News

2017 Design Senior Shows

ANIMATION/ILLUSTRATION
5/5–27 Works Gallery, San José
Opening night6-10pm 5/5
Professional night 4-8pm 5/11

GRAPHIC DESIGN
5/7–11 SJSU Student Union Ballroom, San José
Professional night 5–9pm 5/8

INDUSTRIAL DEISGN
5/23–24 San José City Hall Rotunda
Opening night 5–8pm 5/23
Professional night 5:30–9pm 5/24

INTERIOR DESIGN
5/24 Pivot Interiors, 3355 Scott Blvd #110, Santa Clara
Friend and family 3–5pm
Professional night 5–9pm


 

The 2017 SJSU IDSA Student Merit Award Winner is Vanessa Cantoli

The Student Merit Award (SMA) is sponsored by the Industrial Designers Society of America with the intention of recognizing talented student designers in their senior year with exceptional academic records. The IDSA Student Merit Award is highly regarded in the design community and represents an extraordinary level of rigor and professionalism recognized across the industry.

Vanessa was selected by a jury of local professionals and will now go on to compete at the 2017 IDSA Western District Design Conference (WDDC), in Portland, OR, against SMA winners from other western district schools. One SMA student will win the WDDC and then present themselves as one of the nation's top students in design at IDSA's 2017 International Design Conference. 


art board

Department of Design Graduation Ceremony

11am–1pm, May 25, 2017, Morris Dailey Auditorium


Tuesday night lecture series
5–6pm, Feb 7, Art building room 133

MARTIN VENEZKY: DRIFTING BETWEEN ART AND DESIGN

One’s career is always a work-in-progress. Although Vanezky has been a designer and educator for nearly 30 years, his latest interests are steering his work in a curious direction. He will show how his work has evolved and how each body of work has begun to inform the other. Martin Venezky is the mastermind and master designer behind Appetite Engineers, an internationally recognized, San Francisco-based design firm that has been running on all cylinders since it was founded in 1997. For more info, visit www.appetiteengineers.com


SJSU A/I Students Win Awards at FPS Fest
photo courtesy of Nikiel Suchit and Samantha Healy

In December 2016, two Animation/Illustration students won awards at FPS Fest, the biannual film festival held by SJSU’s Film Production Society. The festival screens student-made films and has a panel of professors and other faculty determine awards. SJSUA/I student Samantha Healy won Best Art for her work on “Four Four Downpour”, while Nikiel Suchit won Best Picture, Best Script, and Best Sound for his film, “Eye Love You.”

Congratulations, Samantha and Nikiel!


Associate Professor of Design Virginia San Fratello and her partner Ronald Rael's architectural drawings are included in a new exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art in New York titled “Insecurities: Tracing Displacement and Shelter.”

The exhibition explores the ways in which contemporary architecture and design have addressed notions of shelter in light of global refugee emergencies.
Four of Rael-San Fratello's prints from copper plates -- “Xylophone Wall,” “Horse Racing Wall,” “Cactus Wall,” and “Teeter-Totter Wall” -- are featured in the exhibition. They and two other drawings from their “Recuerdos” series will be part of the permanent collection at the MoMA.
Professor San Fratello's work will be on display through January 22, 2017. Read more about the exhibition here.

mexico y los estados unidos

Secret Life of Buildings

Lecturer Joris Komen has been selected as a winner in the The Secret Life of Buildings Competition. Organized by the University of Texas Center for American Architecture and Design, the conference will explore Speculative Realism and Object Oriented Ontology (OOO)—an emerging philosophy that imagines that buildings and the things in and around them not only promote human life, but also have lives of their own, separate from our experience of them. The symposium will also consider other similar theories that investigate whether or not (and how) inanimate structures affect their surroundings and the world at large.

http://www.secretlifesymposium.com


San Fratello in her laboratory.

Professor Virginia San Fratello, along with her partner Ronald Rael, have been selected to receive the 2016 ACADIA Digital Practice Award of Excellence. 

Ron Rael and Virginia San Fratello’s excellence in integrating digital technologies into their emerging design practice includes innovations in multi-scalar digital fabrication, 3d printing, and material research. The pair also has a track record of teaching excellence that is rigorous and experimental.

