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Your interview and portfolio

Undergradute study

Our lecturers have tailored subject specific portfolio and interview information because we know you'll want to show us just how talented you are when you apply to study at Ravensbourne.

What are we looking for?

Focus. Know the course you're applying for and aim the contents of your portfolio accordingly. We want to see you have a keen interest and ability for the subject. If you find out more about your specific course to tailor your portfolio, go to the course page.

 

Experimentation. Don't keep everything the same; we want to see whether you can work in a variety of media, using different methods.

 

Commitment. Show us that you can come up with a good idea and develop it into a final concept.

 

Passion. If you're excited and enthusiastic about your work, there's a better chance that we will be too.

 

Ambition. To make it in digital industry, you have to be ambitious. So go beyond the brief and produce your own work.

 

Industry awareness. We want to know you're going to exhibitions and events and who's inspiring you within your industry.

How much work should I bring in my portfolio?

Our interview tutors love looking through your work, but they won't have much time, so edit your portfolio and only bring us your best, most relevant pieces.

 

Your portfolio should be between 15 and 20 pages long and should also include at least one full sketchbook - ideally a separate sketchbook for each project.

 

Your work should cover the whole design process: from initial research, through concept development to the finished piece.

 

Only bring what you can carry yourself; you can show us large or three-dimensional pieces using photographs or via Flickr , YouTube or Vimeo.

Top showreel tips

  • Remember, we are a digital institution, so include some digitally focused work.

  • Keep all your work in the same format - all landscape or all portrait - as this makes it easier for us to view it.

  • Make sure you clearly label all your work, because we will sometimes look at it before we interview you.

  • Be prepared to discuss your ideas and what you hope to achieve by studying on the course.

  • Research the course you're applying for, identify the main area of work and base a larger portion of your showreel around that.

  • Front-load your showreel with your best work.

  • You'll only have a short time to show off your work, so keep your showreel short and punchy - around two minutes long.

  • Your interviewer may ask to see your best piece of work, so make sure you can find specific pieces quickly and easily.

  • Put your showreel on an internet channel, which will make it easier to view - but always bring a back-up with you in the form of a DVD, memory stick or hard drive.
  • Explain what your role was in each clip.

  • Only include your best work.

  • Correctly label all clips and the DVD, memory stick or hard drive.

  • Make sure all work is both Mac and PC-compatible.

If you are an EU or international student, we recommend that you upload your portfolio to a website such as  Flickr, YouTube or Vimeo and provide us with a link to your work, rather than supplying original work which cannot be returned.

Download our getting your showreel ready for interview guide

How to prepare for your interview

  • We'll expect you to talk about your work, so know it well. Be able to analyse it, identifying the strengths and weaknesses of your work.

  • Brush up on your knowledge of Ravensbourne and the industry you're applying for.

  • Find out as much as you can about the course you're applying for as the admissions tutor will be looking for this. A good way to do this is to come to an Open Day.

  • Be able to show that you're a team player and that you can use time effectively.

  • Practice at home, making sure you can say three things about every piece of work that aren't obvious by looking at it.

What else do I need to know?

 

  • Arrive on time.

  • Report to the main reception.

  • Your interview will take around 20 to 30 minutes, but you should expect to remain on campus for up to two hours.

  • You will be interviewed by at least two people, including a member of the course staff.

  • You may be interviewed in a group situation.

  • If you're applying for certain TV and broadcasting courses, you may be asked to sit a short maths or physics test.



Specific course requirements

Not all our courses ask you for a portfolio or showreel (although most will). Click on the course below to find out more:

BA (Hons) Advertising and Brand Design

You will need to provide a portfolio of material comprising of work created during your previous creative education, alongside any personal or professional projects.

 

This might include typography, graphic design, adverts, posters, digital design, animation and photography, as well as written material such as scripts or copywriting.

 

It is also important that you include research and development material such as moodboards, experiments, tests, thumbnails and brainstorms.

 

We do not expect a perfect professional finish but would rather see that you are prepared to take risks and explore outside your comfort zone.

BA (Hons) Animation

You are to upload no more than 10 pieces of work to a blog.

 

A piece of work can be: 

 

  • An animation
  • A storyboard
  • A concept piece, which could be of an environment or character design
  • Life drawings (one sheet of paper with multiple drawings on it or one developed drawing showing tone or colour)
  • Any personal work representing design, drawing, colour and research.
  • 3D work (a single model, an environment or samples of texturing and lighting skills)
  • If you feel other work is suitable such as photography or model making then please feel free to add it if it is relevant to animation.

The blog

 

As for the blog you can either create a free blog using Tumblr or use an existing blog if you have one.

