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Our Course

Special Effects at the University of Bolton has established itself over the last half decade as being one of the best courses in the country for practical effects. With the launch of our brilliant Special Makeup Effects (SMUFX) and Modelmaking Effects (MMFX) degrees we’ve taken the opportunity to refocus our core work into Creature and Character Effects. 


Creature and character effects cover a vast range of skills and disciplines. Our focus is on the most appropriate skills for the job of creating amazing creatures. We cover concept design and sculpture to create unique and dynamic characters, with costume and mechanical elements like animatronics and puppetry to bring those creatures to life. We want to make use of the best techniques and technology available to create amazing effects, things like 3D printing and engineering. The core tenets of design, realisation and fabrication underpin the amazing and varied work we do on this course. One day you might be sculpting and mould-making, or in the workshop fabricating armatures or animatronics, then another you might be in the costume shop making creature suits or things for more human sized characters. 


There will always be overlap in skills within practical effects but this course is not a make-up one nor is it modelmaking, though often, those skills might be relevant and appropriate. Creature and character effects is about little green space wizards and werewolves, knights in armour and battle worn space suits, It’s hulking barbarians and cackling witches. It’s about taking an art based skillset and pointing it at monsters and heroes. 


Our job is to make people believe the unbelievable.


First you need to check out the Uni Website

Then find out what the students are saying

Then, if you still like what you've seen



Our Studio

Our degree programme is written to include high levels of tutor contact but also high levels of independent and supported learning. It's a full time course and as such, you'll be needing somewhere to "be" during that time. 

We're really proud of our studio space. It's a visual cacophony of past projects and current WIP's it's busy and loud and vibrant and it's the central hub of our community. 

This workshop has areas where students can ALWAYS find space to work, whateber they're creating. We live and breathe this space. Our staff offices are next door so there's always support available to students even when working independently. Our teams also practice their craft in this studio workshop. 

Students and staff both treat the workshop like a home from home, we're relaxed and determined to enjoy our time their but also driven and focused on getting the job done. We'll laugh with you when things are fun, cheer when things go well and, more importantly, we'll pick you up when you fall down and guide you when you need support. 

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