We are now in the second semester of my second year, and already the pressure is on to complete our films fill our scholarship applications and get our portfolios and resumes sent out for internships. I've been experiencing a lot of growth this year as an artist and I have a lot more experience with the school. I think it's time i give back a little to the Calarts hopefuls. I'm going to start a list. A list of what you might ask? Well a list of stuff that i wish someone had told me before i came here. So many things about my first year experience could have gone been way better if i had known these things. I will update this list as things come to me but here is the start
1) Get a way to make your own coffee:
Hands down the most useful gift i received this Christmas was a french press coffee mug. You are going to need coffee to power through the long nights and sometimes to get through the day (if you aren't addicted to the stuff now you will be). But the school cafeteria is only open from 8-7 and the coffee machine downstairs costs a dollar a cup. Both of these sources for Joe are not that strong either. Getting a system so you can brew your own coffee is, in the end, cheaper, tastier, and more caffeintastic.
2) For your first year don't worry about making a GREAT film. Just make a film.
I can't tell you how many people come in here with epics in mind for there first year. How many have it in their head that they are going to get into the producers show every year. They get caught up in the details of story and designs and other details and then they don't finish a film. Or they do finish a film but because they chose to cram an epic into 90 secs it seems rushed. Your freshman year is about making a film. Just pick something that you can complete, and have fun with. Don't worry about getting into the producers show. Worry about making a film.
Make time to sketch. It's as simple as that
4) Make a portfolio folder
As you do homework assignments and draw on your own, make sure you have a place to put the assignments that you want to put in your job portfolio where they won't get ruined. My advice would be to scan them and put them in a folder on your computer. That way you are not frantically running all over the place trying to find where you put that character design assignment from January.
5) Don't pull an "all-nighter"
There is a difference between working hard and working efficiently. A lot of people use the "all-nighter" as bragging rights to show how much they worked, and how passionate they are. DON'T FALL INTO THIS TRAP. You don't need to pull "all-nighter"s to get work done, in fact they can do more harm then good. How efficient do you work when you are tired. I knew people that would pull all-nighter's but then they would either not have much of anything done in the morning, or they would have to redo what it was they worked on. Get sleep! It is your friend. It's healthy. Besides the mornings are the best times to work because no one is here.
6) Schedule in breaks:
This kinda goes with the number 5, but you can't be working all the time. Put times in your schedule where you force yourself to take a break. but schedule it. This makes it so you know that there is a time for work and a time for relaxing and prevents you from mixing the two. With this you can work more efficiently and also reduce your stress.
7) Take an English 101 class
Get your English 101 credit done with before you get here. Don't listen to Calarts about taking "writing arts" here. It is not as valuable as they will make it seem. It is a pain in the butt to have to write a paper every week and work on your film.
8) To get anything done with the administration you'll need to ask more then three times.
That's it for now, I'll add more as i think of things.
4 years ago