Apricotgrove
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Hey,

So I've been struggling constantly with my a level choices and one week left until term starts and I'm STILL deciding. The two I'm deciding between have a load of summerwork too ( art and english).

After getting the A* in art I immediately switched (I got a 6 in English lit, lower than my targets sadly). I can still take English as I just get in on the requirement but I felt more comfortable at the time with.

But there's a huge problem. School work art makes me so, so stressed out. I've been crying just from the first assignment because I'm stuck for ideas, feel a lack of creativity and desolation. It takes me so long and I'm wondering if it's worth it at all really. I feel terrible because my mum loves me drawing and has just brought a new sketchbook... but I feel like I'm going to end up like I did last time when I was so stressed out about GCSES : constantly alone shut in my room or at the toilets at school, quietly crying my eyes out.

Sorry this is so long, I really want some opinions. I never feel brave enough to share this with anyone else. English I feel would still be hard but so much less stress. I don't like all the books but I like a couple. Please somebody give some advice. Thank you.
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mistysky01
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(Original post by Apricotgrove)
Hey,

So I've been struggling constantly with my a level choices and one week left until term starts and I'm STILL deciding. The two I'm deciding between have a load of summerwork too ( art and english).

After getting the A* in art I immediately switched (I got a 6 in English lit, lower than my targets sadly). I can still take English as I just get in on the requirement but I felt more comfortable at the time with.

But there's a huge problem. School work art makes me so, so stressed out. I've been crying just from the first assignment because I'm stuck for ideas, feel a lack of creativity and desolation. It takes me so long and I'm wondering if it's worth it at all really. I feel terrible because my mum loves me drawing and has just brought a new sketchbook... but I feel like I'm going to end up like I did last time when I was so stressed out about GCSES : constantly alone shut in my room or at the toilets at school, quietly crying my eyes out.

Sorry this is so long, I really want some opinions. I never feel brave enough to share this with anyone else. English I feel would still be hard but so much less stress. I don't like all the books but I like a couple. Please somebody give some advice. Thank you.
With a levels do what you think you would enjoy. I took gcse art and it made me hate drawing, there's no point taking a subject that you already know makes you stressed and a level would be a step up.
Keep drawing as a hobby, and you'll still enjoy it, don't force yourself to do something because of a grade, tons of people got lower grades than expected on English literature you can still come out with a strong a level as you won't be dreading it.
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Shadowdraconis
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(Original post by Apricotgrove)
Hey,

So I've been struggling constantly with my a level choices and one week left until term starts and I'm STILL deciding. The two I'm deciding between have a load of summerwork too ( art and english).

After getting the A* in art I immediately switched (I got a 6 in English lit, lower than my targets sadly). I can still take English as I just get in on the requirement but I felt more comfortable at the time with.

But there's a huge problem. School work art makes me so, so stressed out. I've been crying just from the first assignment because I'm stuck for ideas, feel a lack of creativity and desolation. It takes me so long and I'm wondering if it's worth it at all really. I feel terrible because my mum loves me drawing and has just brought a new sketchbook... but I feel like I'm going to end up like I did last time when I was so stressed out about GCSES : constantly alone shut in my room or at the toilets at school, quietly crying my eyes out.

Sorry this is so long, I really want some opinions. I never feel brave enough to share this with anyone else. English I feel would still be hard but so much less stress. I don't like all the books but I like a couple. Please somebody give some advice. Thank you.
I completely understand the GCSE art thing i was like that too. Personally I think english would be a better option particularly if you enjoy it and diddnt mind GCSE english. You can always do art in your own time and have the freedom to choose what to do and when to do it. If you do it as an a level i feel like it would be really restraining and from what you said about your experiences at GCSE. Good luck in your decision! Bear in mind tho that i have not done art or english a level.
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pastelsloth
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(Original post by Apricotgrove)
Hey,

So I've been struggling constantly with my a level choices and one week left until term starts and I'm STILL deciding. The two I'm deciding between have a load of summerwork too ( art and english).

