I'm thinking about quitting my state college drawing program. I've got 2 years left, and from what I can tell it's more of the same. I'm interested in concept art and illustration, and this program is for fine art.
I'm super committed to foundational studies, I recognize how important they are. I feel like I'd have much more time to do good work without the hassle of homework (especially hw unrelated to art). There's a ton of info in books, online, and offered by things like Massive Black to help me along. I want to spend a year drawing all day, every day and see if I can start getting small character design jobs or the like and work my way up (a la Rapoza, Janaschi, Alpenfleger, Miles). I can always go back to school after the year if it's not working out, no harm done. I've seen plenty of people do it on this board, so I'd like to give it a shot without wasting more money (lots more) at college.
One concern that sticks out in my mind is that I won't have an outlet to meet people. I want to continue to work on my social skills (recovering from a lifetime of social anxiety and shyness) and college is perfect for that. I'd be transferring next fall to finish the 4 year program, and I'd be surrounded by artists. I've got little interest in partying and all that, but I would definitely like to meet other artists, girls!! (artists), etc.
Does anyone have any experience doing this without college? My area is mostly families in the suburbs, so few people from my peer group. I don't know how to hook up with people that may be like minded. Sketchgroups come to mind, but I don't know where to start. Could I go look around the college campuses anyway, even though I don't go there? Any help would be appreciated. I've worked hard to better my socialization, and I don't want to lose that aspect of my life. People are interesting and cool, and if they're artists then we could all help each other. I'm just afraid quitting school will mean a year of being locked in my room without any human contact.
(I do have friends, some fantastic ones online and some others left from high school. I don't see the HS friends so often though because of our different lives. I'd love to meet some more artists so that the focus can be on developing that skill rather than boozing/smoking/watching sports. Nothing against any of that, in fact I can see how it's fun, but my goals are just different than those people)
Thanks for listening, you have my eternal gratitude , I hope you all are doing well.
PS: If this doesn't get a ton of response, should I try somewhere else, such as the lounge? This seemed like the best place for it though.