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Experimental Animation Requirements


The Program in Experimental Animation promotes and supports animation as a fine art. In making admissions decisions, the program’s faculty considers animation and other visual materials such as flip books, paintings, drawings, storyboards and photographs. The faculty recommends submitting portfolios that contain examples of unique, personal expressive art. Submit animated film or video work if at all possible. If you do not have a film or video to present, it is especially important to submit visual artworks that indicate your creative potential. Personal creative visual work that represents your interests is preferred over class assignments.

  • If you submit work that was part of a collaborative project, please describe your role in the process or inception.
BFA and MFA applicants, submit the following written materials with both your online application and your online portfolio submissions.

Artist Statement

An artist statement is very important in the admissions process and should answer the following three questions:

  • What issues and concerns inform your artmaking practice?
  • Why are you applying to your program at CalArts?
  • What are your artistic goals?

Additional Written Materials

  • Synopsis: One or two sentence synopsis of each work submitted
  • A one-paragraph autobiography indicating significant artistic, professional, and academic achievements, or other life experiences that would help the committee evaluate your application with 2-4 stills from your work.
  • Comments on films, books, art, etc., that you feel have influenced your thoughts and work as an artist. It is important to say why and how these works have influenced you. Avoid writing plot summaries.
  • Project plans. Keep in mind that such a plan is meant to give faculty an idea of the type of filmmaking that interests you, not an idea of a project you will necessarily produce at CalArts.
  • A brief explanation (one page) of why you are interested specifically in the Program in Experimental Animation at CalArts.

Portfolio Submission Format:

We prefer that you use our online portfolio
submission system. The online system accepts MP3's, documents, images and video. Once your portfolio is uploaded, it can be viewed and rearranged until the final submission is made. No changes can be made following the final submission of your portfolio. There is a fee for each portfolio submission you make through the online system. Be sure to submit your portfolio to the correct degree level and program. If you experience technical difficulties while uploading your portfolio, you may send an email to support@slideroom.com for technical assistance.

If you are unable to submit your work online, portfolios can be mailed to CalArts. Mailed portfolios should include a completed Portfolio Information Form and be mailed using the Portfolio Mailing Label. Only one submission method (mailing or uploading) may be used.

Learn more about the program, faculty, facilities and view student work.

Last edited by kachzet on Nov 16, 2015
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