Art Institutes, really that bad??

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  1. #1
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    Art Institutes, really that bad??

    So I've got a friend who goes to the Art Academy and one at the Art Institutes...I'm leaning towards the latter because they're helping me out big time financially (plus a bunch of my credits transferred), but I keep hearing bad things about it. That people will not take you seriously with a degree from there, that the advisers and faculty and coursework aren't all that great, and that even though it's accredited it's a 'fake' one???

    I'm a bit confused so I was wondering if anyone here has any insight on the matter? I've applied and visited the one in Orange County, and from my experience it's been the total opposite of what I've heard. I'm hoping it's a case of if I put a 150% into the work it won't matter since it seems like the majority of schools have the same curriculum, and it's just the effort you put into it that matters.

    Thanks!

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  2. #2
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    I personally would steer clear, but I suppose if it really REALLY came down to it, it would all depend on how much work and effort you're willing to put into it during your time in class (and out). I know some amazing artists have gone to the Institute/Academy's, some of which will again say the same, while others will say it was a huge waste of money and time better spent learning on their own/doing workshops/online classes via CGMW/Rydan/Gnomon/whatever.

    I suppose it would be more of a matter of how much drive you have to learn on your own versus how much of an educational structure you need to not fall to slacking on your practice etc.

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  4. #3
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    Art School is what you make of it (See the sticky thread). If you have the scholarships for the school it's all good. I went and I'm mixed. Yes it was nice to have pros in the field, but the program felt rushed after the next year. If I were to do it again I would have taken my time and went elsewhere.

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  6. #4
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    The Orange County Art Institute is probably better than the vast majority of them, since it's easy to find industry pros willing to teach in the LA area. Still, for the amount of money the AIs ask, you can go to a better program.

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  8. #5
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    highly recommend that you look into another school. art school in general is usually a tough choice, but the Art Institute shouldn't even be an option if you're going to spend that kind of money.

    there are much better programs for less money.

    the reason why the AI's remain so popular is because it requires little effort to get into. frankly, it would be wiser to take art classes at a community college and supplement it with videos on Concept Art, CG Talk and Gnomon.

    i know that AI is tempting because of it's ease of admissions and the "college experience," but the ridiculous tuition is completely unjustifable, especially when there are much more simpler, affordable, and better options.

    Last edited by SlowDaddie; July 4th, 2012 at 10:48 AM.
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  10. #6
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    You won't necessarily need to go to any art school to become a great artist. And frankly I think your employer is going to be more interested in your portfolio than what college you went to. Look up art classes at your community college first, sometimes their a lot cheaper and you can sign up for single courses instead of a semesters worth of classes.

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  12. #7
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    Not all Art Institutes are bad. For example, I have heard good things about the one in Vancouver. However, even with that said, I would stay away from them. Why?
    1. They have a horrible reputation. Whether this is valid or not, Perceived reality can become reality with employers and clients.

    2. Admission standards are very low. This becomes important since with most art and design programs, the quality of the other students is important for critiques. The lower the quality, the worse the critiques. Moreover, you also learn a lot from watching other good, talented students. If most of the other students are of low quality, you will only develop so far.

    Bottom line: stay away from all the AI schools and go to the one that has at least decent admission standards.

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  14. #8
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    Thanks for the input! Seems like the majority is just it's not worth it for the price, but since they're giving me much cheaper options than any other schools that's not too much of a problem for me. xD

    I've taken a lot in community already too and the majority of those transferred so I'll only have to take the last couple years worth of specialty classes I can't do at community. Plus, with my particular situation the low standards works to my advantage since I'm not in a position I can easily get into a school without spending silly amounts of money anyway.

    Still, just wanted to shop around and see what the general opinions are from users at CA, since y'all know what you're talking about, so thanks a bunch! It really helps to hear what's up! And now I'll be checking out a few other schools in the area too I just found so wish me luck, haha.

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    id say be weary if you can learn it on your own or through networking with people than your money would be better spent doing that, i went to school for fours years and got pretty much nothing out of it and just took an extra year just taking nothing but drawing and painting classes, that 1 year taught me what the prior for didn't, practice, learning and fundamentals the rest is just know how to market yourself/portfolio because when it comes down to it in the art field no one really cares about your diploma but rather the work you do and how well you do it.
    but if moneys not a problem to the point it wont leave you in debt after graduating than id say no harm no foul.

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