Amazing. The most intense learning phrase I've ever been able to experience, simply because I had more time to devote to it. I wouldn't change it for anything; even when I found a class frustrating, I still learned something from it.
The bonus was getting a job from the first test I took almost right out of college - because I figured out what I wanted to do, what I needed to know to get there, and hassled every teacher I could to help me learn those skills.
For the record, I didn't even attend a private art school. I attended a public state university - and I'm still friends with so many of my classmates and professors.
Last edited by Alice Herring; August 27th, 2011 at 08:56 PM.
1. Sir Ken Robinson is awesome. You should check out his other talks, and also any of the RSA videos.
Interestingly enough, I find half the struggle a lot of people have when they study for commercial arts is to break those habits established by the school system. To have them experiment. Take risks. Learn from being creative. Learn from mistakes, instead of learning to be right.
As for the second one..have you watched it all the way through? Certain facts omitted, others overstated...their primary source of documentation is the NIA, which is the same institution funding the documentary? That's rather self-referential. They offer no opposing viewpoint. It's fear mongering. Starting out regarding college (never talking about the individual responsibility of people to make sure they can afford to pay back loans, instead blaming the government - what's with that?) then moves into jobs, food, etc...all to get to the point about a NWO where those will gold and silver will be the elite.
What does NIA pushing?
Gold and Silver Mines.
Think for yourself indeed.
Last edited by Alice Herring; August 28th, 2011 at 03:18 AM. Reason: Edit: NIA may not own mines, but may be being paid by a third party to promote the mines.
Your tuition pays her salary. What else do you think she would tell you? Quit now, this degree is worthless?
oc, after removing all of your posts, were you wrong?, now you leave these hit and run salvos with no defense. Anyone here can find some viewpoint supporting anything and post it. You have yet to defend your opinion that "all" teachers and "all" schools are crap. There has never been an argument that education has its problems everywhere everyone knows that. But there are still some good teachers and good schools. How can you keep dismissing this argument? That would be the same as if I said, "This one time at band camp this guy drew a picture and it sucked and like he never went to school so if you don't go to school for art you will suck."
I get it, your school experience sucked and you see sucky automatons around and I believe you because I see the same people around me. But I also see the positive in schools because I've been there as have others.
I went to the top art school in western Canada, it was a solid mix of liberal 70's mentality mixed with progressive ideology topped off with a large collection of outdated technology. In the end, I graduated with a degree in Integrated Media and now work for a VFX studio.
Here's my two cents...
I didn't realize it at the time but now in retrospect, university was the perfect environment for an artist because in the end, a degree, can only be what you make it and artists tend to make awesome out of nothing.
One of the things I hear more than ever is: "bachelors degrees are worthless now." I find this confusing, when I look at my group of friends and peers who did and did not put themselves through university- there is an stark income gap between them. I'm not saying one side of the coin is happier than the other because of that, I'm saying the innate monetary worth of a post secondary education is still definitely there.
What is happening more so than ever is the opportunity to gain your degree through online courses etc. and the value perception is economically skewed because people assume the more of something there is, the less it is worth. Tempered knowledge and refined skill sets don't exactly work that way.
What happened to most of my peers post grad was they kept the jobs they were working while in university. It was a smart move but there was less of a hunger to get out there and kick life right in the balls. Those that hit the ground running after receiving their degrees are working for top VFX studios such as MPC, ILM, Digital Domain and R&H. One of the fundamental reasons they were brought on as junior artists was their COMBINATION of degree and portfolio work. To any HR person, your value is based on what you bring to the table. A strong portfolio is a must, you add a degree in an applicable field, even better.
The great myth I've seen now in 6 years of university is "School will make me better." No, school is there for you to make YOURSELF better. It is on you, not your teachers, not the facilities or technology available for 10k a semester.
Your degree is a reflection of that, and that image is a rocksteady pre determination of your abilities which, God help you, might open a couple doors that would normally be closed.
Now, there are people in this world who are so talented, so naturally skilled at what they do that a degree would seem like a waste of time... then why do you find so many of them still working through the academic system? Because they understand that the experience, of highs and lows, will be an important journey in their lives both personally and professionally... the beautiful part is that it doesn't have to end, I think that's called a PhD.
Don't ever base your choice of an education on "what will this be worth in the end?" base it on "Is this what I really want, is it the direction my life should go." and I promise you, it will be worth so much more than you ever imagined.
I'm not an artist but I have a question, why are you people so upright about punctuation and spelling? I mean it's a forum not an English class even though people should use proper punctuation most of the time but c'mon, as long as you can understand I don't think it should be a problem.
uptight* sheesh seriously
I did that on purpose just to prove my point fucking assholes.
At least I start my day with a smile. Any chance that this is olivercartwright in new form.
Last edited by bcarman; August 30th, 2011 at 01:46 PM.
