In this article, we look at how to get started with special effects school. In the multimedia world there are a wide range of positions for people who have taken special effects courses. Special effects animators and multimedia artists are work in the special effects we see in movies and on television. Visual effects are needed in a wide range of productions and there are ranges of courses that can teach you the essential skills to help your creative side bloom into a wonderful career. There are many areas that require the use of these visual effects and special effects classes are available at various levels. If you are interested in gaining formal qualifications you will need to have successfully passed courses at postgraduate levels and show a keen flare for design and technology. Some of the courses available are: Associates in Special Effects Degree, Bachelors in Special Effects and also Masters in this discipline.
Special Effects Education and Training
You will need to decide if you wish to pursue a career in digital or mechanical effects before deciding upon your choice of degree at the special effects school of choice. During the courses some of the modules you may have the opportunity to study are: Theatre history, Digital Theatre Design, Costume Design, 3D Modeling, Computer Generated Imagery, Storyboard Techniques, Design Fundamentals, Safety Strategies and Regulations and Engineering.
Special effects animation training teaches students how to use computer applications and imaging techniques in order to manipulate film, video, photographs, digital video and audio, and soundtracks. Special effects animation degrees offer classes in equipment operation and computer programming.
Special effects school courses may include: Business Management, Visual Theory, Cartooning, Film Editing, Film Production. Photography, Human-Computer Interaction, Color Theory, Ad Design, Printmaking, Illustration, Drawing, Design, Painting, Animation and Motion Studies, Computer Graphics, Sound Design and Editing, Multimedia, and Television Production.
In addition to your degree, you may be required to undertake a pyro-technicians course to make sure you have the safety and knowledge required to be granted a license by the Government. These courses can be taken after your degree at special effects school or as a part time area of study on top. This will only be necessary if you wish to get involved in the mechanical rather than digital and animation works.
Careers with Special Effects Training
At special effects school, you will be given the opportunity of having hands on experience in theatres and studios of local television and film companies. Once you have qualified depending on your chosen field of expertise, you may be required to obtain a pyro-technicians commercial license with hazmat endorsements.
As a special effects technician, you will need to keep up with the newest software and be prepared to go for regular training sessions on the latest technology to help to keep you at the top of the game. You will have a high level of competition however the games industry is growing at an incredible fast pace. This means there are more opportunities to get involved in this enjoyable job.
As a special effects designer, you may be able to gain employment in the making of films and television productions as well as jobs in the gaming industries. Job titles which you can apply for include the following: Pyrotechnic Operator, Model maker, Prosthetics Designer or Sculptor.
Estimated Income and Projected Career Outlook
The salaries will be widely dependent upon the scale of the project that you are employed in. Your experience and level of skill will also be taken into consideration. The median salaries at the time of publishing are: Model maker 49,000 dollars per year, Special Effects $57,000 per year, Pyrotechnic $44,000 per year, Sculptor $31,000 per year and Prosthetics $55,000 per year.
- The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports the following data for 2010:
- The median annual wage of camera operators was $40,390. The lowest 10% earned less than $20,300 while the 10% earned more than $81,270.
- The median annual wage of film and video editors was $50,930. The lowest 10% earned less than $25,960, while the top 10% earned over $111,860.
- The employment of camera operators is projected to grow 2% from 2010 to 2020.
- The median annual wage of producers and directors was $68,440 in 2010. The lowest 10% earned less than $32,140, and the top 10% earned more than $166,400 in 2010.
- The employment of producers and directors is projected to grow 11% from 2010 to 2020.
Television and film are still reliant on the skills of the artists. And the Internet is another platform which will want to use your level of skill in their marketing campaigns and shows made especially for that platform in a variety of special effects jobs. Hence, attending special effects school will help you determine the career path to take in the film or television industry.
Visual Effects Programs
- Online and Bachelor's programs include B.S. in Advertising, B.S. in Web Design, B.A. in Interior Design, and more
- Curriculum focus on preparing students for a creative career by teaching them the fundamentals of advertising and design
- Students can choose from courses that cover areas such as advertising concepts, art direction, experience design, and online marketing
- Over 50 locations nationwide, with a student support team dedicated to helping students grow
- Visual Effects & Motion Graphics (BFA)
- Media Arts and Animation (BFA)
- Game Art & Design (BFA)
- And more...
- Full Sail’s curriculum combines elements of creativity, art, business and life skills, technical prowess, and academic achievement.
- Full Sail offers accelerated programs, so a degree that would normally take four years takes 24 months on average.
- Students work with industry-standard tools and technologies, allowing them to gain practical knowledge and real-world experience.
- Join us on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Instagram to interact with our community, read about grad success, and see campus images.
- Computer Animation, Bachelor of Science (Online)
- Game Design, Bachelor of Science (Online)
- Game Art, Bachelor of Science (Online)