Researching Art Schools - Any Recommendations?



  • Hello! I am a young self taught artist that is highly considering going back to school for an illustration degree. I am doing my own research and comparing schools within the US. If you have a recommendation on an art school worth checking out please comment below. If you have attended an art school please leave your review on your experience at the school. I'd really appreciate it! Thank you! 😁



  • I graduated from SCAD 16 years ago. All in all it was a good school, great professors and good experience, but it is very expensive and there are probably more affordable options out there.


  • SVS OG

    @Sasha-Contreras i’ve heard great things about the following schools Art Academy, SVA, Ringling, SCAD, and RISD. Tho I’ve never attended them so I can’t give you more info. BAsed on my research, they’re all too expensive tho.



  • I was actually accepted to scad this year but have decided against it since I found it way too expensive, will be looking for other schools in U.k.



  • Long ago I graduated from SVA. Excellent school with amazing instructors.

    However, with the options available now with remote learning, online sites, increased quality of state schools you need to ask yourself if the expense of an "art school" is worth it? Look at a nearby community or state school and see what they offer. Afterall, if you have the talent and you practice and grow as an artist where you attend for a formal education means less.



  • Hi Sasha, I’ve been to art school, I graduated about eight years ago. My school is no longer around, so I can’t recommend it lol. This is what I wished I had done. I would recommend looking at what career you would like to have before picking a school. There are some illustration business classes here on svs and they go over some possible careers. Once you have an idea of where you want to end up in your career, I’d look to at what schools offer that and work backwards. Online does seem like a really good option now, svs for example has a lot of what I learned in college. I would also highly highly recommend not going into debt for this. It’s incredibly difficult to monetize creativity and having $100k+ in debt is going to make it harder. I still have around 2/3 of my student loan debt and my day job (that I have to keep to pay this debt) while based on skills I learned in school, it doesn’t really use my degree. Having no debt will give you way more freedom 🙂

    That’s some of the negative side. Art school was also a ton of fun, I learned a lot, and I did like having classes in person. I hope this gives you some ideas. While there are a lot of stresses, it can also be super fulfilling and rewarding.



  • @erinrew Thank you so much for sharing your experience with me! I was looking into SCAD and agree that the education looks promising but it does look a bit pricey 😬 😅
    I appreciate you sharing this information with me!



  • @Nyrryl-Cadiz Thank you! This is a great list to add to my research! I appreciate you taking the time to recommend these! I do agree that they are a bit pricey but worth looking into. Thank you! 😃



  • @Navya-Raju Oh that's awesome!! I hope you find something better then in the UK 🙂



  • @jimsz That's awesome! I definitely will take a look at SVA. I agree that perhaps something in my area or online would also be a great idea to look into to lessen the expenses of attending "art school". I appreciate the advise and will put that into account while looking 🙂



  • Do you have a budget?



  • @Norman-Morana Thank you so much for giving me this important advise! I really appreciate you sharing this information with me! I will definitely look at the SVS class. Yes COVID has made online basically a requirement for schools so it's a good idea to look into online schools that are already experienced and prepared for online learning. Thank you for these helpful tips. I wish COVID was over already so I could get the full experience of any school lol. But I guess we will see how much longer this pandemic lasts... Take care! Stay safe! Also love your portfolio website! 😃



  • Hello!

    Simona Ceccarelli had an interesting art journey. She is based in Switzerland and studied (if I recollect it well) from distance (/on line) in an Art School in California specialised in digital art.

    I tried to find her post about it but could not find it. It is a pity because her choice of school was very thoughtful and articulated towards her objectives. If anyone here remember her post and is able to locate it, please share it here! This could be helpful!

    Edit : here is the link : https://forum.svslearn.com/topic/3293/formal-education-illustration/2?_=1604669581933

    I hope it helps figuring out your options!



  • I went to the School of the Art Institute of Chicago for a year, for painting and drawing. I don't think they have a grad program specifically in illustration, but at SAIC you can do anything, you're not limited by the program you're accepted into. It was wonderful, the most luxurious educational experience for an artist that I could imagine. I'm also still in debt, which isn't crippling at this point, but probably wasn't the best financial decision. I think art school provides discipline/deadlines and can be invaluable in terms of connection with faculty and other students. Ideally you can fully immerse yourself in the experience and really limit distractions and other obligations for the time you are in school. I think you have to be willing to go into debt that you might carry for years, art school scholarships are scarce and super competitive. Overall I think art school is a strange beast - lots of delicious candy and frills for sure, but a good deal of learning you could get for a fraction of the cost through a combo of online learning with SVS, finding a mentor artist to work with, studying locally through a community college or arts organization, attending an artist residency for some of that essential immersive creative time reading, writing, going to shows, connecting with a critique group etc. Wishing you the best of luck!


  • SVS OG

    @Julia Simona studied MFA in Visual Development fro academy of Art in San Francisco, CA



  • @ArtofAleksey Hello! No budget for now - just doing research. If selling my soul is worth it I guess I'm open to the idea lol


  • SVS OG

    @Sasha-Contreras hi! But don’t you have a degree in Graphics design already?



  • @Sasha-Contreras im attending FIT in nyc,
    It doesn’t compare to SVAs or Pratts program but it’s a lottt cheaper. And im breezing through it but it does take some self motivated work on the side. At least the first 2 years. The BA programs they have after you complete their AAS seems really serious though. They have an Animation track, a Toy Design track, and Illustration Track.



  • @Nyrryl-Cadiz thanks! I could not remember right. Isn't it an Art School? Maybe I got confused with the many options US studies offer! (and acronyms).
    Sorry if my post was not relevant in this context!


  • SVS OG

    @Julia hi! Oh no, you were actually correct. 🙂 Academy of Art University is actually an art school. Despite the university name.


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