After getting the A* in art I immediately switched (I got a 6 in English lit, lower than my targets sadly). I can still take English as I just get in on the requirement but I felt more comfortable at the time with.

But there's a huge problem. School work art makes me so, so stressed out. I've been crying just from the first assignment because I'm stuck for ideas, feel a lack of creativity and desolation. It takes me so long and I'm wondering if it's worth it at all really. I feel terrible because my mum loves me drawing and has just brought a new sketchbook... but I feel like I'm going to end up like I did last time when I was so stressed out about GCSES : constantly alone shut in my room or at the toilets at school, quietly crying my eyes out.

Sorry this is so long, I really want some opinions. I never feel brave enough to share this with anyone else. English I feel would still be hard but so much less stress. I don't like all the books but I like a couple. Please somebody give some advice. Thank you.
I got an A* in art too and Ive had a passion for art since I was small. But oh man doing it for GCSE absolutely killed any love I had for it because of the deadlines the excessive workload and the restrictions placed by having to follow certain topics etc. I personally am nOt doing it for Alevel never in a million years simply because of how p a i n f u l GCSE was. My headteacher even said to me don't do Art if you're doing 4 a levels since it's too much work.

I'd much rather have fun and do art on my own where I feel happy and comfortable creating stuff rather than stressed and on the verge of crying because of how much work there is. I'm being dramatic but I also (stupidly) took photography along with art so yknow the workload was doubled to say the least.

Do English instead if ur good at it, I don't know though I'm not good at advice giving. It really depends on your time managing skills of which I have none lol srsly I did a whole terms worth of work in 3 days and it was tiring. If it doesn't make you happy there's no point and besides you can always do art at home (my parents were also saying don't give up with art since I'm apparently really good but it just makes me sad so there was no way I was putting myself through it again)
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Shadowdraconis
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(Original post by mistysky01)
With a levels do what you think you would enjoy. I took gcse art and it made me hate drawing, there's no point taking a subject that you already know makes you stressed and a level would be a step up.
Keep drawing as a hobby, and you'll still enjoy it, don't force yourself to do something because of a grade, tons of people got lower grades than expected on English literature you can still come out with a strong a level as you won't be dreading it.
IKR me too!!!

Soo true!!! You worded it so much better than me lol :laugh:
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artful_lounger
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You know you can do art without having to do an art qualification...?

If the structure of assessment for art makes you this distressed, then it's not a reasonable choice to pursue. However, if you like doing creative things in general, there's no reason you can't use your sketchbook (after dropping art) to draw stuff as you like.

Also you may want to speak to your GP about your situation because contrary to what popular media may suggest, crying on a regular basis over academic work is not healthy or useful.
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Apricotgrove
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(Original post by mistysky01)
With a levels do what you think you would enjoy. I took gcse art and it made me hate drawing, there's no point taking a subject that you already know makes you stressed and a level would be a step up.
Keep drawing as a hobby, and you'll still enjoy it, don't force yourself to do something because of a grade, tons of people got lower grades than expected on English literature you can still come out with a strong a level as you won't be dreading it.
Thank you for replying! I totally understand, I love drawing when I feel like it but art makes me feel horrible when I can't think what to do for what is instructed. Further more I don't consider it a career, more a hobby.

Is that true with English lit then? I really thought I had done well in it, I've been a straight grade 8 student (a* level) all year but was kinda heartbroken to see the 6 (b level). I'm not confident in my skills any longer. I don't even know if I'm closer to a c or an a because the new grading systems don't give it anymore. I'm so torn, maybe I should talk and ask for some more opinions from my parents and others.
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Shadowdraconis
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(Original post by pastelsloth)
I got an A* in art too and Ive had a passion for art since I was small. But oh man doing it for GCSE absolutely killed any love I had for it because of the deadlines the excessive workload and the restrictions placed by having to follow certain topics etc. I personally am nOt doing it for Alevel never in a million years simply because of how p a i n f u l GCSE was. My headteacher even said to me don't do Art if you're doing 4 a levels since it's too much work.

