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Old 11-12-2011, 11:23 PM   #1
Shaky1
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Default Not quite sure

Hello everyone,

I'm 18 years old, and in my senior year of High School. I've had the luxury of taking some college classes at a local community college while attending High School. For the longest time I figured the best way to get into the gaming industry was to get a computer science degree (which it still probably is). However, I recently took a CS class at my community college and found it was not right for me.

So now I'm kind of worried. While I have a pretty high GPS (3.8), and many general college classes out of the way (almost an AA degree), I'm really not talented in anything. I look at the people around me wanting to get into this industry and it seems like they have this lazer focus since they were a kid to become an artist, or a programmer.

With no desire to get a CS degree, I've focused more on drawing. However, I am way behind everyone else who already can draw and have worked hard at it for years. These people can already draw/digitally paint like professionals.

Now I am looking at some kind of art degree, possibly 3D environmental stuff, concept art, digital production, anything... I can tell my parents are kind of worried about helping me pay for an art degree, as it really isn't a practical career. The schools I am applying for are the University of Washington, Western Washington, and Washington State University.

I'm just not sure what to do anymore, and I'm struggling to find out what I like versus what is practical. Thanks for any advice.
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Old 11-13-2011, 05:13 AM   #2
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Shaky wrote:

Quote:
1. For the longest time I figured the best way to get into the gaming industry was to get a computer science degree (which it still probably is). However, I recently took a CS class at my community college and found it was not right for me.
2. I'm really not talented in anything.
3. I look at the people around me wanting to get into this industry and it seems like they have this lazer focus since they were a kid to become an artist, or a programmer... However, I am way behind everyone else who already can draw and have worked hard at it for years. These people can already draw/digitally paint like professionals.
4. With no desire to get a CS degree, I've focused more on drawing. ..
Now I am looking at some kind of art degree, possibly 3D environmental stuff, concept art, digital production, anything...
5. I can tell my parents are kind of worried about helping me pay for an art degree, as it really isn't a practical career.
6. The schools I am applying for are the University of Washington, Western Washington, and Washington State University.
7. I'm just not sure what to do anymore...
8. I'm struggling to find out what I like versus what is practical.
1. You should not pursue programming if it's not right for you. Read FAQ 34: http://www.sloperama.com/advice/lesson34.htm
2. Maybe you haven't tried doing enough things yet. Just try lots of different things until you find something you enjoy. Enjoyment leads to dedication, and dedication leads to skill.
3. I'm surprised you have so many others "around you" who want to get into the game industry, are uber-talented, and focused like a laser. I only knew 2 or 3 people in my high school who knew what they wanted to get into. The rest of us schlubs were just trying to deal with teenage life the best we could. You sound like you think you're "too late" choosing a focus. Read FAQ 71. http://www.sloperama.com/advice/m71.htm
4. Okay, if you enjoy art.
5. I hear that a lot from kids with Asian parents. Part of the problem is that you haven't shown them any particular interest in art up to now. If you had, they'd know that's the way you were headed, and would let you go to the school you want. Unless they're Asian and/or your dad is a type A control freak. Look, try to strike a compromise. Pick a college that has majors and subjects you're interested in and that your folks can agree to. Get your required liberal arts classes out of the way while you take some courses that let you explore topics of interest to you. That'll buy you time to make a decision, and will inform your decision. Read FAQ 34, and also read my November 2009 IGDA column, "The Parents Discussion." http://www.igda.org/games-game-archives
6. Make a decision grid. http://www.sloperama.com/advice/lesson25.htm
7. Make a decision grid.
8. You should explore what you like, while exploring the "practical" inasmuch as your parents make you.
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Last edited by tsloper : 11-13-2011 at 05:17 AM.
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Old 11-13-2011, 06:50 AM   #3
Lt Topcat
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To me it seems you think that you think jobs in the game industry ether fall under programming or art, there are also a lot of job in-between and outside of the two departments. Such as technical artist which is a mix of the two, it may be helpful to look at this site so you can see how many different types of job you can choose from.

http://www.skillset.org/games/career...cle_2768_1.asp

Also tsloper site has a lot of really helpful info too.
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Old 11-13-2011, 10:06 AM   #4
Shaky1
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tsloper View Post
Shaky wrote:



