Career change- 28, too late for school and career in the arts?

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  1. #1
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    Career change- 28, too late for school and career in the arts?

    I'm dreaming of getting out of the corporate world after working there for several years. I'm 28 now and I want to re enter college and get an art related degree. I have started putting together a portfolio to apply to some NYC schools but I have some concerns.

    I know it shouldn't matter but I don't want to feel out of place being the oldest student. It'll feel really weird being a decade older than the freshmen. Can some people chime in on if there are a good amount of older students? Any of you out there go do what I'm planning, a mid career change and reentering school late?

    Anyone have any thoughts on the possibility that it'll be harder for me to get a job afterwards? Is there age discrimination for entry level jobs, in art related fields?

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    exactly my thoughts. but I also have one more handicap. I'm getting married this summer. And I've got to bring home the groceries if not the ham :/ Well at least I have this forum which rejuvenated all my artistic thoughts and brought me to the verge of a rebirth in means of art.

    But I think you should go for it anyway. GO FOR IT!! poor me..

    and thats all..
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    I go to College for Creative Studies in Detroit, and we have a few older students in pretty much every department, so I don't think what you're doing is too unsual. Hell, there are even people in their 40's-50's here sometimes! Although some places will be bitchy about hiring older people, I say chase your dreams. My dad switched careers a few hundred times... starting as a radio DJ and ending somewhere in advertising.. :confused: Go for it.

    "I say a lot of stuff, but I can't
    remember anything..."
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    you're not too old unless you're dead.

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    Hey I will be starting when I am 24. I'm already married and I am about to graduate with a businesss degree that I feel I wasted the last four years of my life on. It's never too late to start anything. Go over to AWN Forums and look up Ed Gavin. He's a teacher at Ringling and he started his art career later than most and he's been successful. Live your life with no regrets. You only have one chance to do it.

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  7. #6
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    I'm a couple years younger than you, but still old enough to feel a little awkward about starting school with everyone else 6 years younger than me. Not to mention telling people the field I want to go into (comic books), doesn't exactly garner a lot of oooh's and aaah's. But the way I look at it is, I'm going to die someday, do I really want to waste the time between now and then wishing that I was doing something else? So, don't worry what other people think and do what makes you happy.

    Also I don't think there's all that much age discrimination in art related jobs, as you are usually judged on your ability and little else. As long as your portfolio is good, no one really gives a damn how old you are or where you went to school.

    Anyways, that's my two cents. Good Luck.

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    " 28 " oh man buy a coffin an find a suitable grave.. I know one at an art academy..
    Just joking for sure go for it.. you are still " young " and even you can plan a career in sports.. Maybe snooker

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    Thanks for the reply, you're right I shouldn't let little things like this hinder me. Just curious but what's your story exactly? Did you also make a career switch? How old were you when you went back to school, and were you indeed the oldest?
    Hope things are working out for a fellow oldie =)

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    dude, just go for it...what the hell??? career switch is cool man. u know what???

    after 7 years of bloody, unwillingly study in the interior design of a well known university in my country, I just drop it...to hell with it.... the real art is out there and it is in you. switch it. do it. dont even hesitate.

    we are with u dude.

    eating,drinking,drawing...
    http://www.emirart.com

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    I'm in 26 and married with my pencil. I love my bride but making love is kind a different. I'm pushing it so gently but you know the resulted kiddy was an art piece.. Whaa whata relationship..
    Sorry if I'm rude with this, but I hate school and art education. I studyed in an academy and I know how the atmosphere is in there. so I only know one way to learn art. that is follow your impulse and twist that under your personality.. life and friends are the best teachers..

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    Well first off, you can never be too old. Second off, you're not old. Third off, art is a lifestyle, not a career.

    I don't think that it's relevent how long it takes for you to become skilled in art. The more important factor, in my opinion, is perseverence. I've gotten 100x better, and I've only been drawing for a couple months now.

    Art is a lifestyle. When I become a bit more serious about my art (over the summer, probably...), I will breath, drink, and eat art. I'll have a sketchpad in my pocket wherever I go and I will devote hours upon hours on just improving my technique. If you enjoy art and the lifestyle, then nobody's gonna give a damn how old you are.

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    i just graduated from AIS, one of my roommates was 28, and a friend of mine is also 28. A large portion of the guys I graduated with were in the 23-24 range, and there was a few even in thier 30's.

    I self-published a book on the fundamentals of drawing from life.

    http://www.amazon.com/Fundamentals-D...8951905&sr=8-1

    http://www.endlessunlimited.com
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    I don't think 28 is too old to switch. But that's provided if you have been working on artworks all along since you were younger and have been in practice.....only thing preventing you from picking it up back then was parents, or you needed to be in a career that offers huge returns for sake of family commitments.

