The next dimension of creativity: 3D Digital Visualization opens a new level of opportunities

The shiny new mobile phone or computer that you saw advertised that you’ll wait hours in line to buy. The concept car that won’t be out for another two years. That dream apartment in the city that you can already envision yourself living in. These stunning images and more capture the attention of millions, yet they’re not photos of these sought-after things. They’re 3D digital visualizations.

On the cutting edge

“So many of the things we see every day are actually digital renderings of prototypes, or images of what the products will eventually look like,” said Jason (Kyong Hwan) Lee, NCIDQ, ASID, IDEC, Assoc. AIA, a professor in the new Bachelor of Fine Arts (B.F.A.) degree program in 3D Digital Visualization at Berkeley College. “They’re often so realistic that viewers don’t even realize they’re not real. And that’s why these skills are in such demand.”

A unique degree program

The degree program, one of the only of its kind, combines many of the skills already taught in Berkeley’s popular Graphic Design and Interior Design programs. “This takes it to another level,” Professor Lee pointed out. “The program focuses on the three-dimensional aspects and the state-of-the-art software used by today’s leading firms. By developing these skills and mastering these software programs, students will be able to expand their career opportunities into so many different professional areas.”

Learn from experienced professionals

“Another advantage of the Berkeley 3D Digital Visualization program is the faculty we already have in the Graphic Design and Interior Design departments,” according to Professor Lee. “Many of the professors are working professionals at leading companies, so students learn across the various disciplines, expanding both their versatility and their marketability.” He continued, “The medical field, for example, is an area with tremendous potential for people with 3D modeling skills.”

Industry experts see the potential

In professional circles, the 3D Digital Visualization program is already attracting attention. “Berkeley’s B.F.A. program is a very interesting hybrid,” according to Carl Skelton, a professional multi-media and installation artist who has created work for numerous well-known architectural and engineering firms. “The business of making things appear as if they’re real is substantial and very much in demand by numerous types of firms for presentation, proposals, and such.” He went on, “The combination of disciplines covered, as well as the faculty in Berkeley’s B.F.A. program, should give students an advantage over programs that are more limited. Graduates will have a very relevant background and skillset, as well as a strong portfolio that should make them appealing to employers in various areas of the industry.”

A core curriculum with the ability to specialize

“The program facilitates collaborative and interdisciplinary efforts focusing on a core sequence of required technical and elective courses,” Professor Lee noted. “Additionally, the student has an opportunity to select electives from the Interior Design and Graphic Design departments to further emphasize the career path they want to pursue, such as architecture, interior design, construction, graphic design, industrial design, art, animation, and gaming as skilled professionals.

“These ‘digital storytelling’ skills can set professionals apart,” added Mr. Skelton. “The 3D aspects of this program can also provide bargaining power when seeking staff positions or freelance opportunities in the business. There’s particular demand here in the northeast region of the country, as well as opportunities for remote work.”

Opportunities span many industries

Animation, architecture, automotive, construction, gaming, industrial design, graphic design, interior design, and retail are just some of the industries that depend on skilled, talented professionals to communicate graphical concepts for presentations, sales and marketing materials, displays, and many more applications. 3D renderings are often used to test new products before they go to market, evaluating their appeal to potential audiences to finalize the products.

The 3D Digital Visualization program is offered at Berkeley’s Woodland Park, NJ campus as well as through Berkeley College Online®.

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