Archive for the ‘Illustration’ Category

Close encounters of the Mac Pro kind

Thursday, April 10th, 2014

Mac Pros at 870

Like a fleet of alien spacecraft, over 50 new Mac Pros have landed at 870, melded with the network and firmly attached to new Wacom Cintiq touchscreen monitors. To the delight of Illustration and Fine Art students, these strange new digital organisms have taken root and are ready to start turning out some serious teraflops (1 Trillion floating-point operations per second)!

The new Mac Pro has been eagerly anticipated since its announcement last year at The Apple Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC); and it represents the next wave in desktop computing, boasting dual GPUs, PCIe flash storage, high-performance Thunderbolt 2 peripheral connectivity, new-generation Xeon processors, ultrafast memory, and support for up to three (count ‘em, 3) 4K monitors (That’s… ehem… over 24 million pixels at up to 60 frames per second = over 1 Billion pixels per second).

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From muscle machines to dinosaur skulls: Art Center’s March 2014 alumni notes

Wednesday, April 9th, 2014

It’s that time of month again. Time, that is, to catch up on the creative undertakings Art Center’s talented diaspora of alums have been plotting, planning, pitching, prototyping, publishing, publicizing, producing and plying. And that’s just the p’s.

Dive into the following digest of alumni accomplishments and works-in-progress. And for those alums among us, be sure to clue us in on your own news and notes for inclusion in our next dispatch. We don’t want to miss anything. This is Art Center, after all. And we’re nothing if not completists.

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Community celebrates new studio spaces, student artists love stronger connection to each other

Monday, March 31st, 2014

Ranee Henderson’s life has changed dramatically since the opening of Art Center’s new 870 Building. Since she doesn’t own a car, the 7th-term Illustration major and Fine Arts minor typically lugged a heavy backpack plus a carry-on bag stuffed with supplies, all while juggling a large canvas, every day on the bus ride from her home in Eagle Rock to Pasadena–where she then boarded the campus shuttle to reach her Hillside destination.

Carrying around all that extra weight is now a thing of the past. Today, Henderson–along with her art supplies–happily occupies one of 47 individual studio spaces in the newest addition to the College’s expanding South campus.

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Art Center in the News: February-March 2014

Thursday, March 27th, 2014
Maggie Hendrie on the set of TakePart Live

Maggie Hendrie on the set of TakePart Live

Art Center students, faculty, staff and alumni have been making news while making their mark at on the art and design worlds. For those who may have missed a headline or two, we curated this handy highlight reel of our recent media clips:

Don’t miss two lengthy, live interview segments we arranged for Interaction Design Chair, Maggie Hendrie and ACCD student Alex Cabunoc on the new cable program TakePart Live—a show tailored to Millennials (age 18-34) that reaches 40 million-plus households through Participant Media’s Pivot TV network. (Participant Media is the award-winning, socially and politically progressive production company responsible for An Inconvenient TruthThe CoveLincoln, among other enlightening and edifying films and TV shows).

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Captured on tape: Craigslist in all its humanity

Thursday, February 20th, 2014

Tape Classified. Though it may sound like a chapter in a book on the Watergate scandal, in this case, those two loaded words are meant to be taken literally as the title and source materials for the first mural installed in the warehouse-sized West Gallery of 870 Raymond, the latest addition to Art Center’s South Campus complex.

Measuring just shy of 70 feet, the installation consists of student-created images made from black drafting tape inspired by ads on Craigslist. The mural’s concept was rooted in the students’ desire to tell many loosely connected stories—each sharing the same narrative DNA from a community. The idea is based on one person’s trash (or Mid-Century Womb Chair) is inevitably another person’s treasure.

Instructor Brian Rea is thrilled with the results. “This one mural tells 80 stories with individual illustrations,” says Rea. “With eight different students, all with different styles, different attitudes; it’s been really interesting to try and systemize that on a wall.”

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View from the Bridge: A renovation designed for creation, innovation and collaboration

Wednesday, February 19th, 2014
The 870 building at sunrise. Photo: Darin Johnstone Architects

The 870 building at sunrise. Photo: ©Lawrence Anderson/Esto

As a teacher, I understand well the difference a space can make in the quality of the educational experience. Space affects learning. It makes a difference in how people teach. It makes a difference in how people create.

Which is why when you embark on creating a new space, you want to get it right. You need to talk to the right people and to ask the right questions if you wish to build that place where students can thrive and where faculty will love teaching. You want the space to elevate the whole.

