Program Overview

If you are passionate about art and want to develop your talents in an exciting and encouraging setting, the Fine Art program can help you reach your creative potential. This advanced diploma program can help prepare you for a career as a practicing artist, teacher, designer, or many other roles in the artistic community.

Program Details

Program Code
Ontario College Advanced Diploma
90 weeks
Start Dates

Full Time Offerings

2023 September
2024 September
Start Dates

Full Time Offerings

2023 September
2024 September

Your Learning Experience

Fanshawe’s three-year fine arts program celebrates traditional hands-on approaches to the visual arts. Our excellent studios, dedicated to students in this program, will provide you with the perfect environment to explore your talents in painting, drawing, sculpture, photography, printmaking, video, digital art. You’ll also study the history and philosophy of art to help provide a theoretical background for your practice. As part of your education, you will exhibit in several art galleries, enhancing your knowledge and experiences of professional practise and facilitating the beginning of a Fine Art career.


When you graduate from the fine arts program, you’ll have the option of continuing your studies at the university level if you’re interested in becoming an art teacher. If you prefer to venture out into the private sector, you may join other students from the fine arts program who have worked as museum curators, studio assistants, commercial technicians, and freelance consultants.


The Fine Art program is an intensive three-year course of study. It emphasizes the development of manual, perceptual and conceptual skills in various media which are used as disciplines considered necessary for working as a professional artist and/or teacher.


Students wishing to enter the Fine Art advanced diploma program must first successfully complete the one-year Fine Art Foundation certificate program.


Students that have successfully completed the Fine Art Foundation program, and wish to continue with the Fine Art program, must complete an "Application for Program Transfer" form available from the Office of the Registrar, Room E1012.

Career Information

Graduates of Fanshawe’s Fine Arts program develop practical and creative skills preparing them to enter a wide-range of career opportunities, such as:

  • a professional artist exhibiting and selling their own art
  • a studio assistant to other artists or as a technician in academic or commercial venues
  • curatorial work in galleries and museums
  • a freelance artist or consultant serving the needs of the television, film and theatre industries, commercial art venues, architects, designers and other professionals in the visual field
  • delivering art programming to engage youth or seniors.

Some graduates also choose to continued their studies at the university level in order to attain the qualifications required to enter the teaching profession.

Did you know Fanshawe consistently ranks high in graduation employment rates among large colleges in Ontario? 

Here are some examples of career opportunities for graduates of Fanshawe’s Fine Art program:

Professional Artist
Market yourself and show your creative, beautiful and thought-provoking art work in galleries, museums and art fairs.

Studio Assistant
Work with artists in studios and galleries across the world.


Acquire objects and collections, keep records and catalog acquisitions, plan and organize exhibitions, research objects and collections and handle administrative duties.

"Fine Art is a hands-on, studio-based program that exposed me to a diverse range of artistic techniques taught by supportive professors who are knowledgeable artists themselves. In addition to creative techniques and art history, we also learned about promoting ourselves as artists and the practicalities of participating in art exhibitions. I graduated with a professional portfolio to enter the art world."
Lori Jensen-Brazier
Graduate 2015
Learning Outcomes


The graduate has reliably demonstrated the ability to

1. Produce a portfolio of work including a comprehensive artist’s statement that reflects an advanced and sophisticated ability to communicate visually.

2. Solve complex problems related to the conceptual process involving project specifications, deadlines, budgetary restrictions and potential client directives.

3. Express artistic concepts and personal vision through the manipulation of a variety of media.

4. Enhance visual, written and verbal communication in the practice and promotion of personal artwork through the use of technology.

5. Communicate effectively in visual, verbal and written forms appropriate to the presentation and promotion of one’s work.

6. Evaluate contemporary developments and issues in visual and creative arts, as well as current trends in the market, in order to make informed decisions about one’s career in the arts.

7. Observe guidelines and regulations with respect to health and safety applicable to the use of art materials and methodology.

8. Evaluate historical and contemporary works of art from a critical perspective.

9. Conduct research for visual, written and oral presentation that directs problem solving, informs the creative process and reflects the influence of artistic styles and individuals from periods of history.

10. Create a career plan that reflects professional business practices and a knowledge of organizations and institutions that support the arts, for purposes of self-promotion and other art-related activities.

11. Prepare for exhibitions of one’s work in public galleries, displays and shows, including the documentation of work.

12. Collaborate effectively with faculty and peers.


Academic School

Program Coordinator:

Marla Botterill


Admission Requirements

Fine Art Foundation Ontario College Certificate from Fanshawe College
An equivalent qualification from another institution as judged by the College
International Admission Equivalencies
Admission equivalencies for Fanshawe depends on your country of study. Please enter your location to see the requirements for your country below.
Recommended Personal Preparation

Recommended Personal Preparation

  • Develop an interest and appreciation for art by visiting galleries, attending theatre and reading about the arts
  • Attempt to explore as many facets of art as possible
Applicant Selection Criteria

Applicant Selection Criteria

Where the number of eligible applicants exceeds the available spaces in the program, the Applicant Selection Criteria will be:
  1. Preference for Permanent Residents of Ontario
  2. Receipt of application by May 1st (After this date, Fanshawe College will consider applicants on a first-come, first-served basis until the program is full)
  3. Achievement in the Admission Requirements
  4. Preference will be given to graduates of the Fanshawe College Fine Art Foundation program


