The Art Department and Leading Artists from Pixar, Disney and Top Studios, Form Cutting-Edge Online and On-Ground Collegiate Animation Program.

Emeryville, California (EastBayDaily) — The Art Department (, in partnership with animation, story, design, and creative leaders from Pixar, Disney and other notables, have launched a new, multi-track collegiate animation program. The animation classes and major starts August 27th 2012, and submissions for merit based awards, including full-rides, have begun via the school’s website.

“The Art Department offers a mainline to animation, film, games, and art industry leaders who teach within a collegiate program built by those who make Academy Award winning films and blockbuster games. Having Andrew Gordon and esteemed animation faculty lead this innovative international program, brings true knowledge and deep practical experience to our students, connecting them to those capable of delivering life-changing opportunities. We have cut the cost of college education to less than half that of the top art schools in the US. Full and partial ride, merit based awards, combined with on-ground and online delivery, we make it possible for deserving students from any economic background or locale to learn and build their creative dreams alongside those that lead the field.”

Jason Manley – President, The Art Department, Founder of ConceptArt.Org

“Our animation program is rooted in history, tradition, visual storytelling, is highly focused on creativity, visual expression and entrepreneurial spirit. It can be attended by students anywhere in the world, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week,” Manley says. “Access to affordable, life-changing, educational experiences is important and we are doing everything to bring opportunities and success to talented people. Giving the merit awards to hard-working artists around the world, has a major impact and is part of what makes it all worthwhile.”

Each segment of the school curriculum features classes taught by masters of that discipline, assuring students get relevant, applicable insight from the very best in the field at any given time. Courses span five tracks within the program; Directing, Animation, Experimental, Games, and Visual Effects while covering 3D, 2D, and Flash based media options. From the start, students focus on valuable foundational training in drawing, painting, and problem solving, while learning to create effective characters, visual narratives, meaningful stories and personal creative voice. In addition, students gain crucial insight into business, legal, teamwork, production, marketing, planning, promotion, and finance – all necessary for long term success in today’s rapidly growing industry.

“I want the best animation program in the world. We are teaching students what they need to know to be great storytellers, directors, animators, and visual artists. Everyone involved wanted the program that we wished we had when we were in college. That is what we built and it does not exist anywhere else but here,” says Department Chair, Andrew Gordon.

Gordon is a fifteen year veteran of the Oscar winning studio Pixar, where he has contributed to awarded films, including, A Bug’s Life, Toy Story 2 and 3, Monsters Inc., Finding Nemo, The Incredibles, Ratatouille and currently, as Directing Animator for Monsters University. As a three time leader of Pixar’s animation internship, he works to bring new talent to the studio and regularly assists with training those ready to make the next step into the company.

The Art Department CEO, John English explains, “Art school education has been broken for decades. To help solve this major academic issue The Art Department brings accurate and current industry knowledge, lower tuition costs, practical skill building, and career opportunities to any student wishing to learn from those who truly do what they teach. It is a brilliant animation program that is perfectly in tune with our current majors of Entertainment 2D, 3D, Drawing and Painting and Illustration. I am proud to work with such gifted and experienced faculty. These are not just industry stars, they are great teachers.”

To interview Andrew Gordon, Jason Manley or John English, please contact Jaclyn Havlak at

The Art Department is an established online-centric art and entertainment development college with on ground components (both studios and workshops), available to students worldwide. Talented students studying Animation, Entertainment 2D, 3D, Illustration and Fine Art are able to learn with the best in the business–in person, online, or both. The program is the first Art and entertainment development college for digital and traditional media being delivered synchronously online. Synchronous online delivery means that classes are conducted live (in real-time), allowing students and instructors to interact as if they were in the same place of study, without ever having to leave the comfort of their own home or studio. Live demonstrations are held, presentations are given, and every work is critiqued by leaders in the field.

TAD’s free high school program, the Visual Literacy Program is being given for secondary schools across the country and around the world, as a way to pay it forward — to re-insert the grammar of art and animation into youth education. TAD has already awarded many full-ride and partial scholarships and continues to provide merit based awards worldwide as a matter of responsibility.

The technology used, allows for students to see anything the teacher shares on their computer, view live traditional media or digital demonstrations over streaming video and more. The Art Department’s proven tools allow students and faculty to seamlessly collaborate, critique, and learn in applications like Autodesk: Maya, 3DSMax, Painter, Photoshop, Art Rage and any others.

The Art Department’s programs are highly flexible and widely accessible. Its faculty is recognized industry leaders of proven accomplishment. Its online-centric model allows the school to positively impact the mountainous cost of education faced by students today, deeply cutting financial investment risk that artists and families face at any of the top ten US art schools. The curriculum, in all majors, provides the knowledge of art, animation, business, marketing, promotion, legal, personal point of view and the entrepreneurial spirit that is required to be successful in any creative endeavor.

To improve success and opportunity for students The Art Department connects directly to the industry. Current and graduating students have contributed to the number one MMO League of Legends, products for 2k Games, artwork for Rolling Stone, The US Postal Service, feature film studios, video game companies and others. Awards received by our students include Gold and Silver Medals from the society of Illustrators and the Spectrum Gold Medal. These incredible achievements are only found at The Art Department.

This model allows for an improved quality of education, personal one-on-one faculty time, experience in industry process, team participation, along with on-demand lectures and demonstrations available everywhere there is internet. The Art Department has on-ground studios and facilities located in Austin, Kansas City and Richmond. The school has students and instructors that hail from 24 countries and 6 continents, whom connect daily on the quest for opportunity and greatness in art and animation.


Jason Manley