Is creativity in your blood? Do you love Fine Art as much as Cosplay and Comics?
Do you have a passion for technology, gadgets, science fiction and fantasy?

Get a career in:

CMU College of Makeup Art & Design's
Creature and Character Design Program is for you!
Only 10 Seats Available



  • Prepares you to work in both practical and digital makeup effects in creature and character design.
  • Introduces you to 3D scanning, modeling, printing and production workflows.
  • Blends Special Effects Makeup Artistry with 3D Digital Modeling to provide you with an extensive skill-set in creature and character design.
  • Teaches you foundational skills in Photoshop, life drawing and sculpting; and how to concept, hand build, mold and paint an advance-sculpted creature.
  • Teaches you how to design and create digitally sculpted high-resolution characters and environments using Pixological ZBrush.
  • Teaches you the professional skills needed to be job ready. When you graduate, you'll have an online portfolio showcasing your 3D digital sculptures, 3D printed maquette and hand built advance sculpted creature.
  • Provides you with a rare cross-disciplinary College Diploma and the knowledge and skills to work in roles like: Special Effects Creature and Character Design Artist, Digital Effects Makeup Artist, 3D Character Modeler, Mock-up Artist, Mold or Model Maker, Digital Artist, Prototype Fabricator, 3D Scanning or 3D Printing Technician.
  • Program Duration: 1 year - condensed into 4 months and 1 week (17 weeks)
  • Classroom Hours: 552.5

Curriculum Outline:

2-weeks Digital Sculpting: Photoshop

Photoshop is a foundational step in learning to digitally concept and sculpt a 3D creature design in ZBrush. This course work provides specific instruction on Photoshop skills and workflows for digital sculpture creature creation. A basic knowledge of Photoshop technical theory, tools, palettes and painting will be introduced followed by advanced techniques. Image manipulation, special effects, photo retouching, restoration, colour correction and painting texture maps for 3D work will be thoroughly explored in preparation for environment and character concepts.

1-week Foundation: Life Drawing

The course work will introduce principles and techniques of fine art life drawing. Students will gain the basic skills needed to begin to draw the human form through observation. A focus on human anatomy, musculature and fine details will prepare students to portray their concepts and work in a 3D environment. Knowledge of process, demonstrations and practice in life drawing will lead to the study of the human skull and figure. These drawings will then be transformed into a creature head and body study.

1-week Foundation: Figurative Sculpting

The course work will introduce principles and techniques of fine art figurative sculpting which will prepare students to have the basic skills needed to begin to develop concepts in 3D. This course will provide knowledge of process and representational form, demonstrations and practice in armature building, basic and advanced anatomy, musculature and fine detailing, which will lead to a study of a the human skull and figure. These studies will then be transformed into a creature head and figure sculpture.

6-weeks Digital Character Design: ZBrush Sculpting

This course provides the knowledge and skills in 3D sculpting to be a professional 3D Character and Creature Designer. Through a series of creative exercises using the ZBrush software, students will learn about 3D workflows, 3D painting, 3D anatomy studies, and 3D concept creation. Students will progress to design and create high-resolution 3D characters, creatures and environments. Students will also learn, by practical exercises, the 3D scanning and printing processes and the technical training needed to complete this work.

6-weeks Practical Creature Design: Sculpting

In creature design, students will learn how to design, construct and mould an advanced sculpted character. This course is ideal for artists interested in working in a special makeup effects lab building projects for a film or television production, animation studio, museum or entertainment venue, to name a few. In creature design, students will learn how to use the tools found in a workshop environment safely, effectively and with confidence. A thorough study of how to plan a project is covered as well as how to sculpt teeth and gums and create artificial eyes. By the end of the course, each student will have produced a completed character or creature.

1-week Career Planning and Digital Portfolio Creation

The course work for digital portfolio creation and career planning will prepare students for employment as professional digital and practical sculptors in creature and character design. Students will learn about strategies and tactics for job searching, networking, professionalism and specific types of employment. A full and personalized career toolkit will be developed that includes: a CV/Resume, visual content (photos/video) depicting their work, and a comprehensive online portfolio. Interview techniques and a mock interview will complete their studies.

  • Tuition: $11,050.00
  • Student Kit: $3595.00 plus HST (includes one year license for Photoshop and a full license to ZBrush)
  • Required: Students will need a MAC or PC laptop with the following requirements

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