Trolling? I'm being serious I'm not trolling, you guys are grammar Nazi's.
Anyway, I have this huge...uh..wall of text for ya'll on the topic of degrees. Just covering some things that I don't see people talk about a lot.
The statement “Bachelor's degrees are worthless” is effectively true. The award itself holds no meaning without the knowledge and experience gained through hard work and study. The degree is a result of the end product, not the end product itself. There are a variety of other factors in place as well: a lack of qualified instructors, grade inflation, cultural tendencies, and a saturation of the market of both schools and students.
The smartest thing anyone can do if they are planning to attend school is to do their own research.
This does not mean going to the nearest forum and asking around; this means finding out who the faculty are, and if they have any professional experience in the relevant field. Here's why research is a good thing:
I just spent and hour trying to read up on what accreditation is, and how a school is accredited. Talk about a nightmare in and of itself! “Accreditation is a voluntary, independent review of educational programs to determine that the education provided is of uniform and sound quality. Being awarded accreditation ensures that an institution has been evaluated and that it met set standards of quality determined by the accrediting organization granting the accreditation. A college or university's accreditation is maintained by continued adherence to the set criteria.” - http://www.back2college.com/library/accreditfaq.htm
The accrediting organization is not a government body, and there are six separate regional groups. Why is accreditation important to schools? In order to obtain federal aid and participate in state financial aid programs, a student usually has to be attending an accredited program. When I was looking into international loans to attend school in Canada, one of the requirements of Sally Mae was that the institution be accredited.
Why am I talking about accreditation? One of the requirements it to have a qualified faculty instructing the students. This is why Universities require full-time professors to have a terminal degree in their field. For art, that means an MFA. I would hope by now any reader would be clear that having a degree does not necessarily mean the individual is skilled or experienced. There is an exception where work experience can be used in place of a terminal degree, but very rarely is the waiver approved. For skill based fields like art where many working individuals do not have a degree, this narrows the possible applicant pool. This is why it's important to research a program's faculty members. Ideally, the individuals teaching should have more than a year or two industry experience. There are many talented professionals who are teaching as adjunct faculty, or have moved into teaching full-time because they enjoy it. To assume people teach because they couldn't find a job is just as ignorant as assuming teachers are knowledgable in their field because they are teachers. Any program worth their salt will still look at an applicant's portfolio, but there are others that don't. Buyer beware.
The other major issue affecting academic institutions is grade inflation. Or conversely, minimizing the amount of work and effort required in any given class to obtain the same grade. There is pressure on faculty to pass students; I'm not entirely sure regarding the cause, but I suspect economic and reputation to be two likely culprits. The other factor is the power student reviews have been given over a professor's career. In some institutions, poor reviews can mean not being able to obtain tenure, raises, and may even cause termination. Not all schools are like this, but it IS out there.
The number of people attending college and the number of colleges awarding degrees seems to be pretty high right now, especially as online schools are now a part of that market. However because of the issues outlined above, not all students who receive bachelor degrees are equal. In effect, the bachelor degree can no longer be a benchmark for academic rigor. Thankfully for art it's more about the portfolio.
And Just For Fun, It's So Damn Expensive! (It's more than you think)
Because I haven't yet seen anyone break down the full financial cost.
Here is a list of schools and their current tuitions for undergraduate degrees (in no particular order
Art Center: 16,296 per term
CalArts: 37,687 per year
SVA: 14,775 per semester
Ringing: 16,140 per semester
SCAD: 30,510 per year
OTIS: 34,454 per year
RISD: 39,482 per year
Pratt: 37,500 per year
These costs do not include any additional fees the school may charge, nor housing or board. Some schools do offer scholarships, others don't. The average cost works out to about 34,256 per year. With no scholarships or grants, that's 137,024 for all four years of tuition only.
Using the loan calculator found here: http://www.finaid.org/calculators/loanpayments.phtml
With a loan term of 10 years at a fixed interest rate of 6.8%, the monthly loan payment would be 1,576.88 a month. Total repayment: 189,225.04
So just take 20 years to repay it instead, right? It helps a little to lower the monthly payment, but because interest is calculated daily on the remaining balance, it actually means paying a lot more in the long run. Monthly Loan Payment would be 1,045.96, and the total repayment: 251,029.57. That means even with a fixed 6.8 interest rate, the amount of interest paid over 20 years for the loan would be 114,005.57.
Say between scholarships, personal savings, and grants, you only have a 40,000 loan. 10 year term, fixed 6.8% interest, the monthly loan payment would be 460.32 a month. Total repayment: 55,238.63.
Now I'm fairly certain that these calculators assume repayment is going to begin immediately after college. If they don't, or you have to take a long deferral due to unemployment or underemployment, the total repayment amount is going to go up. The higher the principle balance, the faster that interest owed is going to accumulate. This is usually the part that gets people into trouble.