A lot of careful thought went into making sure the new Fine Art and Illustration building at South Campus, 870 S. Raymond Ave. would engender the highest quality teaching and learning possible. I have no doubt that the building will do exactly that. Move through the new space, and you can feel it. It’s buoyant. It’s alive. You feel open to experience, to learning, to discovery—all thanks to the environment itself.

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Reflecting on African American History Month’s many shades of meaning to students of art and design

Wednesday, February 12th, 2014
Illustration of Dominican fruit by Medar de la Cruz

Illustration of Dominican fruit by Medar de la Cruz

“One ever feels his two-ness,—an American, a Negro; two souls, two thoughts, two unreconciled strivings; two warring ideals in one dark body, whose dogged strength alone keeps it from being torn asunder.” W.E.B.  Du Bois (1868-1963)

Before coming to Pasadena I rarely thought about how significant the color of my skin was to my everyday life. I was raised in a neighborhood in Miami, Florida where I was part of a majority consisting of residents who were either immigrants, multi-lingual or people of color.

Medar de la Cruz

Medar de la Cruz

But when I came to Art Center I realized I no longer fit in as easily. It was here that I was first asked: “Are you black?” This made me realize that race was going to make an impact on my experiences. It’s normal for people to be affected by stereotypes and visual representations. And it’s normal to make assumptions about someone by the color of their skin. So when I was asked this, I responded, “Yes…I mean I’m not white. My parents are Dominican, my ancestors are African, and I was born in America. So technically that makes me African American as well.” I learned that question alone helps me define who I am.

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Major studios: Touring Fine Art and Illustration’s new digs at 870 South Raymond Avenue

Thursday, January 30th, 2014

This is the first in a two-part series tracking the impact of Art Center’s newest academic facility on the two departments it houses: Fine Art and Illustration.

A man bursts through the gleaming glass doors at 870 South Raymond Avenue in Pasadena looking confused, harried and hurried. Fine Art faculty member (and former interim department Chair) Tom Knechtel, pauses mid-sentence and offers an answer before the man can blurt out his question. “You must be looking for the post office,” says Knechtel, who spearheaded the department’s participation in the renovation of this former postal sorting facility before newly installed Chair Vanalyne Green took the helm. “This is Art Center.”

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Monsters Inc: Art Center Alum Stefan Bucher’s yeti inspires Saks holiday window display

Thursday, January 30th, 2014


Each December, Saks Fifth Avenue signals the beginning of the season of warmth, joy and supersized spending with the unveiling of its holiday window display. The now iconic dioramas depicting a new take on a winter wonderland each year have become a prime destination for New York’s annual influx of year-end tourists, seeking a high dose of holiday spirit.

This past year, Saks’ holiday display was entirely based on Art Center alum, Stefan Bucher‘s children’s book, The Yeti Story. The luxury department story commissioned him to create a holiday book, centered around a Yeti reputed to live on the roof of the flagship store on Fifth Avenue. Here Bucher (Advertising ’96) takes us behind the scenes to reveal the origin story of his encounter with the furry mythic beasts with an infinitely high cold tolerance.

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Why is it so hard to finish a passion project?

Friday, January 24th, 2014

Unknown

“Our time at Art Center is all about pushing limits and taking chances, but a lot of us lose that creative fire when our personal visions butt up against professional realities. In many ways our book RE:INVENT was a reclamation of the risk-taking spirit we had when we were back in school. Art Center alum,” says Derick Tsai (Transportation and Entertainment Design, ’05), who found his own unique creative voice (and heaps of critical and professional success) by thrusting himself out of the security of his thriving design studio and into the wilds of his own imagination. Here he tells the story of how he forged his path to personal and professional fulfillment.

Between the time demands of paying the bills and spending time with our friends and family, it seems like our passion projects never get off the ground. And this is a shame because it’s those passion projects that are often the truest expression of our personal vision and have the potential to elevate us to the next level. It’s pretty easy to get started but at a certain point, questions and doubts inevitably creep into our minds.

”What’s going to become of this?”

“Will anyone care?”

“Will this be worth anything?”

That last one’s the killer.

That thought has stopped me in my tracks more times than I’d like to admit. And I’m guessing it has stopped many of you as well. So I want to share with you how a personal project of mine eventually developed into a critically and financially successful book, lucrative client work and a TEDx Talk for Livestream audience of over 30,000 people.

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