Note: I am not being asked or paid to do this post! I just believe in the quality coming out of the Kansas City Art Institute. The school has put out some pretty amazing artist over the decades and I do not expect anything less than that in the future.
Walt Disney and Dennis Hopper are among the people who have walk the halls of the Kansas City Art Institute. Marc Davis, the guy that created Snow White and Bambi started there as well. If that does not tell you of the quality, I am not sure what will.
What I recommend the school is not only its photography program but you will be working with people that create differently and that will only expand your vision to think differently about your images. Some of my greatest education as a photographer came from chatting about the color wheel with a painter friend. It is about creativity and all artists are after that.
I do believe that a young photographer could learn alot from coming to Kansas City, going to art school and learning how to think like an artist. One of the biggest mental blocks that I have is forcing myself to think as an artist would think. If you master that, there is little limitation in your creativity.
3 reasons that I recommend Kansas City Art Institute
I have lived in Kansas City for a good part of my life. I consider myself from Kansas City and went to high school there. I love the city. I also have spend quite abit of time around the Art school and the museum back in the day just dreaming from looking at the photographs. Amazing works of art!
- You are in a historical city.
I know this might not seem like it matters to you but as a photographer, having very cool buildings that out-date your grandparents and over a hundred fountains, vast public parks, large sporting programs, and skyscrapers are important for backdrops.
I have never been asked by anyone for a permit to shoot about anywhere in the city. Alot of cities seem to have their hands out for “photographer’s fees.” I have not experienced that in Kansas City.
2. Clients respect Kansas City Art Institute
While a student at the school, you have many big name clients that look to the school for work. It could be an ad agency or even H&R Block or Sprint that both are headquartered in Kansas City. I have a friend that was shooting for the Kansas City Chiefs games while he has still a student. He was making decent money before he even graduated. The opportunities are there in Kansas City.
The other thing to consider is the respect that the school has when you do graduate. It can get your foot in the door for some major clients no matter where in America you are living. Graduates are all over the movie industry for example. Open doors is what you need in the crowded photography sector.
3. Kansas City is cheaper than New York
One thing to consider is the cost of living while you are in school. It is cheaper to live in Missouri that New York City. The rent is cheaper, you have more space and you do not have $13 coffees (yet). If you are a student, the cost of living matters because let’s face it, all students are broke.
Also, living a little of the city is much cheaper; another option that will have in New York.
Kansas City Art Institute is not For-Profit
Alot of people think the school is the same as the Art Institute of Kansas City that is owned by Goldman Sachs. They are very different and their mission is even more polorizing. The Art Institute network is not about education but about making shareholders profit. One is a private university ran by a local board and the other was delisted by NASDAQ for scams. It is also interesting that the Art Institute of Kansas City is no longer taking new students. Maybe, they are on the way out the door.
The reason that this is important is many think of the Goldman Sachs controlled school system when they hear about the Kansas City Art Institute and this is a very different school with a even more different mission.
I would never recommend to attend a school that is more concerned with your tuition than they are with your education.
I hope to interview some of the photography professors from the school for Nikon Dojo down the road and might even do something on campus. It is just an option at this point.