Hello, we seem to share the same goal. I also aspire to live and work in Japan. When I visited the country 10 months ago, I immediately fell in love with the way everything works there.
But from my research, I found that there are three options for people who wants to work in Japan, especially in the anime industry.
First, is to get a work visa by acquiring a Bachelor’s Degree or something equivalent of a 4-year education. You can’t necessarily get the visa with only an Associate’s degree (2-year college).
Second, is to go to a 2-year vocational school in japan (professional skill/specialized school) and then get a work visa, but there is a catch. After graduating, you are not allowed to work in other fields that you did not specialize in.
Third, is to have the entertainer visa. It’s basically become really good and popular with what you do that you’ll be an exception, which is highly unlikely and undependable.
You can also do the first choice by getting into a japanese university and obtaining a student visa, then you can finish the 4-year education there.
AFTER ALL OF THIS, you need to find a company that is willing to sponsor your visa, which sounded trivial when I first heard it, but it’s actually half the battle. It’s a lot of hard work. Now let me ask you a question:
Why Japan? Japan isn’t the only source of anime nowadays. In addition, you can choose to work remote and work for anime companies from anywhere.
Why Anime? You do realize the reality of Japanese animators, right? The below minimum wage, average salary. College part-timers get more money working less hours, and less effort. Money is important too for everyone, no matter how much one denies liking it. There are plenty of American companies that are better. Don’t just use the excuse of the word “American” and “Japanese”. They’re essentially doing the same thing.
Why You? Anime companies ARE willing to work with foreigners, but not purely because they’re foreigners. You need to show why they should hire you rather than your other 10000+ Japanese competitors.
Are You? One of the best advice that I’ve ever gotten is that “You Are What You Do.” What are you doing right now? Are you making progress in your portfolio? or Are you doing something else? When you make art in the majority of day, then you are an artist. When you make animations, you are an animator. Theres nothing wrong with being an aspiring artist, animator, illustrator. But, when people just say that and do nothing, that means that they are a dreamer. Many people are dreamers. People who actually reach their dreams, now that’s something else.
Ok, now on to the second part.
To answer your title (assuming that it’s a question), I don’t know much about japanese scholarships. All I know is that it’s really complicated and you kinda gotta set yourself up from the beginning of high school in order to guarantee it.
My advice to you is to find out why your parents are against you. Is it because Japan? is it because its Anime? or is it because you havent done anything to prove them that you are capable of reaching your own long/short term goals?
I’ll admit it, even if you do plan to not rely on your parents to pursue your dream, they are still involved and they care what happens to you. You have to have a plan B, in case everything fails. My plan B is to follow what my parents want, which is to finish Bachelor’s and get a CS job, do that first, then I can do whatever. This is very important in order to convince them. You are essentially showing that you have initiative and attempting to fly out of your nest on your own with a cushion on the bottom. If you just tell them that you want to fly out the nest without a cushion, of course they’d be against it.
After that, you have to keep drawing. Learn how to learn quickly. This is an essential skill that is only provided to us Gen-Z, millenials at a young age because of the internet. The best free YouTube channels that does this is on my sources list.
If you made it this far, clearly you can tell I am not here to discourage you, but if you do feel discouraged, then maybe that says something about your goals. I have spent the past 5 years trying to answer that question to myself, and I’ll be honest, even I haven’t found it. However, I’m sick of being indecisive. I rather regret my job rather than regretting that I never picked one in the first place.
This is as far as my research goes however, I’ve heard people still able to work in japan with just Associate’s degree, or even no degree at all. I’m just following what the Japanese Ministry guidelines and my research says, so do give more feedback, other people.
If you have anymore questions, I’ll try my best to answer ‘em. But do realize, I am your competitor. I have the same goals as you. Most people in this website as well. When there is one job opening, all of us are gonna fight for that (no, not literally).
But in the meantime, there’s nothing wrong with helping out others. Makes the competition fun and the anime industry better. Best of luck, y’all!
- reddit (google ur question + reddit = done!)
- Japanese Ministry
- YouTube vids
- friends and connections
YouTube channels I recommend:
Ethan Becker (he’s an ex-animator at dreamworks who worked on voltron and korra which is totally my style. He also gives out really industry-oriented advice, like how to actually get paid, learning quick, he’s essentially telling us to learn to how to learn to draw, which is drastically different than just learning to draw)
Striving for Animation (obviously. but they really are the only channel on YouTube that informs the pipeline of how japanese animation companies work, so its somewhat important. You don’t want to be the idiot foreigner that asks everything right?)
Manga materials (it’s a relatively new channel, but it really boils down the anime art style to something more approachable rather than studying drawing from life, like bridgman anatomy poses or whatever)
Proko’s Draftsmen podcast (don’t watch a random topic, watch something that you are actually curious about. personally, this was a game-changer for me)
- Finally get your tiny ass off YouTube, and start animating!
tldr; f u read the whole thing. skipping is bad. i know this is important for u. lol
also i can only link 2 things since im a new user, so go find the link urself u babies.