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Explore The Intersection

Of Art, Media, & Technology.

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Combine

Forms of Art That You're Passionate About.

Animation & Game Art

Animation & Game Art majors at MECA are versatile, technologically savvy, and capable of solving complex visual challenges. You’ll be given the tools, guidance, and expertise to define your own career within a rapidly expanding industry.

Create, explore, and manipulate real and imagined worlds. Animation & Game Art majors at MECA blend the lines of traditional media with cutting-edge technologies to create video games, digital art installations, web environments, animated and live-action films, and anything else imaginable in our increasingly virtual age. Our interdisciplinary curriculum integrates drawing, 2D and 3D design, digital imaging, and video, providing the experience needed to build a portfolio that sets you apart. If the exploration of new realms like transmedia storytelling, game art, interactive comics, mobile app design, and multi-media installation is your dream, then pursuing a degree in Animation & Game Art is the right path for you.

Artist Attribution in Video Above

Outcomes

  • Formal

    Students will develop the ability to appropriately apply 2D and 3D compositional strategies to animation and game projects and will acquire a deep understanding of the twelve principles of animation: squash and stretch, anticipation, weight, arcs, timing, easing, overlapping motion, staging, straight ahead versus pose to pose, exaggeration, solid drawing, and appeal. They will cultivate an in-depth knowledge of the application of cinematic principles to animation, and competency in cinematography techniques, including camera distance, motion, angle, focal length, parallax motion and lighting, as well as in special effects and compositing. They will master editing techniques such as cuts, dissolves, match shots and jump cuts, and will learn how to make sophisticated color choices and palettes in services to composition and meaning. They will master the ability to translate scripts in order to create storyboards, animatics and teasers. Students will develop a trained eye for seeing the nuance of motion in character animation.

  • Conceptual

    Students will cultivate skills in storytelling and in the development of the personal concepts that drive their work. Upon completion of the program, they will have the ability to tell compelling visual stories, which is the overarching goal of animation and game art. They will be capable of creating work at all phases of the animation/game design process, from conceptualization to planning to pre-production, production and post-production processes. They will develop the ability to work independently and collaboratively in the classroom community in support of developing processes and work by which one cultivates sound studio and professional practices. They will be able to supply a range of conceptual approaches to a game or story, apply and explore key concepts in character development (such as shape, color, exaggerated characteristics, personality flaws, backstory, dress and props), and encode and decode the significance of choices of symbols, objects and environments in games and animation projects. As students gain experience programming games, they will acquire a sophisticated understanding of how art and logic mutually inform and modify the experience of interaction. An understanding of acting as a fundamental component of creating moving characters will inform their work. Students will master a strong critical vocabulary for the assessment of all aspects of animation and game art.

  • Technical

    As a technical discipline, animation and game art requires knowledge and abilities in both traditional and developing technologies, from drawing to motion graphics. Students will hone their ability to draw on paper and digitally for planning, design and production. They will develop the ability to sculpt in analog and digital environments, and will develop a broad range of software proficiency in 2D, 3D and stop motion animation (including Photoshop, Illustrator, After Effects, Maya, Toon Boom, Dragon Frame, and Audition). They will learn 2D and 3D game art and development, and related software such as Stencyl and Unity 3D. Exploration of established and emerging platforms for games and animation (Mobile, Arcade, VR, AR) will help expand their skills. They will master animation shortcuts (for example, cycles, camera moves and holds) in service to efficient production. Students will master the techniques of modeling, texturing, rigging and animating 3D characters; they will also develop proficiency in visual effects and compositing for animation and games. Students who complete the program will be able to create 2D and 3D game art using industry-standard production techniques.

