Art for Mary

8th April 2021

A former Barking & Dagenham College student is now studying on a pre-MA course at the Royal College of Art (RCA).

Mary Richardson had always wanted to go to art school but never felt brave enough to take that step when she was younger. She pursued a career as a journalist before having children and becoming a stay-at-home mum.

When the children were a little older, Mary took her chance to join Barking & Dagenham College to study for a BTEC in Photography, a course she loved.

It was while studying on the course that Programme Leader, David Bennett, encouraged Mary to apply to the Royal College of Art and she decided to do just that.

The result was that Mary was accepted to study on a pre-MA course specialising in Fine Art and Mary is enjoying it so much.

Enrolling during a pandemic has been interesting. She joins 50 other people from all over the world to do her course via Zoom. As Mary explains: “So far it’s been the most amazing experience. It’s such hard work and I’m rethinking pretty much everything I thought I knew! But I am loving every minute. I have had to turn my kitchen into my studio and make my work there because of lockdown not to mention juggling study with homeschooling when we needed to do that for my two sons.”

For Mary, the course has changed her life. She continues: “Through my courses, I have become an artist rather than someone who likes the idea of being an artist! I am now even applying for an MA Fine Art course. But I know that I am only at the RCA because of the course I did at Barking & Dagenham College and the encouragement of David to apply.”

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