Online Animation Schools : It used to be that animators were a rare breed. But nowadays they are springing up like mushrooms, and animation companies receive thousands of applications from highly qualified individuals every year. They’re able to pick and choose from the best talents.
As somebody in the position to hire such animators, before I pop the DVD reel in, I will usually scan through the resume to see where the graduate is from. If it’s a reputable academy, I am usually more icentified to look at the reel. Because we receive so many applications, sometimes it is just impossible to go through every single reel, though we try our best.
However, not everybody can afford the time or money to attend a major animation school. A good alternative to consider might be an online animation course. There are currently some online courses that have garnered a good reputation and they do add some credibility when you submit your resume. it may be worthwhile to explore these options. However, you do have to exercise caution when choosing such online courses.
The first thing you have to look at is the course outline. You have to assess your own needs versus what the course is offering. You might be competent in certain areas already and do not want to spend time going through those subject matters. In which case, you might want a curriculum which is flexible and can be molded to fit your needs. You also want a curriculum that is up to date because the animation business is fast moving, and the techniques and tools that are state of the art today will be archaic two years later.
You will also need to choose a course that will allow you to complete a show reel. A show reel is essential when you are applying for a job as it is a testimony of what you can do. Make sure the online course covers guiding you through the production of your show reel and not just leave you to do your own thing.
You might also want to see if the online animation school can arrange for internship in animation companies. Remember, you go there not just to intern and gain some experience, you are actually there to network. If you can impress the animator during your internship, it may be the ticket to getting your first job in animation.
Be very wary of schools who do not have portfolios of students to show or only showcases their teachers’ works. It either means they are very new or not great at teaching. Teachers with good portfolios mean nothing if they have not exhibited the ability to impart their knowledge. There are also schools who ‘borrow’ portfolios from animation companies from parts of the world who seldom surf English sites. Avoid these schools like the plague! If possible, try to get details for past graduates of the course and see how they are doing now.
Last but not least, you should make sure that you are comfortable with the schedule of the course. If you can’t fit into the time-table or vice versa, either work your way around it or look for another school. Nothing will break down your resolution to be an animator faster than not being able to keep up with the course.
By observing the points I have listed above, I believe that you will be able to gauge which online animation course is the right choice for you.
I prefer not to make any recommendations to online courses as I personally have not taken any of them, and therefore cannot make any. However I have heard good things being said about Animation Mentor whom I heard is run by a bunch of experienced CG professionals. I have also compiled a list of online animation courses in my resource section. You can check them out in the Resource section found in the sidelink.
I hope that this article has been helpful to you and I wish you success in finding the right online 3D education.