Fashion Image Making and Styling
BA (Hons)

Overseas study available
Work placement opportunity
International Students can apply

3 good reasons to study Fashion Image Making and Styling at Salford


Be part of one of the leading fashion image making & styling courses in the country with a long-established track record recognised by the British Fashion Council and Graduate Fashion Week


Be encouraged to find your own style through a unique learning environment that combines great teaching from a team of passionate tutors with a large amount of creative freedom


Enhance your employability by showcasing at Graduate Fashion Week, exhibiting in a London gallery as well as work placements, competitions and partnerships with leading international fashion brands

Course Summary

Image-makers and stylists are now fashion’s most powerful figures, creating aesthetics that transcend boundaries and influence popular culture at the highest level. Studying this course will greatly increase both your employability and cultural currency, preparing you for a successful career in the fast moving fashion industry.

The Fashion Image Making & Styling course is unique in its contemporary direction. We work with your individual talent and ability, encouraging you to build on your personal strengths, whilst helping you to develop as a creative practitioner.

Through project briefs that contextualise fashion within contemporary culture, you will develop a critical and cultural awareness that enables and promotes discourse around hegemonic visual trends and language. Technical skills and professional skills are nurtured alongside creative and conceptual thinking. You will engage with a range of technologies, enabling you to operate in a cross-media world.

Our students enter the industry in a wide variety of roles relevant to the ever-changing fashion environment. The great versatility of this course means that alongside freelance photographers and stylists, our graduates also go on to work in PR, film, TV and media. Many are now leading practitioners in industry employed by brands including Topshop, Urban Outfitters, Marina Rinaldi (Italy), Red Bull and X Factor and fashion publications including Dazed & Confused, i-D, Pop, GQ Style and I Love Fake.

Watch our video

Interview with current international student Karin at Vogue’s Fashion Night Out in Manchester.

Watch our video

A video of 2012 graduate Michael Mayren working with Adidas as part of the London Olympics to customise trainers

Watch our video

A film by 2012 graduate Rachel Hannaway who won a 6 month placement with Warehouse to shoot a collection campaign

Course Details

Course Structure

Year One

During Semester 1 you will undertake a broad exploration of fashion through a series of practical projects in both Fashion Image Making & Styling and Fashion Design. Experimentation is encouraged and you will be introduced to the fundamentals of a range of technical, knowledge and understanding skills. After Semester 1 you will choose your specialism.

During Semester 2 you will focus on specialist areas relating exclusively to Fashion Image Making & Styling. By the end of the year, you will have developed sufficient technical skills in the area to be able to realize your concepts, including photographic and fashion film-making skills. You will also have developed the ability to understand and communicate ideas in a professional visual form.

Semester One

This module introduces the basic skills and knowledge required as part of the fashion design process. It aims to provide the essential foundation upon which your understanding and awareness of the conceptual processes are underpinned by your technical and creative responses. It also aims to generate a sense of confidence and encourage you to think and explore in an open and expansive manner allowing you a period of exploration within which more personal and creative responses can be generated via 2D and 3D solutions within the context of an extended project.
The aim of this module is to introduce you to the basic aspects of fashion styling and image making through approaches to research and exploration of concepts and techniques that are pertinent to fashion. This includes looking at contemporary fashion practice, trends and image that inform society both at a commercial and artistic level. You will be encouraged to appreciate the opportunities that these areas can offer, providing the foundation upon which you can supplement fresh thinking and apply future projects.
This module is delivered through a series of lectures, seminars and practical workshops involving the development and research of fashion thinking via short exercises and focused projects. The sessions also incorporate individual and group tutorials to discuss student development, and encourage an exchange of ideas and approaches to learning. Typically students will produce as part of a project a research book, development boards and a final outcome that could be either in the form of 2D, 3D or digital formats. The content of work will be determined by individual projects and the student’s interest in either design or styling.
The module is taught through a variety of complementary teaching methods and formats including lectures, tutorials and projects. These various methods and formats will use the VLE to encourage active student participation in research, study skills and interpretation of teaching material. The two assessed components encouarge the students to explore, consider and reflect on a range of perspectives in the field of creative practice, especially in the context of their own practice. Sessions focus on issues affecting visual culture in relation to fashion and visual culture. Connected visits may be arranged.

