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Jump start art skills: Teach Myself ( books ) or Fundamental Classes

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#1 kjgreen   Members   


Posted 09 May 2013 - 08:24 AM

I'm at a point where I would like to start learning more about art not just for potentially making game art, but also for fun. I used to draw a lot when I was in high school but after high school I never really pursued it, but I did enjoy it a lot. 


I decided to go into computer science and am graduating with a masters in computer science. I feel that I can teach myself just about anything when it comes to technical topics. I'm not sure if this confidence would transfer over to design/art since it's totally different.


Anyways, when it comes to game art that I would like to create, I would want to focus on 2D art. I'm a big fan of the art style of Tiny Wings ( http://www.tuaw.com/2012/05/08/another-title-from-tiny-wings-creator-coming-this-month/ ) and I would like to produce art on this level. 


I'm wanting to know if it would be better to take classes at a local university or teach myself through books and hard work? 


If I take classes at a local university, I would only be looking to take classes based on basic design foundation classes. 


These are the classes I would take at my local university:


Art 101: Two-Dimensional Design

Through reading, discussion, and projects, the foundations course introduces students to the studio method while exploring the fundamentals of two-dimensional design. Recommended studio art elective.



Art 111: Drawing I

An introduction to traditional drawing techniques and skills with a primary focus on perspective.



Art 102: Color Theory

Exploration of traditional and contemporary color theory in studio art. BA and BFA in art majors only.'



If I went the self taught route, I would start off with this book:



I'm not sure what other resources I would use after that book currently. 


Another difference is the money. If I take these classes at the local college it will cost about 2400$ for the three classes. 


So, I'm asking if someone can teach themselves the design foundations of art and be successful? Or Would taking the classes greatly increase my success rate? 


Any response is appreciated.



#2 riuthamus   Moderators   


Posted 09 May 2013 - 09:29 AM

For the first 15 years of my life I was self taught. I can honestly say my art would not be considered "one of the greats" but it certainly was not what one might call "noob". I was however missing some fundamentals that were not very clear to me from the start. Most artists run into this issue until they learn it from a class or experience it through life and looking at how it works compared to the way they attempt to portray it.


So, can you learn this stuff on your own? Sure, but the process for doing so can be very long and uneventful. This is why most people turn to more traditional forms of study as it helps to maintain a fast past of learning while creating a productive format for study. The success rate of either is not dependent upon the method rather the will of the person who is learning. If you wish to be successful than there is nothing that will stop you from doing so.

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