Pretty simple thread, i would just like to know your opinion on art schools. In the future i would like to be an artist and i've heard some popular artists say that they just wasted their time in art college (I'm talking about drawing and painting). The thing is i feel like a shit, because everyone else plans to go to college(I'm at final year of high school now). I had a vision that i would work in some electro shop or helpdesk or something with computers that doesn't include programming or networking after high school and i would still focus on my art, spend money on some courses and with time i would try to make money with my artwork. What do you think about all this?
A lot of people like to talk shit about schools, but most haven't even been to art school so its just a bunch of exaggerated hearsay.
As a freshman at an art school (not a program in a state school, an actual art college) I can tell you MY first impression of art school.
Art school is an experience. Whether you like it depends on your preference of learning, and where you're attending as well as the professors you get.
Here is what you're paying for:
1.You get to be around likeminded people 24/7 and its incredible. Once upon a time you were that kid who draws from so and so highschool, and now you're surrounded by ALL those kids.
2. Critiques - Being critiques by classmates and professors gives you a different perspective on your work. These critiques can show you your strengths and your weaknesses. People will suggest ideas to further your work or maybe even suggest artists to look at that you might be interested in. Through critiques you also get to see other peoples artwork and you can build your own critical eye looking at others work, which can be inspirational if you're in a class with other good artists. Seeing so much different artwork is refreshing.
3. Connections- You build relationships with your peers who will also one day be out in the workforce, your professors will refer you to working professionals. All you have to do is ask.
1. The cost- art school is ridiculously expensive. Most of the worthwhile schools cost circa 40k per year, and thats just tuition alone. If you're not on a scholarship, its a truckload of money, and tremendous debt for an art degree isn't very appealing. You want the school to give you money? You better have a good ass portfolio. That will give you merit money. Got a good GPA and SAT/ACT score? great. They give out money to smart people too.
2. Your professors greatly impact your experience
If you have any questions, just ask. Im glad to help. (MICA student, accepted at RISD, Pratt, and SVA)
Art college is great for 3 things
>the degree paper
Only go there AFTER you're at a competent intermediate level with a solid portfolio. That way, you can get in and out without any setbacks. If you're a complete beginner or still a novice, do NOT go. Stay out of school and teach yourself via the internet and the numerous resources available until you are intermediate level. Art college is good for everything but the actual learning part.
My twin sister is in art school, I'm doing an unrelated, scientific major. She's improved since enrolling, but as far as I know she never did actual studying beforehand. I do a lot of independent study and I'm still more skilled than she is. So I don't think it's necessary, there's a wealth of free resources online and in libraries. Peer critique is good, but you can get that here too.
>Only go there AFTER you're at a competent intermediate level with a solid portfolio. If you're a complete beginner or still a novice, do NOT go. Stay out of school and teach yourself via the internet and the numerous resources available until you are intermediate level.
Yes, agreed, but for differing reasons from this anon
1. If you have a trained eye before you go in and can see clearly as to why you're shit, you will learn better. You're already over the first hump. You want to be in at least the first green circle area of pic related.
2. If you're intermediate when you're applying, your portfolio will be better = more $$$ your way. Its alllll about those scholarships.
>Art college is great for 3 things
>the degree paper
the degree paper- false, people hiring artists look first to your portolfio, if even at all where you studied. if you have good work, it doesnt matter much.
making connections- yes, i touched on this in my earlier post
gettling laid - if you're a straight guy, yes. If you're gay/bi, yes. if you're an average looking straight girl, No.
>peer critique is good, but you can get that here too
Critique on /ic/ is nothing like critique in a class. Its 8 hours long, sometimes even longer, and obviously a whole lot more in depth. Plus its a regular experience. I wouldn't compare the two at all based on my experience.
Scholarship money, yes. It was my second choice school, RISD refused to give me merit only money because I'm not a citizen lmao.
Im an illustration student btw- the best school for you personally varies greatly on your interest. Like. SO much. illustration student vs animation students needs are so different and the advice I'd give is completely different to each.
