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Ella – HND Art Practice

The HND Art Practice degree has not only given Ella more confidence, but enabled her to expand her sustainable print business.

"Completing the course with growing a business alongside has built my confidence and helped me to make more products and sell more."

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Hometown: Newlyn

Course: HND Art Practice

My Story:

Ella started her journey at Truro and Penwith College studying A Level Graphics, Photography and English Literature. Studying these subjects led Ella to investigate continuing her learning and expanding her capability. She went on to study the Art and Design Access to Higher Education course before erolling on the HNC/D Art Practice degree at the Penzance School of Art.  Alongside studying, Ella is running her own sustainable Art busniess, created in Newlyn and inspired by all things Cornish and coastal.

Ella said: ”Getting a degree was not about going away and getting the University experience, I was growing my business and had a lot of commitments to hold me in Cornwall. It was so nice to be able to pick to study locally, I also love the building the course is held in!”

Praising the support she received from her lecturers, Ella credits how it has allowed her to grow: “All the staff are so supportive and encouraging they want you to do what is right for you. They are happy to push you to the best of your ability. I have been able to develop more skills that I use to compliment my business and getting a degree is a bonus.”

Ella explains: “Our class sizes are small, which is so nice because then the learning is 1-1. It is also way less daunting to make friends because the group is small so you all gel. I think it is much better for your learning.”

“Even though it is a full-time course, the actual structure of the timetable is really good. It’s shorter days, but you can be in as much as you want. I run my own business, have a part time job, completed this course, and still have free time.”

“I run a business called ‘Mora Cornwall’. ‘Mora’ means to leave land on a voyage or put to sea, in Cornish. I established Mora in early 2020 with the aim of creating affordable and sustainable products that share my love of Cornwall and the sea. As I go along, I am finding more and more ways to reduce the impact of my business as much as I can, and I hope to continue this as I grow. I create all my designs in my little home in the fishing village of Newlyn and I source my products as locally as possible; some are produced down the road!”

Ella has not only grown her business through the course, but also her confidence: “Completing the course with growing a business alongside has built my confidence and helped me to make more products and sell more. Specifically, life drawing was something I always wanted to do but was always too scared, I recently got commissioned for a life drawn piece. A couple of years ago I would have said no, but because I have now done that module on the course I said yes, and I knew I could do it.”

When applying for the course, Ella understood that she would be able to work in a wide range of artistic mediums but didn’t know how important this would be in her journey: “The highlight for me has been learning so many new mediums to work with, ceramics for example, I would have never had the opportunity otherwise. If I had gone to another university, I would have probably specialised in print making straight away and never got the chance to experiment.”

Ella’s advice to prospective students is: “Just give it a go! The University Centre is very flexible and it is way less daunting than you would think.”


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