How Do I Become an Animator?

Animators utilize the latest technology to create characters in movies, advertisements, and/or video games. Animators must have the right combination of creativity and education to be successful. Read on further to discover how you can become an animator. Schools offering Animation degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Career Overview

In order to succeed as an animator, you must possess artistic ability, focus, and excellent communication skills. Many animators work in teams, collaborating on various elements of a project, while others are assigned particular tasks to work on alone. As a result, animators must be comfortable working for long periods by themselves as well as work well in a team setting.

You can choose to work in films (special effects), TV, computer-generated animation, advertising, video games, or multimedia (websites). 2D animation is similar to creating comic strips and 3D animation requires skills in computer modeling. Other desirable skills include editing, storyboarding, producing, and scriptwriting.

Important Facts About This Occupation

Median Salary (2014) $63,630
Job Outlook (2012-2022)6% growth
Work environment Home studio, office
Similar occupations Art director, Graphic designer, Web developer

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Training

To become an animator usually means formal training, although some make it as animators without formal instruction. In recent years, to succeed as an animator necessitates having advanced technical or computer skills, thereby making a bachelor's degree almost mandatory, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (www.bls.gov). Consider earning a bachelor's degree in art, design, animation, or graphic design with a concentration in computer skills.

You may also be able to enter the field of animation by taking training in multimedia design, 3D design, sculpture or model-making, computer programming, or illustration. It is important to keep up-to-date with the latest software programs used in animation, such as Maya, Flash, After Effects, and MotionBuilder.

Portfolio and Internship

In order to show a potential employer what you can do, you must develop a portfolio. Your portfolio should contain your best work and highlight your skills and talent. To get started, consider taking an internship (paid or unpaid) with someone established in the field (programmer, game designer, or animator).

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

  • 1. Degree Options:
The schools in the listing below are not free and may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users. Tuition and costs will vary across programs and locations. Be sure to always request tuition information before starting a program.

Popular Schools

  • The Art Institutes

    The Art Institutes responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at The Art Institutes:

    • Master
    • Bachelor Degrees
    • Associate Programs
    • Certificates

    Campus Locations:

    • Virginia: Arlington
  • The George Washington University

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    Popular programs at The George Washington University:

    • Certificates

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  • Full Sail University

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  • Johns Hopkins University

    Johns Hopkins University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Johns Hopkins University:

    • Master
    • Certificates

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  • ECPI University

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    Popular programs at ECPI University:

    • Certificates

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  • Ashford University

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  • Purdue University

    Purdue University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Purdue University:

    • Master
    • Certificates

    Online Programs Available

  • Indiana Wesleyan University

    Indiana Wesleyan University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Indiana Wesleyan University:

    • Bachelor Degrees
    • Associate Programs
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    Online Programs Available

  • Penn Foster High School

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  • Colorado State University Global

    Colorado State University Global responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Colorado State University Global:

    • Bachelor Degrees

    Online Programs Available

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