I'd much rather have fun and do art on my own where I feel happy and comfortable creating stuff rather than stressed and on the verge of crying because of how much work there is. I'm being dramatic but I also (stupidly) took photography along with art so yknow the workload was doubled to say the least.

Do English instead if ur good at it, I don't know though I'm not good at advice giving. It really depends on your time managing skills of which I have none lol srsly I did a whole terms worth of work in 3 days and it was tiring. If it doesn't make you happy there's no point and besides you can always do art at home (my parents were also saying don't give up with art since I'm apparently really good but it just makes me sad so there was no way I was putting myself through it again)
I did GCSE art too and absolutely HATEDDD it (mostly cos of deadlines and the fact that it takes me yearssss to draw cos im a little bit of a perfectionist.) and iv chosen to do A Level photography (having not done it at gcse or met anyone who has). Would I regret it? Like is it a load of work like GCSE art or is it nicer?
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Apricotgrove
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(Original post by artful_lounger)
You know you can do art without having to do an art qualification...?

If the structure of assessment for art makes you this distressed, then it's not a reasonable choice to pursue. However, if you like doing creative things in general, there's no reason you can't use your sketchbook (after dropping art) to draw stuff as you like.

Also you may want to speak to your GP about your situation because contrary to what popular media may suggest, crying on a regular basis over academic work is not healthy or useful.
Thank you for replying! I know, you've hit the nail when it's the sheer amount of deadlines and work that makes me so wound up about it. I really do need to weigh up my options.

And I know my situation is bad. I've told my best friend only and she told me to see a counsellor but over the summer holidays I've been so happy and it hasn't happened once. But these last few days have been worse than ever. Last year I unleashed it on my history teacher and feel embarrassed to this day for making him feel horrible too because I know it spreads.

I need to go with the choice that makes me happy but I don't want to do something I might regret? I don't know, I'm still conflicted. I'm trying to organise my thoughts on here haha.
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mistysky01
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(Original post by Apricotgrove)
Thank you for replying! I totally understand, I love drawing when I feel like it but art makes me feel horrible when I can't think what to do for what is instructed. Further more I don't consider it a career, more a hobby.

Is that true with English lit then? I really thought I had done well in it, I've been a straight grade 8 student (a* level) all year but was kinda heartbroken to see the 6 (b level). I'm not confident in my skills any longer. I don't even know if I'm closer to a c or an a because the new grading systems don't give it anymore. I'm so torn, maybe I should talk and ask for some more opinions from my parents and others.
I got a 7 in English lit despite being predicted 8/9. I understand that your not as confident but I'm still going to take it because I don't think me having a bad day makes me worse at the subject, not that a 7 or a 6 is a bad grade!!! Seriously take English, If you don't enjoy art
Ask your English teacher if they think you can handle it if you've been getting straight 8s you definitely can
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mistysky01
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(Original post by Shadow_12)
IKR me too!!!

Soo true!!! You worded it so much better than me lol :laugh:
Words can not express my hatred of gcse art
😂😂 my class had a bonfire with our pencils and water colours after exams
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pastelsloth
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(Original post by Shadow_12)
I did GCSE art too and absolutely HATEDDD it (mostly cos of deadlines and the fact that it takes me yearssss to draw cos im a little bit of a perfectionist.) and iv chosen to do A Level photography (having not done it at gcse or met anyone who has). Would I regret it? Like is it a load of work like GCSE art or is it nicer?
Aagh same. And photography oh no...I got full UMS overall but only because I put SO much work into it...bit too much. It was haaaaard for me. I made sure to do x2 A3 pages of research for each photographer we looked at and our teacher made us write a paragraph long annotation for each photo we took and we had to know what to talk about with every photo and there was the fact that we had to have contact sheets for each shoot and shoot plans ughh I hated it so much. Especially since we had to print out each thing we had so like the annotations and research was all printed...I think I have pics of my book somewhere since they've taken it for marking but I think you're lucky since the book portfolio is digital or at least in our school now.

