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Thread: Am I too late for art college?

  1. #1
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    Am I too late for art college?

    (forgive me if this is in the wrong section, I'm not exactly searching or applying for art college right now, just working towards getting there skillwise?)

    This summer, if all goes well, I plan to take traditional drawing with an instructor. When I first came to his studio to see a preview of class, I showed him some of my work. He seemed to like it somewhat, however he gave intimations that I may be too late to get into a good art college along the lines of SVA or RISD. There was a man who was painting behind him and he did say that I was pretty late already as well.

    This guy is certainly prestigious, since last year three of his students got into RISD with scholarship, as well as a few in Ringling, so I don't doubt his teaching skill. It's just that there are a lot of his students that have been drilling traditional art like figure drawing, still life, oil painting and the like since they were pretty young (think elementary to middle school), and I'm pretty sure those were the people that eventually were accepted into the really good art schools.

    So is it too late for me? Currently I'm a sophomore in high school. How long will it take to learn enough figure drawing and realism to render competently enough? I did take some technical drawing in Shanghai last summer for a month or so, which did help a lot, however I haven't been able to retain the skills once I came back to the states.

    A sample of my work (my dA) I also have a tumblr link in my sig.
    Last edited by Toriknew; May 7th, 2012 at 01:52 AM.
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  3. #2
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    Good lord, a sophomore in high school? That is PLENTY of time to start working on your skills. The secret is hard work every day. No one can tell you how long that takes, other than a long time. But certainly you don't have to be a master in order to get into school. This thread gets passed around a lot but you might find it helpful: http://www.conceptart.org/forums/showthread.php?t=870
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    WTF? You're a sophomore in high school and asking this?! I can understand that you might not know much.

    Two years is waaaaaaaay more than enough time to start working on your skills for an entrance portfolio. Getting into a top art school isn't hard -- working out the financial burdens it presents is.
    BLAHBLAHBLAH
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  6. #4
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    I don't think your brain is even fully developed by tenth grade. I highly doubt it's too late for anything.

    Except a career as an olympic gymnast. Those dreams are dead. Oh, and native fluency in some languages. Being an astronaut is probably out, too, but not because you're old.
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    Sophomore.... ironic.
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    Dont make fun of us : ( you are a sophomore, you have so much time man. But the hard work has to start now. If not now, when? what matters is that you start.

    And to add to that, who says you have to get out of high school in spring and already attend an institution in fall? Work on your craft, see how accepted portfolios look like or post yours here and people will help you. When you have good portfolio pieces send em in.

    Dont be scared, be excited you are finally getting into art making a little bit more seriously. Its fun.
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    Probably not an age thing. I bet it's more to do with application dates. Just keep working...
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    Thanks for all the helpful links and advice. Sorry if I offended everyone, I'm just kind of nervous, and I know it's probably a bad thing to compare myself but there's so many people in my grade that are bounds ahead of me in realism, and I look at the submissions for AP studio art and the people there who got fives and sixes, and I'm not sure how an art career would work out at this stage.

    But I will give it my best shot, and see how far I'll go.
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    Stop worrying so much.

    You're too young to have that much stress in your life.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Toriknew View Post
    Thanks for all the helpful links and advice. Sorry if I offended everyone, I'm just kind of nervous, and I know it's probably a bad thing to compare myself but there's so many people in my grade that are bounds ahead of me in realism, and I look at the submissions for AP studio art and the people there who got fives and sixes, and I'm not sure how an art career would work out at this stage.

    But I will give it my best shot, and see how far I'll go.
    To be honest your comprehension of what their "realism" looks like is very subjective and will change and continue to change the further into art you delve. "Bounds ahead" may not necessarily be true.

    Also, working in the art producing field does not require a degree. Employers do not care where you went to school, they only care if you can produce them a quality product. Though things like life drawing classes are extremely valuable. Or if you want the art school experience, that's fine too, just know that ultimately what will get you to where you want to be is HARD WORK, not school.

    The most fitting advice for you is to keep having fun making art first and foremost. But if you're truly serious about an art career start looking into fundamentals of drawing; perspective, anatomy, composition etc.. This is what separates the amateurs from the serious artists.
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    Great, last month it was twenty-year-olds worrying about being too old, now it's high school sophomores. I swear, I'd start kicking some ass if my joints weren't so achy.

    Tristan Elwell
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  19. #12
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    Talking

    Totally not too late!

    I flunked art Freshman, Sophomore, and Junior year and nearly flunked out of school. I had like a 2.0 or maybe even 1.something. I can't remember. It was awful, though. Had a rough childhood. Got my head on straight during my junior summer. My senior year I got into a tech school during my senior year, supplemental to my normal classes to get the credit I needed to graduate. Because of that, I brought my gpa up to 3.6 or something. Had everything squared away to go to college, and then my mom had a stroke and I ended up not even able to go to college anyway. I had no choice but to just start a career as an artist.

    So, I didn't go to college, I was not a good artist in high school, and now I've been a professional artist for 12 years. HOW? I went crazy absorbing all the books I could find, drawing at least 8 hours a day (because I read an article that said a pro artist had to draw for at least 8 hours a day, so I emulated that), and just turned myself into an artist after a year or so of really going at it, and treating it like I was already a professional and had all these projects and deadlines I had to meet. I started getting as soon as I got out of high school. Small stuff at first, made like $3,000 my first year, probably $12,000 my second year, and have been making an exponentially better living each year as my qualifications grow. No college to pay back.

    Some of my friends who went to college, got their art degrees, are still not making money as artists and have all those college fees to pay back.

    Now, I'm not telling you NOT to go to college. I'm just trying to open you up to the possibilities.

    What kind of artist do you want to be? Comics? Film? Gaming concept art?

    All of those positions are more interested in seeing great work than a degree. Certain more technical jobs DO require a degree before they'll even look at you. But for the art I do I've never even been asked for my education information. Seriously NOT ONCE. I've worked for every major comics publisher, game companies, major TV and film companies, magazines, trading cards, etc. All over the place. Not once did the ask for education. Most of the time they don't even ask for resume. Very rarely.

    So, if you're headed for a job you know requires a degree, go for it!! But, if not ... you might want to save the like $30,000 you'll be struggling to pay off for years. I feel like that concept is frowned upon, but I feel it's relevant.

    This is getting long-winded, but no you're not too late to go to college... that was your original question. HA! Absolutely go if you want and if you feel it's necessary to get you where you want to go.

    Ray Dillon - Artist & Writer
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  21. #13
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    Oh, and the tech school I mentioned going to was in a small town in Kansas. Not the most advanced program. It was 2 years, but I only went to one to get the credit to graduate high school. I was introduced to Photoshop, though, which of course is what I use extensively now. I worked like a mad man at K-Mart and random local Kansas art jobs (like a t-shirt or sign) + mowing lawns, just anything I could do and got my first Mac G4 and the internet. That's how it all got going for me.

    Aren't I done yakking yet??
    Ray Dillon - Artist & Writer
    CLIENTS: Science Channel, R.L. Stine, Todd McFarlane, Marvel, DC, IDW, Archie, Topps, Upperdeck, WB.
    • Ridley Scott's "Prophets of Science Fiction" (Issac Asimov, George Lucas) + "Meteorite Men" (Science Channel)
    • Mars Attacks: Popeye / Transformers / Real Ghostbusters / KISS / Robots vs. Zombies (IDW)
    • Anne Rice "Servant of the Bones" (IDW)
    • Peter S. Beagle "The Last Unicorn" (IDW; NYT Best-Seller!)
    .COM | Blog | Sketch | FB | uTube | DA | TWITTER!
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