The world-famous city of San Francisco, California is well known for its arts culture, with thousands of local artists pursuing careers in the lucrative field of visual animation. Just over one-third of all animator jobs in America are located in the state of California. Most of these jobs are in and around San Francisco, which is California's fourth largest city. San Francisco is home to well over 800,000 residents and supports as many as 110,000 local commercial businesses.
San Francisco Schools and Training Programs for Animation
San Francisco, California is renowned for its preponderance of Universities, colleges and other learning facilities that offer degree programs and professional training in animated design. Popular San Francisco area animation schools include San Francisco State, Expression College of Digital Arts in Emeryville, California College of the Arts in Oakland and San Francisco, and Carrington College in Emeryville and San Jose.
Many aspiring San Francisco animators opt for virtual training at accredited animation colleges whose course work is available online. Among the most successful cyber colleges featuring animation arts are The Academy of Art University, National University, Full Sail University, Stratford Career Institute, University of Phoenix, The Art Institutes, DeVry and ITT Tech. Some of these schools also provide campuses and resource centers near you. University of Phoenix has campuses in San Francisco and Oakland. The Art Institutes and National University both have convenient San Francisco locations. ITT Tech is at your regional service in Oakland and Concord.
Working as an Animator in San Francisco, California
Thousands of San Francisco businesses hire professional animators for assorted commercial and technical purposes. Animation is produced for visual entertainment, interactive gaming, medical imaging, structural engineering, corporate training videos, promotional advertising and website design, for instance.
Serious San Francisco, California artists work for major local animation studios like Anima-Crackers, Fluid, Ghostbot and Treanor Brothers in San Francisco, or Pixar in Emeryville. Other animators team up with local motion picture producers whose films feature animated segments. Successful San Francisco area film makers include Beyond Pix Studios, Flaneur Media, Filmcore Editorial, Camp Creative and Groundspark, among many hundreds more. Some San Francisco animators are employed by graphic design-oriented information technology firms. Leading local graphic info tech corporations include Bebo Incorporated, Net Tech, MoonViper Web Services, Zinio Systems and Smack Happy Design.
Full time animators in San Francisco, California who are employed by American businesses report an average annual salary of a bit more than $75,000, with a mean hourly rate of around $37.25. California ranks first among states in annual salaries for animation professionals. San Francisco animators tend to earn more than animators elsewhere in California. Unfortunately, no reliable information exists regarding the incomes of freelance professionals.
Skills of a Professional Animator
The most basic technical skill of almost any professional animation designer is advanced drawing technique. Animators are amazing illustrators, able to capture universally recognizable forms, features, mannerisms and expressions in the characterizations they create. Professional animators are also gifted at digital artwork and fully familiar with related high tech software applications. Additional visual skills often needed are photography, sculpture and set design. Other crucial qualifications include fluency in programming languages, website construction and interactive media.