Art Institutes

Professional Writingfor Creative Arts

I have a way with words. And the drive to make them my career.

Writing is what you love to do. It’s the art of persuasion, the expression of imagination, the rush of inspiration. With the exponential growth in digital content, there’s a need for captivating stories and characters for entertainment, publishing, TV, film, and video games. Advertising, websites, blogs, social feeds, and news outlets need compelling narratives. Business, medical, and technical fields need clear, convincing exposition. It takes writers to create all of that, and one of those writers could be you. So if the written word is what drives you, your first stop should be here. In our Professional Writing for Creative Arts degree program, you will find yourself surrounded and inspired by other talented, creatively driven students—and pushed, challenged, and, above all else, supported by experienced faculty*. Easy? No. Worth it? Without a doubt.

*Credentials and experience levels vary by faculty and instructors.

Degrees Offered

Bachelor of Fine Arts in Professional Writing for Creative Arts

Quarter Credit Hours:
180
Timeframe:
12 Quarters

Gainful Employment

Outcomes
X

Bachelor of Fine Arts in Professional Writing for Creative Arts

Outcomes
  • Demonstrate effective written creative and expository communication by considering various audiences and contexts, and providing sufficient, relevant information on a topic that is organized, complex, and employs successful rhetoric.
  • Demonstrate, through research techniques, copy editing, and self-critique, knowledge of multimodal forms of expression.
  • Develop and apply concepts based on an understanding of appropriate media/technology as well as analyze and incorporate aesthetics and layout in the design process for various forms of communication outlets.
  • Demonstrate proficiency in the conceptual thinking process through work that reflects current cultural, social, economic and, industry trends as well as emerging technologies.
  • Demonstrate professional presentation skills, articulation of visual problem solving, and mastery knowledge of ethics, business practices and industry standards.
  • Demonstrate, through digital publications, a sound knowledge of content management, and media content creation utilizing industry software.

See ge.artinstitutes.edu/programoffering/5225 for program duration, tuition, fees. and other costs, median debt, salary data, alumni success, and other important info.

View Academic Catalog

Classroom Experience

Shortcuts don't interest me.

Just because writing comes naturally doesn’t mean it comes easily. Deadlines are real. The competition is real. The need to think, work and react quickly is real. Our program is meant for students with the real drive and determination to forge a career. Here, you can develop and polish the real-world skills you’ll need to succeed. You’ll have the opportunity to learn the fundamentals of storytelling structure and technique, build a foundation of rhetoric and creative writing skills, and develop the technical, interactive, advertising, and business writing abilities that can expand your opportunities. You can gain a working knowledge of current software, a command of spelling and grammar, the ability to defend your work, and a grasp of industry trends. Plus, you can work in a unique, eye-opening atmosphere with other creatively driven students pursuing careers in design, photography, filmmaking, video production, media arts, game design and more. See our gainful employment pages for possible careers that match the program that interests you.

Meet Our Alumni

  • Bruce_MacLachlan

    Bruce MacLachlan

    Interior Design , 2011

    "[My education] provided a broad understanding of design principles, a wide range of awareness in the various programs used by the industry, and a high degree of competence in them."

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    Bruce MacLachlan

    Interior Designer for JPC Architects

    Bruce MacLachlan is an interior designer II for JPC Architects in Bellevue, Washington. He develops and designs furniture concepts, prepares contract documents, creates technical interior architectural details, and selects finish materials and furniture. “I assist in managing client expectations and communications and contribute to office activities, initiatives, and learning programs,” he says.

    A typical day includes creating space plans, design development, turning designs into construction sets, BOMA (Building Owners and Managers Association International) calculations, and site verifications. “The odds of a design being perfect on the first go are virtually nil. Things will change and corrections, refinements, even starting again from scratch are all part of the design experience. Just keep going and do your best and eventually it'll work.”

    He says that a challenge arose when he was asked to handle BOMA calculations for his office. “It's a specialty that involves the calculation of rentable square footage for each suite within a building and the precise formulas have no room for error. I'm not much of a math person, but the office expert had some health problems and was out for several weeks and I was assigned to take over in their place.” He stayed calm, asked questions, and learned as much as he could about the process. “Now, I'm one of only two people in our office who can handle these projects.”

    Bruce adds that the ability to try something new and unfamiliar is paramount to success in the creative marketplace. “As the amount of work our office acquires continues to accelerate, people start to get overwhelmed. The creative environment is greatly facilitated by being ready to help others, assist in any way possible, and even take over projects at a moments notice. By working as part of a team, an impact is definitely made.

