Robert Strange

Artist teacher Scheme

Robert Strange

Having achieved my degree in Fine Art from Newport College of Art in 1979 I worked as a sign-writer in London. After becoming self-employed and starting my own business I worked as a graphic designer, and eventually became a general manager of a graphics company in Oxford

Having achieved my degree in Fine Art from Newport College of Art in 1979 I worked as a sign-writer in London. After becoming self-employed and starting my own business I worked as a graphic designer, and eventually became a general manager of a graphics company in Oxford. In 1990 I was made redundant and took a PGCE at Reading University before starting a new career in teaching.

I decided to do the ATS at Oxford Brookes because it was perfect for me as an artist and a teacher. I was interested in visual literacy and this course gave me the opportunity to develop my interests as well as to meet like-minded teachers and artists. It was also a course that was local to me, and I knew and trusted the course leaders. Not many Universities offer a course like this one, and I found it to be practical, academic, and very relevant.

One of the best things about the course was meeting like-minded people, as well as the balance between practical and academic work. Furthermore I found that the course was relevant to my situation at work, and also helped me to learn new ideas about art in education. The tutors were great, especially Rachel Payne who gave up a great deal of her time and was very knowledgeable and enthusiastic. As a mature student I thought that returning to education would be difficult, but Rachel made it very easy for me. The facilities at Oxford Brookes also gave me the opportunities to experiment with new ideas in art education.

Oxford is a city that is really easy to get around, and what was great about Oxford Brookes was being able to access the libraries across all the sites. Oxford as a city has a lovely ambiance, and it has great museums, theatres, shops, cafes, pubs and parks.

After completing the Artist Teacher Scheme I decided to leave teaching to pursue my own full-time art career. The course provided me with the inspiration, courage and confidence to follow this direction, and I have now set up my own studio and joined the Oxford Art Week that opens studios to the public in May and November. For anyone interested, you can find my art at: www.robert-strange.co.uk