Buuuut the positives of photography and art is that the work you create at the end is something that makes you so proud. And photoshops rly fun in photography. I found it to be a lot more work but I was also being a perfectionist + procrastinator so uhh yeah
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Apricotgrove
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(Original post by pastelsloth)
I got an A* in art too and Ive had a passion for art since I was small. But oh man doing it for GCSE absolutely killed any love I had for it because of the deadlines the excessive workload and the restrictions placed by having to follow certain topics etc. I personally am nOt doing it for Alevel never in a million years simply because of how p a i n f u l GCSE was. My headteacher even said to me don't do Art if you're doing 4 a levels since it's too much work.

I'd much rather have fun and do art on my own where I feel happy and comfortable creating stuff rather than stressed and on the verge of crying because of how much work there is. I'm being dramatic but I also (stupidly) took photography along with art so yknow the workload was doubled to say the least.

Do English instead if ur good at it, I don't know though I'm not good at advice giving. It really depends on your time managing skills of which I have none lol srsly I did a whole terms worth of work in 3 days and it was tiring. If it doesn't make you happy there's no point and besides you can always do art at home (my parents were also saying don't give up with art since I'm apparently really good but it just makes me sad so there was no way I was putting myself through it again)
Thanks for replying! It feels so good to find someone in the same situation as me. I may take up your advice, art at home makes me so much happier too. I really agree with your post.
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Apricotgrove
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(Original post by pastelsloth)
Aagh same. And photography oh no...I got full UMS overall but only because I put SO much work into it...bit too much. It was haaaaard for me. I made sure to do x2 A3 pages of research for each photographer we looked at and our teacher made us write a paragraph long annotation for each photo we took and we had to know what to talk about with every photo and there was the fact that we had to have contact sheets for each shoot and shoot plans ughh I hated it so much. Especially since we had to print out each thing we had so like the annotations and research was all printed...I think I have pics of my book somewhere since they've taken it for marking but I think you're lucky since the book portfolio is digital or at least in our school now.