 

You will need to sign up using an existing email address and a password of your choice. Also create a simple URL perhaps something simple like: ravensbourneinterview.tumblr.com

 

Please make sure to remember these details in case we need to contact you if we have a problem with your blog.

 

Make sure your blog is not password protected so we can gain access to your blog at anytime.

 

Please note it is your responsibility for ensuring we can access your blog. If we are unable to do so we will not be able to proceed with your application.

Architecture courses

BA (Hons) Architecture 
BA (Hons) Interior Design Environment Architectures
BA (Hons) Urban Landscape Architecture

We are looking for creative people, interested and wishing to pursue a career in architecture, urban landscape, interior design and built form interactions.

 

The portfolio should provide evidence of your creative interests, whether it be in the form of drawings photographs, video, film, animation, graphics, fashion, products, paintings, sculpture, models or assemblage, which shows your creative impulses and responses.

BA (Hons) Digital Film Production

  • Candidates should please bring a showreel around 3-4 minutes in length on a hard drive or accessible online. Please ensure your reel has clips that show the content of your films (i.e. including dialogue, interviews etc.) rather than simply a montage of images set to a soundtrack
  • If possible, films featured in the showreel should be made accessible in full either online or on a memory stick/hard-drive
  • If you don't have any films at this stage, please bring a portfolio of your other work for us to look through along with scripts, storyboards or any other relevant material(s)

BA (Hons) Digital Television Production

  • An engaging showreel with a duration of 2-4 minutes that contains your skills and work. Please only include your best work
  • If you have any materials such as mood boards, drawings or scripts that you made, please bring these along if you want to display them
  • If you are particularly interested in TV sound bring along some audio work
  • Photographs are acceptable if you want to display your lighting work or skills in framing and composition
  • At interview, you will be asked what you did specifically on the content that you show
  • It is beneficial if you show a passion for the television industry and can exhibit material that has been made by you outside of what is required for your formal studies

BA (Hons) Digital Photography

Bring a selected portfolio of your work, try to be as varied as you can, showing your range of interests and experience.

 

Aim to include 19-21 images as this makes a good, coherent portfolio.

 

Make this a print folio of about A4 to A3 size and show us your very best work - this might be examples of your current coursework but also consider any examples of personal work that might be relevant.

BA (Hons) Editing and Post Production

  • Please bring a showreel of your best work
  • It should run around 2 minutes and show a variety genres (bring your own computer to show your work or a link to your work online)
  • Please also bring two or more entire projects you have edited

BA (Hons) Fashion

If you attend your interview in person, you will present a variety of work in the form of a physical portfolio and supporting sketch books. We accept all sizes of portfolio from A3 to A1.

 

  • For in person interviews, the applicant should present a physical portfolio of work that represents their primary, secondary research and completed projects
  • Minimum of 10 pages of design development drawing skills that represent each project or most recent work
  • All Sketch books are crucial. These should demonstrate your research methods, concept development, ideation, colour, fabric and fashion application were applicable
  • Any garments that have been designed and manufactured by the applicant should be brought to the interview. We also recommend you photograph your garment on a model and include this in your portfolio

 

The portfolio and sketch books can also include:

 

  • Evidence of drawing skills and in particular observation skills
  • Life drawing quick sketches
  • Life drawing longer study drawings
  • Colour palette development, colour sensitivity and concept development
  • Evidence of design development and extensive experimentation
  • Textile experimentation, finish ideas and testing, feature development
  • Ability to develop from 2D into 3D resolution( photographs of final garments is adequate)
  • Draping in the stand and ability to capture shapes and silhouettes
  • Evidence of Illustration skills and the ability to communicate through illustration
  • CAD skills using Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop; this could be in illustrations or technical drawings(CAD skills not essential as we do teach this)

 

Overseas students

 

Digital portfolios should include some or all of the above elements scanned and presented in the form of a clearly laid out and easy to navigate PDF file that can be scrolled.

 

Please note: A range of separate individual sheets is not acceptable.

