Online Cartooning Classes and Courses Overviews

Students can begin their education in cartooning by taking online courses in illustration, animation and other related subjects through online bachelor's, master's or continuing education programs. However, advanced classes specifically in cartooning are often more readily available in a traditional classroom setting.

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Online Classes in Cartooning

Below are some commonly offered art courses for prospective cartoonists that can be found online.

  • Fundamentals of Animation Course: Students gain an understanding of basic animation concepts, such as follow-through, overlapping motion and squash and stretch. Students learn about the art of motion and its application to objects.
  • Digital Illustration Course: This course covers the basics of vector-based graphic design programs like Adobe Illustrator. Students learn to design and draw with the program's palette of tools and functions.
  • Figure Drawing Course: Students learn the principles of drawing the human body. Traditionally, figure drawing courses use live models. An online course, however, uses illustrations to teach the student about human anatomy. Classes cover concepts such as composition, lighting, proportion and composition in an attempt to help students create realistic images.
  • Digital Painting Course: Students are introduced to special software to paint in a digital format. Many of the same basic principles used in traditional painting are applied to digital painting and used to create student projects.
  • Beginning Drawing Course:This course introduces the novice to the art of drawing. Students learn about the different types of drawing and its key elements, such as design, color theory, light and shadow, perspective and space.
  • History of Animation Course: Students in this class will study the technological and stylistic innovations in animation throughout history. The course will highlight the work of animation legends and pioneers who created iconic cartoon characters. Additionally, the course will cover contemporary cartoons and animation in film, television and more.
  • Character Creation Course: In this course, students will examine the perspective of a character's personality and how that relates to the way the character is developed. Previous characters and how they were created will also be covered.
  • Desktop Publishing Course: This course will introduce students to Adobe InDesign. Topics include design skills, Microsoft Word and Adobe Photoshop.

Program Information

Classes listed strictly as cartooning are rarely offered online, but students interested in drawing with the use of computers will find related courses covering these basic areas, along with animation, graphic design and illustration. Some schools offer training as part of online certificate or degree programs in art, new media, graphic design or illustration.

Online courses for animation and illustration require well-equipped computers with updated operating systems. Many of the classes require the purchase and use of particular software programs such as Adobe Illustrator or Corel Painter; students should check with the school to see which software is required. Students may also need access to additional peripherals, such as a scanner, printer, and digital camera.

Online cartooning courses are offered via individual classes, certificate programs, and associate's and bachelor's degree programs. Students will have the chance to study topics like figure drawing, digital painting and animation fundamentals.

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