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A question concerning life

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A question concerning life

So. I’m 18 years old, and I didn’t get into Cal Arts, RISD, USC's Animation program or any other college. I have just applied to San Jose State, Ringling and some other liberal arts colleges. I truly don't have a passion for anything, I have a passion for everything. The entertainment industry is definitely where I want to be. I am so stressed out because I am being forced into a Liberal Arts school, U of Arizona, because I don’t have enough passion towards any one thing. It was film. Then animation. Then film, rinse and repeat. My question for you guys is what are your suggestions about what to do as a kid who has a passion for the entertainment industry, but isn't sure concerning what aspect. As well as what to do about college.

Also, does anyone know of any instances where someone has found a job as a camera person/coffee boy for a person in Hollywood right out of high school, or how to find positions like this? This would be an awesome replacement (in my mind) for developing my interests instead of being pigeonholed into a school.

Also, would taking a year off to develop artistic skills before college be a wise thing to do, even if I'm not sure that is what I want to pursue?

I’m dying here guys, between the parents and the friends and the friend's parents all expecting me to give them an answer about what I’m going to do with my life, and me not knowing, I’m stressing out big time. I thought I would turn to the credible experts. All comments are appreciated.
Thanks in Advance, Truly.

I agree with a lot of what's been said here. I think lots of people in adulthood are still trying to figure out what they want to do, much less college students! Many of my college friends changed their majors a couple times before graduating. I myself went to college (liberal arts) and studied foreign languages, then grad school to study film wasn't until then that I finally realized that my passion was animation. Sometimes you have to try things, figure out what you don't want to do, then by process of elimination, realize what you want to do. Experience lots of things! It will only enrich your life. But I do agree that going to college is very important. It will allow you options in the future, while helping you to explore many different subjects. Film studies in particular would allow you to utilize many different skills as well as teach you effective story telling techniques, all of which can later be applied toward animation. Just remember, you don't have to make a lifelong commitment to your major!

Oiy! College classes are an expensive way to explore what you want to do with your life. My recent classes run about $2,000 a pop, so I think pretty dang hard about what classes I take. Many more cost efficient ways to get to know yourself exist. Books, for one, or websites on various topics. Explore the cheap way first, try and narrow down your interests, and then talk to a professor or a person in the field. With some personal research you might avoid the usual expensive third year major change that so many college students go through (I did, and it cost me thousands).


Hey....I'm just like tht but im only 17, still got time.... Haha, it was actually a few hours ago when i asked my mom the same question...She told me to go into computer animation because i like computers but i really don't think it seems like a good idea...isit... I mean if i try specialising in CGI will it help me in the entertaiment industry...

To tell the truth, I have a major exam coming in a few months.I'm studying as hard as i can but i seem to think of the future of what i really want to be, at one side theres being someone who studies hard and live a good and safe life in the future and on the other theres someone who lives a life in the entertaiment industry, which is what i want to be in but requires hardwork, dedication and in the end, also a little bit of luck and potential. If not,life will be a livin hell...

Not to mention,the entertaiment industry here in Malaysia is horrible... BUT, I know i can make it, I know tht one day, somehow someway, i can make it in the entertaiment industry... but what if i'm wrong... Thats why i'm trying to understand as much as i can before i choose...

Pirates of the Caribbean 3 is coming out... All this thought actually started when i saw the trailer about a month ago, to tell the truth...That was what made me think about my future, funnily i find a recent thread about it too. When i was watching it, the one thing that i wanted most at that time was that the movie was my idea/story or even at least, the character Jack Sparrow was my idea...I didn't even care if i was famous or not but it will give me a sense of achievement in life...

Sorry, for writing so long, but i just wanted to ask for advice too.. and oh yeah, what is a screenwriter?

Imagination is much more important then knowledge...

Hey I am still trying to decide what I want to be when I grow up and I am 57 this year. Just don't lose sight of the world you live in. Feel the sun, smell the roses and try to do no harm to yourself or others. Be open and generous and you can't go wrong.

