• Photography and Media

    HNC Photography

  • SCQF Level

    Level 7

  • Attendance/Duration

    Full-time, one year

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This course will help you prepare for a successful career as a professional photographer.

For entry to this course you’ll need:

  • A real passion for photography
  • One Higher, preferably Photography or Art and Design OR a relevant NC course at SCQF Level 6 or equivalent, such as Photography
  • An interview with us
  • A portfolio of your work

If you don’t have formal qualifications, but have appropriate experience or training, then we’ll also consider you for a place, so please call us for a chat.

What's Involved

To be a professional photographer, you’ll need broad technical skills for lighting, camera and editing, good people skills, and the ability to work under pressure. Led by experienced and award winning photographers, this course will develop your technical expertise, while giving you the opportunity to work on live briefs to develop the rest.

Here’s just some of what you’ll be doing:

  • You’ll look at studio still life, with an emphasis on creative lighting and composition.
  • You’ll develop your portraiture skills, learning creative lighting techniques for the studio and on location.
  • You’ll look at corporate photography, and techniques for working in uncontrolled industrial and commercial environments.
  • You’ll learn about documentary photography and choose your own theme for producing a series of documentary images.
  • You’ll look at social photography such as events and weddings.
  • You’ll explore environment photography and go on location to produce a series of images.
  • You’ll develop skills in the specialist area of image editing, including Lightroom and Photoshop.

You’ll also have the opportunity to:

  • Take part in live briefs, such as community projects.
  • Engage with local businesses and shoot photography for promotional purposes.
  • Go on location locally, such as Kilwinning Abbey, Scottish Maritime Museum or the beach.
  • Go on trips to photography exhibitions and studios.
  • Display your work in public exhibitions.
  • Enter competitions judged by professional photographers.
  • Hear top tips from guest speakers who work in professional photography.
  • Take part in internal and external events, such as the Fashion Show, weddings and employer dinners.
  • Work with other creative students, such as hair, beauty or make-up students, with photography for their portfolios.

Go Anywhere

When you successfully complete this course, you’ll have the choice of:

  • Moving onto HND Photography
  • Setting up your own photography business.
  • Exploring your future career options including: Social Photographer, Portrait Photographer, Press Photographer, Fashion Photographer, Corporate Photographer or Photo Editor.

With additional qualifications, you may be able to progress to a degree programme in photography at e.g. Edinburgh College of Art, Edinburgh Napier University, Glasgow School of Art, Gray’s School of Art at Aberdeen, City of Glasgow College or Edinburgh College.


  • Snapped up - student’s enthusiasm for learning leads to work experience with a pro. Click here to read the blog.
  • Skills on show - creative students put on dazzling display of talent at End of Year Show. Click here to read the blog.
  • Find out what it’s really like - Student of the Year Karen Kerr shares her experience of studying Photography at Ayrshire College and her plans for what to do next. Click here to read the blog.
  • Success on a global scale - photography lecturer honoured at international awards. Click here to read the blog.

Start Date

26 Aug 2019




Start Date

26 Aug 2019




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