View Full Version : Master Degree or Bachelor

05 May 2009, 04:14 AM
I was graduate in interactive media design ( Website, Flash, Video ) but I'm more interested in Animation Modeling and Texturing. I look forward to study at Vancouver Film School but I also think about grain a master degree too. what do you guy think of Master in Animation in the industry is it worth to study or not? or if I do another Bachelor It'll cover all the basic that i need to work in the industry.

05 May 2009, 05:09 PM
depends what is part of their curriculum. Personally I have never seen MA students in animation that were better because of doing an extra year or two. You can learn everything you need in a 3 or 4 year undergraduate degree. And generally (unless you apply for something quite technical) it is your showreel to the largest most significant extend that will matter, so having an MA, even from VFS will not get you a job if your showreel is just above average. Somebody with no degree or a BA from some unknown school with a seriously good showreel will always win.

Basically look what they offer and ask yourself what you wanna learn or dont know yet and if you could get a job learning it there instead. Or if you just want a year or so to express yourself and experiment, which is something you will find hard to do while working 8+hours a day ...

05 May 2009, 07:21 PM
thanks you so much

05 May 2009, 01:26 PM
Hazenobu, my daughter will pretty much have the same major as you: digital arts,which was mostly about web design but was probably a bit broader in scope.She also wants animation and was considering a masters.

We asked several successful folks in the field the same question that you posed. The general response was a follows:

A masters degree is a terminal degree and is fine if you want to teach in college or to hone already existing skills. If you want to develop basic skills in animation and develop the "all-important" demo reel, it really isn't the place to go.The folks that I spoke to felt that art skills take time and the masters program doesn't ordinarily provide enough time to both develop these skills and develop a good demo reel.

They recommended either taking another bachelors degree at a well-known animation school such as Ringling ( which waives all gen eds for folks with existing bachelors) or Calarts, SVA, Pratt etc. or going to trade oriented schools such as Gnomon and animation mentor, Max the Mutt et. al. or utilizing all the online resources available to develop the skills needed for a good demo reel.

They also recommended staying away from the intensive one-year programs since they felt that this didn't give enough time to both develop strong skills and to develop a reel. I was told, rightly or wrongly, that the one- year programs are for folks that already have decent skills in the area and want to hone their existing skills.

05 May 2009, 03:03 PM
I think that was true, thanks you so much.

05 May 2009, 01:29 AM
in finished mfa in electronic art at the university of cincinnati. i believe it was a valuable experience not just for teaching, but also for maturing as an artist with people that share a distinct and focused passion for what they do. yeah, it helps you if you want to teach, but it also helps tech skill, creative sensibilities, critical thinking, team building etc. Grad scool was a very valuable experience. your education is what you make of it.

05 May 2009, 04:00 AM
Fluxist8070, My daughter is majoring in Digital Design at University of Cincinnati. Where is the MFA offered in Electronic Art there? I don't see it on the DAAP web site.

05 May 2009, 05:01 AM
Digital Design is in the School of Design. The Electronic Art program is located in the School of Art. I know that they have a game art work group in the electronic art program. The program is really flexible. Student research ranges from conceptual/experimental to commercial/entertainment focus. She can choose courses that will prepare her for what she needs. She should talk to Ben Britton or Charlie Woodman. Both faculty are very experienced and helpful. (I know, they taught me.)
However, I have heard the digital design program is pretty strong too. The overall philosophy of DAAP, at least as far as i understand is not on just learning the software, but how to leverage the software to make a quality portfolio. They should have art electives in either program which would allow her to sample classes outside of her discipline so she can round out her skills.
While I was there, the thesis work for my exhibit ranged from paintings/digital prints/ websites/ rapid prototype sculpture and 3d animation. It is very possible to leave the program with a wide range of professional skills. In either case, it is a rigorous and demanding program and can be quite challenging. Even getting accepted to the digital design program is a feat of its own! Kudos to your daughter! While I was there, I was fortunate enough to be a Teaching Assistant for Digital Foundations and Drawing classes. The talent base is impressive and the students were a pleasure to work with. So, I am sure she is in good company in that respect too.
Best of luck to you and your daughter!

05 May 2009, 05:39 AM
Fluxist, thanks for your quick response. I will check out the art graduate program. Yes, my daughter is a VERY driven young lady and very smart. As you know, DAAP, is very academically oriented for admission.She attended a magnet program in high school. In addition, she has a tremendous work ethic and will work till she drops.She is also particularly good at coding and programming,which is odd for most artist types, at least in my family. In fact, as a result of her coding skills and work ethic, she was offered a full time job at each of her two internships that she had. Sadly, she has two more years to go.

Interestingly, the Digital Design grad program foundation year is a bit different from the art foundation year because there was no emphasis on live drawing or figure drawing. In fact, I think my daughter said that no training in these areas was provided,which is odd because digital design includes some animation.

Yes, she theoretically has a lot of spots for art electives and is encouraged to take art courses. However, we have found a serious catch 22: most digital design studio courses are on Monday, Wed and Friday and Tues and Thursday morning. Sadly, every darn art course that she wanted to take such as live drawing, figure drawing, animation etc. conflicts with her schedule. Check out when the digital design , upper level courses are offered and compare these offering times to that of art studio courses in these areas.

One would think that Digital Design would understand this and make appropriate changes to the time offered. Sadly, this has been a problem each quarter so far. Maybe you have some clout with the art department in order to get some studios and other courses offered Tues and Thursday afternoon, evening or even on weekends. It is a major dilemma without any real solution. I even thought of some independant study course for living drawing,but I forget why there was a problem with that.

By the way, you noted that you taught digital foundations. Did you get a teaching fellowship as part of your graduate program? Was your grad program free?

05 May 2009, 02:34 AM
sorry, i have no power at uc. i teach in mass now.
I received a fellowship, and had alot of TA and GA opportunities. If she goes, she should land an TA opportunity in the spring semester. Also, in her first year she can apply for a pretty hefty travel grant to go anywhere in the world to do research for her thesis. All of my tuition was covered, but extra fees and stuff were not. So, I did have take out some loans, but not much.
Good luck!

06 June 2009, 07:04 PM
Somebody with no degree or a BA from some unknown school with a seriously good showreel will always win.

I got some hope... :applause: I'm a software engineer (Bsc/M equivalent) with strong passion for CG.. hope that someone will give me the opportunity to show and GROW my (uncertified) talent in CG

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