When I was underwriting for a finance company, this is how we determined if the individual could afford their car:
Monthly income – auto insurance, rent, 100 dollars for each dependent, minimum payments owed to other creditors (listed on credit bureaus, ranging from credit cards to existing loans or student loans) 500 disposable, and car payment listed on contract > 0.
The cautious thing to do would be to make sure you could pay back the loans even if you don't get that high-paying job. This could mean working for a few years before attending school. This time could also be used to get a kick-ass portfolio together, to qualify for more scholarships. It also means if you hit 24, FAFSA considers you an adult student and no longer takes your parents' income into consideration. The downside is they will use your last year's W-2, irregardless if you are going to have the same hours or not.
I personally suggest cautious because student loans except for extreme situations cannot be included in Chapter 7 bankruptcies. A person would have to prove they are physically incapable to do the job they trained for due to disease or accident. It seems most people hit a critical point, where it seems impossible to pay the debt back because they cannot obtain a job that pays enough to cover the loan and everything else.
There are also public state schools with excellent programs, and places like Concept Design Academy, Schoolism, American Animation Institute, iAnimate, and Animation mentor who cost much less overall because they are not part of that academic system.
The most important thing anyone can take away from reading this or even just skimming it is to do your own research. Not all schools are equal. Be aware of the financial obligations a loan contract will put you in. The industry is very small, and as dpaint put it...
BEING AN ARTIST IS F#CKING HARD
“Making your living from your art is even harder and making your living from your art for a lifetime is so rare that we usually write books on them when they do.
Its not for dabblers, quitters, attention wh0res, daddy's little princess, or mammas boys.” -dpaint
- all tuition amounts obtained from the actual school websites
Last edited by Alice Herring; August 31st, 2011 at 05:30 AM. Reason: STRAY APOSTROPHE
I'm sorry for acting like a moron over the last couple of weeks. I just wanted to say, art school is what you make of it and even though I had a bad experience I still acknowledge good teachers and schools. Regardless of the above statistics, I believe the path to success consists of working really hard and staying true to yourself.
I go to a city college in NYC, and boy are there some dumb people. I wonder if they might actually get a degree, which is pretty scary. Some of them just talk too damn much, even during class and loudly at that.
Twinkle, twinkle little star
I don't wonder what you are
For by spectroscopic ken
I know that you are hydrogen - Ian D.
Last edited by Vay; September 1st, 2011 at 08:31 AM.
Twinkle, twinkle little star
I don't wonder what you are
For by spectroscopic ken
I know that you are hydrogen - Ian D.
It's not necessarily "worthless", but it's "not required" as it used to/thought out to be.
^ Oh the miracles of the internet where you can get countless tutorials, books, step by steps by other artists. Have others critique you etc etc etc etc....
In art, the degree doesn't necessarily matter. If you want to work for a company, research their stuff, and tailor your portfolio to meet that companies needs. Any other field, like teaching, engineering, nuclear physicist, etc., people wanna see a degree hanging on your wall. Or at least that's how I feel about it.
I do know that some people would prefer to see a degree on your wall because that gives them confidence that you're not a complete idiot.
Doctors heal you, Artists immortalize you.
"Those who can, do. Those who can't, teach" - bullshit.
The usual staples for anatomy:
I graduated from my BA about a year and a half ago and hadn't realized that my actual certificate had been mailed to my parents home. A few weeks ago I was visiting and told them that I was confused that I still hadn't even received my certificate. My dad said something about getting an envelope a while ago and went off to dig through his filing cabinet. He came back brandishing my snazzy degree certificate, this was the first time I've ever seen the dame thing. I slid it out of it's envelope, had a little glance at the shiny sticker, ran my fingers over the grain of the paper and the embossed stamp and then slid it back into the envelope with cheeky "meh".
As for the value of it.... I think it's worth a fair bit. I certainly couldn't have done my postgrad without it and I think it's adequately relevant in it's role as a CV foundation stone. The skill learned at Uni specific to your subject area are of course very important although I think there's a whole lot to learn from the experience of being a student and the scholarly pursuit it entails. Also the environment of being at university promotes working hard. Since graduating I have set myself a few personal projects for my demo reel, thinking I'll just blast some super awesome work out. After all I was churning out work just a few months ago in preparation for my final project deadline. Sadly the result was a fraction of the amount of work I got done at Uni. I'd pander along with the luxury of letting my perfectionism reigning free, or I'd be distracted by other things, unrelated to the task at hand.
I suppose with costs of attending university going through the roof and the current flood of graduates, it's difficult to tell if it truly is worth it. I mean I believe it is "worth" it but I'm not sure if it's a logical way to go. If you are able to get yourself into an entry level position in the industry you are interested in without a degree, then it's probably not necessary to look at getting a degree. Yea you'll miss out on a great experience but you'll also save yourself a lot of debt.