Posts Tagged ‘Art Center at Night’

Products become customized vehicles of personal expression in Art Center at Night’s surface design class

Wednesday, December 18th, 2013
Patterns from Debra Valencia's Kyoto collection.

Patterns from Debra Valencia’s Kyoto collection.

Can you imagine a world filled with nothing but solid colors and smooth surfaces?

If not, then thank a surface designer, those daring individuals who transform our vanilla products—everything from iPad cases and coffee mugs to tote bags and pillowcases—into personalized vehicles for individual expression.

In this spring’s upcoming Art Center at Night Introduction to Surface Design course, taught by artist and designer Debra Valencia, students will learn about the styles and techniques used in creating surface designs by exploring case studies, product categories, themes and other business basics of earning a living as a surface designer.


True confessions from Art Center at Night students, captured on video

Tuesday, November 19th, 2013

Each term, Art Center at Night holds an open house, offering current and prospective students a brief glimpse at what goes on within the walls of its open-air classrooms. It’s a fleeting, but essential, experience for career-changers and seasoned and aspiring artists preparing to make the leap into what’s arguably the city’s most high-intensity after-hours creative education. It’s also an opportunity likely missed by anyone with extended working hours or family obligations (i.e., those who need it most).

Don’t fret. We’ve got your back. At a recent open house, we asked students to get in front of the camera and share with us what Art Center’s continuing studies program has meant to them. The answers were as diverse as the individuals themselves. See for yourself in the video above.

Perhaps it’s time to contemplate what Art Center will mean to you.

View from the Bridge: Art Center’s incoming class, the LEAP Symposium and bringing the Bard to Lida Street

Tuesday, October 15th, 2013
President Lorne M. Buchman

President Lorne M. Buchman

Being surrounded each and every day by thought-provoking ideas and inspiring individuals is perhaps the greatest benefit of working at Art Center. As President, I’m in a unique position to see so much of the remarkable work created here.

A clear side effect—and thankfully, it’s a good one—is that at the end of the day I have a lot on my mind. Which is why I’d like to start sharing with you here, on occasion, my thoughts on what I’m seeing, hearing and experiencing around campus and in the larger community.

First things first: The Fall 2013 term is well underway. Before we reach that busy midterm crunch, I’d like to tell you a few things about our latest incoming class. After receiving the highest number of applicants across all disciplines in our 83-year history, Art Center this fall welcomed 361 undergraduates and 68 graduate students, our largest incoming class ever. The increase reflects the strength and growth of our academic programs, as well as the planned expansion envisioned in Create Change, Art Center’s 2011–2016 strategic plan.


Artist Erik Mark Sandberg explores the intersections of landscapes, tacos and razzle dazzle

Thursday, August 22nd, 2013
"Girl with a Floral Headband" (2011) by Erik Mark Sandberg.

“Girl with a Floral Headband” (2011) by Erik Mark Sandberg.

For artist, Illustration alumnus and Art Center at Night (ACN) instructor Erik Mark Sandberg, life is constantly presenting contradictions ripe for artistic exploration.

“I was on my way recently to the Sierra Nevada Mountains to do some backpacking and thought, Gosh, look at that pristine pastoral landscape, when suddenly my view was obstructed by a large billboard advertising that Doritos Locos Tacos Supreme were available at the next gasoline station,” says Sandberg with a laugh. “And I thought Wow, those look good and I do need fuel. It was so strange.”


2013 Great Teacher Award-winner, Richard Keyes, delivers graduation address. Student-drawn allegory included.

Tuesday, August 20th, 2013


Illustration by Katia Grifols

Illustration by Katia Grifols

Richard Keyes didn’t stay long the first time he took the stage at Art Center’s 2013 Summer commencement ceremony to accept the Great Teacher Award. That’s likely because he knew he’d return shortly in his other capacity, as the event’s keynote speaker. Keyes, who is both an alum (Graphic Design ’87) and beloved faculty member has made a habit of multitasking throughout his career at Art Center, where he straddles five departments — Graduate Industrial Design, Entertainment Design, Photography, Integrated Studies and Art Center at Night. For insight into why he received the highest honor awarded by Art Center students, look no further than the speech itself (posted in its entirety below), which culminates in a moving fable, accompanied by a slideshow of images hand-drawn by student, Katia Grifols, who has been Keyes’ T.A. for three terms.   