    Bruce, who in 2011 earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Interior Design from The Art Institute of Seattle, says that his education provided a broad understanding of design principles, a wide range of awareness in the various programs used by the industry, and a high degree of competence in them. He states that when he received a promotion to his current position, he felt that he’d experienced the benefits of his hard work. “My new position has a new set of skills to learn and requires the refinement of ones I possess. Expanding to meet the needs of my new job description while being ready for the unexpected is my new challenge.”

    See http://ge.artinstitutes.edu/programoffering/92 for program duration, tuition, fees and other costs, median debt, salary data, alumni success, and other important info.

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  • Dean Zulich

    Dean Zulich

    Digital Photography , 2007

    "I maintain relationships with the faculty [at The Art Institute of Seattle], and have been happy to speak to students when I go back to Seattle."

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    Dean Zulich

    Dean Zulich is self-employed as a photographer in Los Angeles, California. He books shoots, markets his business, and oversees pre- and post-production. Dean is proud to have been the runner up on VH1’s “The Shot,” a reality TV show that gave 10 amateur photographers a chance at becoming a fashion photographer. He also joined the Hall of Fame at The Art Institute of Seattle and was featured on a “Digital Photo Pro” cover and in a “Boston Globe” article.

    Dean says that he came into school as a “point and shoot” photographer and left knowing the principles of photography, from lighting and post-production. “I maintain relationships with the faculty [at The Art Institute of Seattle], and have been happy to speak to students when I go back to Seattle.” He adds that one of the best parts of his job is working for himself—and making his own hours. He also travels the world and is surrounded by other creative people.

    Dean, who in 2007 earned an Associate of Applied Arts in Photography from The Art Institute of Seattle, says that he started his photographic journey shooting landscapes. Today he is excited to have achieved his professional goal of becoming a photographer. “[My education] has played a tremendous role in the development of my career.”

    See ge.artinstitutes.edu/programoffering/4444 for program duration, tuition, fees, and other costs, median debt, salary data, alumni success, and other important info.

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  • Jeffrey Vergge

    Jeffrey Vergge

    Industrial Design , 2000

    "I can work all night on a project and feel fantastic and energized. When I go to bed I can't sleep because I'm so excited about what I just created."

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    Jeffrey Vergge

    Jeffrey Veregge is working as a senior designer for Masterworks. He started as an intern and worked his way up into production art, design, studio management—and now senior designer. “We’re a marketing company to nonprofits. We do catalogs, magazine ads, and digital.” Jeffrey springs into action when there’s an emergency, such as a typhoon or earthquake, to create needed materials for clients.

    In addition to his position at Masterworks, Jeffrey is known for his art, Salish Geek. “I take my passions for comic books, sci-fi, horror, fantasy, and blend it with my Native American heritage and designer background.” He jokes that he still has the same creative dreams that he did as a child. “I still read comics, I still love toys, I’ve never grown up and I don’t feel the need to do that. I feel connected to the characters that I’ve always loved. I’m connected to the genres that I care most about. “

    Jeffrey, who in 2000 earned an Associate of Applied Arts in Industrial Design Technology from The Art Institute of Seattle, says that he’s always had a talent for drawing. “Having those kind of passions and having those skills is never enough. If you really want to make it, you have to work at it.” He says that his education helped him to fine-tune his passion and focus it into a career path that’s led him to his present position. “I can work all night on a project and feel fantastic and energized. When I go to bed I can’t sleep because I’m so excited about what I just created.

    See ge.artinstitutes.edu/programoffering/90 for program duration, tuition, fees, and other costs, median debt, salary data, alumni success, and other important info.

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  • Steven James Taylor

    Steven James Taylor

    Industrial Design , 2006

    "I design not on paper, but with a pair of calipers, an exacto blade, and a hand tool."

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    Steven James Taylor

    Steven James Taylor is working as an advanced model maker for Apple, Inc. in Cupertino, California. He’s responsible for designing and creating interaction prototypes to support Apple’s industrial and interaction design. “I love how things are made and greatly enjoy solving mechanical problems and seeing a pile of nuts, bolts, and other parts come together into a working prototype,” Steven says.

    He says that a typical day consists of balancing his work between a few projects. “I generally work on [anything from] designing mechanical prototypes to making physical models that portray the designs and interactions’ intent.” Steven is excited to utilize his knowledge and skill to improve the products he works on. “I am able to [provide] a unique view of how to solve a problem when given one. I am very mechanically focused—more than design driven."