BA (Hons) Fashion Accessory & Textile Futures

The portfolio can be either digital or physical. It needs to have:

 

  • 10-15 portfolio pages, this may require you to edit your work. It can include illustrations, CADs and photographs of fashion accessory designs
  • 2–5 samples of work. This could be prototype or finished fashion garments, jewellery pieces, bags, backpacks, shoes or headwear
  • Theme-boards or trend boards which you can describe articulately during the interview. We are interested in your design process, your thinking, research and development of ideas
  • A written piece of work on any subject. Please print this out and bring a copy you can leave with us

 

Overseas students


Digital portfolios need to be presented in a scrollable PDF format, not as individual sheets (we cannot accept this). Please include some or all of the following elements:

 

  • Sketch books (essential to include)
  • Evidence of drawing skills, in particular observation skills
  • Life drawing - quick sketches and longer study drawings
  • Colour palette development, colour sensitivity and concept development
  • Evidence of design development and extensive experimentation of recent work
  • Textile experimentation, finish ideas and testing, feature development
  • Ability to develop from 2D into 3D resolution (photographs of final 3D design outcomes is adequate).
  • An awareness of 3D form and shape, and its application in fashion accessories design
  • Evidence of illustration skills and the ability to communicate through illustration CAD skills using Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop; this could be in illustrations or technical drawings (CAD skills are not essential as you will learn this here)

 

Home students

 

If you are able to attend your interview in person, you will still need to demonstrate a variety of the above evidence in the form of sketch books and a physical portfolio.

 

Please note: While we will accept any portfolio size, it is much more professional and easier to manage if you bring a maximum A3 to A2 size portfolio to interview.

BA (Hons) Fashion Buying and Brand Management

Due to the breadth of the field of study in Fashion Buying and Brand Management, an art and design portfolio is not a requirement.

 

The course will accept students from a broad range of subjects and backgrounds.

 

The following selection factors will be used:

 

  • A portfolio is welcome but not required
  • If you wish to demonstrate creativity through projects, it is acceptable to bring photographs of your work rather than an AO or A1 portfolio if you are coming a long way
  • A keen interest in the fashion industry is vital
    Work or work experience in fashion or fashion retail is an advantage
  • Ability to discuss a range of fashion related topics
  • The minimum UCAS points (64)
  • Foundations and BTech National Diplomas Merit and above
  • Good A-levels in art and design OR academic subjects
  • Subjects such as Business, English, Maths, Psychology, Sociology, Media Studies, Graphic Design are all relevant and a great advantage

BA (Hons) Fashion Promotion

  • The portfolio can be either digital or physical
  • 12-15 portfolio pages, this may require you to edit your work
  • Photography and film work films need to be in Quicktime files or uploaded onto youtube or vimeo so that the lecturer can view them on their laptop
  • Work which demonstrates use of graphics and graphic layouts
  • Theme-boards or trend boards which they can articulate during the interview, which showcase your thinking. We are keen to see how your research development has resulted in your finished pieces
  • 1 or 2 good projects from conception to realisation
  • A written piece of work, this can be on any subject but needs to be printed out, need to be able to also leave a copy

All the above has to be no more than 15 pages.

 

Overseas students

 

  • All work must be made by the applicant
  • 12 - 15 pages maximum
  • Size A3 is ideal but we see work which is A2 , A1 or A0.
  • Aim to show 3 projects which demonstrate design thinking - Research, ideas development, realisation / outcome
  • Visual language / creative thinking:
  • Drawings / illustrations
  • Concept boards / Mood boards / Storyboards
  • CAD skills ( Photoshop, InDesign, Illustrator, film editing software)
  • Graphics - layouts and use of typography 
  • Photography
  • Film
  • Sketchbooks and scrapbooks
  • Evidence of good written English 

BA (Hons) Games Design

You are to upload no more than 10 pieces of work to a blog or microsite.

 

A piece of work can be:

 

  • A game idea or paper prototype of a game.
  • A level idea for a game that already exists or one of your own game designs.
  • A concept piece, which could be of an environment or character design.
  • Video of any playable prototypes you have created in game software such as Unity, Game Studio 2.0.
  • Any personal work representing design, drawing, colour and research.
  • Reports from play sessions where you look at how a game was played by multiple participants and which mechanics worked best.
  • 3D work (a single model, an environment or samples of texturing and lighting skills).
  • If you feel other work is suitable such as photography or model making then please feel free to add it if it is relevant to game design.

 

The blog

 

The blog should be something easy to set up and access. Tumblr is quick and easy to get up and running. You can also use an existing blog you have.

 

Things to remember:

 

  • You'll need an existing email address to set up your account on the blogging service
  • Create a simple URL
  • Make sure you remember the password and URL for your blog just in case we have any issues accessing it
  • It's your responsibility to make sure the site is not password protected and we can access it with no issues.

BA (Hons) Graphic Design

Your portfolio


Bring along your portfolio and don’t forget your sketchbooks, which will demonstrate your creative processes and how you think.

 

We are interested in seeing your completed projects, including final outcomes, but it's always good to include any personal work you're proud of too.

 

We will be looking out for original and innovative experiments as well as relevant visual research and idea development.

