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MFA 2012 All Art ADMISSIONS freak-out forum!!!!!!!!


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Thanks. It seems the only good thing to come out of all this rejection is knowing what not to do, and by elimination, try to please the commitee.

I think that trying to please the committee is a mission doomed to failure. I think you just have to accept that the whole process is subjective and unpredictable. Like Noceh4 said above, the fact that you didn't get in doesn't necessarily mean that your work isn't strong - it could mean anything, it could mean that your work didn't fit in with the rest of the group that was emerging, or maybe it was too close to someone else who had already been selected and they wanted more variety, or it just didn't click with the committee on that particular day. When asking for references during the application process, one of my profs said "As they say in these things, it's a crapshoot. You never know what a jury will go for." And that's coming from someone who has BEEN on those juries. So you can be cynical about the unpredictability of the process, but I think it would be a big mistake to modify your practice in an attempt to cater to that unpredictability.

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Man, if I asked someone to marry me and they waited this long to decide I would tell them good riddance.

I think that trying to please the committee is a mission doomed to failure. I think you just have to accept that the whole process is subjective and unpredictable. Like Noceh4 said above, the fact that you didn't get in doesn't necessarily mean that your work isn't strong - it could mean anything, it could mean that your work didn't fit in with the rest of the group that was emerging, or maybe it was too close to someone else who had already been selected and they wanted more variety, or it just didn't click with the committee on that particular day. When asking for references during the application process, one of my profs said "As they say in these things, it's a crapshoot. You never know what a jury will go for." And that's coming from someone who has BEEN on those juries. So you can be cynical about the unpredictability of the process, but I think it would be a big mistake to modify your practice in an attempt to cater to that unpredictability.

Well put.

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I think that trying to please the committee is a mission doomed to failure. I think you just have to accept that the whole process is subjective and unpredictable. Like Noceh4 said above, the fact that you didn't get in doesn't necessarily mean that your work isn't strong - it could mean anything, it could mean that your work didn't fit in with the rest of the group that was emerging, or maybe it was too close to someone else who had already been selected and they wanted more variety, or it just didn't click with the committee on that particular day. When asking for references during the application process, one of my profs said "As they say in these things, it's a crapshoot. You never know what a jury will go for." And that's coming from someone who has BEEN on those juries. So you can be cynical about the unpredictability of the process, but I think it would be a big mistake to modify your practice in an attempt to cater to that unpredictability.

I totally agree. If you pretend to be something that you are not and get accepted on that basis, then what? Both you and school are going to be butting heads for 2-3 years. Not a recipe for growth. Take a year or two to really refine your work. Explore new things, try things you normally would not. Build your list of exhibitions. Then try again with a really refined and tight and cohesive portfolio. And apply to more schools in a variety of locations. I noticed that your geographic area of schools was really limited. Must you stay close to New York? You might be the bomb on the West Coast, the Mid-West, the Rockies, or the South, but be just one of the herd in the northeast. And you only applied to what 5 schools? I applied to 24 schools - that really is too many. However, I got full ride offers from several schools that I would not have applied to if I would have kept it to my original list of 8-10 schools that were just based on rankings. In fact I'm very happy about the OSU offer and will likely go there and they were not in my original top rankings list. I was encouraged to apply to as many as I could afford if I really wanted to go this year. At 51 years old, I don't have time to keep trying.

So take the time to work on crafting the best portfolio you can and save some money so you can apply to more schools in more geographic areas. I recommend targeting 12-14 programs. Keep in mind that there really is no such thing as a safety school unless you have personal connections. Smaller, less well-known schools often called safety schools, may only be taking 1 or 2 new students and they may be favoring their own pool of undergrads or undergrads from a faculty-friend at another school. The odds may be worse at those schools. I was rejected from several of the 50+ ranked schools that I thought of as safeties.

Also, after the dust settles in late April or early May, consider asking some of the faculty at schools where you were rejected, if they would give you a candid appraisal of your application. Where did you fall short? Was the resume weak? Was it just the portfolio? How can you keep to your own style yet strengthen the work? Keep an open mind and try not to be too hard on yourself. Look at all the rejection that artists have had over the years. One modern example is the writer Stephen King, perhaps the most successful writer in modern history. He had his books rejected dozens and dozens of times. Art history is of course filled with artists who struggled with acceptance for years or decades.

Keep going.

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Anyone have any thoughts on the SVA mfa in Fine Arts program? much appreciated and happy sunday

Honesty, I haven't heard good things about SVA - They are very expensive and offer very little in ways of funding. I have also heard that their grad studios aren't great and that while "big name" people teach there, they often spend very little time outside of their classes either in the facilities or with the students. I've heard this both from those who are in and outside of New York. Granted, it could be different now - my advice is, if you can, go and check it out for yourself. You'll be the one to decide and make sure you ask them about the things I just said.

Edited by miyamoto81
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Honesty, I haven't heard good things about SVA - They are very expensive and offer very little in ways of funding. I have also heard that their grad studios aren't great and that while "big name" people teach there, they often spend very little time outside of their classes either in the facilities or with the students. I've heard this both from those who are in and outside of New York. Granted, it could be different now - my advice is, if you can, go and check it out for yourself. You'll be the one to decide and make sure you ask them about the things I just said.

I have to agree with "miyamoto81" on this as well for the fine art (not so on the graphic design, where you get a ton of attention from the pros), and the film dept is also likewise known for being riDICulously expensive (a friend of mine paid his MFA off after about 10 years...while bringing in a six figure salary as an art director)...

That being said, miyamoto81, it looks like you applied and got into CalArts...that school is just as bad as SVA for $...I have a friend in their Director's program and she's going to end up with well over 120K in debt, and she says the fine art people are only better off because they are a 2 year program instead of three...