    Steven, who in 2006 earned an Associate of Applied Arts in Industrial Design Technology from The Art Institute of Seattle, says that his education provided the tools he needed to transition into his creative career. “It showed me that hard work and attacking the next challenge with vigor will get you far." He recommends that current students say yes when others say no. “Question the way you and others approach a problem. Find an answer when there appears not to be one. Start thinking differently, work hard, and do what you love."

    See ge.artinstitutes.edu/programoffering/90 for program duration, tuition, fees, and other costs, median debt, salary data, alumni success, and other important info.

    Read More...
  • Thomas Manley

    Thomas Manley

    Graphic & Web Design , 2005

    "[My instructors] never made it easy on me or other students, but [they] got the best work out of us, and in the process, made us better designers."

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    Thomas Manley

    Creative Director at Focal Point Marketing & Multimedia Creative Leader Oversees Branding, Print, Web, and Videography

    Thomas Manley is the creative director at Focal Point Marketing & Multimedia in Kennewick, Washington. “Being in a small agency setting still requires that I'm very hands on with production. I spend anywhere from 4-6 hours per day in production mode, working on design projects for our clients. The other hours are spent in client meetings, staff meetings, brainstorming sessions, photo and video shoots, strategy sessions, eating or drinking coffee, or taking a break to shoot some hoops in our studio,” he says. Thomas is the creative leader on all things brand, print, web and videography within the company. He adds that his design work includes logos, brochures, print ads, business cards, posters, flyers, bus and transit ads, and product packaging. He also conceptualizes television commercial ideas, including copy and scriptwriting.

    He recommends that current students stay focused when the going gets tough. “There's always a light at the end of the tunnel. Continue to push yourself—as a designer, as a business person, a leader, and a collaborator. Don't limit yourself.” Thomas suggests that difficult circumstances help designers to adapt and evolve as artists. He tells a story of looking for a new job in a new city—which became a tough situation when the job he really wanted offered him a salary lower than expected. “At that point, it came down to knowing my worth. I had an established portfolio and reputation for quality work and I knew I was worth more than what they were offering me.” He declined the job, and a month later received a call from one of the people he’d interviewed with. The person had moved to a new agency and recruited Thomas to come work with him.

    Thomas believes that graphic design requires lifelong learning and an ability to adapt to new technologies, trends, industries, and skill sets. “I'm always looking to grow my skills and learn new skills like leadership, strategy or public speaking.” He adds that it’s important to be able to communicate well and collaborate as a team member.

    Working in a creative environment is important for innovation, he adds. “Every week, I have my staff in creative meetings doing exercises that help us to think outside the box a bit. Our team is more likely to do its best work in an open, stress-free environment.” He also encourages music to boost creativity.

    Thomas says that each of his jobs has led him to a new experience. “The hard work that I've put in at each job, on every project, has helped me to grow as a creative professional. I've won numerous advertising industry awards for my design work, including ADDYs.”

    Prior to his current position, he was an in-house designer and webmaster for The Art Institute of Seattle. He also worked as a graphic designer for advertising agency BHW1 and as a production artist for PIP Printing.

    Thomas, who in 2005 earned an Associate of Applied Arts in Graphic Design from The Art Institute of Seattle, says that his instructors made an impact on him. “They presented us with real-world problems that we had to solve. [They] never made it easy on me or other students, but [they] got the best work out of us, and in the process, made us better designers.”

    See http://ge.artinstitutes.edu/programoffering/89 for program duration, tuition, fees and other costs, median debt, salary data, alumni success, and other important info.

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What Will I Study?

Professional Writing

All I need is the right experience.

The Professional Writing for Creative Arts curriculum is rigorous, all-encompassing and designed by experienced industry and education innovators. In today’s market, employers are seeking talent they don’t have to train. So we'll help you get ready to hit the ground running as you study:

  • Fundamentals of Marketing
  • Advertising Copywriting
  • Advertising Storyboarding & Scriptwriting
  • Public Relations
  • Scriptwriting
  • Applications & Industry
  • Information Architecture
  • Fundamentals of Web Design
  • Introduction to Writing for Interactive Media
  • Introduction to Research Methods
  • Principles of Rhetoric
  • Journalism
  • Foundations of Professional Writing
  • Marketing Communications
  • Myth & Symbol
  • Introduction to Literary Studies
  • Creative Writing
  • The Language of Business
  • Story Writing
  • Content Management for Web Media
  • Lifestyle Writing
  • The Editorial Process
  • The Publication Process
  • Communication in the Global Marketplace
  • Ethics in Professional Writing
  • Creative Nonfiction Writing
  • Grant & Proposal Writing

I'm looking for my proving ground.

