LSU Animation Program Ranked Top 25 Nationally

professor by camera

LSU Virtual Production Studio

Animation Career Review named LSU’s animation program the 26th best public university or college animation program in the nation, in the top 30%. LSU was also ranked first in Louisiana, and the 12th best animation program in the South, across all Southern public and private institutions. The BFA and MFA programs were both ranked #25 nationally among schools offering animation-related programs.

Animation Career Review is the source for aspiring animation, design, and gaming professionals seeking information on training programs, schools, and colleges. The 2021 Game Design School Rankings are the ninth annual rankings, and over 125 schools with game design programs from across the U.S. were considered in preparing this year’s rankings.

“We have created an environment that fosters collaboration with students, researchers, and industry,” said Derick Ostrenko, assistant professor of digital art at LSU. “Educating our own visual artists is vital to continue growing the digital media industry in Louisiana.”

LSU is home to several programs for aspiring animators. The LSU School of Art offers a BFA and MFA in studio art with a concentration in digital art. The program fosters creative insight and theoretical grounding in addition to practical expertise. Students refine their skills in classes that provide an integrated understanding of animation, visual effects, 3D modeling, and interactive systems. LSU pulls instructors from the wide range of Louisiana digital media companies. These companies also offer internship opportunities for LSU students, keeping students and faculty current in trends, practices, and professional workflows. Additionally, LSU now offers a new BA degree, which offers students greater flexibility and the ability to tailor curriculum to their individual goals.

The Master in Digital Media Arts & Engineering, an interdisciplinary program of the College of Art & Design and the College of Engineering, DMAE is an intensive, two-year master’s degree that employs a practice-driven approach to produce polished outcomes designed to meet industry needs. The courses explore cutting-edge developments in video games, interactive design, visual effects, and animation.

New Virtual Production Program

As Louisiana’s flagship institution, LSU is committed to responding to current and emerging industry needs, particularly in the state’s strategic sectors, such as entertainment. By combining technical and artistic disciplines, LSU has received a $1.25 million investment from Louisiana Economic Development (LED) to accelerate content creation and talent development. The effort will help secure the state’s position in a rapidly changing film and television industry where movies and series increasingly rely on photorealistic gaming technologies for backgrounds and special effects.

“By building an XR studio that plays on the convergence of virtual, mixed, and augmented reality, we can design tailored experiences that immerse its builders, participants, and viewers,” said Derick Ostrenko, digital art professor in the LSU School of Art with a joint appointment in the LSU Center for Computation & Technology. “Using real-time technology for compositing, visualization, and post-production allows for faster iteration and on-set improvisation.”

As graduates of the LSU Virtual Production Program, students will access high-paying careers for artists with real-time 3D skills. The demand for such skills has more than doubled in the past decade and is expected to grow further as Louisiana’s film industry continues to hybridize, merging digital and physical production, gaming, and film.

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