Sarah Cross describes her typical day as a BA (Hons) Comic & Concept Art student, the exciting character design projects that she is currently working on and shares some critical advice to prospective students...

What do you specialise in and what are you working on at the moment?

I'm currently specialising in character and creature concept art but recently I've been enjoying environment design as well. I'm trying to keep my learning well-rounded for now, until I'm fully ready to commit! As for work, I've just completed a project centred around an old alchemist healer, who lives with their adopted human assistant. It's been a lot of fun!

Image: Courtesy of Sarah Cross 

How does Leeds Arts University help you develop your practice?

They provide lots of employment and competition opportunities, typically sent out via email - so make sure to check those! The tutors also provide lots of valuable critique, normally in weekly sessions and there are plenty of bonus classes for all years involving painting, life drawing, etc.

Image: Courtesy of Sarah Cross 

What does a typical day/week as a BA (Hons) Comic & Concept Art student involve?

Things are a little different at the moment due to the Covid-19 situation but there are online sessions 4 days a week, each generally lasting 2 hours and split between am and pm sessions. There are certain guidelines and mini-deadlines for work each week, so it's quite intense - you need to be prepared to put the work in from the start, or else it's easy to get stuck playing catch-up! But if you stick with it, you end up learning a lot. As mentioned before, there are also optional bonus classes that run on those days in the evening, they are always worth the spare time if you have any!

Image: Courtesy of Sarah Cross 

How does the University support you?

The University offers lots of welfare services surrounding mental health and counselling and I've heard lots of good things about them from friends. They also provide financial support towards material costs. Our tutors are super kind and understanding when it comes to unavoidable issues with work and I've personally been really impressed with how they've handled many of the issues that students have been experiencing in regards to the past year.

What advice would you give to someone considering studying BA (Hons) Comic & Concept Art at University?

Be prepared to work hard from the start and you won't end up with a deadline crunch. Speaking from experience - if you get your designs refined early, you'll have more time to experiment and create dynamic work and you'll end up with a stronger project! But most of all just do your best, remember to take breaks and don't be afraid to ask the tutors or your peers for help or advice if you're struggling.

Header Image: Courtesy of Sarah Cross