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Dan Shefelman

Dan Shefelman

Dan Shefelman Studio / FIT School of Art & Design

Career Roadmap

Dan's work combines: Art, Entrepreneurship, and Communicating / Sharing Stories

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Day In The Life

Cartoonist, Animation Director and Professor

I am a visual storyteller, focusing on animation and cartoons, and I teach these subjects at FIT.

Skills & Education

Here's the path I took:

  • High School

  • Bachelor's Degree

    Political Science and Government, General

    Kenyon College

Here's the path I recommend for someone who wants to be a Special Effects Artists and Animators:

High School

Bachelor's Degree: Political Science and Government, General

Learn more about different paths to this career

Life & Career Milestones

My path in life took a while to figure out

  • 1.

    I went to Kenyon College, which coincidentally, my cartooning idol Bill Watterson attended.

  • 2.

    One of my first jobs was building a video game for a bank that taught you how to manage your money.

  • 3.

    My first and second newspaper cartoonist jobs were huge for me; it felt like I'd "made it."

  • 4.

    Cranking something out for that huge audience everyday helped form my ability to think on my feet.

  • 5.

    I first got into teaching by accident; I started out by substitute teaching for a friend.

  • 6.

    Teaching at FIT has given me the freedom to pursue my passion projects.

Defining Moments

How I responded to discouragement


    Messages from Myself:

    You're not good at this. You don't have any good ideas. You can't teach.

  • How I responded:

    I think that my inner voice is my toughest, most tenacious critic. I've had some other negative feedback from coaches and such, but I've usually been able to take that "noise" and use it as motivation. Sometimes you have to go against that negative feedback or bad advice, and just win your critics over by showing them that you know what you're doing and you're not going to be set back by anything they say.