Find out what it takes to attend a computer animation school
Love watching Saturday morning cartoons or Disney and Pixar movies? Love video games and want to make a career building shooters, racers and platformers instead of just playing them all day? Then an animation school and a career in animation design could be the next move for you.
Traditionally, animation has been defined as the illusion of movement by rapidly displaying images of two-dimensional or three-dimensional models. In essence, it's an optical illusion that makes a viewer think they're watching a constant image and life-like characters. Animation has been popular in the motion picture and television industries for generations, but it's become increasingly dependent on computers and other technology in the last decade.
Diploma in Animation
An animation school will introduce its students to both elements: classical animation, including drawing classes, cartoon studies, the design of characters and visual language, with more modern computer graphics and animation. Students will learn how to create a believable character through storytelling techniques and storyboarding practices. They'll also learn how to bring an animated environment to life through background painting and background design training.
Students entering their second year in a 3D animation school will be encouraged to take on new, more advanced courses specializing in digital editing and the use of important design software like Adobe Flash and Photoshop. Senior students will advance towards courses that encourage them to lead in the production of their own films, from the creation of a story and characters, to their design and implementation, and finally towards editing. They may take video game design classes as well.
Starting a Career in Animation
Graduates from a computer animation school will thus boast a variety of skills and a solid portfolio when looking for their first job in the entertainment industry. Many online animation courses help in this process by offering online animation classes that teach students approaching graduation how to write cover letters and resumes, how to conduct themselves during an interview and how to emphasize the usefulness of their specializations. Many of the best schools will bring students and employers together via open house events that act as job fairs for those approaching graduation.
Most animation schools offer three-year diplomas and an online animation degree, although applicants who have experience in the industry may in some cases be able to advance to year two by demonstrating a quality portfolio.