Semester Two

A skill based module taught mainly in the workshop/studio through a series of demonstrations and lectures.The student will be introduced to materials, workshop machineries and studio equipment through a series of demonstration and exercises. Assessment will be through a project that will typically include a body of work demonstrating understanding and application of techniques, materials and practical skills. Typically, this would be in the form of a project file built throughout the module.
This module is created to challenge you to engage with diverse approaches to fashion communication. The learning is achieved through workshops including practical drawing for fashion and the use of computer software appropriate to the fashion industry.
Continuing the topics covered in semester 1.
In semester 2 this module also features a mentoring experience where level 4 and level 6 students are partnered according to their interest in either design or styling. Level 4 students in semester 2 work closely with level 6 students who are in the process of realising their final major project. Level 6 students are required to complete an evaluation form that assesses the experience with their L4 student.  At the same time L4 students are required to maintain and submit a visual/written journal/blog as part of their experience and overall project work

Year Two

Semester One

Acting as an introduction to the pathway, this module aims to provide you with the opportunity to develop your understanding of styling and image making and give you a solid foundation of knowledge for future modules. You will develop the technical skills necessary for the effective realisation of concepts within this discipline.
This module aims to introduce you to the basic skills associated with the discipline (photography/image making), equipping you with sufficient knowledge to enable independent work in the area of fashion styling and image making. This module deals with the professional strategies necessary to gain both experimental and creative sensitivity towards every aspect of the project.
The purpose of this module is to place fashion styling and image making within a business context, enabling you to consider the Specialism in relation to the needs of a diversity of end users within the fashion and style related industries. Developing an awareness of business and marketing issues enables you to develop professional and creative skills which reflect the relationship between product, consumer and needs. This experience will allow you to gain sufficient skills to work independently in all areas of fashion styling and image making practice.
This module asks you to find your position in debates around key ideas in design and visual culture. Building on your knowledge of the ideologies and aesthetics of the 20th and 21st centuries, you will engage in dialogue in order to critique design and the visual within an historical and cultural framework. This module fosters an environment where ideas can be explored and exchanged in order for you to develop an individual, critical voice.

Semester Two

The aim of this module is to develop an understanding of the image-maker and stylist’s role in spotting and instigating new trends while developing a contextual awareness of fashion’s place within wider culture. This module encourages you to understand different markets within fashion. You will develop a flexible approach, learning to adapt your work to different markets. Throughout this module you will be entering a more personal journey and initiating your personal direction in preparation for your final year.
Building the knowledge and skills gained in year 2, semester 1.
Building the knowledge and skills gained in year 2, semester 1.
Placements within industry not only add to your knowledge and appreciation of your chosen discipline but can also enhance future employment prospects. This module encourages a liaison between you and leading practitioners, publications and brands in industry – allowing you to apply and develop your knowledge and skills gained on the course while offering an understanding of the relevant working procedures and the professional activities. You will be encouraged to identify a placement that supports your interests and future career aspirations.

Year Three

Semester One

The aim of this module is to extend and refine your understanding of styling and image making and develop your ability to solve a series of issues fully in response to an external brief within a professional context.You will aim to develop a personal and informed body of work, developing integrity, authenticity and professionalism, skills that will underpin the final year.
You will develop an understanding of the process of producing a collection of images, and explore the full potential of the creative interpretation and consider styling and image making as a creative process.
This unit aims to challenge you to reflect critically on your personal skills and to exploit your individual creativity in promoting your own work. It is also the aim to enable you to use the experiences and approaches to specialised research as a platform for your Final Major Project work.
This module provides an opportunity for you to engage in a detailed examination of an aspect of business practice and management of interest to you. The module enhances your ability to contextualise design as a commercial activity thereby underpinning and strengthening your own practice and understanding.


This module provides an opportunity for you to engage in a detailed examination of an aspect of visual culture of interest to you. You are encouraged to explore connections between your proposed study and your studio practice in a connected but distinct programme, thereby underpinning and strengthening your own practice and providing an intensification of understanding.

Semester Two

The final major project is designed to allow you to synthesise your experiences on the course through the definition, negotiation and implementation of a self-directed programme of design investigation, research and development leading to the presentation of a major design project. You are encouraged to identify an issue or set of issues around which to focus your design investigation. The primary responsibility for the implementation of the project lies with you, and you will be assessed on your capacity to undertake a detailed examination of the territory you have identified.Effectively, this negotiated study provides a framework through which you are able to demonstrate a capacity to practice your understanding of the particular contextual circumstances in which you operate.
Further developing the knowledge and skills from year 3, semester 1.
Further developing the knowledge and skills from year 3, semester 1.


Further developing the knowledge and skills from year 3, semester 1.

Please note that it may not be possible to deliver the full list of options every year as this will depend on factors such as how many students choose a particular option. Exact modules may also vary in order to keep content current. When accepting your offer of a place to study on this programme, you should be aware that not all optional modules will be running each year. Your tutor will be able to advise you as to the available options on or before the start of the programme. Whilst the University tries to ensure that you are able to undertake your preferred options, it cannot guarantee this.