Edited by OutWest
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hi OutWest, how did you know the result from UC Berkeley? I applied to MFA art practice but have heard nothing yet.

Well, that sounds good for you, I'm going to bet! It sounds like (though, I'd contact the Dept. to make it real) you are on a kind of Waitlist. The same thing happened to me for Davis (i.e., no Accept or Reject for along period of time and then they finally told me I'm on a waitilist)....oh, for my rejection, they sent me a form letter back on 02/25...

Hope you hear from them. I really like(d) that program (plus, it's free tuition which is awesome)...out of curiosity, what is your concentration? I am a new media/new genres kind of guy with a techie bent and, though that program seems to talk a good game about media art, they also seem to admit mostly "traditional" artists...

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I have to agree with "miyamoto81" on this as well for the fine art (not so on the graphic design, where you get a ton of attention from the pros), and the film dept is also likewise known for being riDICulously expensive (a friend of mine paid his MFA off after about 10 years...while bringing in a six figure salary as an art director)...

That being said, miyamoto81, it looks like you applied and got into CalArts...that school is just as bad as SVA for $...I have a friend in their Director's program and she's going to end up with well over 120K in debt, and she says the fine art people are only better off because they are a 2 year program instead of three...

Any info on their Interaction Design department?

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Anyone have a strong opinion on Rutgers? Great program / middlin' / would avoid?

I think its a great program. It is very renowned because of the faculty and there was recently a large sum of money given to the art school to hire some one of importance in the art world, this being Catherine Murphy. People say its a cheap or affordable school but the fact is that is it one of the most expensive state schools in the state of NJ. However, in comparison to other schools in the surrounding a it can be advertised as an affordable school without too much exaggeration. I like the faculty because I'm a painter. The students are making great work, I think.

Did you get accepted? What program? :)

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This does not sound like a good idea. Please don't take this the wrong way, I don't mean to crush any dreams or hopes for living in a peaceful and beautiful local but I don't think there would be any galleries/exposure on the top of the Rockies or in any forest. If you want to have a career as an artist, you need to place yourself in the heart of the beast. NY, L.A., Chicago, Texas, Boston, Florida, Washington DC, SF.. these are all hot spots.

Unless you are quilting, making watercolors of deer for a state fair or designing signs for local lawn mowing businesses, you need to be in a place where there's an art hub and community.

I strongly (yet respectfully) have to disagree. I live in Santa Fe, NM (part of the Rockies) and we have an amazing fine art market...nothing but galleries and many artist retreats. In fact, there is a whole real-estate market here devoted solely for homes with "private studios." Artist from around the world have studios here or permanently reside here. Art collectors, tourist, Native American artist etc...have very successful careers, yet we are not NY, Chicago or LA.

Artists get inspiration from many places. Location can greatly influence creativity not to mention impact social/ cultural change. If you want to make a career as an artist, you need to work hard, and gain inspiration from wherever makes you happiest. For some people it is a large metropolitan city...for others, it is exactly the opposite. Many successful artists get inspiration from their environment. For many, this is in the west. Just because a school is not listed in the "top program list" does not mean successful artist do not emerge from them. And just because someone graduates from a top choice school, or resides in a metropolitan area, does not mean they will have a successful career. Hundreds of well-known artists practice or live in mountain states/southwestern states.

Edited by Eboni_Rain
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I agree that an art community is essential. So...I say we all move to the Rockies and start a hub for contemporary art. Who's with me?

Yes, I realize I'm a dreamer. But I'm okay with that.

I'm down for that.

You're welcome to come to Santa Fe...we have an amazing fine art market especially in Painting, ceramics and jewelry :) Plus it is blue skies and sunshine 300+ days of the year.

Edited by Eboni_Rain
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I have to agree with "miyamoto81" on this as well for the fine art (not so on the graphic design, where you get a ton of attention from the pros), and the film dept is also likewise known for being riDICulously expensive (a friend of mine paid his MFA off after about 10 years...while bringing in a six figure salary as an art director)...

That being said, miyamoto81, it looks like you applied and got into CalArts...that school is just as bad as SVA for $...I have a friend in their Director's program and she's going to end up with well over 120K in debt, and she says the fine art people are only better off because they are a 2 year program instead of three...

Yes, I know they are . . . I'm going to see what I can work out as far as funding from them goes. I have a few very generous offers from other schools that will take precedence if nothing pulls through for Cal Arts. It is a shame, a lot of these programs have potential to offer so much to people who aren't bankrolled by anyone.

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if we havent heard from usc are we out?

Brown06, I believe that people on this thread either were contacted for interviews or had friends who were contacted for USC. What kind of 6-degrees-of-separation it was, I'm not sure. But I think that for most schools whom we haven't heard anything from yet (5 in my case) it isn't a good sign. That being said, who knows - it ain't over til it's over.

Edited by miyamoto81
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I got exact same hand written note on the letter. It's a spam note. Parsons trying to appeal their financial needs obviously.

My note was a little different. Below the letter it says "Wonderful work, you should be very proud." Then off to the side it say "Your talents are well suited to our creative yet demanding program. Come join us." Did you guys have that too? I was skeptical of its genericness from the beginning.

So, everybody who got accepted into Parsons had the note on their letter?!

:D now i just feel funny about it if its a spam! They did get to me for some time though! :D

Have you heard anything from them on merit based scholarship ?

No word about merit based scholarships either. Don't think it's a good sign because ... :-/

Recieved an acceptance email from Pratt on 3/9, an acceptance email from BU on 3/8 with some funding. Got an acceptance letter from Parsons with some funding on 3/14. Just waiting on SVA now. Interview went well so we will see...

^How much funding did you get for Parsons. How did they notify you?

Edited by minderbinder22
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