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How to Become a Multimedia Artist or Animator

Many multimedia artists and animators pursue a bachelor’s degree in computer graphics, art, or a related field to develop a good portfolio of work and learn the strong technical skills that many employers prefer. 


Employers typically do not require a degree, but they look for workers who have a good portfolio of work and strong technical skills. However, many multimedia artists and animators have a bachelor’s degree in fine art, computer graphics, animation, or a related field. Programs in computer graphics often include courses in computer science, such as programming, and in graphics.

Bachelor’s degree programs in art include courses in painting, drawing, and sculpture. Degrees in animation often require classes in drawing, animation, and film. Some schools have specialized degrees in topics such as interactive media or game design.


Some animation studios have their own software and computer applications that they use to create films. They give workers on-the-job training to use this software. Animators may be hired for a probationary period while they prove that they have the skills and talent to become a permanent employee.

Important Qualities

Artistic talent. Animators and artists should have artistic ability and a good understanding of color, texture, and light. However, they may be able to compensate for a lack of artistic ability with better technical skills.

Computer skills. Many multimedia artists and animators do most of their work using computer programs or writing programming code. However, those with artistic talent may be able to find work without strong computer skills.

Creativity. Artists and animators must be able to think creatively to develop original ideas and make their ideas come to life.

People skills. Multimedia artists and animators need to work as part of a team and respond well to criticism and feedback.

Physical stamina. The hours required by most studio and game design companies are long, particularly when there are tight deadlines. Artists and animators need to be able to keep up with the long hours and challenging work.

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2012-13 Edition