Your complete guide to a PhD in Animation

Everything you need to know about studying a PhD in Animation

part of Computer Science & IT

What is Animation? 

Animation is a discipline that focuses on combining creativity with skills and techniques to create a visual story, by using computer technology. By studying an Animation degree you will learn how to transform still images, drawn by hand or digitally, into moving sequences.

Animation Specialisations

If you want to pursue an Animation degree, there are several specialisations you can choose from. Some of the most common ones are:

  • 3D Animation,
  • 2D Animation,
  • Character Animation,
  • Illustration and Animation,
  • Animation and VFX,
  • Motion Graphics.

The specialisations in the list above, and many others related to Animation, can be pursued in both Bachelor's and Master's degree programmes. This allows you to find the most suitable choice if you are passionate about the world of animation.

What will you learn during an Animation programme?

Choosing a degree in Animation is perfect for you if you are curious to learn how to transform still pictures into animated ones, using various software. Some of the artistic and technical skills you will gain during an Animation programme include:

  • proficiency in design and animation software,
  • project management skills / organisational skills,
  • communication skills,
  • creative thinking skills,
  • deep understanding of visual effects and colours.

Some of the popular courses you'll most likely take during an Animation degree are:

  • History of Animation: you will learn about the animations that shaped the industry, and become familiar with the way animation has changed over the decades.
  • Life Drawing for Animation: develop basic skills by improving the usage of details, such as lighting and shadowing, contour, proportions, and others.
  • Storyboarding: teaches you about the visual plan and visual storytelling.
  • 3D Modelling: teaches you the fundamentals of 3D, by creating representations of humans, objects, and landscapes using software.
  • Movement and acting: you'll become familiar with the motions and emotions of 2D and 3D characters.

The skills you get from an Animation degree are not only needed within the film industry, but they are also useful in Advertising and Marketing, Computer System Design, Data Visualisation, Software publishing, and Video Game Design.

Skills needed for a degree in Animation:

Creativity and drawing skills are only a part of Animation. If you want to excel in this area, you need more than just passion; you should have good observational skills or an eye for detail. While patience is the key, you also need some basic skills in computers and software, as you are going to use them for your projects.

What can you do with an Animation degree?

The jobs you can get with an Animation degree are varied and rewarding since you can choose from jobs that are directly related, to jobs where a degree in Animation would be useful, such as special effects technician, sound engineer, or television production coordinator. Some popular jobs are:

  • VFX Artist,
  • 3D Modeler,
  • Animator,
  • Art Director,
  • Video Game Designer.

A career in the most common Animation specialisations, such as 3D Animation or 2D Animation, is incredibly fulfilling if you like using your imagination and artistic talent to create a visual story or concept.

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View all PhDs in Animation. Keep in mind you can also study an online PhDs in Animation.

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