Got a passion for photography, but not sure if you’re ready for a degree?
Whether you’re new to photography, looking for a career change or want a job in the contemporary photographic field – our degree will encourage your holistic and informed thinking about photography.
You’ll experience cultural, historical and contemporary life through the lens of a camera while evolving your own artistic way of seeing the world as a professional photographer.
Former students have gone into a range of photographic careers, become freelance photographers, curators and editors and some have secured solo exhibitions in art galleries just months after graduating.
The Photography Industry is worth £1.2 billion a year
Join them and kick-start your career in the photographic industry with our Photography course.
Curious about what happens on our course? Follow the action on social, via our blog, or visit our 2020 Vision Student Showcase to see the artwork our 2020 graduates have developed for their final project with us.
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Your Career with a Photography Degree
A degree in Photography can open up a fantastic range of career options. Freelance or in a permanent position, studio-based or on the move, the skills you learn will help you no matter what route you decide to take. Our former students have gone on to become assistant photographers, picture editors and researchers, forensic and medical photographers, gallery curators and more.
For many of our students, their career path begins even before graduation through commissions and success during their studies. Amy Trantum was given the university's Highest Achieving Student of the Year award in her third year, and Liam Collins won the first Young Cumbrian Artist of the Year in his second year. The shortlist of ten for this prize was exclusively made up of our photography students, so you can be sure of creating well-acclaimed photographs during this course.
Photo by Liam Collins
Two of our graduates Gillian Gilbert and Anna Bridges have gone on to develop the Carlisle Photo Festival and have gained national and international recognition. Other graduates include Will Wintercross who is an acclaimed photojournalist and has worked extensively in Syria, Drew Gibson has made his mark in automotive sports photography and Caroline Leeming is a very successful fashion photographer working for clients such as Saatchi & Saatchi and Fenwick.
Photograph by Adam Mennell. Train of Thought won second prize in the ‘A World of Unfairness’ competition held by Disability Talk. Professor Stephen Hawking was on the judging panel.
Why Choose University of Cumbria?
Practical work is central to our course and so whether you’re studying technical skills, contemporary and traditional photography or exploring relationships between the photographer and their audience – there’ll always be a hands-on element to your learning.
Photo by Hannah Outhwaite
We don’t believe in breeding one type of photographer, so you’ll have the freedom to pursue and develop your own individual and artistic repertoire.
- 75% hands-on, practical work
- Easy access to up-to-date equipment without having to pre-book or queue
- Great facilities, including digital and dark rooms, an 80MP Mamiya Digital Camera and a colour processor
- Don’t have your own camera kit? No problem, you can borrow ours for free
- In 2017 we took our students to Liverpool, Edinburgh, Amsterdam, the Farne Islands and for a residential in the Lake District as part of their student enrichment.
- Ample opportunity to exhibit your work and to gain experience organising an exhibition
- Benefit from professional practice through client commissions
- Taught by internationally-renowned photographers and experts, who have published books in their field
- Tutors have great, current industry links
- We have several visiting speaker talks a year from professional photographers like Julian Germain and alumni Cameron Robertson.
- Visiting speakers also carry out folio reviews for a selected number of students
- We work with Redeye Photography Network on their Fourth Year Project where twice yearly we run a group crit for recent graduates of photography – this offers ongoing support for graduates early in their career
- Freedom to experiment and develop your own innovative practices
- Learn key skills employers will look for – including how to market yourself or set up your own business
We run an open-door policy, so you won’t need to book timeslots with technicians and tutors, and we’ll be on hand to help you hone your technical and creative work when you need it.
Photo by Kat Westhead
Course Study Options
We also offer this course with an integrated foundation year. Click the button for more information.