Do people (besides your significant other) say you have a way with words? Are you part of the .001% of the population who doesn’t mind when a TV show goes to commercial? Do the inside of greeting cards make you cringe? If yes, perhaps copywriting might be your calling. But know now, there is a huge difference between a copywriter and a writer. Simply getting words down on paper (or a word doc) won’t cut it. In fact, that barely scratches the surface of what a copywriter does.
Initial classes focus on the fundamentals of strategy, creativity, communication and the computer. In strategy classes, a Copywriter defines strategies that are applied to projects in the concept classes. In early writing classes, the finer points of headline writing and how to craft informative body copy are addressed. Basic principles of typography and design are also taught during the early quarters.
Once the fundamentals have been established, the copywriting student is ready to apply these skills in the concept classes, the core of our curriculum, which is taught at all levels. Here students are paired with Art Directors to work on a wide variety of speculative real-world assignments. Weekly, the creative team presents its ideas to a professional who critiques the work just as a creative director does in an agency, dispensing direction with plenty of inspiration.
Here’s a small sample of the classes you’ll take as a Copywriter.
Introduction to Copywriting
This introductory course will allow the student to begin to learn the rudimentary techniques of advertising headline and body copywriting, theeconomy of words and thought peculiar to this type of writing, and the necessity of creative thinking in written expression.
Introduction to Creative Teams
Introduces the student to the basic work structure in which he or she will work through the remainder of both school and professional careers.Teamed with a partner, the student will be exposed to the techniques of joint brainstorming, concept development and execution of ideas through “thumbnails” or “comps.”
Developing Your Voice
The professional advertising writer must have a distinctly personal style in the way she or he approached a problem, whether conceptual or written. This course will encourage the student to overcome inhibitions and prejudices in order to allow her or him to gain experience andconfidence in the value or her or his intrinsic talent and ability.
This seminar course will introduce students to the concepts behind using new media and trend spotting in advertising.
Creative Team 3
Working with a partner of another discipline, the student will concept several print advertising campaigns during the course of this class. Theobjective of the course is to begin to develop professional-level samples of the student’s work for their final portfolio
This class will focus on final portfolio with in-depth portfolio critiques, web-site, PDF electronic portfolio and traditional portfolio preparation. This course will utilize both in-class and out-of-class learning activities to achieve course objectives.
With an emphasis on storytelling, character development and sound design, the advanced copywriting student will break down and improve his/her copy, word by word, for possible portfolio pieces.
To graduate from The Creative Circus, a Copywriter’s final portfolio must show proficiency in strategic thinking, conceptual interpretation, and creative execution. The work in the portfolio should also show a range of creative solutions, audiences, types of media, and voices. Prior to graduation, every student creates a personal identity package, a resumé, mini-books, and a web site.
During the final quarter, students meet with the Director of Career Services to discuss career goals and objectives. Graduating copywriters also work with an industry professional on personal presentation skills that will benefit them during interviews or presentations to a client. Graduates have access to our alumni listings, agency contacts, portfolio reviews and direct personal assistance from the Director of Career Services, whose services alumni can continue to use the throughout their career. *Department of Education Program Disclosure
Department Head, Advertising
Dan has been in the ad business since 1987. And he has been a copywriter since 1990, with a decade in New York agencies both big and small. In addition to his duties as a full-time instructor and department head at The Creative Circus, Dan is a freelance creative director, podcaster, strategist, father, husband and blogger who’s never short of opinions. Check out his blog DGMS: A podcast about advertising.
Senior Copywriting Advisor
If you’ve ever been to Disney World and seen one of the characters running around and thought to yourself “I wonder if it’s hot in one of those things?” Paul can tell you first hand.Seriously, after passing out in the SpectroMagic parade one extra humid night, Paul decided it was time to seek a different career path.Admittedly, Paul changed his major seven times while in college. To his parent’s relief, he finally found his calling in Advertising and hasn’t looked back.Paul attended the Creative Circus in 2003. Soon after graduation, he jumped at an opportunity to work at Boone Oakley in Charlotte, NC. From there, he’s worked at 22Squared, JWT Atlanta, various interactive shops, and today is a successful freelance writer throughout the Southeast.Paul has been with the Circus since 2009 and unlike his Disney days, has every intention of sticking this job out.In addition, to helping students, Paul is a huge fan of his wife, his son, his dog, his turtle, his two fish, and his Big Green Egg.