SCAD School

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Old 09 September 2010   #1
SCAD School

Hi.
I'm a self-thaugh 2D and 3D artist, and I plan to attend a school of visual effect (precisely 3D modeling of characters and environment).
I really find art a fun thing to learn, even if it gets frustrating sometimes to try and learn by myself. Check my thread and 'deviantArt'.
I searched alot, I firstly found DigiPen. but after reading about it, I tried finding something else. I found Gnomon school, it simply looks the right school but it's very expensive... + living in LA. Then I found SCAD. people on the net say it's good and not as expensive.
I plan for 2 years there + hard working in my free time (haven't dived once this summer lol).
My parents are worried about me but this is what I want, and I'll work as hard as I can to succeed and make them feel confident about this whole thing.
(I even tried learning English to be able to communicate in the school.)
So here are my questions:
Is SCAD the right school? they are going to give me a 3D modeling education and a degree right?
Thank you.
 
Old 09 September 2010   #2
Yes, i'd say SCAD is pretty good school, i'd say Gnomon is way better, specially if you want to specialize in Modeling, i assume your not from the us, so you'll have to show English proficiency through a test or something, but yeah, i think SCAD is a good choice, good luck.
 
Old 09 September 2010   #3
Scad

I attended SCAD for 3 years but not for computer graphics. Overall I would advise against it, the school seemed to be run more like a business than a place of education. Although they do have very very small class sizes, the largest class I was in had 30 students, while the smallest class I had had 5. The professors there are really hit and miss, sometimes you'll find ones that are so enthusiastic about the programs their teaching that it will rub off on the students, while on the other hand, some professors care so little that they wont even show up to class. With the small class sizes, I saw a lot of favoritism between professors and students. While this can be good for you, it can also really suck if your professor decides they don't like you.

The perks to the SCAD are that, SCAD does not have a campus, and has buildings scattered around the downtown Savannah area. This area is less than 5 square miles (very small) and very flat, the easiest mode of transportation is a bicycle although SCAD offers their own bus line. Their bus line stems from a single hub on the North end of campus at the freshman dorms. The problem with the bus line is that if you're at a building and have to go to another one that's not on the same line, you have to go back to the hub and wait for the bus and transfer, making it more efficient to walk/ride a bike.

Overall, if you're looking for computer specific, i'd go with Digipen as it specializes in CG, while SCAD you will have to learn all of the traditional art foundations that may not pertain to CG at all.
 
Old 09 September 2010   #4
I went to school in Georgia and had quite a few friends attend SCAD. So while I was not a student there, I have heard quite a few reviews first hand. My roommates brother is a current student majoring in Animation. He loves it and has had nothing but positive things to say about his experience thus far. However, as Emmuh pointed out he did say that he had to take a lot of traditional art courses in his first year to build his foundation. Good luck!
 
Old 09 September 2010   #5
Originally Posted by Emmuh: Overall, if you're looking for computer specific, i'd go with Digipen as it specializes in CG, while SCAD you will have to learn all of the traditional art foundations that may not pertain to CG at all.

Sorry, might be long......
I really don't want to say anything bad, especially since I didn't actually attend DigiPen. I did however work with their teachers and staff giving talks to students, portfolio reviews, game industry advice, and informal suggestions for class directions. As with any school the quality of teachers with good industry experience is key. They had some full time and part time staff that worked in the industry, so there was a mix of former and current professionals. They have a nice facility with a range of classes from fashion, sculpture, concept art, 3D, and others. There is also a programming school which is really good from what I hear. My main issue was the quality of student work coming out of the different departments was all over the map. To be fair, I only saw 2-3 graduation classes portfolios, about 2 years ago, so it could have been an off year. The concept art and 2D guys were great, but the 3D side seemed like it needed a bit more direction. The 3D work wasn't of the quality I would have expected from graduates, and most would be ill prepared for an entry level position. I stayed after and talked to some students to get their take, and again the feelings were mixed.

In all, I would say do your homework on the school, then go visit and talk with the staff and former students. I did this and still screwed up with my first pick. I dropped out after 6 weeks, got some money back and switched schools. Best decision ever. I would ask to see portfolios of both good and bad work from graduates, job placement rate with the types of industries/companies, and if the school has its own demoreel . Ask to see the teachers portfolio, resume, shipped products/projects, and ask as many questions as possible about the area you are interested. Ask about teacher retention, if there is a lot of turnover, that's a bad sign. Ask about the split between individual vs. group projects, number of projects per semester, and time per project. I am not a fan of a single group project for the semester. Make sure the teacher that is teaching a particular discipline has expertise in that area. A lot of times a teacher will be 'given' a class and it may not be their specialty or passion, so the quality will suffer. Ask about afterhours lab/classroom availability, and the policy about working at home. In my experience, having students working together in a classroom is infinitely better than everyone going home to work. The bonding, networking connections, and combined learning is essential to know how to work together as a team at a company. Sure you are going to probably take some work home, but you should be working together in a classroom as much as possible. Every job I have gotten has been through a school contact in one way or another, and after 12 years our entire class (8-10) still stays in contact and we have 100% employment, with probably 60-80 games shipped between us.

I have worked with SCAD graduates, and have been impressed, but am not suggesting one school over the other. Do your homework and don't be afraid of your gut reactions. Good luck....
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Old 09 September 2010   #6
Thank you all for your honest responses.
I'm not really counting 100% on the school to give me the 3D education, as I believe art could also be learned through personal hard-work.
I do a lot of drawing whenever I grab a pen : life/gesture drawing, as well as digital painting. And I believe I have good understanding of anatomy, form and color; so skipping the traditional year, if that is an option, would be fine for me.
I heard that DigiPen puts students on an unnecessary stress. And that SCAD is very welcoming. I want to attend this school mostly for the degree (wich no one has pointed out yet if the give it or don't).
I do care about class sizes (love small ones) and friends (sharing), but I don't have to about the teachers; art comes with passion.
I've taken a look at your portfolio unparent, and I must say it's very nice! You seem to have some awesome renderings and had worked on noticeable games. It's obvious you worked your butt off for such level of skill...
I'm currently working on some 2D and 3D project to put on a portfolio for a scholarship consideration, if anyone can point out anything (like when/how to submit one), it would be very nice!
 
Old 09 September 2010   #7
Hey guys! I just want to make sure this. Is SCAD's tuition fee expensive than Academy of Art University?
It's shown in the website that for a year tuition at scad would be around 30k + living cost + etc
- AAU- $15,120+ Books + Huge Living Cost.
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Old 09 September 2010   #8
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