The annual summer show at Cleveland College of Art and Design (CCAD) in Middlesbrough has once again celebrated the future generation of artists and designers with students now going to employment and prestigious higher education institutions.

Putting their talents in the spotlight, over 300 students showcased their works from a wide range of courses at the ‘Make your Mark’ exhibition at the leading specialist art and design college, including fashion, photography, 3D design, fine art and design crafts.

Helena at the Summer Show

18-year-old Helena Greening from Osmotherley has just completed her foundation diploma in art and design and is now on her way to Oxford University to study BA (Hons) Fine Art at the Ruskin School of Art.

Her final major project included a display of ceramics, prints and paintings based on ‘Traces’ and the forces felt by women in their lives and bodies from different cultural backgrounds.

After acing her GCSEs and A-levels at Stokesley School and Sixth Form College, Helena decided she wanted to specialise in art. She said: “Ever since I’ve been small I’ve loved art but I didn’t think it was possible for it to be my career, then I heard about the Foundation course at CCAD, and I knew straight away, I wasn’t ready for university, so the course at CCAD was just perfect for me.

“I was really excited when I found out; I couldn’t quite believe it really! It is a really different Fine Art course, allowing me to practice in any discipline of Fine Art I like throughout the three years I am in Oxford. It also combines the History and Theory of Art alongside Human Anatomy and dissection to create an academic twist to the degree which I love. Altogether very happy!”

Helena’s time at CCAD has been crucial to earning her place at Oxford. She added: “CCAD definitely gave me a platform to completely focus on my art. I love it, it’s changed the way I look at the whole foundations of the subject and has given me a massive step up. I couldn’t have got in (Oxford) without my Foundation and my next step to study a Fine Art degree is a continuation of my life through what I love, art.”

The further education programme at CCAD includes Access to Higher Education Diploma, A-Levels, Foundation Diploma, and BTEC Extended Diplomas and hundreds of visitors to the exhibition are anticipated over the next five days, where they can expect to see a fantastic array of designs in clothing, wallpapers, clothing, prints and 3D designs.

Included in the exhibition is graphic design student Matthew Goodyear from Redcar, who is celebrating after securing an internship with Better Brand Agency in Middlesbrough.

Matthew, 18, created a final project which was based around a new restaurant, ‘The Parmo House’, a more upmarket and modern establishment compared to a traditional takeaway. On his internship, Matthew said: “I was really looking forward to working with Better after they got in touch with me. I have now started and really enjoyed my first day, so I can’t wait to go back. I’m hoping the opportunity they’ve given me will help kick start my career in graphic design.

“At CCAD I’ve loved the working environment and the tutors are great and know what’s needed to be successful in the industry.”

Creativity obviously runs in the family, as Matthew’s brother is a Creative Director at BigBite Creative in Boho, Middlesbrough and Matthew knows how valuable working in the industry can be. He added: “I’ve had work experience at Via Creative and it was good to gain experience working on real projects for clients and getting a feel for how design agencies work.

Zak is looking forward to studying for his degree at the London College of Fashion

Zak Moore, 18, from Brotton in Saltburn studied for a BTEC Extended Diploma in Fashion and is now heading off to the prestigious London College of Fashion to study design and technology womenswear.

His collection at the show ‘expresses the struggle of power between a couple, afraid of giving in to one another. A war without guns, temptation, manipulation, lust.’

On the challenges of preparing for the show, Zak said: “As much as you plan, everything happens last minute – it’s just the way things are. There are always late nights and the biggest challenge is time. It has been so busy with the show and university interviews that I haven’t really had time to think about my degree. I’m feeling great at the moment about it but I’m sure when moving day comes I will be a bit nervous!”

18-year old James Wilkinson, has conquered personal challenges to gain a BTEC Extended Diploma in Interior, Architecture and Product (3D) and received the Principal’s Award for his achievement.

The student, from Coulby Newham in Middlesbrough, who has autism, was nominated for the award by his lecturer Martyn Featherstone who said: “James’ thirst for knowledge has grown along with his confidence, moving steadily forward to take an active role in sessions. His work is outstanding and has earned a place on a degree in interior design at the University of Lincoln.”

James received the Principal’s Award for his achievements

James said: “I knew that I had been nominated but no idea that I was going to win, so it is a shock. It is a real achievement for me as there have been tough a few times but it has been well worth it. I have really enjoyed my time here at CCAD and would recommend anyone thinking of coming here to study to go for it.”

Pat Chapman, Head of Employability and External Relations, said: “My congratulations to all the award nominees and winners. It has been an exceptionally strong year and I hope the students celebrate their achievements. It is always inspiring to see the creativity and talent that our students produce.

“The students have worked tremendously hard over the course of their studies, and they can be justly proud of their final work, as I am sure are their family and friends. I encourage people to come along to the exhibitions and see the incredible talents on display for themselves. The work on show displays maturity and readiness for their next step. Anyone visiting will see the industry level standard of the work our students.”

The Summer Show is open on the following days:

Fri 16th June – 10am – 8pm

Sat 17th June – 10am – 2pm (includes open day for students)

Mon 19th June/Tues 20th June – 10am – 5pm

Wed 21st June – 10am – 12pm