
- Sumo Digital
- Ubisoft Blue Byte
- Quantic Dream
- Splash Damage
- Lockwood Publishing