Art | Capital University, Columbus Ohio



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  • In this section..

    • Majors: Art Education • Art Therapy • Studio Art 

      Three distinct academic programs for the art major lead to a Bachelor of Arts degree — art therapy, studio art or art education. 

      You can also minor in digital design, therapeutic art and studio art. The flexibility of our program will enable you to complete off-campus internships in areas like interior design or commercial art. Our students have worked for state agencies, advertising firms and print shops. With Capital's location in the capital city of Columbus, you'll have access to a vibrant arts community and all the opportunity to create, exhibit and experience art a major city affords. 

      What You'll Learn

      At Capital, you'll learn in a setting tailored to the individual. You'll be guided and taught by professors who also are practicing artists. When it comes to teaching, they have a single purpose — to develop proficient and creative students in the fine arts within the scope of a liberal arts education.

      Advanced standing in art is possible through portfolio examination of work completed independently at another institution or high school. You'll be encouraged to participate in local competitions, and Capital's Schumacher Gallery showcases student art in an annual exhibition each spring. In addition to its extensive collection of original paintings, ethnic art and sculpture, the gallery hosts traveling exhibits and a variety of creative programs. Students are encouraged to attend gallery receptions where they can meet informally with artists and others who share an interest in art.

      Where you'll Go: Careers and PLacement

      Capital’s graduates are working in professional areas like teaching in public and private schools, working as professional studio artists and serving as art therapists. Many have continued their education through graduate study in studio art, art history, art therapy, art education and arts administration.

      Our graduates work as:

      • Commercial Artist
      • Managing Editor
      • Pastor
      • Art Therapist
      • Gallery Director
      • Art Teacher K-12
      • College Professor

      Our graduates work for companies like:

      • Central Virginia Training Center
      • International Technology, Inc.
      • Professional Minor League Baseball
      • American Greetings Corporation
      • AAA Today Magazine
      • Riverside Recovery Center for Youth Choices
      • City of Columbus  

      Explore the program and course descriptions in our online course bulletin 




      Our professors bring out the best in you. We won't lie. They can be tough. But they're also your counselors, your mentors, and your biggest advocates. Meet a few below, or view our department directory.

      See all Faculty in the Directory

    • Drawn to Success

      Steve Harpster’s popular books and school appearances help kids rediscover the joy of drawing and imagination.

      Student-Success-Art-300x200Steve Harpster is one of those people born with a unique and enviable ability: he can draw just about anything. Growing up, he sketched and doodled constantly; as early as first grade, he knew he wanted to draw for a living, and he honed his skills at Capital, graduating in 1996 with a Bachelor of Arts degree. Since then, he’s been a busy commercial artist, illustrating everything from T-shirts and greeting cards to comics and textbooks. He’s been inspired by, and often works with, some of the best-known illustrators in the industry.

      But lately, his career has morphed into something very different. Today he spends most of his time with people who aren’t very good artists – or, at least, they don’t think they are. His job is to remind them that everyone is creative. And he proves it to them every day.

      Harpster is the author and illustrator of a popular series of books that encourage even the most apprehensive kids (and teachers, for that matter) to pick up a pencil, pen or crayon and draw wildly imaginative animals, monsters and more. His secret: having kids start by drawing familiar shapes, such as letters and numbers, and adding lines and squiggles to bring them to life.

      The key to Harpster’s success? A mixture of innate entrepreneurism, a youthful energy that kids relate to, and a busy schedule of in-person (and online) school appearances that put him face-to-face with his audiences and drive sales of his books, iPad apps and more. His business model is strikingly simple – and effective. He self-publishes his books, which keeps the cost low. And his visits to schools are free – all he asks is that parents are given the option of buying his books. He even offers each school 30 percent of the revenue from these sales, which in just three years has totaled more than 30,000 copies.

      “All kids love to create and draw,” Harpster said recently. “It touches them in different ways.” His job is to never let them forget it.

      Born to draw

      Harpster was raised in Central Ohio, and his skills were evident very early. (He often shows a stylish sketch he did of his father holding him; he was just six at the time.) He chose Capital largely because his father is a graduate – and because Capital offered him something other design schools lacked: a chance to play football. He always knew he wanted to study art, but didn’t want to limit himself. “I wanted to do more than focus on art all the time,” he remembered.

      “I looked at Capital, and it just seemed like the better choice for me.” He played defensive tackle for the Crusaders for one season, then left the team to focus on his studio classes and a growing interest in the business side of design.

      An early influence was Professor Gary Ross, a renowned sculptor who regularly worked on commissioned pieces, including iconic statues of Bob Feller and Ohio Governor James Rhodes. Harpster hung out with Ross in the Capital art studio, peppering him with questions about developing clients and managing the financial side of his projects. Harpster also took a class on marketing, and enjoyed one assignment in particular: creating a product concept and writing a business plan to support it. “It came naturally,” he said. “It felt like common sense.”

      Harpster loved his Capital experience, and squeezed as much into it as he could. He drew comics for The Chimes, interned at a local animation company, and even acted in a few theater productions, including Taming of the Shrew. “I played Hortensio,” he said. “To do Shakespeare in college – it was pretty cool. I tried a little of everything at Capital. I have great memories.”

      By Steve Harpster

      Drawing Animals with Numbers 
      Drawing Sea Animals with Numbers
      Drawing Monsters with Letters 
      Silly Animal Mix-Ups
      1-100 Dot-to-Dots
      A-Z Dot-to-Dots
      Pencil, Paper, Draw!
      The Haunted Creeps and Ghastly Ghouls of Spiterbite