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Toi me Te Hoahoa

Art and Design

Channel your creative thinking into a rewarding career.

Design skills are essential for New Zealand's economic and cultural future. Our highly practical art and design programmes will give you the skills and knowledge needed to build a career in the creative industries. 

You’ll engage in hands-on learning led by expert tutors in small classes. Your studies will equip you to pursue a career in a swiftly evolving environment and reshape thinking of what’s possible in the creative work context. Our graduates are at the forefront of these shifts – leading the drive to solve real-world problems through the creative and critical thinking skills they develop with us. 

We have Art and Design facilities at our Christchurch City and Timaru campuses.

Along with valuable work experience and intern opportunities, our relationships with industry mean we can respond quickly to marketplace demands. This ensures you graduate with exactly the skills employers tell us they need. Ara graduates are popular with employers because they have a reputation for being highly skilled, industry-ready and keen to contribute their creative energy and ideas from day one.

Our Art and Design facilities are exceptional and we’ve developed impressive, purpose-built environments to enhance your learning.

As an Art and Design student you’ll have access to advanced digital and multimedia technologies in our Mac studios which feature the full Creative Suite from Adobe and the latest Cinema 4D design programme. The Bachelor of Design (Motion Design) is the only degree programme in New Zealand to be using Cinema 4D for modelling, animating, lighting, texturing and rendering.

We have dedicated print facilities for traditional media like woodblock, intaglio, silkscreen and fabric printing, along with digital machines for market-standard printing of large-scale posters, banners and vinyl cut.

Our workrooms are well stocked with specialist tools and equipment for creating fashion garments, art and sculpture. You can book photo shoots within our main studio which features a cyc, full lighting kit and backdrops, or in one of two smaller studios.

There's a range of programmes to feed your creativity and develop your talent including Art and Design and Fashion Technology and Design.

If you think you may require modifications in order to undertake the practical components of a particular course of study, we encourage you to discuss these with us so we can give them careful consideration.

As it may take time to consider and implement any modifications, please contact as early as possible prior to the course starting. We’ll also need to check that there’s no risk of harm to you or anyone else before making a final decision.

Throughout this process we’ll communicate with you in a clear and timely manner.

Some of the content of this programme may pertain to current real-world issues that could evoke strong feelings or impact on the wellbeing and academic performance of learners who have experienced corresponding traumas in their own lives.
Performers / Broadcasters entertain, inform, engage, and create empathy with their audiences. These interactions bring forth discussion, can foster creative solution development and, most importantly, stimulate the creation of change in the world. This could mean drawing attention to and facilitating dialogue about topics that can be difficult, such as sexuality, gender, abuse, cultural appropriation, or racism.
We recognise that our learners bring with them diverse lived experiences. It is our role to create a safe environment for learning to allow for real emotions to come to the surface, and for students to feel well informed and well supported in the process.
Some of our strategies for supporting learners to engage with difficult content include:

  • Providing trigger warnings that allow learners to prepare emotionally for the content or propose alternative content or an alternative learning activity.
  • Providing resiliency or intimacy training as required
  • Providing access to wellbeing and counselling support services

It is difficult to anticipate all the topics that might be potentially triggering for learners, and therefore we encourage learners who are experiencing an emotional reaction to content to talk with their tutor or utilise Ara’s support networks.

Related programmes & courses

New Zealand Certificate in Fashion

Learn the skills needed to meet fashion industry expectations and explore your design aspirations.

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New Zealand Certificate in Creativity

Gain foundational hands-on experience for employment or further studies in the creative industries.

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New Zealand Certificate in Digital Media and Design

Gain foundational digital experience for employment or further studies in the creative industries.

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Bachelor of Design (Visual Communication Design)

Hone your creative talents to become a versatile design professional.

FULL-TIME - 3 Years
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Bachelor of Design (Motion Design)

Channel your imagination and creativity towards a career in the dynamic field of motion design.

FULL-TIME - 3 Years
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Bachelor of Design (Fashion Technology and Design)

Establish a name for yourself in the fashion industry by combining your flair, creativity and passion with professional expertise and technical skills

FULL-TIME - 3 Years
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Bachelor of Design (Applied Visual Art)

Prepare yourself for independent art practice in a studio environment.

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Postgraduate Diploma in Creative Practice

Take your professional creative career to a new level.

FULL-TIME - 1 Year (Part-time options available)
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Master of Creative Practice

Gain a qualification that recognises you as a leader in creative practice.

FULL-TIME - 1 Year
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