What Education Do I Need to Become a Cartoonist?

While there are no formal education requirements for cartoonists, a bachelor's degree in fine arts or even business administration could prove beneficial. Keep reading to learn more. Schools offering Children`s Book Illustration degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Educational Requirements

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS, www.bls.gov), you don't need any formal education to become a cartoonist. However, because cartoonists must draw, write, and make business decisions on a regular basis, you might consider pursuing a degree in arts or business. Since many cartoonists must also digitize their work, according to the BLS, you may also consider taking some computer or other technology-related courses. The BLS reports that because of the technical skill involved in creating art, it may be difficult for you to become a successful cartoonist without some formal art training.

Bachelor of Fine Arts

If you decide to pursue a degree in the arts, you may choose to enroll in a four-year Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) program with an emphasis in visual arts. You will take classes in art history, global design issues, drawing, and media.

Several schools in the United States offer specific programs in illustration and cartooning. If you choose to enroll in one of these programs, you will also graduate with a BFA. Your courses may include classes in:

  • Design and lettering
  • Writing humor
  • Narrative structure
  • Color illustration
  • Business of art

Both cartooning-focused schools and more traditional BFA programs will provide you with studio classes, where you'll practice cartooning with supervision and feedback from instructors. Studio classes will allow you to create and develop a portfolio, which may be useful if you're interested in becoming a political cartoonist.

Bachelor of Business Administration

If you choose to pursue a Bachelor in Business Administration (BBA), you'll take classes in accounting, economics, management, marketing, and international business. You may also have the opportunity to study abroad. Many BBA programs will allow you to specialize in a field that will help you establish yourself as a cartoonist, such as marketing or entrepreneurship. You could also choose to complement your BBA with a minor in studio art.

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:

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