  • Professional

    Students will develop an online portfolio that displays standard production skills and highlights their areas of interest and of particular excellence; they will complete the program with a resume and professional reel. Every graduating student is required to show their work in the BFA Thesis Show; moreover, all MECA students can exhibit their work in organized College exhibitions and on their own (after getting approval for space) during all four years of their MECA experience. As a major, students will learn to effectively collaborate on team productions; they will also be able to work independently. They will hone the communication skills required to competently critique work in various stages of production, from pre- through post-production, and will also demonstrate competency in written communication in the form of self-evaluations that address research, development processes, historical precedents and contemporary practice. Students develop proficiency in using online resources and communities as learning and problem-solving systems. Through its Artists at Work program, the College has a large national network that allows students to take advantage of internship opportunities with artists, illustrators, animators and game artists.

FAQs

  • What are some of the career paths for someone who majors in Animation & Game Art?

    Many of our students find work in the animation and gaming fields. A fair number have started successful companies in the fields of smart phone apps, documentary film, web design, and rich media. Some work as graphic designers, or as artists launching their own recording and digital art projects.

  • How do you prepare your students for the real world?

    Students learn to write an artist statement, professional resume, cover letter, and artist bio. Students learn to seek out and research opportunities in the field through the use of the internet, professional organizations, publications, and periodicals. Students create a portfolio of work targeted to their specific interests in the world of digital media. Students learn how to use social media and evolving web technologies effectively in the promotion and distribution of their work. Students have an awareness of the transferability and versatility of their education into the related fields of digital media, motion design, web design, art direction, and the ability to explore ideas outside the discipline, including teaching.

  • What are some examples of what your alums are doing?

    Stop Motion Animation Technician, Animation Instructor, Live Event and Video Producer, 3D Environment Artist, Feature Film Animator, Art Director/Game Artist, App Designer (iOS), Chief Creative Officer, Project Manager of a Game Company, Interaction Developer, and Artist Assistant.

  • What are the prerequisites to major in Animation & Game Art?

    Students take Digital Imaging and Digital Filmmaking in their foundation years. They also take an Animation & Game Art Elective appropriate to their level or area of interest.

  • Will I be able to incorporate other media or interests with my work as a Animation & Game Art major?

    You will be required to take a range of courses from other areas that match your specific area of interest. Students often take courses in Photography, Graphic Design, Illustration, Sculpture, and Painting.

Program

Preparation (1st & 2nd Year) 3-6 Elective Courses
Animation 1 (AG 101)
Cinematic Storytelling (AG 120)
Character Design (AG 199)
3D Modeling & Animation (AG 245)
2D Character Animation (AG 201)
Digital Filmmaking (AG 230)
2D Game Design (AG 250)
Stop Motion and FX (AG 304)
3D Rigging and Animation (AG 303/403)
Intermediate Game & Concept Art (AG 326)
Advanced 3D Game Art (AG 400)

Junior Year (3rd Year)
Fall Semester:
Major Production Studio 1 (AG 321)
Animation and Game Art Concepts and History (AG 351)
Major Studio Elective (AG)

Spring Semester:
Major Production Studio 2 (AG 322)
Collaborative Productions (AG 352)
Major Studio Elective (AG)

Senior Year (4th Year)
Fall Semester:
Capstone Pre-production (AG 421)
Professional Studio (SEM 451)
Majors Studio Elective (AG)

Spring Semester:
Capstone Production (AG 422)
Majors Studio Elective (AG)

Workspace & Tools
  • iPads, computers, and Android devices
  • 3D printers
  • Digital SLRs, video cameras, and audio gear
  • Data projectors and lighting equipment
  • Industry-standard programs including
    Maya 3D, Stencyl and Unity Game Engines,
    Dragon Stop Motion, Flash, After Effects,
    Final Cut Pro, Soundtrack, Motion,
    Compressor, and Adobe Premium Suite

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What do our alumni do?

Statistics from the 2015 Strategic National Arts Alumni project (SNAAP)

Did you know?

55% is the national average for arts alumni that work as professional artists.

45% is the national average for arts alumni that are self employed, independent contractors, or freelance workers.

63

Work as professional artists

23

Work as graphic designers, illustrators, or art directors

16

Founded a business

23

Work as craft artists

38

Work as fine artists

29

Work as art teachers

17

Pursued an MFA after graduation

47

Are self-employed, independent contractors or freelance workers

91

Make art in their personal time

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