To learn more about the award and ACADIA visit:

http://2016.acadia.org


 

various

Join us! 5:30–8:30 pm Oct 6, 2016 at 439 S. First Street, San José.


As part of the SoFA Design Crawl 2016 the San José State University Design Department will be holding an exhibition showcasing student work. The Design Department at SJSU strives to maintain a comprehensive curricula that provides training in the practice and theory of design.

Vari•us is a collection of student work from the BFA Graphic Design Program at SJSU. This collection shows the variety of work the students produce while maintaining their originality in the process.

Free Admission and open to public.


cane maker

John Canemaker Visits SJSU A/I

Photo by Charlotte Chen

May 20: Award-winning animation filmmaker and historian John Canemaker gave a special talk for SJSU Animation/Illustration students, offering a behind-the-scenes look into the making of Disney’s animated feature film, Pinocchio. The talk coincided with the opening at The Walt Disney Family Museum of Wish Upon a Star: The Art of Pinocchio, an exhibition that gives museum visitors insight into the artistic process and development of the classic film.

Canemaker shared how Walt Disney and his crew adapted the original Italian story of Pinocchio into a film, condensing the novel into a feature-length film and changing the character’s design and story events to make the protagonist more sympathetic. He also discussed the contrasting animation styles of golden age Disney animators Bill Tytla and Milt Kahl. Cell drawings from both animators done for the film are available in the exhibit for visitors to flip through.   

Wish Upon a Star: The Art of Pinocchio will run from May 18, 2016 - January 9, 2017 at The Walt Disney Family Museum in San Francisco.


A/I Students Win at Virtual Reality Hackathon

April 29 - May 1: SJSU Animation/Illustration students won the grand prize at a Virtual Reality Hackathon in San Francisco hosted by High Fidelity. The focus of the hackathon was the creation of innovative, socially interactive VR spaces using High Fidelity, an open source software platform that allows for the creation of multi-user, editable, virtual reality spaces on personal computers or cloud servers.

Team members included A/I students Fabiola Duran, Desiree Dixon, and Kenneth Benavente, with programmers Angelo Yazar and So Choi. The team’s idea was to have an open world with a floating rock world theme. A teleportation spell allowed players to easily travel between the floating rocks, and they could travel across other worlds created by other players. Players also had a fireball spell and shield spell, so the game could turn into a PvP if desired.

The A/I students were in charge of the visual development of the world, and modeled and textured the assets as well. Each member of the winning team received an HTC Vive, a virtual reality headset developed by HTC and Valve Corporation.

"Win or lose it was still a great experience where we got to learn about VR and how artists can be part of it in the future," Benavente said.

Congrats to the team!

For a look at the VR spaces created during the hackathon, please visit: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MiUMoccksjI.


 

2016 Design Department Graduation Ceremony

The Design Department Graduation Ceremony is scheduled for Thursday, May 26, 2016 from 11:00 AM to 1:00 PM in SJSU Student Union Ballroom. Please come celebrate with us!


High school students visit SJSU Department of Design

We were thrilled to host a group of high school students when they SJSU's Animation/Illustration, Graphic Design, and Interior Design programs. The students came from Lincoln High School in San Francisco, as part of a SFUSD CTE Arts, Media & Entertainment Academy. (In conjunction with AIGA San Francisco's Diversity initiative).


B.S. Industrial Design Senior Exhibition

You are invited to attend the 2016 B.S. Industrial Design Senior Exhibition that will showcase the work from our juniors and seniors. Join us from 5:00pm - 9:00pm on Wednesday, May 25th in the SJSU Art Building (Rooms 103, 105 & 205). Come by and say hi! 


2016 national design awards

SJSU Alumni win National Design Award!!!!

Studio O+A—founded by SJSU Interior Design Alumni Verda Alexander and Primo Orpilla, wins the 2016 award for Interior Design.

Ammunition—founded by SJSU Industrial Design Alumnus Robert Brunner, wins the 2016 award for Product Design.

For more details and to view their work, visit Cooper Hewitt 2016 National Design Award Winners. 


first place winnersecond place winnerAdrianna HamzelueAll winners
 

 

SJSU Interior Design Students win at Northern California International Interior Honor Design Awards! 

