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Case Study

Nicole Tyrie

Washington, UK

BA (Hons) Fine Art


Nicole Tyrie always had a passion for art and it wasn’t until she was in her second year of college that she realised to wanted to pursue it as a career. Studying at the University of Sunderland was an easy choice as it was her local university, and she was impressed by the state-of-the-art facilities. She is currently applying for postgraduate courses in teacher training as she wants to inspire the next generation of artists, and is hoping to study this at Sunderland.

I have always been a keen learner, so going to college and university was second nature to me. Although I always had a passion for art, I pushed it away for a long while. It wasn’t until my second year of college I decided I wanted to pursue a career in it. I wasn’t ready to give up learning about the art world, or more importantly, my own creative practice. I think this was 100%, the best move for me.

University of Sunderland was an easy choice for me. It was local, so I could travel there easily, but most importantly it has a brilliant art department. The facilities such as wood and metal work, printmaking facilities and the amazing studio spaces were very appealing to me. I also wanted to stay in the North East as it has a rich creative community.

The delivery of the BA (Hons) Fine Art course is very good. You receive a lot of one-on-one support and are pushed to try new techniques and develop your ideas. The studio spaces give you plenty of working space, and you are also surrounded by work from other students, which can be good for inspiration. My studio is my home away from home during term time, and I enjoy surrounding myself with other creatives and having somewhere to experiment. We also have free access to traditional and state-of-the-art printmaking equipment, wood and metal work tools and the University also offers an online shop for better deals on materials. The Fab Lab is also really helpful with bigger installations, for larger wood or acrylic projects.

If I was to give advice to future students, I would say make sure you pick the right course for you. You will only have a fulfilling journey if you pick the course that you will be interested in. Research is key before studying anywhere – make sure it’s where you want to go and what you want to do and you’ll get the best from your experience.

I am currently applying for postgraduate courses in teacher training. I spent a lot of time helping out in secondary schools alongside my university work, and decided it was the right move for me. I want to inspire others and show students that creative outlets are just as important as academic work.

I really enjoyed my experience at the University of Sunderland. I think my course was very helpful for my personal and artistic development. I was never in need of anything the University didn’t offer and my lecturers were wonderful. Hopefully, I can return one day to study my Masters Degree.”

Published 29 May 2020

To see more of Nicole's art, check out her Instagram page or see her art blog, which includes artist reviews and exhibitions she has visited.

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