At The Art Institutes system of schools, creativity is our core, our calling, our culture. We know that a creative career is not for the faint of heart. Every day is a battle to bring your ideas to life. And because it’s tough out there, it’s tough in here. But our “tough” comes with the support you need to make your creativity marketable. We provide the mentoring and real-world experience you need to prevail, with faculty* who’ve worked in the field and internship possibilities at successful businesses. Here, you’ll be encouraged and expected to be bold. To take risks. To push yourself and the people around you. So if your heart is telling you that you belong in a creative field, you belong here. It’s the hardest thing you’ll ever love. 

*Credentials and experience levels vary by faculty and instructors.

 

Meet Our Faculty

  • Antoine Rondenet

    Baking & Pastry

    "Embrace your mistakes, keep on learning, and always look at your work critically."

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    Antoine Rondenet

    Was there a defining moment when you knew you were destined to become a creative professional?

    The light came on the first time I visited the international pastry show, called Intersuc, in Paris. I was stunned by the display of cakes, chocolate and sugar showpieces. I realized I was entering the most beautiful craft in the world: pâtisserie.

    How do you weave your professional background into the classroom experience?

    I share real-world problems, and explain how applying the procedures we teach could have prevented those problems...things as simple as pasteurization barèmes to prevent food-borne illness, or knowing where ingredients come from and how that affects their costs.

    What class assignment exemplifies your approach to teaching and mentoring?

    I break my management by menu class into two main parts. In the first, students create a restaurant and its menu. In the second we do a case study of a local restaurant, looking at how it operates. We go through the financial steps to determine whether or not the restaurant will stay in business, and why.

    How does collaboration contribute to students’ success?

    For me, collaboration is essential. I tell my students that a food critic doesn’t grade just one individual, but his whole dining experience. That means the entire team needs to be working together toward excellence.

    What’s the most important thing you impart to students to help them succeed in class and the real world?

    Embrace your mistakes, keep on learning, and always look at your work critically.

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  • Joshua Brincko

    Interior Design

    "There is no shortcut, and there's no substitute for hard work."

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    Joshua Brincko

    Was there a defining moment when you knew you were destined to become a creative professional?

    When I was six, I visited an art museum in Cincinnati that had large, colorful abstract sculptures. I drew them from memory on graph paper, and my aunt bought one for five dollars. I instantly thought, wow, I can be paid for doing this! I never sold another one, but my parents encouraged me by telling me I could earn a living as an architect. Today I have my own practice. And it all started with five dollars of inspiration.

    How do you weave your professional background into the classroom experience?

    Every single topic I introduce in class, every project I assign, is carefully paired with an example of how it relates to my professional experience. I also relate current professional challenges and give students opportunities to offer solutions. It’s all about giving them a sense of the real world.

    What class assignment exemplifies your approach to teaching and mentoring?

    The design studio courses are the specialty in any design student's education. This isn’t just a class where you read a book, do homework, and take tests. It’s simulates a real design project; students evaluate actual design parameters and design a solution using models, drawings, renderings, and other presentation tools. A design studio course can turn into a full-time job for students who take it seriously, so I give them a lot of support and mentor them through the design process.

    How do you inspire students to push themselves beyond their perceived limits?

    A student has never truly been "busy" until they’ve taken a design studio course. When they’re immersed in designing creative spaces, they learn what busy really is.

    How does collaboration contribute to students’ success?

    Designers rarely work in a vacuum. They each have a unique background and skill set, so working in the same room with other designers lets them learn from each other and overcome challenges—there's often someone around who’s already tried what someone else may be struggling with. I run a study buddy program that links seasoned students with newer ones. When younger students work in the same space as upperclassmen, the more experienced designers learn to mentor while the underclassmen get valuable input from peers who’ve made their way through the project at hand.

    What’s the most important thing you impart to students to help them succeed in class and the real world?

    There is no shortcut, and there’s no substitute for hard work. Dedicate yourself to your craft.

    What’s the most critical advice you would offer any student embarking on a creative career?

    Gain experience in every facet of the industry. If you don't know how to build something, how can you successfully design it?

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