On March 24th at the Fox Theater in Oakland, California, 5 SJSU Interior Design Students were honored for excellence in design by the IIDA. 

First Place - Adrianna Hamzelue

Second Place - Yvonne Chen

Honorable Mention - Jonathon Chow

Honorable Mention - Julieta Horvath

Honorable Mention - Susan Lee


punch drunk

Punch Drunk Moustache at SJSUA/I

Photo by Elizabeth Chee

SHM Alums JP Balmet and Jeff Sangalli, along with fellow Punch Drunk Moustache artists Andre Kirk, Will Nichols, Chris Voy, Jim Moore, and Molly Denmark visited SJSUA/I in March. Punch Drunk Moustache is the name of a series of art books showcasing the personal images and stories of concept artists working in the industry. The artists were at the school to promote the second book in the series and discuss juggling personal projects and industry work.  

They advised the students to put effort in promoting themselves and their work, for without access to their work, people will not bother to seek them out. In addition, the artists emphasized the importance of finding time to do personal artwork no matter how busy school or other responsibilities get. The future of the industry lies in fresh ideas, so blocking out time do to personal work for fun is essential.

For more information on Punch Drunk Moustache, please visit https://www.facebook.com/PunchDrunkMoustache/


Zynga

Zynga Visits SJSUA/I

Photo by Elizabeth Chee

The Animation/Illustration program welcomed Zynga representatives to campus in March. Senior Art Director Mike Matessi and University Relations representative Leo Cortez (also an SHM alum) spoke to the students about what the studio looks for when hiring and placing artists.

Matessi explained his “3 Buckets” principle to placing artists on different game teams. When assessing an artist, he places him or her into one of three categories: 

1) Game Developer/Problem Solver/Function-Oriented artists

2) Visual Developer/Problem Solver/Aesthetic and “User Feel”-Oriented artists

3) Perfectionist/Super Polished/Detail Rendering artists

To make a successful game, a development team needs all three types of artists. Where an intern ends up depends on having the “right talent” on the “right team” at the “right time.” Matessi suggested that artists make a note to themselves what percentage of each “bucket” they have in them.

The Zynga representatives also stressed the importance of being a versatile artist, with the ability to work in a wide range of styles and across disciplines.


Nicole Casem

The 2016 SJSU IDSA Student Merit Award Winner is Nicole Casem

The Student Merit Award (SMA) is sponsored by the Industrial Designers Society of America with the intention of recognizing talented student designers in their senior year with exceptional academic records. The IDSA Student Merit Award is highly regarded in the design community and represents an extraordinary level of rigor and professionalism recognized across the industry.

Nicole Casem was selected by a jury of local professionals and will now go on to compete at the 2016 IDSA Western District Design Conference (WDDC), in Denver, CO, against SMA winners from others western schools. One SMA student will win the WDDC and then present at IDSA's 2016 International Design Conference. 


Design Department Senior Shows  

Come check out the amazing work by our students from Animation/Illustration, Graphic Design, Industrial Design, and Interior Design. All events are free and open to the public.

Animation/Illustration program:
May 6–28
Citadel Art Studios, 199 Martha St., San José
Wednesday–Friday: 10 am–5 pm
Saturday: 10 am–6 pm 

Graphic Design program:
May 8–11
SJSU Student Union Ballroom B&C, Upperlevel, San José
10 am–9 pm
www.2016isOnIt.com

Industrial Design program:
May 25–26
SJSU Art building, San José
10 am–6 pm

Interior Design program:
May 25
One Work Place, 2500 De La Cruz Blvd, Santa Clara
5:30–9:30 pm


Please mark your calendars!

The Design Department Graduation Ceremony is scheduled for Thursday, May 26, 2016 from 11:00-1:00 PM in the Student Union Ballroom. Students who graduated in Summer 2015, Fall 2015, and Spring 2016 are invited to participate. Please make sure to update your email address on your MySJSU account as we will email graduating students to give more information about signing up. Thank you!


Design Lecture: David Peters

5–6pm, Tuesday, Feb 16
SJSU Art Building Room 133
Free admission
Open to the public 

David curated a program called "PLAY: The Art of the Animated Film Title" which was later featured at the Mill Valley Film Festival. The talk explores the function of film titles, their origins and historical development, with a focus on typography and animation.


