need help, what art school to go to in orlando

hello, I am currently in the military and would like to go to school when i move back to Orlando, Florida.  I am finding a lot of conflicting things about the schools in the area.  My plan is to take a media arts and animation type course set and also try to volunteer/apprentice? at a local special effects studio.  I need help I'm not sure which direction to take.


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    I'm not familiar with any schools in Orlando, but I do know that there is a lot of production in that area, so you should be able to find a small shop/studio to intern/volunteer at.

    As far as what to look for in schools, I would first see what aspect of effects inspires you the most (design, fabrication, sculpting, modeling, makeup, painting, etc.) and try and find a curriculum that puts you on that path.

    Having a primary focus is good, but when it comes to effects you can never learn too much.  The more disciplines you are educated/experienced in, the more likely you will be to find work.  If you can sculpt, mold, and paint, you are more likely to find work because you can do the work of multiple people, lowering your employer's staffing expenses for the project you are contracting on.  

    In addition to focusing on the aspects of effects you want to be your primary charge, taking classes (even on the side while employed) in other disciplines like machining, art history, color theory, anatomy, electrical engineering, mechanical engineering, sewing, etc. will make you more valuable/employable.

    I'm not sure if we have any regulars here from the Orlando area, but if there are, hopefully they can share their insight on what schools/shops exist in that area.

    Best of luck!

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    thank you for the reply, i was interested in media arts or an animation mostly to get familiar with the digital programs like photoshop and zbrush for references or maquettes, to even 3d printing since its getting very big in fabrication. i hope i hear from somebody in the orlando area.  I was just browsing Full Sail's website, any opinions?
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    I've heard a lot of good things about Full Sail's film school, but I'm not familiar with their other curriculum.  Ryan Connolly of Film Riot went to Full Sail, and he has frequently mentioned them in a positive light on his program.

    With any school I would try to hunt down local alumni that are currently working and see how they feel the school helped their career.

    I would also look at their instructors for the classes/programs you are interested in and see what their relationship to the industry is.  An instructor that is active in the industry or well connected can help you land your first job, which is extremely valuable.

    3D printing is a great technology to get familiar with,  and the barrier for entry is extremely low right now.  Look for a local hackerspace/makerspace and you should be able to use their printers for free (or cost of filament), and their members are usually happy to teach others the various software packages/machines.  Many libraries are also starting to run small makerspaces, and a 3d printer is typically one of their first pieces of equipment.

    I'm a member of the hackerspace "CRASH Space" here in Los Angeles, and we provide public access to 3d printers, a laser cutter, and a CNC mill (among other tools), but the most important resources there is the people.  Every time I go there I learn something new from some exceedingly smart and talented folks.


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