    Still I'd say you will prolly find it hard to adjust at first. But as the saying goes...

    If at first you don't succeed.......Cheat!!!

    No wait that didn't turn out right. But I think you guys got my meaning


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    There are 3 sides to every story. Yours, mine and THE TRUTH.
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    Thumbs up Go For It!

    I think it's a great idea. About the age factor, I would not worry about it, I have recently been to three interviews for university (fine arts) and college (animation, illustration), and most of the people applying were not straight out from highschool. In fact, most had masters in fine arts, architecture, etc.

    Many people have a first "backup" degree or job before persuing a career in art (cause we all know art is a tricky business).

    Good luck!

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    i was 19 at otis and was in classes with 50 and 60 year old people
    ( i think it was more of a hobby for them but still.....)
    all that matters really is that you have the foundation of ability to start learning from
    if you dont have any sort of an art background or ability then its not too late its just that a lot of people expect art school to turn them into artists(i went to school with alot of them...eventually why i left)
    and if you have the ability a degree isnt the most important thing in the world
    hell go to a good cc take brush ups whatever just make sure you have a good portfolio
    (mine is no example for sure)
    i may not be in my dream job but at least i get freelance werk
    well in the end schools not a bad option
    but yer work will speak volumes more than a degree
    if you think schooll will fill those empty chapters...go for it

    best of luck
    trevor

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    yo its never too late man,

    if you think you have the talent to do it,
    then go for it.

    but if you've never been good at art before and just want to get into art and design as a career cuz it looks fun...

    might not be the best idea..

    ur age is NO biggie man, and still ur only 28, its not like ur 58 or something, and even then you could still do it.
    college isnt like high school, people from all walks of life and all ages go to college.

    but definetely I'd say only go for art as a career if you think you might have some talent. YES you can learn to draw and such.. but natural talent DOES have a roll in this.

    oh and its not all fun and games man,
    long hours, and MUCH LONGER hours during crunch times,
    I worked at a video game studio doing all sorts of art for a year.. and man.. when I had to do something not work related, it was SO hard, I mean.. I'd wake up, go 2 work,
    get home at 10pm.. do this 5-6days a week..

    how the heck are you supposed to do anything that requires a store thats not open on stundays? or till MIDNIGHT !??!:eek:

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    IM 27

    Hi Mate

    I think you should go back to school if it freels right in your hart.

    Im now 27 and in the second year of a games design degreeIm loveing it and have never been happyer in my life

    I took a long time makimg my mind up about doing a degree so late in life. I was working Full Time For a large company don an ok job with good benifits and perks

    but I wasnt doing what I flelt I should.

    So I sorted out my finances as much as I Could and took a plunge and started a degree here in the UK.

    I was so affraid at first Im Dyslexic and did do well at school
    I still struggle with writen work and maths and have problems with short term memory. but Im doing well.

    I hope that at the end of this I have the skills I need to get a job in the games industry.

    And looking at the reaction to my work I should just do that.

    The one advantage of beeing older than my fellow students is my expierence,knowlage and work ethic this is somthing i can share with them and as my tutor says Pier learning is to most important part of any degree.

    we all have somthing to contribute even if its just another point of view.

    Im not sure Who said it But one of my fave sayings is

    "Minds Are Like Parachutes they only work when their open"

    so give it a go who knows where you will end up

    good luck in what ever you do mate

    YOUR COMPADRE Tiernan

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    Not old

    Hiya,
    Well dont worry 28 is not old, I am actually 23 going to be 24 soon. Next week I graduate with a degree in PSYCHOLOGY! whoopi 4 years of college later I have a degree I dont want to work with anymore. What I like is art drawing, comptuer art all that so I am currently looking for a good school that can teach me comptuer art, I wont go to a 4 year school because that is too much, maybe a 2 year degree. I think it is worth it, cause if that is what you love then that is what you should do.

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  20. #19
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    sorry double post


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    Definitely go for it dude, I'm 38 and I'll be starting at MICA either this fall or spring. If you can swing the finances you should definitely go for it, that's the only thing that's holding me back. Learning new things keeps you young.

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    Hey Guys
    I tell you what. I'll be retiring out of the Marine Corps after 21 years of service. I'll be 40 and looking forward to working in the gaming industry. I squeeze classes in where I can and never leave the country without my sketch pad and pencils (PRACTICE, PRACTICE, PRACTICE). You only need 2 things: 1) determination 2) skill/talent. Don't take no for answer. The Marine Corps has equipped me with excellent work ethics and how to be a team player. Maturity and leadership go along way also. I hopes this gives you some inspiration from an old war-dog like me.

