Cartooning Majors

Current or soon-to-be undergraduate students with a passion for cartooning and similar art forms may be interested in pursuing a major in cartooning or a related field. Discover your options for cartooning-related majors, coursework, online programs and career paths. Schools offering Children`s Book Illustration degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Majors Will Train Me in Cartooning?

Although some colleges and universities offer majors specifically in cartooning, these programs are rare and are typically found only at for-profit institutions. A cartooning major will specifically train you in the art and business of cartooning, covering graphic novels and related art forms. More commonly, however, you'll be able to find programs in visual arts, drawing, animation or illustration. These majors will provide you with many of the same skills you'd learn in a cartooning program, though they are more broadly-focused. Typically, such an undergraduate major will lead to a Bachelor of Fine Arts (B.F.A.).

Major OptionsMajors in cartooning are rare, but majors in visual arts, drawing, illustration and related fields are widely available
Common Courses2-D design, history of visual arts, digital drawing, photography, 3-D design
Online AvailabilityOnline bachelor's degree programs in cartooning or visual arts are rare
PrerequisitesA portfolio is usually required for admission and may consist of a collection of drawings or other specific types of artwork
Career OptionsFilm and video game animation, book illustration, advertising, greeting card illustration
Median Salary (2018)$50,370 (Graphic Designers)
Job Outlook (2016-2026)4% growth (Graphic Designers)

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS)

What Courses Will I Take?

If you major specifically in cartooning, your coursework will help you develop your skills in drawing and illustrating for cartooning-based art forms, such as graphic novels. You'll also take foundational courses in the basics of 2-D and 3-D design, color theory and the history of visual arts. More generally-focused visual arts programs will also include these courses, as well as additional courses in other art forms. These courses may include digital drawing, photography and painting. You'll often spend significant time working in an art studio, honing your craft through supervised practice and experimentation.

What are My Online Options?

Only very rarely will you find cartooning or other visual arts bachelor's degree programs available online. These programs will offer you the chance to study without relocating or leaving a full-time work commitment. You'll need access to a computer with high-speed Internet capabilities in order to complete your coursework. In some cases, you'll need specific software or hardware components, though most online programs can be completed with any modern Macintosh or Windows-based personal computer.

What are the Admissions Requirements?

Some cartooning and other visual arts programs will require you to submit a portfolio. Your portfolio will be used in determining your artistic skill, creative potential and overall readiness for the program relative to other applicants. The portfolio will typically consist of a selection of your creative work, including various types of drawings. Some schools will have requirements regarding specific types of work that must be included, such as still-life or figure drawings.

What Can I Do With This Degree?

The world of cartooning offers a significant breadth of employment opportunities based on your preferred style or genre. You may work as a print illustrator or digital animator for television, video game and film animation companies. Several other industries, such as advertising, greeting cards and children's books, also require expert cartoonists. Your role in any of these industries may include drawing, editing or concept development.

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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