Bachelor's Degree in Visual Communications: Illustration/Animation

Visual Communications Illustration and Animation

In recent years, demand for skilled employees in the creative professions has risen dramatically. As technology develops and its potential applications in the workplace increase, the need for Visual Communications graduates continues to grow. The Visual Communications program has a proven record of producing graduates ready to meet this ever-evolving demand.

If you are looking for a major that will prepare you for professional success in a creative field, Visual Communications at Cazenovia College is the place for you. The program leads to a Bachelor of Fine Arts and offers concentrations in Advertising Design, Graphic Design, Web/Interactive Design, Illustration/Animation, and Visual Communications. Student may wish to pursue more than one concentration within the program.

The Visual Communications: Illustration/Animation concentration prepares students to create applied imagery; art that visually communicates a message or a story to an audience. Students in this concentration will draw and paint using traditional as well as digital media to create literal or conceptual visuals for documentation, reference or instruction; commentary; storytelling; persuasion; and identity. Students will also learn how to create sequential imagery for moving images, animation, TV motion graphics, comic books, graphic novels, narrative fiction and non-fiction for young audiences, as well as still images for advertising, packaging, magazines and any print and digital media. Instruction is geared toward preparing students to enter a growing and varied job market as a freelance cartoon or commercial illustrator, cartoonist, or staff commercial illustrator.

Student Learning Goals:
•    Teach students to solve communication problems visually, to partake in conceptual message development, and to achieve personal creative excellence;
•    Help students understand and respond to the cultural influences that shape various audiences, messages, client needs, and design decisions;
•    Develop proficiency in classic media as well as fluency in new technologies; and
•    Ensure understanding of basic business practices as designers, including production, project organization, and working in a team environment.

Special Features:
•    Students are required to take two career electives that offer a broad experience within the Visual Communications degree to maximize their professional experience in the field.
•    In their final year, Visual Communications students complete a comprehensive senior project in their area of concentration and in collaboration with a professional contact within the field. These projects and their portfolios are showcased in the College Art Gallery in April. The exhibition is curated by the students, and offers the opportunity for friends, family, and industry professionals to view their creative efforts on a large scale.
•    Students and graduates of the Visual Communications program routinely win regional and national awards for their real-world design work.
•    The VC Club, now a student chapter of AIGA, takes annual trips to NYC during which students have the opportunity to tour advertising and design related businesses and visit with authorities in the field.
•    Internships are an integral part of the program because they provide students with valuable professional experience as well as all-important opportunities for networking. Internship students are placed nationally in corporate or educational art departments, advertising agencies, design and animation studios, and publishing houses.
•    Students spend their entire senior year building print and online portfolios while conducting successful job searches with mentors in the field. These portfolios are widely acknowledged by local industry professionals as the best in the region, making graduates competitive on the job market regionally as well as nationally.
•    Classes are small and taught in seminar/discussion/studio format by well-qualified, experienced faculty members in Reisman Hall, with state-of-the art dual boot computer studio labs.

Career Opportunities 
After graduation students pursue degrees in higher education, go into business as freelancers, or find employment in corporate art departments, advertising agencies, design studios, publishing houses, newspapers, magazines, multi-media and web design businesses, or printing firms.

Students with a BFA in Visual Communications enter a growing job market with many career options. Typical employers would include advertising agencies, multimedia production companies, publishers, design groups and consultancies, magazines, local government, education, television, charities, commerce and local industry.

Positions graduates may seek include:
Freelance Designer Owner, partner, principal of a design business, Illustrator (book, magazine, advertising, editorial, greeting card, etc.), Visual image developer Game designer, Animator Cartoonist, Digital Artist, Visual Effects Artist/Designer, Digital Imaging Specialist Visual journalist, Broadcast Designer for film or, TV Motion Graphics Designer, or Comic Book & Graphic Novel Illustrator.