Pat Hacker, Visit Scooter's World.


Rochester Institute of Technology in Rochester, NY has an excellent major in their College of Imaging Arts and Sciences entitled "Film and Animation." You can get experience in both areas and decide your concentration as you go along.

i was in your place

Test the waters with all the intro classes at whatever school--you're bound to run into an interview or a professor, or an assignment that hooks you. Don't go to college stressed out on "what do I want to do?!?!" It's time for you to take advantage of your time... for one time in your life you'll have the chance to be as creative as you want to be. It should not be a stressful time. During that time you'll find what you want to do, or maybe you'll find one opportunity that will lead to another.

I would not suggest transferring majors 5 times. It's a waste of time and MONEY. You don't want to look back with lots of loans. And companies for the most part don't require a certain degree for hiring. They only want to see that you have an eye for what you're applying for... and that you did accomplished something in college, whether it be a basic film studies degree, or a killer short film with a team, etc. There is plenty of time for stress after college, so don't be stressed during college. My wife designs baby clothes with Ralph Lauren and she got out of school with an illustration degree. She's hiring someone at the moment who has a background in mural painting. I work in FX for commercials... everyone I went with has a different story (from community college--to no college--to business degree), but they ended up here because their goals and desires and talents fit with the company--not because of a certain degree. My degree meant nothing until I actually got a job and excelled in it.

So my advice. Go for it! And soak up all you can on the way. Surround yourself with wise people, not loud-mouthed people... and then turn around and share what you've learned. One piece of advice I was given from an older fella at Sony, Dreamworks, etc. was don't forget to fuel your creativity. Go do what you love on the weekend, volunteer, do photography, don't get stuck in an office (or a school lab) trying to climb the ladder--this will fuel your creativity and you'll do better at whatever you do. So no stress. All the people in my office agree that: taking off a year = wasting a year for many people. Go for it~whatever school!

I didn't know exactly what I wanted to do either, but I went to art school, found that I liked animation the best, surrounded myself with animators, and Miraculously ended up in NY with a great company. Everyone's story is different. Find your path and start growing--not only in your "field" but in teamwork abilities, character, etc. It's Life. Enjoy.

If you're not sure what you want to do, a liberal arts college is probably the right place to be. It'll give you the flexibility to explore your options without locking into something right away that you may find a year or so down the road isn't what you really want to be doing.

Take entry-level courses in subjects that interest you (animation, video production, filmmaking - whatever) and see what floats your boat. Then dig into the subject deeper with some research and see if it still sounds like something you want to do. If it does, then you'll know what direction to take and what schools can provide the education you need to get there.

Don't forget that you can always transfer later, and sometimes this makes it easier to get into your school of choice.

Film Studies.

Many liberal art schools have courses in "Film Literature", "Film History" or "Film Appreciation" -- this would be an excellent place to start. It WILL help in animation. It will give you head start on vocabulary, understanding of the "Classics", familiarity with great directors, and an introduction into foreign cinema.

Also take a writing course, something geared toward film or theater. Something that will give you structure and help you with story arcs and character development.

If they have "media" studies, that might give you an overview of the industry from the business side as well as the social/cultural side.

Round it off with a drawing class and or CG program.

There's your course load for Semester 1. Enjoy!!!!

It's all good.

Oh, as for finding beginner film work -- check out
It's a forum that often lists student film shoots looking for an extra hand.

I second what DSB said wholeheartedly. For many people, college is a place to explore and figure out what it is that you're passionate about more than anything else. Looking back, it seems absurd to think we should know what we want to do with the rest of our lives when we're 18. Go to AU, change your major, change your major again, transfer if/when you decide that somewhere else will do a better job of getting you wherever you decide you want to go in the industry. Summer internships during college are also a great way to make connections and learn firsthand what different industry environments are like. And down the line, grad school is also an option for further refining/focusing your area of expertise.

You should also keep in mind that many people major in areas unrelated to the entertainment industry and still work their way into the industry regardless. It's all a matter of where and how you want to get your information and experience.