1. You should not pursue programming if it's not right for you. Read FAQ 34: http://www.sloperama.com/advice/lesson34.htm
2. Maybe you haven't tried doing enough things yet. Just try lots of different things until you find something you enjoy. Enjoyment leads to dedication, and dedication leads to skill.
3. I'm surprised you have so many others "around you" who want to get into the game industry, are uber-talented, and focused like a laser. I only knew 2 or 3 people in my high school who knew what they wanted to get into. The rest of us schlubs were just trying to deal with teenage life the best we could. You sound like you think you're "too late" choosing a focus. Read FAQ 71. http://www.sloperama.com/advice/m71.htm
4. Okay, if you enjoy art.
5. I hear that a lot from kids with Asian parents. Part of the problem is that you haven't shown them any particular interest in art up to now. If you had, they'd know that's the way you were headed, and would let you go to the school you want. Unless they're Asian and/or your dad is a type A control freak. Look, try to strike a compromise. Pick a college that has majors and subjects you're interested in and that your folks can agree to. Get your required liberal arts classes out of the way while you take some courses that let you explore topics of interest to you. That'll buy you time to make a decision, and will inform your decision. Read FAQ 34, and also read my November 2009 IGDA column, "The Parents Discussion." http://www.igda.org/games-game-archives
6. Make a decision grid. http://www.sloperama.com/advice/lesson25.htm
7. Make a decision grid.
8. You should explore what you like, while exploring the "practical" inasmuch as your parents make you.


Thanks for the reply!

1. Yea I agree, programming just didn't work. I'm an avid computer user, built my computer, and everyone comes to me when they have problems, but I don't necessarily enjoy it (so I wouldn't go into IT either).

2. I'm trying to find things I enjoy, but I think it is hard for me to just stick with something. I have an issue with doing something so much that I get burnt out. Also, it is hard to try out 3D modeling software, and other things to get my feet wet. Are there any artists who weren't very good, before they went to college?

3. Actually, there isn't anyone around me that wants to get into the video game industry. But, when I look at people online, you have these people saying "Blah blah I've been programming since I was 2." and "I've drawn since I picked up a pencil". Then they have this amazing portfolio to show for it. While it is late, I understand that I just need to find something I like and stick with it. I shouldn't be making the assumption that everyone who goes into the industry is some childhood prodigy.

4. I didn't like art at an early age, as I always assumed you were automatically good at drawing if you had talent. Now that I know it takes hard work, I know that anyone can draw. I also did not see what art could possibly be used for when I was kid. Now I see concept art, digital art, 3D modeling, and animation. This is the kind of stuff that excites me. I decided to drop calculus at my community college, and take an art class to see if I enjoy it.

5. Haha, you are right on the mark. One of my parents is Asian.

6. Sounds like a good idea.

8. I'm trying to explore, but it is hard to get my feet wet in some of these specialized areas.
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Old 11-13-2011, 10:31 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shaky1 View Post
it is hard for me to just stick with something. I have an issue with doing something so much that I get burnt out.
You have to fix that yourself.
You have to fix it.
YOU have to fix it.
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Old 11-13-2011, 10:36 AM   #6
Shaky1
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tsloper View Post
You have to fix that yourself.
You have to fix it.
YOU have to fix it.
Haha, I'm trying!!!

When I find something that is somewhat enjoyable, I keep thinking "OMG, I'm way behind, I need to do everything in my power to catch up". Then I get burnt out and say, "I can't see myself doing this for the rest of my life".
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Old 11-13-2011, 04:41 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shaky1 View Post
When I find something that is somewhat enjoyable, I keep thinking "OMG, I'm way behind, I need to do everything in my power to catch up". Then I get burnt out and say, "I can't see myself doing this for the rest of my life".
So how's that working out for you?
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Old 11-13-2011, 04:55 PM   #8
Shaky1
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tsloper View Post
So how's that working out for you?
It isn't working. I need to fix it =D.

Does anyone know if the Art Institute or DigiPen are good programs, everywhere I read, there are mixed reviews.

Last edited by Shaky1 : 11-13-2011 at 06:26 PM.
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Old 11-13-2011, 06:37 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shaky1 View Post
Does anyone know if the Art Institute or DigiPen are good programs, everywhere I read, there are mixed reviews.
And you think someone's comments here will un-mix them, will add sufficient weight to one side or the other of that particular seesaw?
I recommend you read these:
http://scientificninja.com/blog/on-game-schools
http://www.igda.org/games-game-june-2009
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/For-profit_education
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Digipen
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Art_Institutes
And I also recommend you add some mainstream colleges to your short list (not only for-profit colleges).
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Old 11-13-2011, 08:49 PM   #10
Shaky1
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tsloper View Post
And you think someone's comments here will un-mix them, will add sufficient weight to one side or the other of that particular seesaw?
I recommend you read these:
http://scientificninja.com/blog/on-game-schools
http://www.igda.org/games-game-june-2009
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/For-profit_education
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Digipen
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Art_Institutes
And I also recommend you add some mainstream colleges to your short list (not only for-profit colleges).
Thanks for sticking with me tsloper =D. I discussed everything with my parents, and we decided that it would be best for me, to try and get a BFA at a public university. I couldn't get into Art Inst, or Digipen anyways as I don't have a portfolio (just started drawing). Maybe transfer later into one of these schools.

Thanks for your help, and your motivation.
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