The mountainous state of West Virginia features extraordinary scenery, many local artists and a surprising number of commercial businesses. Due to huge technical advances in visual media design, more and more West Virginia artists nowadays seek careers as professional animators.
West Virginia Schools and Training Programs for Animation
West Virginia Universities, colleges and other higher education providers offer a full range of courses and training programs in animated design. Well-regarded West Virginia art schools include Everest Institute in Charleston, Ben Franklin Career Center in Dunbar, Fairmont State University in Fairmont, Strayer University in Scott Depot and West Virginia University in Morgantown, to name a few.
Lately, an ever-widening enrollment of West Virginia artists are obtaining technical skills and earning professional degrees at accredited online schools. Popular virtual art colleges offering animation instruction include University of Phoenix, ITT Tech, The Art Institutes, DeVry and Stratford Career Institute, for instance. Many online art colleges feature supplemental physical campuses and/or handy local resource centers. ITT Tech has a campus in Huntington.
Working as an Animator in West Virginia
Commercial companies and community organizations throughout West Virginia enlist the help of local animation professionals for various specialized tasks. Jobs for local animators include cartoon creation, video game design, mobile app development, medical animation, website banner ads, instructional videos and many more. Some local artists work for West Virginia animation studios like Palomino Productions in Weirton. Others work with local movie producers whose films sometimes feature animated clips and overlays. Worthy West Virginia motion picture makers include Motion-Masters and Mountain-Music-Partners in Charleston, Communication-Management in Kearneysville, Tri-State Productions in Reedsville and Magellan-Productions in Huntington, among others. Some local animators are employed by graphic IT corporations. Award-winning West Virginia info tech firms include Mantech-Services in Hinton, Shentel-Service-Company in Pineville, Westcel Internet in Morgantown and Ncompass Networks in Huntington.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics provides no current information regarding the average annual incomes of professional animators living in the state of West Virginia.
Skills of a Professional Animator
The most basic prerequisite personality traits for a career in professional animation design include artistic talent, keen observation and well developed communication skills. Technically speaking, animators need advanced illustrative technique, proficiency with related software, photography, web design and storytelling expertise. They should also be hands-on familiar with interactive media design, preferably with fluency in several system-specific programming languages. Additional desirable traits include a wild imagination, extreme attention to detail and high-level project management skills.