Entry Requirements

Qualification Entry requirements
Foundation Diploma in Art & Design Pass = 165 (plus other additional qualifications to a total of 260pts)
UCAS tariff points 240-280 UCAS tariff points, including an Art & Design subject
GCE A level 240-280 points including an A2 in an Art and Design subject at grade C
BTEC National Diploma DMM
BTEC Higher National Diploma Applicants may be considered for entry into level 5 (year 2)
Foundation Degree Applicants may be considered for entry into level 6 (year3)
Scottish Highers 240-280 points including an Art and Design subject
Irish Leaving Certificate 240-280 points including an Art and Design subject
International Baccalaureate 26 points including an Art and Design subject

Salford Alternative Entry Scheme (SAES)

We welcome applications from students who may not meet the stated entry criteria but who can demonstrate their ability to pursue the course successfully. Once we have received your application we will assess it and recommend it for SAES if you are an eligible candidate.

There are two different routes through the Salford Alternative Entry Scheme and applicants will be directed to the one appropriate for their course. Assessment will either be through a review of prior learning or through a formal test.

English Language Requirements

Applicant profile

Personality, enthusiasm, passion and dedication are all critical characteristics that we look for in our prospective students. Projects demonstrating good visual communication skills are required, and investigation and development of creative ideas should be evident in your work. An interest in photography, styling and image making is essential.

Applicants are normally invited to bring their portfolio of work to a selection visit. We welcome applications from candidates who do not have formal entry requirements.


Visual and academic research may take several forms, according to specific briefs, your objectives and your personal approach to the subject. Drawing, photography, visual & written notebooks, blogs and self-published books are encouraged as a fundamental means of gathering, analysing, storing, retrieving and using visual information effectively.

This is generally seen as an opportunity for autonomy, although there is tutor guidance and support. You will also learn how to use the internet appropriately, and how to use library resources including archives and databases in order to obtain the required information from specialist sources.

Projects vary in the amount of time you will be in contact with staff. Styling projects generally require small group tutorials and more one-to-one discussions, especially at year 3 where research and personal reflection, as part of the learning outcome, become more imperative.


You will be assessed through:

  • Coursework (70%)
  • Presentations (10%)
  • Dissertation (20%)


Recent graduates have gone into all spheres of the fashion industry including brands like Adidas, Puma, River Island, Mulberry, Burberry, Matalan, Pop Magazine, Dazed and Confused etc.

Graduates entering the fashion industry work across a diverse range of careers – as designers, stylists, pattern cutters, buyers, visual merchandisers, illustrators and retailers. Many have set up their own labels. Recent graduates have found employment with companies such as Burberry, Monsoon, Paul Smith, J Crew, French Connection, Whistles, River Island, Erdem, All Saints. Others have found work with international fashion magazines including Dazed and Confused, Vogue and Elle.

Each year a number of graduates pursue their educational study at postgraduate and Master's level, continuing at the Royal College of Art, Central Saint Martin's School, the University of Westminster, and Kingston for example. Some students go on to complete a Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE).

Career Prospects

Recent FIMs graduates have gone into a wide variety of areas within the fashion industry including photography, styling, casting, art direction, PR, show production, fashion film, fashion media and visual merchandising. Image Making & Styling graduates are employed by leading international brands including Topshop, Urban Outfitters, Marina Rinaldi (Italy), Red Bull and X Factor. They also work for leading fashion titles including Dazed & Confused, i-D, Pop, GQ Style, Man About Town, Dust and I Love Fake.

Each year a number of graduates pursue their educational study at postgraduate and Master's level, continuing at leading institutions including Goldsmiths and Central Saint Martins.

Alumni Profile

Michael Mayren, Fashion Photographer

Through early collaborations with up and coming designers, Michael Mayren began to have his work published whilst still a student. Now an established fashion photographer in his own right, Michael works with top international stylist Nicola Formichetti and is the face of Diesel. He has shot campaigns for Adidas, is regularly commissioned by Dazed & Confused, Man About Town and Dust and has been featured as a rising fashion photography star in Dazed & Confused and Ponystep. “Studying Fashion Image Making & Styling at Salford was a major turning point in my life. You have so much personal freedom and tutor guidance on the course that it gives you the ability to grow to anything you want to be. I loved every minute of it.”

Links with Industry

Students have the opportunity to meet and collaborate with a wide range of industry professionals. The course has a wide network of professional contacts with leading fashion brands, publications and practitioners including Marina Rinaldi, Magma, X-Factor, River Island, Selfridges, Pop, Dazed & Confused, Man About Town, Optology, Nevs Casting Agency and Ryan McGinley. The valuable knowledge and experience this brings ensure that you are kept informed of the current changes and demands within the fashion industry.

Placement Opportunities

Further Study

Fees and Funding

Fees 2016-17

Type of StudyFee
Full-time International£11,500

Additional costs

Students should expect to pay approximately for £100 studio levy each year. In addition, in Year 3 of study, students may incur a cost of £200 for a promotional book or publication. Costs are approximated based on the current academic year.

You should also consider further costs which may include books, stationery, printing, binding and general subsistence on trips and visits.