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Am I able to get a place on the Animator life?

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Am I able to get a place on the Animator life?

Hello everyone!

My name is Cris, I am 18 years old and I am from Spain. I have been drawing since I can remember and I have been really obsessed with cartoons even before I could remember. Cartoons have been my life company and they still are.
The thing is, when I was a little kid, right after going to the cinema to see Shreck, I was talking with my father about jobs and life and I asked him how animation movies were made, so he told me that there were people who liked drawing and computers and they made every movie that I loved! I was 7 by that time, and 11 years later, I am pretty sure that animation IS my thing.

But not everything in life is beautiful, and when I started to grow, I realized that in Spain it seemed like only a few people with enough money and contacts succeded in this path. My family is middle class and they can only pay for a public college, so I am starting the only existing public career in Spain whose planning is near to Animation: Design, which includes illustration, graphic design and even animation subjects.

Even if I am on my way to learn as much as I can and even more, some people are telling me that it is a very difficult thing and that I am not going to succed, that I dream so big. What they call dreaming, I call it ambition. I could not love more animation and I spend my days drawing and thinking about how to improve my technics. But it is difficult and I am starting to believe that maybe they are right and Spanish people don't have a place on there. So I came here to ask: Do I really have any chance to get my dreams? I have been thinking about studying Animation at some good academy with my own money, and that would be after finishing Design, soy I would be 22. I obviously would investigate by myself during the next 4 years, is this a bad plan? What do you think about it?
I seriously want to be an animator, traveling is not a problem and I am disposed to do whatever it is necessary to do the things on the right way!

I am leaving here some of my drawings for you to check them out. I also have a youtube channel where I upload some simple speed drawings, you can find them here: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCCCljG5h4CMyJRIdVxDd4iw

Thank you for taking your time!

Hi Cris--

Hi Cris--
Would you like some straight talk from someone who has been in the animation business for over 30 years?  I've worked as a animator, inbetweener, storyboard artist, layout artist, designer, illustrator, comic book artist,  animation studio owner, and a art instructor.
  I'll give you some honest answers and opinions and you can decide if you think this is for you.

 "But not everything in life is beautiful, and when I started to grow, I realized that in Spain it seemed like only a few people with enough money and contacts succeded in this path. My family is middle class and they can only pay for a public college, so I am starting the only existing public career in Spain whose planning is near to Animation: Design, which includes illustration, graphic design and even animation subjects." 

My opinion and experience as both an self--taught artists and former professional art school teacher says that education is good, and can be valuable for a career in animation, but what you need are really three things:  talent, opportunity and a bit of luck.

There is NO school anywhere that can teach you ( or (re)make you) into a professional artist.  If they promise you that, they are lying to you and just want to take your money.  What art schools, with good animation programmes, do is introduce you to and give you a short amount of time to learn techniques that are used in professional animation.
Understand that you can complete these programmes, even earn a degree, and still NOT have professional level artistic ability.
That's because pretty much any degree-programme holds that the student meets the academic standards of the programme--that is they complete the assignments to the requested outcomes.  Artistic talent tends to be qualified as a subjective form of aesthetic appeal, subject to personal taste.
There's really no reliable way to grade that, except by the instructors professional experience and opinion.
The problem with that is instructors teaching a given class do not all come from the same professional background, so how they evaluate a student's artistic abilities can come from all kinds of interpretations.  There is no common standard for this at any school, anywhere.

But that doesn't dismiss schooling, it just pust a proper light on the value of schooling.  Schooling in Spain may be as useful as that in France, or the USA, or Canada, or anywhere else. The time and money spent are only relevant to talent you have--as that is what will make the difference.

And what is talent, what is the measurement of those that have talent?  If you want to work professionally as an animator, just look at the work of professionals creating animation.  That is the benchmark you need to hit, or exceed past. Get your work to be as good as, or better, and you will land work in the industry.

You can do most, if not all, of that on your own, through self--development.  Look, let's be honest here........ANY material or lessons you are going to be shown at a school you can now find on-line, using the same computer that allows you to read these words.  All the books, articles, tutorials.......all the materials you will need to leard from are sitting in front of you......right now.
The trick is finding the stuff.......which really isn't that hard.
I am self-taught, from a time when the resources of the internet simply did not yet exist. All I had was about a 1/2 dozen books on the subject of animation and drawing, and I was able to develop to the point where I could break into the biz.  Today there is a thousand times more available information sources to ANYONE in the world who wants to learn animation. It is right in front of you.

"Even if I am on my way to learn as much as I can and even more, some people are telling me that it is a very difficult thing and that I am not going to succed, that I dream so big. What they call dreaming, I call it ambition. I could not love more animation and I spend my days drawing and thinking about how to improve my technics. But it is difficult and I am starting to believe that maybe they are right and Spanish people don't have a place on there. So I came here to ask:Do I really have any chance to get my dreams?"

I will be very blunt and candid with you: if you do not think you have a chance at this, then you are right. You do not.

That is the hard truth that a lot of people have to work towards accepting. if you don't think you can do this, go off and become a truck driver or something. They will always have work.
But the other part of the hard truth is that if you believe you can do this, in spite of any obstacles in front of you, then you are also right.  You do have a chance at this.

First thing to do is to ignore all these "experts" around you.  They are not animators, they are not in the business they know nothing about it.  So why listen to them?
Oh, sure, they love you and want the best for you........but they also want you to pursue something that THEY understand.  That is why they are critical of animation as a career.
It may take you a while to find people around you that actually do this stuff. It might not be easy, you may even have family members that try to sabotage your dreams. You might sabotage them yourself by listening to them. 
You need to be clear about what you want, and what you value.  If family is most important you to, then..........give up animation. Go drive a truck.
But if the need to express what is inside you is like a screaming voice........then driving a truck isn't going to make you very happy.

 "I have been thinking about studying Animation at some good academy with my own money, and that would be after finishing Design, soy I would be 22. I obviously would investigate by myself during the next 4 years, is this a bad plan? What do you think about it?
I seriously want to be an animator, traveling is not a problem and I am disposed to do whatever it is necessary to do the things on the right way!"

Your age doesn't matter.
Where you go to school doesn't matter.
Your time-table for this......doesn't matter.

The only thing that matters is how you develop your talent.

Do you want a gauge of where your talent is?  Take a look at the drawings you have done.........will they land you work right now?
If the answer is no.........then you have work to do.  The most valuable skill to learn is the ability to gauge what you are weak at, and then how and where to find the tools that help you improve, and then apply those lessons to your work.

Learn this skill and you will succeed in this career goal.
But most people don't do this because they have no clue as to how to measure their own work.
The thing is, once on the job, you will have to do this daily...........and your continued employment will depend on your judgment as to if the work you have done is satisfactory.
Sure, other people will grade your work on the job, but it is the skill that YOU must learn before they get to see it. You need to be able to make your work as good as the pros.

How you get there...........is entirely up to you.  There's no real reliable short-cuts, and there's no set pathway either.   You can start with anything.  Pick something you are weak at, master it...........move on to the next things.  Repeat as needed.

Here's a secret: this process is progressive, and compounds.  What does that mean?  It means that you will not have to start over each time you look at learning something new, that the previous lessons can build the foundations of the next lesson, and so on.
Everything is connected, nothing stands apart.  All the lessons link in some way.  It's the same in schooling as it is in self-development.

But the journey is yours to take or not.

 

"We all grow older, we do not have to grow up"--Archie Goodwin ( 1937-1998)

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