Small School Art Student - Advice for Where to Go Next?
I'm currently an art student at a fairly small state school, though it's growing (and with it, so is the city). Their art department is growing too, and I would say that I'm pretty much at the top of my class when it comes to art. However, I'm not yet satisfied with my skills. I have another year and a half, at least, left after this semester. So, there's still plenty of time for improvement and advancement. I have a list of things I want to improve on, and have been discussing with my instructors.
However, I would like some advice if anyone's willing to give it - what is a good path forward? I've been looking at TAD courses, but I don't have a lot of moolah (in fact, I have a lot of student loans I'll be in repayment for). Even then, I'd probably only go part time, as I feel like I'd be rehashing a lot of things that I already know - I just need to keep working to advance.
What I'm currently in mind of, is looking for a future in Illustration. I don't mind terribly much if it takes me 10 years to get off the ground (though money is an issue). Should I just start and press forward on my own projects? Look at other classes? Go to graduate school?
I know that some artists have told me to just continue to work on things, on my own time, and begin to take my portfolio to any conventions I can get to. Also, to put myself out there on the web. I've considered starting up a webcomic project, mostly to force myself to take time to draw these ideas in my head, and work on composition and layout. It would be a big step, but interesting.
So, after this bit of rambling - what are some good types of projects to work on? What is a good way to improve? I feel like I need something I can really get into, instead of a lot of the studies I do.
If you are interested in Graduate School, might I suggest looking into the Low Residency MFA Program in Illustration at the Hartford Art School. You are considered a full time student, and therefore eligible for loans, but you only spend 4 weeks out of the year away from work or home. This means you can keep a steady job while you earn your degree. The program is also extremely prestigious and is the only one of its kind: http://hartfordillustrationmfa.org