Featuring almost quarter million local residents and a thriving arts culture, the city of Norfolk, Virginia supports many career artists. The state of Virginia has a higher percentage of high tech employees than any other state, which is good news for local visual artists pursuing careers in the field of animated film design.
Norfolk Schools and Training Programs for Animation
Numerous Norfolk, Virginia Universities, colleges and art schools feature animation classes and degree programs. Some aspiring Norfolk animators attend local design colleges like Norfolk State University and Tidewater Community College. Typically, they major in communications design and study computer science and interactive game development in addition to visual arts.
Other Norfolk artists prefer to acquire skills via virtual training programs. Popular accredited online animation schools include the Academy of Art University, Full Sail University, Stratford Career Institute, DeVry, Strayer University, ITT Tech and University of Phoenix. Online schools often feature supplemental campuses and learning centers. ITT Tech has a campus in Norfolk.
Working as an Animator in Norfolk, Virginia
Many businesses in Norfolk, Virginia hire professional animation designers. Some Norfolk artists work for well-known Virginia animation studios like MT Creative in Arlington, CCL Productions in Stephens City, Aloe Design Studios in Leesburg or the Virginia Animation Society in Lynchburg. Other Norfolk animators team up with local movie studios that feature their own animated segments. Successful Norfolk motion picture producers include Latebloomers Productions, Off-the-Wire Studios, Prier Communications, Skylit Corporation and Video-Unlimited-Legal-Services. Some Norfolk animators are employed by animation-friendly IT corporations. Top Norfolk info tech firms include Commonwealth Creative, Igetsmart.com, M&L Enterprises, Real Time Data and Infinet Company.
A full time professional animator employed in Norfolk, Virginia earns, on average, about $58,000 per year. The mean hourly wage for a professional animator in Norfolk is around $29.00. This data does not reflect the incomes of Norfolk animators employed by offshore companies, nor does it account for the unreported salaries of local freelance professionals.
Skills of a Professional Animator
Successful professional animated films require advanced skills of the animator. Animation artists demonstrate superior drawing and coloring technique, photographic expertise and proficiency with animation software such as Toon Boom Digital Pro, Maya or 3D Studio Max. Animators also possess a firm grasp of story boarding, page layout, set design, prototyping and editing, as well as web page construction and fluency in related programming languages. Personality traits most fitting for a professional animation artist include superb communication skills, high-level mental organization and the ability to collaborate smoothly as part of a creative team.