Washington's largest city is a virtual wonderland of creative, high tech commercial businesses. The major city of Seattle supports about a hundred thousand companies and offers limitless opportunities for local artists pursuing animation careers in Seattle's motion picture industry.
Seattle Schools and Training Programs for Animation
Many Universities, colleges and art schools in Seattle feature animation skills training and academic degree programs. Some aspiring Seattle animators enroll at local art colleges like Seattle Pacific University, Cornish College of the Arts, Seattle Community College, University of Washington or the International Academy of Design and Technology.
Other Seattle artists choose virtual educational options. Popular accredited online animation schools include the Academy of Art University, Full Sail University, Stratford Career Institute, DeVry, ITT Tech and University of Phoenix. Some online schools also provide supplemental campuses and resource facilities. ITT Tech is located in Bellevue, Lynnwood and Federal Way. University of Phoenix has campuses in Bellevue and Lynnwood. The Art Institute maintains a Seattle location.
Working as an Animator in Seattle, Washington
A slew of Seattle business associations hire professional animation artists to create feature film clips, TV cartoons, video games, iPhone apps, instructional videos, medical images and many other things. Some Seattle artists work for local animation production companies like Tooned-In or Arkitek Studios. Others are employed by motion picture producers who feature their own animation. Stellar Seattle movie makers include Blue Plate Digital, Edge Creative, Nuvelocity, Pravda Studios and Synergy Productions. Some Seattle animators work for major IT corporations like Disney Interactive Media, Ivey Imaging, Schultz Solutions, Sonic Wall or Watch Guard Technologies.
Professional animators employed full time in the city of Seattle, Washington earn about $63,000 a year on average, with a mean hourly wage of around $31.50. Washington ranks sixth among states in terms of average annual income for professional animators. The median annual income for all occupations in the whole state of Washington is just over $58,000.
Skills of a Professional Animator
Professional animated film work calls for a number of highly advanced visual arts skills. These include drawing, coloring, photography, lighting, page layout, model making and set design, as well as an affinity for computer-generated artwork. Current animation software used by professionals in the field include Toon Boom, Maya and 3D Studio Max. Animation also requires non-visual technical skills such as fluency in programming languages and exceptional storytelling expertise. Among the most desirable personal qualifications of a professional animator are outstanding communication skills and proven self-motivation, not to mention talent.