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DRPS : Course Catalogue : Edinburgh College of Art : Art

Undergraduate Course: Digital Technology as Art Medium (ARTX08083)

Course Outline
SchoolEdinburgh College of Art CollegeCollege of Humanities and Social Science
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 8 (Year 1 Undergraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryWe are living in an age that is defined by digital technology: this course will explore some of the ways that digital can be not only a technique but also an artistic medium. You will be introduced to the photo-editing and graphic possibilities of Adobe Photoshop. The work you make may remain ephemeral, only existing on-screen and as digital code, but you will also be invited to explore digital printing, to consider digital projection and simple animation using Final Cut Pro as outlets for your art practice.
Course description Digital art includes two-dimensional images, music, animation, text. It is often seen as an umbrella term that includes such diverse a range of activities that it cannot be described as a medium, or as having a single aesthetic. This notion is enhanced by the fact that many digital artworks continue to work in relation to traditional art forms, e.g. digital photographs are comparable to analogue photographs and develop the history of photography, equally digital films develop the history of film. However, digital art is transmissible: it can be displayed on countless computers all over the world and, each time, the artwork is original, not a reproduction. Moreover, the multi-media aspect of digital art is exactly what makes it so relevant to a contemporary art world that challenges medium-specificity and specialization. It is the perfect arena for students to examine broader philosophies relevant to contemporary art.

The course will be launched by a lecture about the many different uses of digital technology by contemporary artists so that students gain an immediate insight into the possibilities created by digital media for their artistic practice. Students will gain knowledge of contemporary art and how artists use technology as art forms.

Visits to contemporary art galleries and studios will allow students to see a wide variety of contemporary art that utilizes digital technology, and meet master printers and artists who produce ambitious digital projects, providing an insight into professional networks beyond University.

These studies will support practical workshops in photo-editing and graphic painting techniques using Adobe Photoshop, and animation techniques using Final Cut Pro. Short projects will ask students to experiment with different ways of working with digital technology: e.g. to create images using different layers and prepare them in formats for high quality digital printing; to produce images for projection; to work collaboratively and remotely; and to prepare images for very simple animations. Through these projects, the students will explore the possibilities inherent to computer-generated art. Each student will then plan a personal project using the techniques most appropriate to their ideas and artistic practice. Workshop sessions with the support of the tutor will allow for individual and group discussions to continue as works develop. Students will be asked to present finished work for discussion at a final group critique.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Additional Costs Students are expected to pay for Art materials and equipment. Specific materials and equipment costs will vary depending on students' individual choice of method of production.
Information for Visiting Students
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Not being delivered
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. INVESTIGATE: demonstrate a range of uses of digital media and an ability to develop your subject matter through them.
  2. CONSIDER: Show evidence of an ability to use digital media in ways that are appropriate for your ideas.
  3. APPLY: Produce a body of finished work that displays your control of technique and imagery working together.
Reading List
Transdisciplinary Digital Art, edited by: Randy Adams, Steve Gibson, Stefan Muller Arizona - online access

Digital design theory: readings from the field / edited by Helen Armstrong.

Digital art / Wolf Lieser; with contributions by Tilman Baumgärtel [and others].

Is there a digital art history? Johanna Drucker, Routledge (full text online)

Iterations : the new image / exhibition curated by Timothy Druckrey and Charles Stainback; edited by Timothy Druckrey

A Philosophy of Computer Art, Dominic McIver Lopesroutledge 2010

Context Providers, conditions of meaning in computer arts. Margot Lovejoy, Christiane Paul, Victoria Verne, University of Chicago Intellectual Press 2011

Digital Art. Christiane Paul. Thames & Hudson 2003
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Students will gain knowledge of contemporary art and how artists use digital technology and gain confidence in their own abilities to use digital media. The course demands that the students consider the possibility of a digital aesthetic, and the status of ephemeral art and art objects critically. It supports the analysis of image making, installation art and moving image through digital means.
Course organiserMs Josephine Ganter
Tel: (0131 6)51 5894
Course secretaryMiss Ellie Mccartney
Tel: (0131 6)51 5879
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