5 Great Free Digital Tools for Animation and Illustration Students
03 Oct 22
“At the University of Bolton, we take great pride in providing a quality, supportive learning environment for our students.”
Professor George E Holmes DL | President & Vice Chancellor
“...tutors are very supportive and you’re not just a student ID number, at this university you are an individual with a name.”
Ellisse Vernon | BSc (Hons) Adult Nursing
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Animation plays an enormous role in modern childhood, with characters, such as Elsa, Simba and Sponge Bob, forming the backdrop to everyday life. You might have been inspired by the characters of a graphic novel or Manga as a young adult. Our animation courses open up a world of creative opportunity so that your work can touch other people in the same way. You will develop skills and gain an understanding of the creative industries that will set you up for a career in video games, television and film, online, and special effects.
The outlook for an animation career is very healthy – both the animation and VFX market are set to grow by 11. 5% over the next five years, by 2026. This is due, in part, to increased interest in narratives driven by VFX, but also by how people consumed film, videos and media during the pandemic. The increasing use of Virtual Reality (VR) and the move to stream ever more ultra-high-definition content through OTT services, like Netflix and Disney+, means that the silver screen is alive and well, even if it is evolving.
What Exactly is Animation?
Animation is the little bit of magic that happens when drawings are positioned sequentially – whether in frames or stop motion, for example. The human eye and brain can process 10-12 images a second, so if the second image appears before the first one has been fully processed, the brain believes they are moving. In animation, sketches come to life, so animators need to be able to sketch and model-make too.
There are different types of animation, including flat 2D animation and its 3D counterpart. While 2D cartoons are still the mainstay of children’s entertainment, 3D animation is increasingly used in feature films and gaming, but also in applications, such as medical imaging and architectural design. Another cornerstone of animation, stop motion, has been made famous by Oscar-winning Aardman Animation’s Wallace and Gromit, while motion capture brings ultra-realistic animations to life and is used in gaming and Hollywood blockbusters.
Animation at Bolton
The animation courses at the University of Bolton give you the opportunity to understand the number of career choices open to you with an animation degree - our teaching staff are well connected within the industry and they will help you navigate the many routes into employment within the creative industries. It’s not simply about becoming an animator. There are many roles that play a part in bringing an animation project to completion, from storyboard, layout and concept artists, to animators and editors. Graduates with animation degrees are perfectly positioned for careers in the film industry, publishing, advertising and the gaming industry.
As an undergraduate, you will be a part of the prestigious Bolton School of the Arts, which places creativity and exploration within your discipline at the heart of the course. We’ll support you through your academic learning in one of our five computer studios, equipped with Apple Mac computers and scanners, with access to animation, illustration and graphics software.
When it comes to teaching and learning, our focus is on ensuring that the support that you need to get the most from your time with us. Ranked No. 1 in the North West for both Satisfaction with Teaching and Student Satisfaction with Feedback*, you will be able to proactively inform your own progress, with the professional input of your course leader, and push at the boundaries of your own creativity. It is this that creates stand-out creative graduates and our animation courses give you the chance to experiment, grow and develop in an inclusive and vibrant environment.
Search our courses on offer, and remember at the University of Bolton we are proud to provide a positive and supportive learning environment.
*2022 Guardian University Guide