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Computers, Software, and Supplies


In general, Apple's Mac is the choice of most graphic design professionals. Many animation professionals use Macs, as well. Often creatives prefer Macs because of its user-friendly interface and ease of use. A Mac also can be configured to supply the computing horsepower demanded by graphic and animation software.

However, if you are interested in 3D modeling, you might consider purchasing a PC, since the 3D modeling software we use is more compatiable with a PC. A list of the PC compatiable 3D modeling software is listed below under "Software."

The Graphic and Animation Design program requires its students to have a laptop suitable to the demands of the Adobe Creative Suite software. Click on the link below to see recommendations for purchasing Macs.

Student/Education pricing for Macs

Links to PC for 3D modeling

Link to Dell XPS 15 Touch computers

Link to Dell Precision M3800 computers

Link to Lonovo Y700 computers

Links to Longwood computer pages

Learn about Longwood's laptop program

Learn about Longwood's laptop support



The Graphic Design and Animation program requires its students to purchase the Adobe Creative Cloud software. The Creative Cloud can be purchased as individual titles (Photoshop, Illustrator, etc.) or as the entire suite (it is more economical to purchase the entire suite). Both purchase plans require a annual commitment, even though Adobe lists its Creative Cloud prices based on monthly costs. Stay aware of the date your contract ends since Adobe will automatically renew your annual contract unless you tell them you don't want to renew. Please review the following links on the Adobe Creative Cloud.

Link to student pricing for the Creative Cloud.

Link to the Adobe Learn and Support page for the Creative Cloud

Animation software will be purchased on an as needed basis, and some of the Autodesk software may be free of charge, depending on the company's licensing agreement with student users.

The 3D software that is used in Animation courses is Autodesk Maya. Other software that may be used in some elective animation courses are Autodesk 3DSmax and Autodesk Motionbuilder. Please not that 3DSmax and Motionbuilder are only compatible with the Windows operating system.

Additionally, all Graphic Design and Animation students must purchase the Adobe Font Folio Education Essentials.

Learn more about Adobe Font Folio Education Essentials.

Click here to download a PDF on laptop and software recommendations and FAQs_2016-2017.

If you have any questions about computers and software, please contact either Wade Lough or Chris Register (Graphic Design) and Amanda Christensen (Animation).


1st semester_2nd year design team

A design team assesses an assignment.

Art Supplies

Occasionally, students in the Brand Identity and Media Design track may need to purchase supplies for design projects. Usually, the purchases are nominal.

We try to limit the amount of printing required of students, and most printing can be accomplished in our in-house Print Lab. Senior students in the Brand Identity and Media Design track should consider if printing from an outside print house would best showcase their designs as they put together their portfolios.

Aside from the laptop and software requirements, student will need flash drives (for porting files and short term storage) and external hard drives (to make regular backups of their work). We suggest students consider the purchase of a tablet and stylus, such as the Wacom Bamboo Splash. A tablet permits greater versatility in computer design and drawing.

Students also pay a lab fee which goes to the maintenance of the studios and equipment, software purchases, specialty papers, etc. Depending upon the course and the materials needed, these fees may pay for many of the supplies.

Farmville, while growing, is still a small town, and has limited opportunities for the purchase of art supplies. Students should be prepared to plan ahead and purchase materials in a timely fashion.

Students without the proper equipment basically miss the class, because they cannot participate in the class exercises, and can't take advantage of the class time to work on their projects.

While instructors make every effort to inform students of what supplies are needed for what class, it is difficult to predict from week to week. Therefore it is strongly advised the students purchase all the required materials listed on the instructor's syllabus. Doing so will ensure the student is prepared for class.




Farmville, VA

Key Office Supply
121 North Main Street
Farmville, VA 23901
(434) 392-5485

Longwood Bookstore
Barnes and Noble
Midtown Square, Longwood Landings
Farmville, VA 23909
(434) 391-1240

Wal-Mart Supercenter
1800 Perry Drive
Farmville, VA 23901
(434) 392-5334

2644 Farmville Road
Farmville, VA 23901
(434) 391-6300

Midlothian & Chesterfield, VA

Michael's Arts & Crafts
4700 Commonwealth Centre Parkway
Midlothian, VA 23112

Hobby Lobby
14645 Hancock Village St
Chesterfield, VA 23832
(804) 639-4080

Richmond, VA

Plaza Artist Materials & Framing
927 Grace st.
Richmond, VA
(804) 359-5900

Lynchburg, VA

AC Moore Arts & Crafts
475 Simons Run
Lynchburg, VA 24502
(434) 582-1634

Michael's Arts & Crafts
4026 Wards Road Ste 9
Lynchburg, VA 24502
(434)582- 5656

Art Box
422 12th Street
Lynchburg VA, 24504

Charlottesville, VA

Art Box
2125 Ivy Road
Ivy Square
Charlottesville Va, 22903

Crozet, VA

Art Box
5784 Three Notch'd Road
Crozet Va, 22932