Schools here are lot cheaper, but still barelly bearable for me to pay. I also don't think the school i would attend would be any prestigious, thank you for long reply though, i really appreciate it
Huh, I was under the assumption schools gave decent scholarships to international students. That sucks.
Was your scholarship more technical (live drawings, still lives) or illustrative? And are freshman all straight out of HS? I've taken time off from school so I'll be 20 at attendance if I get apply and get accepted this cycle. I have a feeling my age fucks up my chances and potentially even my schooling.
Thanks for your posts and answers, by the way.
No problem! It doesn't have to be 'prestigious', just read up on the program, go to the school and tour it and TALK with students who are attending and ask them for their honest opinion about the school/program so far.
Most art schools girl student population is much higher than the guys. My school is 70% girls and 30% girls. What Im getting at is, guys get their first pick. The straight girls are clammoring for dick and the guys go for the hot ones. Not to say if you're an average girl you can't get laid, I'd just say you'd have an easier chance at an ordinary state school.
Im not a citizen but live in the US under protection of the DACA act (Deffered Action for Childhood Arrival) RISD doesn't acknowledge this. MICA did. So it wasn't a case of being an international student, just not a citizen.
My portfolio was a good mix, which is what you want. What you want to include
-Technical drawings - still lives, figure studies
-Your line of work (whether thats painting, illustrations, photography etc)
-CONCEPT. Make sure you have good concept. The schools are sick of looking at pictures of just a pretty girl, or a nicely rendered eye.
Say, you want to show you're good at drawing hands? It better not just be a drawing of hands. You can do better than just some floating hands right? (Look at pic related, I included this in my portfolio)
-A good range of different mediums. You want to show that you are flexible. Not to say to include a horrible watercolor piece, but 1 mediocre watercolor, 1 pretty good colored pencil piece, some decent pastels or digital or something, and then some REALLY good paintings. (for example)
-One 3D piece. Again, show that you can vary, especially since at the school you WILL be making 3D pieces in your foundation year. Do it.
-If you are illustration, heres some suggestions
Good concept. Good composition. Good line. Good color.
Make sure your portfolio is also well photographed. No shitty phone camera photos.
Worry not, your being 20 wont make a big difference. Most are straight out of highschool, but I know at least two 21 year olds in my class this year. Actually, last year a woman 73 years old graduated with her BFA in fibers! Heres a pic of her receiving her diploma from her daughter who is a fibers professor at the school :'- ) so cute.
Im not saying it can't happen. Im saying If you're a straight/gay/bi guy or gay/bi girl, you will have statistically better pickings than straight average looking girls.
>the degree paper- false, people hiring artists look first to your portolfio, if even at all where you studied. if you have good work, it doesnt matter much.
This all depends on the job. Certain job listings won't even look at you at all unless you have a degree. It's listed as a base requirement for these jobs. The paper makes job hunting that much easier and gives you more options, even if they are only temporary jobs. So yes, the paper is a positive and is helpful. I'm speaking from experience.
99% of those who made it did so because they got to the money first. College or no college, portfolio or not, they got the job becuase they were first in line when the job needed to be filled. They were in the right place at the right time met the mininum requiremrnts and took the pay, that's how they made it.
That's all there is to it really. That's the reason you see skilled talented artists make it just as much as you see unskilled untalented artists. Its why we have good art and terrible art in the world. If a good college or portfolio can get you to front of the line when the job opens up then maybe they're worth it. But I don't know of any colleges that guarantees that, nor any portfolio tactics that will do the same.
There aren't many things you can do to predict where and when a job will open. Some will tell you to build a reputation first, but you'll still be in the same situation for your first gig. Some will tell you to network at college, but even then like everyone else in your network you'll still be waiting for that unforeseeable opening.
All you can do is hold out until you see an opening. In the mean time practice to get yourself ready. If college can prepare you for that then so be it, but it will not change the playing field, just remember that.
