The role of the video game art director is an important one for computer and video game projects This individual acts as a manager to supervise the work of experienced artists and new team members. They must have good communication skills, since part of the job is to listen to ideas from team members and evaluate them. Being able to make decisions about the approach for a project is another part of the art director’s job.
A person who is interested in working as an art director needs to have a good foundation in fine arts.
Being able to appreciate the technical components that go into drawing, coloring and texturing are very important. The art director must also be able to picture how a particular aspect of a video game would look once it has been completed to make appropriate decisions about that aspect of the project.
A person interested in becoming an art director working on computer or video game projects will not be hired at this level immediately. A person who wants to be an art director will not be hired in this capacity straight out of school. Most people who reach this level work their way up through the ranks by starting their careers as animators or game artists. They gain practical experience by working on a number of projects before stepping into the art director position on a full-time basis.
The art director working on a computer or video game project usually works during normal business hours. They may need to work overtime, though, when the team is busy working toward a deadline. The art director keeps the project on track and moving toward the necessary milestones until it is completed.
Completing the requirements for a Bachelor’s or Master’s degree in Fine Arts is a good place for future art directors to start. These programs include courses in color and design, computer graphics, 2D animation and communications. Taking courses in anatomy and architecture are also helpful for future art directors.
The Master’s degree in Fine Arts expands on the student’s level of knowledge. It includes courses in life drawing, 2D and 3D animation techniques, as well as storyboarding. Some people working in this industry choose to work toward their Master’s degree by studying part time or enrolling in one of the distance education programs offering degrees in this area of study.
Art directors may also find completing a degree or a certificate in art administration helpful.
Adding this designation to their credentials means that they get valuable knowledge in aspects of running a computer or video game project, such as project management and finance.
The average salary for an art director working in the computer and video games field is $76,000 according to Indeed.com.