Buuuut the positives of photography and art is that the work you create at the end is something that makes you so proud. And photoshops rly fun in photography. I found it to be a lot more work but I was also being a perfectionist + procrastinator so uhh yeah
I'm wondering if I'll spend too much time on art rather than my other subject and mess them up. I did that was science loads in year 10 (drew in science class) and had to majorly cram in year 11. Oh the joys laid back teachers...
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markova21
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I've heard of a good few people who did A level Art and it basically took over their lives, to the detriment of everything else. There is SO much work, you have little time for your other subjects. What I gathered is most A level Art teachers did not give a flying f*** that you had other commitments, and a life. It was all consuming, all encompassing and hell. As I said a good few people I know who took it said it was the worst decision they made, simply because of the huge workload, compared to their other A levels.
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genie2303
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I'm biased because i've just finished year 13 and achieved an A* in art but i really do think you should go for art.
1) an a* in art is a good indicator that you have atleast some natural ability for it which puts you at an advantage that a lot of others won't have, so a good portion of the course will come with ease i promise you.
2) I remember feeling the exact same with the summer homework set in year 11. But you wouldnt believe the again, 'natural' progression that just comes with practice. GCSE art is so stressful because you're doing so many other subjects but A level gives you time to breathe (and stress out).
3) you'll produce some amazing work and some absolute rubbish work (well i did anyway) a lot of it is learning from your mistakes and going from one idea takes you to another so just go with it and think positively!!
i also was close to taking english and so glad i didn't.. art is a break from textbooks which helps you perform so much better in your academic subjects and less stress in exam season.
sorry that was a bit long but if you have any questions dont hesitate to ask
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Apricotgrove
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(Original post by markova21)
I've heard of a good few people who did A level Art and it basically took over their lives, to the detriment of everything else. There is SO much work, you have little time for your other subjects. What I gathered is most A level Art teachers did not give a flying f*** that you had other commitments, and a life. It was all consuming, all encompassing and hell. As I said a good few people I know who took it said it was the worst decision they made, simply because of the huge workload, compared to their other A levels.
Oh that sounds absolutely terrible! I would hate that to happen as I want to spend the most of my time on history as I'm studying it at uni! would you suggest maybe I trial with doing both the English and art summer wor and deciding in the weekend? I don't want to spend all my time seeing if I even like the art project if I'm not going to do it.
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Apricotgrove
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(Original post by genie2303)
I'm biased because i've just finished year 13 and achieved an A* in art but i really do think you should go for art.
1) an a* in art is a good indicator that you have atleast some natural ability for it which puts you at an advantage that a lot of others won't have, so a good portion of the course will come with ease i promise you.
2) I remember feeling the exact same with the summer homework set in year 11. But you wouldnt believe the again, 'natural' progression that just comes with practice. GCSE art is so stressful because you're doing so many other subjects but A level gives you time to breathe (and stress out).
3) you'll produce some amazing work and some absolute rubbish work (well i did anyway) a lot of it is learning from your mistakes and going from one idea takes you to another so just go with it and think positively!!
i also was close to taking english and so glad i didn't.. art is a break from textbooks which helps you perform so much better in your academic subjects and less stress in exam season.
sorry that was a bit long but if you have any questions dont hesitate to ask
You seem to be the only positive person haha! I totally get that it can be stress free but it's quite stress full for me with the sheer amount of writing about your ideas (which I'm stuck on) and the photography bit. For example I'm doing the topic of change and have chosen to do about a person's greed for consuming the environment compared to those who appreciate nature. But I'm totally clueless for my photoshoots on it and I don't know what to do! I'm just thinking of ditching it to be honest with you. I'm a huge perfectionist and feel like art will take me hours to do
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Shadowdraconis
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(Original post by pastelsloth)
Aagh same. And photography oh no...I got full UMS overall but only because I put SO much work into it...bit too much. It was haaaaard for me. I made sure to do x2 A3 pages of research for each photographer we looked at and our teacher made us write a paragraph long annotation for each photo we took and we had to know what to talk about with every photo and there was the fact that we had to have contact sheets for each shoot and shoot plans ughh I hated it so much. Especially since we had to print out each thing we had so like the annotations and research was all printed...I think I have pics of my book somewhere since they've taken it for marking but I think you're lucky since the book portfolio is digital or at least in our school now.

Buuuut the positives of photography and art is that the work you create at the end is something that makes you so proud. And photoshops rly fun in photography. I found it to be a lot more work but I was also being a perfectionist + procrastinator so uhh yeah
Thanks sooo much!!! Im reconsidering my choices don't know if i can handle the stress yet again... The pics would be really helpful in my decision. Quick question again: does photography require loads of good quality drawings of what you are going to photograph or is it just mostly written stuff about what you intend to do?

Thanks again!!
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Abby3112
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(Original post by Apricotgrove)
I'm a huge perfectionist and feel like art will take me hours to do
I had a friend who was also a perfectionist and wanted to take art. I've never seen someone have a downwards spiral so fast. I personally ditched art at GCSE as I too found it to be sucking away any passion I had for the subject (also my teacher refused to allow me to use my strongest medium at the time). Honestly seeing my friend so stressed out all year was painful to watch - the stress didn't even pay off for her, she went from an A* at GCSE to a D at a level. To make it worse the time she spent trying to 'perfect' each piece of work meant she didn't finish work in other subjects so she ended up failing those too.

Everyone else who took art at my school also really struggled with the workload and ended up not enjoying the subject at all. On the other hand, many people enjoyed English lit (even those who found it difficult came out with a good grade in the exams). Of course it is your decision but I'd rather you make that decision while being aware of the possible consequences from other people's experiences.
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