Year 1
Take all of the following Mandatory Courses:
WRIT-1036Reason & Writing 1-Art & Design3
This course introduces students to essential principles of reading, writing, and reasoning at the postsecondary level. Students will identify, summarize, analyze, and evaluate multiple short readings and write persuasive response essays to develop their vocabulary, comprehension, grammar, and critical thinking.
ARTS-1110Perceptual Studies 14.5
Using the figure, still life, objects, materials, the environment and the studio space, the student will learn to see and evaluate the visual world and, through analysis, interpret visual impressions into basic two-dimensional form. This will be done through the use of a variety of drawing media including; pencil, ink, conte, crayon, chalk and collage.
ARTS-1111Painting 14.5
This is an introductory painting course designed to introduce students to the basic principles and properties of fine art painting. Students will explore basic colour theory and a variety of introductory painting techniques. Knowledge of the tools of painting and their proper handling, as well as the language of painting will be introduced. Students will execute compositions in paint in differing scales and from a variety of sources. Lectures, demonstrations and field trips will provide students with an introductory overview of the history of painting. Acrylic paints will be the painting medium used in this course.
ARTS-1112Sculpture 14.5
This studio course explores traditional as well as contemporary sculpture materials and processes. Emphasis is on both additive and subtractive methods of working. Goals include acquiring technical skills, understanding the physical and expressive possibilities of diverse materials, and learning safe, appropriate use of tools and materials.
This one semester course is designed to introduce students to an appreciation of the inter-disciplinary aspects of contemporary art. The course will provide students with an introduction to work in digital time-based media, including video and sound. Class projects will be structured around various techniques and methods of working and shooting and editing of video including the spoken word and performance.
ARTS-1116Introduction to Photography3.5
This introductory level course is structured to provide a balance between technical instruction and demonstrations, out-of-class shooting assignments, photographic lab practices, discussion of ideas and concepts related to the history of Fine Art photographic images and processes. A critical analysis of student's work and its connection to the subject of art will be ongoing.
ARTS-1071Methods & Media in Drawing3
In this introductory course students will investigate methods and materials in two dimensional artworks such as; watercolour, pencil crayon, ink, pastel, relief printing and collage. Emphasis will be placed on constructing composition, design principles and implementing basic colour theory in drawing. Subject matter and visual resources may consist of studies from the object, figure, the constructed/natural landscape and pattern. Students will work in a variety of scales and use a variety of paper supports. Students will select, from a list provided (see course plan), and explore a single theme throughout the term applied within the use of multiple drawing media. Compositions must be created from a variety of sources e.g. found and personal photographs, still life, direct observation, dioramas, imagination etc.
ARTS-1115Perceptual Studies 25
This course builds on the techniques and materials explored in Perceptual Studies 1. Students will further explore and evaluate the visual world with an emphasis placed on concept development, analysis and interpretation of the visual world. Students are encouraged to experiment with drawing media. Students will work in a variety of scales and in a variety of drawing media.
ARTS-1113Painting 25
This course is designed to advance the basic understanding of colour theory and painting techniques acquired in Painting 1. Expanded colour theory, increasingly complex techniques and compositional strategies are emphasized. Students will be introduced to the uses of various acrylic mediums and will explore a variety of supports/grounds and scales in their work. The language of painting will continue to develop as well as an introductory understanding of the concept-development, inspirations and processes of painting throughout history.
ARTS-1114Sculpture 25
A continuation of Sculpture 1, this course encourages the further development of understanding sculpture through studio practice. Problem solving in three dimensions and issues including perception, metaphor, communication and composition will be discussed and explored through projects, discussions and presentations. Fundamental development of technical skills and manipulation of media are explored while maintaining safe and appropriate use of tools and materials.
COMM-3074Communications for Design3
This course, designed for students who plan to work in the field of art and design, focuses on professional written and verbal communication skills. Students learn to prepare a variety of work-related documents. In addition, students learn about research methods and documentation formats. The principles of effective writing - organization, grammar, style, clarity, and tone - are reinforced throughout the course. The goal of the course is to prepare students for the communication tasks and considerations they will encounter in the workplace in order to meet the needs of employers and/or the communities they will serve.
HIST-1046Ancient Origins to High Renaissance3
This course introduces students to the history of Western art and architecture by examining key works within the intellectual and social context that they were created. Because art does not develop in a vacuum, the philosophical, religious, scientific, etc., background of each period will be examined in order to gain a fuller understanding of important artistic trends. The overall goal of this course is to provide a working knowledge of the history of Western art and architecture as well as a foundation for critical thinking about art's history.
HIST-3028European Art: Mannerism to Contemporary3
This course continues students' education of the history of Western art and architecture by examining key works within the intellectual and social context that they were created. Beginning with Mannerism which wind downs the Renaissance period and points to heralding the birth of the Modern era, students will learn about the technological and intellectual advances that will shape and inform some of the most radical changes in Art History, including the foundation of abstraction, the birth of photography and the move into the post-modern era. The background of each period will be examined in order to gain a fuller understanding of important artistic trends. The overall goal of this course is to provide a working knowledge of the history of Western art and architecture as well as a foundation for critical thinking about art's history.
ARTS-1118Introduction to Print Making3
In this foundation course students will be introduced to various traditional and contemporary approaches to printmaking. Relief processes, monoprints, hand printing and mechanical printing methods will be demonstrated and explored through studio projects examining both unique and multiple production processes. Critique will further develop conceptual, technical, and expressive concerns related to printmaking.
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Tuition Summary


Canadian Costs
Total Cost of Program
International Costs
Total Cost of Program

*Total program costs are approximate, subject to change and do not include the health and dental plan fee, bus pass fee or program general expenses.