Here's the elevator pitch for this thread: I'd like to get a comprehensive and very focused education in compositing in the San Francisco Bay Area, but have no idea where to go. Advice is welcomed and very much encouraged.
In the interest of saving myself from meandering around the important details, here's a rundown of where I'm at and where I'd like to be:
So there's a rundown. Hopefully there's a maximum 2-year program out there that won't waste time on things that don't matter as much in the end. Compositing is the end goal here, with a pipe dream of colour correction. I'm willing to put in the years of grunt work and work my way up the chain to maybe, just maybe, have that as an option in the future. I've not had much luck searching around so far, so here I am asking for advice.
- I'm handcuffed to the Bay Area for the next couple of years. This isn't where I'm originally from - San Francisco is actually the third city in three years, but this is where I'm going to be and so this is where I'd like to train and afterwards obtain work.
- I have a few years of university education, so the idea of a 4-year program at a place like the Academy of Art University is very unappealing. It's also far too generalized.
- I have what I would call between beginner and moderate knowledge of compositing. I feel fairly comfortable in Shake, and to a lesser extent Nuke. The tools don't frighten me. I'd like to now how to use them properly to achieve me goals.
- Ideally, I'm looking for an 18 or 24 month program focused entirely on effects and compositing, even if it takes up the majority of my life for that period. I'm putting a heavy emphasis on offline training. Meeting people and making connections is an integral aspect for what I'm looking for.
- I'm aware that it's not the school but what you put into it and get out of it. That said, I'm not looking for a program that baby steps you through 18 months of After Effects. I want to learn proper nodal compositing. Nearly every studio I've looked at does not list AE as part of their required or preferred skills. Many of them do list Unix or Linux abilities (which negates AE right there), and that's not a problem.