You have reason to expect a celebrity sending you off into the world today, but you are getting a teacher. Conversely, when I came to Art Center 30 years ago I occasionally expected teachers and got celebrities, so I hope I can redress the balance somewhat. But not before I state how much I have learned from you, quite probably the most impressive student body in the creative world.


An early peek at Art Center at Night’s newest offerings for makers, change-makers and career-changers

Friday, August 9th, 2013


Need a career makeover? Ready to explore a new path? Have a dream to fulfill?

Consider your wait over.

Next Wednesday, Art Center at Night (ACN) is holding its annual open house at Art Center’s South Campus from 7–9 p.m. At the event, visitors have a chance to explore the broad range of opportunities available through Art Center’s continuing education program.

At Experience Art Center at Night, visitors can: sit in on classes (see participating courses); observe student presentations and critiques; meet ACN’s instructors; see student work; register for Fall courses; learn about Art Center’s full-time degree programs; enter a raffle to win a free ACN course; and share their ACN experiences in the event’s first ever video confessional booth.

The event is also the perfect opportunity to learn more about and sign up for ACN’s newest courses. This coming Fall term, the program is offering more than a dozen new courses, including:

Digital Painting for Entertainment
Painting can seem complicated. But by understanding the medium and combining foundation skills with more lateral approaches, you can discover the joy of digital painting. This introductory digital painting course is designed specifically for aspiring entertainment design, entertainment arts, and illustration students. Instructor: Justin Pichetrungsi

Dimensions: Exploring Dynamic Objects
Before you can successfully create sculpture or make art, you must expand your definition of objects and object-making past the notion of craftsmanship. This course will challenge you to consider how objects can engage us emotionally and conceptually and offer you the opportunity to work with new tools and materials. Instructor: Mason Cooley


Rockin’ the foundation: Alumnus Simon Davey on how Art Center at Night influenced his work

Wednesday, July 31st, 2013
Simon Davey's Spiteful Table.

Simon Davey’s Spiteful Table.

Many successful Art Center students get their first taste of the College through Art Center at Night (ACN), the College’s continuing studies program. Take for example recent Product Design alumnus Simon Davey, whose student rebranding project for Dulce Mexico was recently highlighted on Adobe’s packaging form Designer Showcase.

I chatted recently with Simon Davey on how ACN influenced both his career at Art Center and his entire design process. Here are a few excerpts.

On the playful quality of his work:
I’ve heard people describe my work as playful or whimsical, and I don’t really shy away from that. At the heart of my design philosophy is an attempt to truly understand the context in which a problem exists. In other words, I like questioning how and why people are using their stuff. And that means sometimes the work I create borders on the ridiculous, like my Spiteful Table, a side table/rocking chair hybrid.


Public Programs Instructor Inspired by Ashcan School and Looney Tunes

Tuesday, May 14th, 2013
Ronald J. Llanos. Photo courtesy of the artist.

Ronald J. Llanos. Photo courtesy of the artist.

Born in Los Angeles, Art Center alumnus Ronald J. Llanos ILLU ’03 has taught in Art Center’s Public Programs—Art Center for Kids, Saturday High and Art Center at Night—for the past 10 years.

Llanos’ work depicts everyday moments of life in L.A., whether it’s street vendors selling their wares in downtown’s Toy District or an homage to Manet’s Bar at the Folies Bergères via Hot Dog on a Stick. “I was inspired by artists who captured their urban surroundings like George Bellows and John French Sloan,” says Llanos, who’s teaching Illustration for Art Center for Kids’ Summer 2013 term.

And while he cites as influences those two artists and others from the Ashcan School—a group of early 20th-century painters in New York and Philadelphia that depicted the raw vibrancy of city life—Llanos says his urban illustrations also owe a debt to Bugs Bunny. “I was also inspired by the background art from Looney Tunes cartoons from the ‘40s and ’50s, specifically the work of Maurice Noble.”

Sunday, his work featured on the most current Art Center for Kids catalog, is part of Llanos’ ongoing “Brown World” series, which refers both to his choice of paper stock as well as the Latino community he chronicles. “I lived in Huntington Park for the first three years of my life, which I can still vividly recall,” says Llanos. “It all left an impression on me.”

