Timetable information in the Course Catalogue may be subject to change.

University Homepage
DRPS Homepage
DRPS Search
DRPS Contact
DRPS : Course Catalogue : Edinburgh College of Art : Design

Undergraduate Course: Performance Costume 2A: Costume and Set Design for Performance (DESI08094)

Course Outline
SchoolEdinburgh College of Art CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 8 (Year 2 Undergraduate) AvailabilityNot available to visiting students
SCQF Credits40 ECTS Credits20
SummaryPerformance Costume 2A is designed to build on fundamental research and technical skills and extend design development knowledge within a specific performance area/ genre . It also aims to foster knowledge, understanding and contextualisation of costume design within a stage setting. Knowledge of how a costume interacts with its surroundings and occupies a performance space will ensure students meet realistic industry standards and expectations. This course will provide technical and perceptual knowledge within the design and construction of a model box i.e. students will be encouraged to use their creative senses to interpret a scene from a script and present their ideas through the production of a scaled set model. The construction of a set will demonstrate and embed the interdisciplinary links within costume and set design. Taught sessions will continue to support and underpin the learning within the programme, for example, an introduction to scale model-making, enhanced pattern cutting and construction techniques, life drawing, professional presentation and layout of work, computer skills in Adobe in-design and illustrator.

The course will include short introductory lectures, regular tutorials and plenaries, practical workshops, peer review, studio sessions, presentation techniques and independent study.
Course description Please note that this course includes teaching on some Monday afternoons and all day on Friday, so this should be factored in when choosing electives. The timetabling will be updated as soon as possible.

Students will undertake the research and design of costumes and stage sets for a production based on a selected music-based text. There will be an introductory read-through and discussion of the key themes and characters in the performance piece, presenting students with strategies for costume and set design research.

A working design concept allied to profiles for the major characters and consideration for the performance setting will be developed. Students will be shown how to interpret a theatre ground plan to make a scale model of the performance space. Further research enquiry will then be undertaken before developing preliminary ideas for the set and costume designs. Students will be supported in their design explorations by regular tutorials, where the students' design research, textile experimentation, exploratory design development drawing, character illustration, fabric sampling and ideas and models for stage settings will be discussed. Life drawing, InDesign and illustrator will be taught to support the students' drawing and presentation skills.

Studio sessions will give students the opportunity to develop their personal interpretation of character through costume design, using drawing and textile sampling as an exploratory medium. These sessions will also allow the development of ideas for performance settings appropriate to the music-based text. Students will learn to read theatre ground plans and learn how to develop scale models based on these. Regular tutorials will give students the opportunity to discuss and develop their design ideas and skills and practical instruction in pattern cutting and sewing techniques will give students a foundation in costume construction.

Indicative Content:
1. Create a statement of design intent
2. Explore layout and creative presentation of an image
3. Accurate compilation of costume bibles and costume plots.
4. Investigate fabric qualities.
5. Utilise theatre and museum visits to inform a better understanding of industry requirements.
6. Introduction and investigation of performance genre
7. Accurate construction of model box
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements This course is only available to students on the Performance Costume Degree Programme in Design.
Additional Costs Sketchbook, drawing materials, printing etc. -approx. £30
Fabric sampling and sourcing £30
Model box and set design £30
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2023/24, Not available to visiting students (SS1) Quota:  9
Course Start Semester 1
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 400 ( Lecture Hours 2, Seminar/Tutorial Hours 14, Supervised Practical/Workshop/Studio Hours 60, Feedback/Feedforward Hours 9, Formative Assessment Hours 2, Summative Assessment Hours 2, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 8, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 303 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) 100% Coursework.

Students will submit the following:

1. Statement of general design concept, costume and set research files, character profiles, sketchbook showing design development, textile research, life drawing, digital file.
2. Resolved model box and set considerations, set modelling, pattern cutting.
3. Resolved illustrations, along with technical drawings and fabric samples.

Relationship between Assessment and Learning Outcomes:

All three Learning Outcomes are equally weighted and will be assessed as follows:.
Assessment element 1 is used to assess learning outcome 1
Assessment element 2 is used to assess learning outcome 2
Assessment element 3 is used to assess learning outcome 3
Feedback There will be verbal formative feedback and one-to-one tutorials from staff for the duration of the course.

Formative feedback: In week 5 or 6 students each student will give a 10 minute presentation to the group that explains the following ¿ interpretation of the text and design concept, key research images, design development for both costumes and set design, and fabric samples. This will facilitate discussion and feedback within the group, verbal and written formative feedback will be provided by the tutor. This formative feedback will provide students with advice and guidance on how their work is progressing and give suggestions for development which will assist in the formulation and presentation of ideas for the summative assessment.

Summative Assessment: In week 12 summative feedback will be provided, this assessment consists of the total submission of the work completed throughout the course. The components will consist of the statement of general design concept, costume and set research files, character profiles, sketchbook showing design development, life drawing, textiles, digital files, set modelling, resolved model box and set considerations, resolved illustrations, along with technical drawings and fabric samples.

The written feedback and grading for the summative assessment will be provided via LEARN VLE.
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Demonstrate highly creative responses to research and costume development within a performance genre.
  2. Demonstrate the ability to contextualise design work within a performance setting.
  3. Communicate ideas effectively within the presentation of a fully resolved set of costume drawings and fabric samples.
Reading List
1. Huaixiang,T. Character Costume Figure Drawing: Step-by-Step Drawing methods for Theatre Costume Designers. Focal Press (2010)
2. Landis, D. N. FilmCraft: Costume Design. ILEX (2012)
3. Street, S. Costume and Cinema: Dress Codes in Popular Film (Short Cuts). Columbia University Press (2002)
4. Thomas, J. Script Analysis for Actors, Directors and Designers. Focal Press (2013)
5. Howard, P. What is Scenography?. Rutledge (2002)
6. Burnett, K. Collaborators. The Society of British Theatre Designers (2007)
7. Burnett, K Transformation and Revelation. The Society of British Theatre Designers (2011)
8. Burnett, K. Make/believe: UK Design for Performance 2011-2015. The Society of British Theatre Designers (2015)
9. Landis, D. N. FilmCraft: Costume Design. ILEX (2012)
10. Aldrich, W. Metric Pattern Cutting for Women¿s Wear. John Wiley & Sons (2015)
11. Aldrich, W. Fabric, form and flat pattern cutting; book design, photography and computer graphics by James Aldrich. Blackwell Pub. (2007)
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Drawing skill, research skill, practical skill
KeywordsCharacter Interpretation,Design Research,Design Development,Textiles,Technical Drawings,Sewing skill
Course organiserMs Emma Renhard
Course secretaryMiss Linsey McEwan
Tel: (01316) 515448
Help & Information
Search DPTs and Courses
Degree Programmes
Browse DPTs
Humanities and Social Science
Science and Engineering
Medicine and Veterinary Medicine
Other Information
Combined Course Timetable
Important Information