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preparation for studies in CalArts

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preparation for studies in CalArts

I am a student who is going to at CalArts (character animation) in this coming Sep. I have some questions

1) I am not good with computer graphics. All i know is some basic skills in photoshop. Do i need to equip myself with other software skills, such as, writing webpages, illustrator, freehand, flash or maya before i attend CalArts?

2) I have problems drawing the same character alike in different perspectives, (esp when the character is looking up)? I have attached a sheet of perpective drawings I have done of a character with a very basic form. Could you give me some guidance?

3) What other skills should i brush up on before i go there? I know the people around me will be really great. I am so afraid i would be lagging behind.

Thanks so much


The purpose of going to school is to learn, not to know everything already when you get there.

If you've been accepted to CalArts, then you're already in good shape, and your studies there will hone your skills and help you develop those areas you need to develop.

Take a deep breath, relax, and enjoy. Keep practicing, but relax.

It's interesting that CalArts has that FAQ with the question asking about, why do I need to know how to draw; isn't that what I'm going here to learn? And their response is that you're going to learn to animate, not to draw, and they'd prefer it if you had a good foundation in drawing.

But like DSB said, if they've accepted you, they have confidence in your ability to succeed and will be able to work with you.

For what it's worth, even though the scan didn't turn out well, and even though every once in a while there's a tangent, for the most part I really wouldn't say you have a "perspective problem." I've seen tons of people holier than thou that unintentionally create cubism when they try their hand at perspective. Nothing practice can't hone.

In answer to your last question/comment, never let your attention to life/observation/figure drawing suffer; drawing skills determine how well you will do in many respects since the more natural and carefree you can be in mark-making (even just for planning) the more you can worry about what it IS you're drawing instead of the technical process itself. Also don't worry about anyone else. Make friends, make connections, but if you feel yourself being outclassed, know there's a reason and that they likely have other things good and bad to balance it, and let it MOTIVATE you to be ten times as good as you are now.