That's real talk.
If you live in the US, it aint worth it, there's no way. Only go if you can get your total tuition under, say, $30K.
Don't get an arts degree at a state school or regular university where many other degrees are available. Go to a school dedicated to art, design, and related fields.
A very small fraction of people are able to study and make gains on their own as fast as someone in school. I envy them. I am not one of those people. Personally, I think the amount of improvement I saw during school far outpaces anything I might have achieved going NEET. It was crucial. The degree itself is worthless, I never made any good connections, and I never had the 'art school experience' whatever that is. I just acquired skills and knowledge and that alone was worth it.
Don't take Fine Arts, it's useless. Try Design, Illustration, Concept Art, Animation. Useful skills that society actually needs/wants and will pay for without you having to dupe people.
>as an arts student, I cultivated my willpower and stamina
I certainly hope your parents have cultivated a lot of money or that you're good enough to have received some sort of scholarship.
I go to the art school at a 4 year university. Don't waste your money. Take art classes at community college, join figure drawing meetup groups, start an art blog. If you're going for credibility in the art world, don't, that is a lie from the pit of hell. No one gives a shit about a bachelor's of fine or liberal arts.
Honestly, OP, no one can really answer whether or not you should go to art school. It's very dependent on the person. Some people thrive better and grow more in an enviornment that breeds it, like a school. I'm one of those people and found I had a lot of trouble continuing my progress (still a beginner) when I left school.
It's good for guidance, to have a focus, to have subjects for your projects, etc. It's good for learning but it's very much "You get what you put into it." If you slack off you won't improve.
It's great for building connections, for learning more about how others perceive your art through group critiques (Scary at first but I love them and miss them. There's not much you get from online critiques in comparison).
Some people go to college and find it a waste of their time though. You need to know what kind of person, and what kind of learner you are to know if its truly the right fit for you.
Or, you know, studying architecture, mechanical engineering or multitude of other subjects that would give you knowledge and some perspective for employment. Maybe not architecture though, market is difficult. Stick to chemistry.
>acceptance rate: 8%
That's not even worth an attempt for me to apply, holy shit.
I have 3 classmates who got into pafa with zero tuition because they won some contest thing,but its fine arts to the most extreme degree so its kind of lesser of the two evils. One of them is contemplating transferring because hes into digital shit and pafa offers nothing for him in that regard
I didn't apply to cooper union, the school is good but not for what I'm pursuing. I'm not interested in architecture and the art program isn't what I'm looking for.
>b/c his feel
I'm not a dude, yo
This anon is right, cooper union is no longer free anyway.
Is your stuff up to par? Don't bother if it's not and git gud till it is. Then yes, I applying to the US would be a good idea if theres a school out here that offers what you want.
If you have the personal drive to keep up with your art, sure. >>2355041 hit it right on the money.
I did receive a scholarship.
Dude, I'm applying for a course in Illustration this year, do you have any tips on portfolio content?
My strengths are, I learn fast as fuck and I'm open to a wide range of styles and techniques/ However I have basically no work over an A4 size to show and I have bouts of low motivation. I was thinking of churning out a shit load of print work, portraits and sketches in the next two or three weeks ready for my interview
Read my general portfolio guidelines here: >>2353982
Those suggestions are apt for illustration portfolios. Like the other anon said, good observational drawings and life drawings are a necessity. And really you should branch out your size- try an 18x24in still life (I submitted pic related in my portfolio) and try some charcoal or conte figure studies on newsprint. Your illustration work doesn't have to be huge but I'd say try to go for a minimum of 11x14
Otherwise, you want to just include some illustration work. Some general tips: most of what you include should be finished work, but some schools encourage showing sketchbook pages and work in progress, but be mindful of what you're putting in. Remember the key to a good portfolio is to show good technical ability, flexibility and experimentation, and concept.
Really, refer back to my original portfolio post. I can't say much more without actually looking at your work, if you'd like more help I wouldn't mind emailing you or smth.