Llanos' "Sunday," 2003. Courtesy: Nick Jeong.

Llanos’ “Sunday,” 2003. Courtesy: Nick Jeong.

Llanos’ has shown at venues like Wax Poetic, Cactus Gallery and Ghettogloss. And last year, Metro unveiled his most ambitious project to date: Ephemeral Views: A Visual Essay. The public work—24 large-scale mosaic panels that depict L.A. street life—is seen daily by thousands of commuters passing through the Expo Line’s Expo/Western station.

Summer 2013 term Art Center for Kids classes begin June 23 and registration begins May 20.

Art Center for Kids motivates students (grades 4–8) to discover their inspiration and express themselves in new ways. Through a variety of unique art and design classes—ranging from Animal Sculpture to Inventors’ Workshop—the program teaches critical thinking, innovation and visual literacy to help children reach their creative potential.

Art Center College of Design’s Public Programs offer a wide range of art and design courses for individuals at every stage of their educational, professional or personal development. By providing non-degree students access to exceptional instruction and facilities, the College’s Public Programs promote critical thinking and problem solving, and teach effective techniques for fostering intellectual, societal and professional development.

For Deezmaker’s Diego Porqueras, the Path to 3D Printing Began With a Film Course

Tuesday, May 7th, 2013
Diego Porqueras, along with Bukobot-printed 3D objects, at his Deezmaker store in Pasadena.

Diego Porqueras, along with Bukobot-printed 3D objects, at his Deezmaker store in Pasadena.

These days 3D printing is everywhere. Creatives are using this emerging technology to make everything from fashion gowns to gummy replicas of themselves. Even the President mentioned it in his most recent State of the Union address.

One man who’s made quite a name for himself in this burgeoning arena is Diego Porqueras, inventor of the BukoBot 3D printer and the president and founder of Deezmaker, a 3D printer store and hackerspace in Pasadena. Surprisingly enough, the path that led Porqueras into this brave new world began with an Art Center at Night (ACN) film course he took 13 years ago.

“I took Basics of Film with Robert Mehnert and that ended up being a big turning point in my career,” says Porqueras, who said he already had some experience making movies prior to the class but that the course provided him with a better grasp of the basics.

But that wasn’t the turning point. That happened when an ACN classmate who was working as a production assistant told the class he was leaving the country for two weeks and asked if anybody would be interested in taking his place on a few productions. “I was the first guy to raise my hand for that,” says Porqueras with a laugh.


For Art Center at Night director Dana L.Walker, “Diversity is really about all of us.”

Monday, February 25th, 2013

Dana L. Walker, Photography and Imaging alumna and Art Center at Night director. Photo: Ken Merfeld.

Many students who end up studying at Art Center are first introduced to the College through Art Center at Night (ACN)—Art Center’s continuing studies program headquartered at South Campus. And chances are that at some point many of those students also came into contact with Photography and Imaging alumna Dana L. Walker (PHOT 1995). Walker serves as both the director of ACN and the managing director of Public Programs, Art Center’s suite of programs that also includes Art Center for Kids (grades 4–8), Saturday High (grades 9–12) and Summer Institute for Teachers (for K–12 educators).

In addition to her Public Programs duties, Walker is also co-chair of Art Center’s Council on Diversity and Inclusion, which the College created in 2011 as part of its Create Change Strategic Plan. She’s also a board member of the 120 Group, an ethnically diverse, alumni-based organization that promotes educational and career opportunities in art and design for underrepresented minority populations.

We sat down recently with Dana to talk about diversity, her work as an artist and what it’s like to be a student in her own program.

Dotted Line: You’re on the College’s diversity council. How do you define diversity?

Dana Walker: I don’t define it. In fact, one of the things we’ve done on the Council is purposely not define it. Because once you define it, it becomes a quantity rather than a quality. Diversity is not just about race, ethnicity or religion. It’s also economics, geography, gender and more. In fact, diversity includes so much that it’s really about all of us. And that’s what makes it challenging. To become a better artist or designer, you need to understand the world that you live in and the people who live in it. Whether it’s learning about another culture or learning how to work with different people, you can’t design for the world if you don’t understand large parts of it.