 

Examples of work can include (but not restricted to):

 

  • posters and other printed matter
  • editorial layouts, including books and magazines
  • typographic experiments
  • information graphics
  • other forms of design including digital examples.


Your interview


At interview we're keen to hear all about your motivation and enthusiasm to study Graphic Design at Ravensbourne. Show us you have a good understanding of your work and why you want to pursue a career in the creative industries.

 

Finally, the interview is a great opportunity to meet current students, get to know the course better and ask us questions.

BA (Hons) Illustration for Communication 

We are looking for aspiring illustrators who are passionate about image-making, and want to take part in shaping the future of visual communication. We are not seeking industry-ready professionals, or people with established styles - we are simply looking for students who are excited and intrigued by illustration, and have the curiosity and motivation to approach it with the energy and focus it needs. This means that we have no specific requirements for what should be in your portfolio, but we would like to see evidence of how you like to make images (it doesn’t matter if that’s drawing, painting, digital work, collage, photography, animation - that part is up to you), as well as roughs, sketchbooks and development, so that we can get an idea of how you create your work. Technical and digital skills are useful, but not mandatory - digital workshops run throughout the course, and will get you up to speed on everything you need to learn to create industry-ready work. We look forward to meeting you.

BA (Hons) Motion Graphics

Where possible we like to interview students individually. At your interview we expect to see a wide-ranging portfolio of design work, which might typically include graphic design, typography, photography, illustration, animation, video and fine art.

 

We don't require you to necessarily have any motion graphics or moving image work in your portfolio, though this is desirable, but we do expect you to demonstrate an interest in and knowledge of the subject.

 

You should also include development work, sketch books and project logs.

 

Your portfolio should include work covered at GCSE, A Levels and / or Art & Design Foundation or BTEC, plus any work you consider relevant that you have produced independently.

 

When coming to interviews please bring all digital work on a USB drive, even if it is also available online.

BA (Hons) Music and Sound Design

Your portfolio should consist of a single Word or PDF document containing online links to three examples of original Music or Sound Design. The content can be uploaded in online platforms, such as Soundcloud, Youtube or Vimeo, or a personal website. A short paragraph of text explaining your role on each piece should be also included.

 

If possible, please include at least one example created for a form of audio-visual or interactive media (e.g. music or sound design for a short film, animation or game).

 

If you do not have three examples of original composition work, you may also include sound recordings or audio production work, such as band recordings and audio mixes, or examples of musicianship, such as a video of you playing an instrument.

 

Be prepared to discuss the pieces in your portfolio during you interview, covering how and why you made the work from both a technical and creative angle. 

BA (Hons) Product Design

For their interview, applicants should be ready to discuss a few (no more than 4) examples of their design work showing evidence of:

 

  • Sketching and planning projects - this might include some rough hand-drawings of ideas from a sketchbook or detailed technical drawings
  • Experimentation with different materials and design processes - this might include images (photographs or videos) of working with wood, metal, or 3D printing
  • Skill with making: images (photographs or videos) of finished projects
  • Problem solving - show how you have resolved problems you wanted to address
  • Research and curiosity: this might include images (photographs or videos) of related or inspirational designs and art projects

 
This work would have been completed as part of:

 

  • GCSEs
  • A Levels
  • Art & Design Foundation (FE)
  • BTEC
  • or independently outside of any curriculum.

BA (Hons) User-Experience and User-Interface (UX/UI) Design

Your interview will last approximately 20 minutes. It will be a friendly chat about your work, discuss your interest in the course, and answer any questions you have. Please bring along your portfolio, which could be printed sheets or a digital portfolio or website on a laptop or tablet.

 

Your portfolio may include:

 

  • App and website design
  • Posters/books/other print based projects
  • Experiments with code and programming
  • Working with materials and technology
  • Games design projects
  • Photography, video, animation, media projects
  • Fine arts projects
  • Relevant academic work in social science subjects

 

It is also great to see your creative process and how you developed your final outcome. Please include sketchbooks including brainstorms, sketches or drawings of ideas and designs, inspiration, moodboards, experiments and prototypes. You may also want to include extra projects and self-initiated design or technology projects you have done outside of any education program.

 

We will consider a wide range of applicants who show creativity and curiosity in the areas of design, technology, research, and more specifically digital experiences and interfaces. You do not need to have any coding or specific design software knowledge to be considered for the course.



UCAS workshops

We run a number of UCAS workshops to help prepare students for interview, including mock interview workshops, personal statement workshops and portfolio or showreel surgeries.

If you'd like to sign up to any of these sessions, please email l.slater@rave.ac.uk.

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