I can't decide: BYU illustration program, or Academy of Art University (or another trade-specific art school)? Is art school worth the expense? It seems to me that the best and most successful illustrators were mostly self-taught. If that's the case, I feel like it would be the best decision to go to a spiritual environment and practice there while I learn more. But I don't want to miss out on valuable education I can only get at an art school.
Academy of Art is an incredible institution; I’m sure you’d have many great opportunities if you decided to attend.
I can’t make your choice for you, but I can say what I would do in your situation. Art schools are expensive, and students frequently graduate in tremendous debt. I would avoid that if I could. One of the primary benefits of going to an art school like Academy of Art, CalArts, or Art Center is the connections you make with like-minded students and industry pros. But if you can promote yourself online and network that way, why spend all that crazy money?
Your education in the arts will be largely self directed. Educators will help to expose you to new artists, ideas, or techniques, but study in the arts is practicum-based. You gotta get your hands dirty and learn how YOU make art on your own terms. And if that’s the case, why not study at a place that would be more affordable, and in an environment conducive to who you want to become as a person?
The issue is obviously way more complex than I could break down here, and you’ll have lots of thinking to do on your own, but I’ll end by saying I loved my experience at BYU. And while it was not a dedicated arts-specific education, in the animation major I was surroundedbythemosttremendous talentswhointimidatedandinspiredmeto become the best artist I could be
The spiritual component of my education there was also SO FORMATIVE in helping me be the best person I can be. I can recommend BYU wholeheartedly and without compunction.
Hi there! I just spent a solid 1 or 2 hours going through your whole blog and it was totally worth it, you're artwork is super inspiring and all the stuff with your kids is adorable! I actually have a question of curiosity for you as well!: Recently i have been struggling with my 'style' on how i draw things and just general uncertainty on the path i want to take my art, especially seeing so many amazing artists around! have you ever experienced this yourself or did your style just come to you?
This is the constant struggle of most artists, I think. Give it time. You’re style will come to you, most likely as a result of the stuff you love. I’ve been doing this for more than a couple of years now, and what I draw is constantly being pushed and pulled on when I see things that other folks are doing that I want to try. The pushing and pulling is less pronounced as I become more comfortable with what I want to do with my cartoons.
Don’t force it. Experience a lot of other people’s art, and steal what you like. You’ll develop your voice over time, and it will be a unique combination of the seashells you’ve been putting in your bag along your journey.
Hello sir! I've just been accepted to BYU, and I'm wanting to try out for their animation program! I looked at the line up of classes, and now I'm am TERRIFIED. The work load looks like it would be incredibly hard and I might not be tough enough to survive it! I don't know if you went to BYU, but I'm assuming any animation school would have classes similar in subject and difficulty. How hard were they for you? How did you set up your schedule so that you could manage all that work?
I DID go to BYU, and it was amazing! You are going to have an incredible time. Any college course schedule will be busy to varying degrees, but the animation course load was extra-super busy (probably because the results are less objectively gradable…also because at BYU you’ll have your academic core courses in addition to religion courses).
Work hard, but don’t lose perspective. If you spend all your time making cartoons, you’ll miss out on life!!
Anthony! Thanks for the follow on twitter! :) Your stuff is super inspiring to me, so it means a lot! I admire how you can balance family, work, personal work so well! just wanted to write you hear to avoid the character limit. Cheers!
Ha! I’m still trying to figure that twitter thing out. Balancing life and work is really difficult for most people, I’m sure. I try to do my best—thanks for the encouragement. It really means a lot!
Hi Anthony, you have come up with yet another awesome animation! I tried to figure out what program you had used with the Abracadabra file, but couldn't decide on if it was Flash or Photoshop. Also, do you ever rough out your animations or you just go on a whim? It's so inspirational for me to see you updating so often, with pieces of incredible quality. Just want to say THANK YOU!!
I drew that one in Flash, and then exported it from Photoshop. Most of the animation I do for fun involves very little planning, since it’s just for personal fulfillment. I have to do enough tight drawings during the day at work, when it’s time to draw for kicks I just kind of go with the flow!
Hi Anthony (or do you perfer mr. Holden? ;) ) You've probably been asked this question a gazilion times, but have you, by any chance, made a tutorial on how you do your gif's? Which program you use, how you export etc etc. I made a gif recently, but could'nt upload it here on tumblr. And when I tried to make it smaller, it lost so much quality that you almost could'nt see what was going on. I used a bitmap based program called TVPaint. Hope you can help! Thanks in advance!
I’ve been meaning to get my hands on a copy of TV Paint. Do you love it?
Formatting gifs for tumblr is super tricky. There are a couple of things that I have figured out.
1) it likes your gif to be either 500 px or 250 px wide.
2) there’s a bunch of mumbo jumbo about sizes up to 1 or 2 megs, but I try to keep stuff under 500k, and that tends to avoid hiccups
3) it won’t let you post gifs in excess of 110 frames (at least I haven’t had success posting anything longer than that).
I do my exporting from Photoshop where I can get a real-time estimate of the final size of a gif. Lowering the resolution and number of colors in your palette are the two options that seem to have the greatest effect on file size. Of course sometimes this makes your content unrecognizable, which is why you see folks splitting things up into gif sets.
I usually just make gifs in black and white or very few colors. Hope some of this helps!!
Hi there! How are you doing!? I'm a huge fan of your work! All your comics are gorgeous and hilarious! and now I'm recently in love with your Harry Potter designs!!! (: Anyhow, I wanted to ask you, I'd love to pitch in to the whole Wizarding Wednesday but I dunno how am I supposed to submit a drawing and stuff so I thought it'd be a good idea to bother you with this question haha, Either way I wanted to let you know I love your artwork. Cheers from Mexico!
Easy peasy! All you have to do is make a drawing and post it on your own tumblr with the tag #wizarding wednesday. At the end of the day on Wednesday, the purveyors of the site reblog the stuff with that tag on it!