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Career and Education Opportunities for Multi-Media Artist or Animators in Birmingham, Alabama

If you want to be a multi-media artist or animator, the Birmingham, Alabama area offers many opportunities both for education and employment. Currently, 510 people work as multi-media artist or animators in Alabama. This is expected to grow 10% to about 560 people by 2016. This is not quite as good as the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for multi-media artist or animators are expected to grow by about 14.2%. Multi-media artist or animators generally create special effects, animation, or other visual images using film, video, or other electronic tools and media for use in products or creations, such as computer games, movies, and commercials.

The income of a multi-media artist or animator is about $22 per hour or $46,480 per year on average in Alabama. In the U.S. as a whole, their income is about $27 per hour or $56,330 per year on average. Incomes for multi-media artist or animators are better than in the overall category of Art and Design in Alabama, and better than the overall Art and Design category nationally. Jobs in this field include: multimedia producer, digital media designer, and motion pictures cartoonist.

There are fifteen schools of higher education in the Birmingham area, including four within twenty-five miles of Birmingham where you can get a degree to start your career as a multi-media artist or animator. The most common level of education for multi-media artist or animators is a Bachelor's degree. It will take about four years to learn to be a multi-media artist or animator if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Multi-Media Artist or Animator

In general, multi-media artist or animators create special effects, animation, or other visual images using film, video, or other electronic tools and media for use in products or creations, such as computer games, movies, and commercials.

Every day, multi-media artist or animators are expected to be able to be creative and generate new ideas. They need to visualize how things come together and can be organized. It is also important that they listen to and understand others in meetings.

It is important for multi-media artist or animators to layout complex graphics and animation, using independent judgment and computer equipment. They are often called upon to make objects or characters appear lifelike by manipulating light and transparency, or manipulating static images to give the illusion of motion. They also develop pen-and-paper images to be scanned, edited, colored, textured or animated by computer. They are sometimes expected to develop basic designs and illustrations for product labels or television. Somewhat less frequently, multi-media artist or animators are also expected to use models to simulate the behavior of animated objects in the finished sequence.

Multi-media artist or animators sometimes are asked to develop and install special effects as required by the script, mixing chemicals and fabricating needed parts from wood and clay. and implement and maintain configuration control systems. And finally, they sometimes have to implement and maintain configuration control systems.

Like many other jobs, multi-media artist or animators must be thorough and dependable and be reliable.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Birmingham include:

  • Art Director. Formulate design concepts and presentation approaches, and direct workers engaged in art work, layout design, and copy writing for visual communications media, such as magazines, books, and packaging.
  • Craftsman. Create or reproduce hand-made objects for sale and exhibition using a variety of techniques, such as welding, weaving, and needlecraft.
  • Display Specialist. Plan and erect commercial displays.
  • Fashion Designer. Design clothing and accessories. Create original garments or design garments that follow well established fashion trends. May develop the line of color and kinds of materials.
  • Fine Artist. Create original artwork using any of a wide variety of mediums and techniques.
  • Graphic Designer. Design or create graphics to meet specific commercial or promotional needs, such as packaging, displays, or logos. May use a variety of mediums to achieve artistic or decorative effects.
  • Industrial Designer. Develop and design manufactured products, such as cars, home appliances, and children's toys. Combine artistic talent with research on product use, marketing, and materials to create the most functional and appealing product design.
  • Interior Designer. Plan, design, and furnish interiors of residential, commercial, or industrial buildings. Formulate design which is practical, aesthetic, and conducive to intended purposes, such as raising productivity, selling merchandise, or improving life style. May specialize in a particular field, style, or phase of interior design.
  • Set and Exhibit Designer. Design special exhibits and movie, television, and theater sets. May study scripts, confer with directors, and conduct research to determine appropriate architectural styles.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Multi-Media Artist or Animator Training

ITT Technical Institute-Bessemer - Bessemer, AL

ITT Technical Institute-Bessemer, 6270 Park South Drive, Bessemer, AL 35022. ITT Technical Institute-Bessemer is a small school located in Bessemer, Alabama. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 1,104 students and an admission rate of 48%. ITT Technical Institute-Bessemer has 2 areas of study related to Multi-Media Artist or Animator. They are:

  • Animation, Interactive Technology, Video Graphics & Special Effects, bachelor's degree which graduated 1 student in 2008.
  • Web Page, Digital/Multimedia & Information Resources Design, associate's degree which graduated 32 students in 2008.

Birmingham Southern College - Birmingham, AL

Birmingham Southern College, 900 Arkadelphia Road, Birmingham, AL 35254. Birmingham Southern College is a small college located in Birmingham, Alabama. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 1,458 students and an admission rate of 69%. Birmingham Southern College has a bachelor's degree program in Painting which graduated two students in 2008.

Virginia College-Birmingham - Birmingham, AL

Virginia College-Birmingham, 65 Bagby Dr., Birmingham, AL 35209-3703. Virginia College-Birmingham is a medium sized college located in Birmingham, Alabama. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 6,090 students and an admission rate of 64%. Virginia College-Birmingham has an associate's degree program in Graphic Design which graduated thirty-eight students in 2008.

Samford University - Birmingham, AL

Samford University, 800 Lakeshore Drive, Birmingham, AL 35229-2240. Samford University is a small university located in Birmingham, Alabama. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 4,469 students and an admission rate of 89%. Samford University has a bachelor's degree program in Graphic Design which graduated seven students in 2008.

CERTIFICATIONS

Certified Web Professional - Site Designer: A CWP Site Designer implements and maintains Web sites using authoring and scripting languages, content creation and management tools, and digital media.

For more information, see the International Webmasters Association website.

Web Graphics and Multimedia Certificate: Equips the student for work as a Web graphic artist, creating illustrations, pictures, buttons, and other images for use on the Web, as well as the ability to create interactive multimedia designs in Flash or other programs.

For more information, see the International Webmasters Association website.

Certified Web Designer Associate: Web Designer Associates are proficient in the visual arts and creating the images and designs that capture and keep visitors' interest.

For more information, see the World Organization of Webmasters website.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Birmingham, Alabama

Birmingham, Alabama
Birmingham, Alabama photo by Eric_in_SF

Birmingham is located in Jefferson County, Alabama. It has a population of over 228,798, which has shrunk by 5.8% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Birmingham, 81, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Birmingham cost $187,300 on average, which is well above the state average. In 2008, one hundred thirty-two new homes were built in Birmingham, down from two hundred thirty-two the previous year.

The top three industries for women in Birmingham are health care, educational services, and finance and insurance. For men, it is construction, accommodation and food services, and health care. The average travel time to work is about 24 minutes. More than 18.5% of Birmingham residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 6.6%, is lower than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Birmingham is 12.5%, which is greater than Alabama's average of 10.7%.

The percentage of Birmingham residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 60.1%, is more than both the national and state average. Williams Chapel Christian Methodist Episcopal Church, Westminister Presbyterian Church and West End Methodist Church are all churches located in Birmingham. The most common religious groups are the Southern Baptist Convention, the United Methodist Church and the Catholic Church.

Birmingham is home to the Mineral Park Municipal Golf Course and the Cooper Green Golf Course as well as Avondale Mills Park and Smithfield Historic District. Shopping malls in the area include Acipco Shopping Center, Altadena Square Shopping Center and Parkway East Huffman Shopping Center. Visitors to Birmingham can choose from Marriott Hotel Birmingham, Rime Garden Extended Stay Suites and Studioplus for temporary stays in the area.