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  23. #22
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    Well I'm only 24, but I've been working as a graphic designer for a couple of years, and decided sometime last year I would rather be an illustrator. So I'm going to Art Center College of Design in 2005 as a freshman (since they don't really transfer in the traditional sense). The average age for freshman there is 24. Although it's going to be a bit expensive (ok, a lot expensive) it helps to know that I have design to fall back on. So I think if you are already good at whatever you do right now, you should be even less worried, since you know you can do another job during slow times.

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  24. #23
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    I'm 33 and am shifting gears into a career in art. Feed your passion man.

    Todd Lockwood was older than me when he changed gears and started doing fantasy from corporate stuff (check his site Todd Lockwood and look what he's done.

    It has nothing to do with age, but everything to do with passion and determination.

    Go for it. Just don't give up when it gets hard. Push harder.

    Cheers,
    ~Oreg.


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    I'm 27 and recently I quit my job (developer) to try to get a career in arts, comics hopefully, mind you.

    If your heart tells you so an your financial situation allows it, go for it!

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    It's never too late to change a career that you're in, unless the career has some kind of age requirement, like police, fire fighters, or military. I say, go for it. I'm working towards doing the same thing myself, though I'm not your age as of yet. The only tough part about it is making sure that you maintain the focus when things get more difficult, and know what you stand to gain for your given sacrifice.

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  27. #26
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    The main thing in any career or job switch is to make sure you do not end up doing yourself more harm than good.

    Most of the people here are young and don't have mortgages or rent or other life expenses. But, I would highly suggest that if you are considering any sort of switch that you first make sure that you have something to transition into so you have as little a disruption with your finances as possible. This may mean sticking with the hated job for a while, which can work as good motivation to find the one that you want. It may also mean working two jobs (the hated and the loved) until you are in a situation where you can make the cut final.

    The last thing you want to do is to put yourself in a situation where you jepordize your finances.

    Hope that helps.

    Cheers,
    ~Oreg.


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  28. #27
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    Well if 28 is too old, then I suppose I'm dead then.

    I initially went to college in my late 20's and got a degree in Architecture. I was at least ten years older than most of the students. This ended up being a benefit because I was more focused.

    I just recently went back to school at 40 to get another degree. I'm literally 20 years older than most of the students and either the same age or older than some of the faculty. This time around, the all-nighters are bit tougher to tackle.

    Like all career changes, there is risk involved. If you are looking into a career in the arts, remember this phrase "Starving artist." People go into the arts because they have a passion for it, not because they think they will get rich. Few make the kind of money they think they will. You either love it and will work for free to do it or you don't and you will ultimately abandon it for a more secure future.

    28 is still young. When you are 40, then you may want to flip a coin over it. Most graduate students are that age and they haven't worked a day in their life yet.

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  29. #28
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    If you feel weird around students a few years younger than yourself, get over it!!!

    I went to Art Center in my later 20s, graduated, and have worked in computer games and doing free-lance illustration every since.

    There are a TON more obstacles that will get in your way other than being 28. Art is a tough career choice. It's not something for the hesitant or over-sensitive. But if you want to do it, just do it.

    :dead3:

    ...Grandma Moses started painting in her 70s and became famous...

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    Lucky you...

    You're lucky...

    I wish I had an option! I'd give anything for the chance to go back to school! I'm 27 and here's my situation:

    -I'm broke
    -Half of an associates degree in Industrial Design(money ran out... I'm in debt up to my eyeballs now because I tried to get an education)
    - No car (broke down while broke)
    - Driver's licence suspended (caught without car insurance while broke)
    - Stuck in suburbia(no public transport within walking distance, or jobs for that matter)
    - A clueless family(they are still hoping I will stop dreaming and get a real job)

    so... essentially I need a car to get a job, but I need a job to get a car. My family just shrugs their shoulders and out of familial obligation allow me access to a computer and internet as well as food and shelter.

    My only hope is to find work online so i can get out of the hole I'm in...

    But through it all I am an artist... and will continue to be one after I'm dead.

    Live by the brush... Die by the brush...


    The only comment I really have is... count your blessings man, count your blessings...


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    As others said, if your only concern is feeling inadequate; then definitely do it; but you have to think what you`re gonna do in the meantime; because until your skills are good enough you won`t find work as an illustrator, so you`ll have to work on something.

    I have been having like two "careers" at the same time, one as an illustrator/artist, since I was 17, and another in architecture since I was 20; I never went to art school and decided to study architecture instead, learning art by myself in the freetime; my carreer as artist developed slow and naturally as I was always more interested in developing my technique than having a "job" doing it; so my parents helped me financially with my architecture career until I get enough money from my art to completely sustain myself... and that happened like 2 years ago (now I`m almost 27, so it took some time), I work doing my art and pay my own studies on architecture while still developing my skills as an artist in the free time, I never had a "real" job! LOL

    The Light and Dark Arts of Cristian Saksida
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