Career Summary

Animators draw by hand and use computers or other electronic tools to produce a sequence of drawings. The series of drawings and sketches are then edited, colored, textured, motion added, photographed and transferred to film or tape. Once this process is complete, the visual imagery is projected at a specific speed forming the animated cartoons and special affects for feature films, television commercials, short features, computer games and videos. Consequentially, animation artists work primarily in motion picture, television, and advertising industries. Animation has become a global business. High-quality animation is produced in Hungary, the Czech Republic, France, Korea, and other Asian countries. Natural talent and creative ability are highly valued in the field of animation therefore an artist should develop an impressive portfolio reflecting his or her style, vision, and the skills level. Although formal training is not exactly required for animation artists, nonetheless, one should strive to obtain necessary expertise through college training in order to be competitive in the job market. Computers are used throughout the visual arts industry. Specialized computer knowledge and skills are essential for various jobs in these fields. Formal educational programs in art provide training in computer techniques. Many fine colleges offer courses and programs in animation, computer graphics, video effects, and graphic design.

Program Description

Glendale Community College offers programs in Classical and Digital Animation. The animation certificates are designed to provide academic and hands-on learning experiences for individuals planning on a career in the field of animation. Course curriculum for both programs delves into a wide spectrum of topics ranging from history of art, structure and principles of design, image generation and combination, life drawing to three-dimensional digital animation, modeling, and kinematic animation techniques. Students will be able to acquire knowledge of the animation story structure and character development as well as obtain technical, aesthetic, and conceptual skills in imaging with Photoshop. Classical Animation program will introduce students to fundamentals of acting and movement for theatre. Hands-on projects include the creation of animated short films in various formats.

Students interested in pursuing a Bachelor’s degree should consult with an academic and/or transfer counselor to discuss transfer requirements

Key Skills and Characteristics

  • Drawing talent and creative vision.
  • Understanding of form and knowledge of design techniques and the art of moving a character.
  • Knowledge of background art and layout.
  • Expertise in computer design software.
  • Patience, perseverance, resourcefulness, ambition.
  • Ability to work effectively without supervision and as part of a team.

Related Career Titles

Sketch Artists * Graphic Designers * Painters and Illustrators * Cartoonists


Please visit the GCC Career Center to research specific occupational information and learn more about your selected career path.

Last updated: 1/24/2010 9:08:15 PM