Rough Cut BFA Graphic Design Senior Show

Rough Cut: BFA Graphic Design 2015 Senior Show

Dec. 7–12 
11am–5pm 

SJSU Student Union Ballroom, Second Floor 
One Washington Square San José CA 95192 
Open to the public 

roughcut2015.com


Google Robinson

Hired by Google

Written by Raquel Coelho, photos provided by Raquel Coelho

Most people believe Google only hires programmers, computer scientists or engineers. Well, that perception may be wrong. Fiona Herse Woo, Robinson Wood and Susie Sahim, graduates from the SJSU Animation/Illustration program, were all recently hired by Google to work as visual artists. How did they get there? Well, their stories are truly inspiring: 

Fiona Herse Woo was contacted by Google a couple months after graduating with a BFA in Animation/Illustration. Google wanted her to work on their upcoming project Pearl, a VR animation directed by Oscar-winning animator Patrick Osborne, currently in production in the Spotlight Stories group at the tech company in Mountain View. Fiona’s academic focus was in Concept Design, and at Google she works helping design props and sets for the film. She also supports other artists on the team by doing research in the visual imagery used as reference in the film.

"The Animation Illustration program at San Jose State was instrumental in preparing me for this job, both in educating and training me in technical skills, and in helping me get the job itself. The advanced course work, the ability to draw and have an eye for design, coupled from advice from industry mentors that come every semester to SJSU to talk to Animation and Illustration have left me with a very practical understanding of what it takes to be a professional artist in the entertainment industry,”Fiona said.

Another lucky artist was Susie Sahim: “I was first hired at Google as a graphic design intern. I must have done something right because my internship turned into a full-time position!”After that things only got better for Susie:  “I started out doing graphic design, creating icons and graphics. Then I became a "Doodler," creating over 100 Google Doodles which appear on Google's homepage for various holidays. Today I'm a senior web developer and lead the development of a javascript component library used by many teams across Google. I enjoy the technical challenges of my job as well as leading and training others.” Susie also reflects that technical skills alone are not enough to do well in today's marketplace. “I feel the Animation and Illustration program at SJSU has taught me essential skills around receiving critique, work ethic, collaboration, and research that I have been able to apply to my web development role here at Google. SJSU's AI program is unique. Not only does the program teach essential animation and illustration skills, students work together to help each other as part of a community. It's a great way to learn soft skills and team work. Google isn't just looking for candidates who have skills. They must also be able to work well with others as a part of a team.”

Robinson Wood was another Animation and Illustration student who is starting his career at  Google. “ I was first hired last year as a contractor to work with the Google Spotlight Stories team (part of Google's prestigious Advanced Technology and Projects division). Getting a job offer to work on an interactive short film project at Google was exciting - but when I learned that the short film was being directed by the legendary Glen Keane, I was ecstatic! A few months later, I rode one of the multi-colored Google bikes down the street to the Doodles office, and I’ve been there ever since! Now, I’m drawing and painting every day, pushing my abilities to the limit, and essentially picking up where my studies at San Jose State left off. The Animation/Illustration program taught me how to think like an artist, and gave me the fundamental skills and tools I needed to start building a career. I count myself extremely lucky to have had the chance to work with amazing teams like Spotlight Stories and Google Doodles, but even luckier to have attended such a powerful and life-changing artistic education program.


blue and beyond

A/I Student Youri Dekker Premieres Film “The Blue and The Beyond” at SJSU

Written by Raquel Coelho, photo provided by Raquel Coelho

October 2015

SJSU Animation/Illustration student - and now director - Youri Dekker spent the last 8 months hard at work on an ambitious animation project: an eight and a half minute film, telling the story of a young, imaginative man named Charlie going through many obstacles trying to connect with someone with a similar artistic soul.

“It certainly was no easy feat, and the only reason this film was able to get finished was because I was fortunate enough to have an incredibly dedicated group of talented artists  willing to sacrifice their time, energy, and talent into helping me make this story come to life, and for that I will be forever grateful,” Youri said.

The Blue and the Beyond premiered on Friday, September 4th, at the Morris Daily Auditorium, for an audience of over 500 students, where it was warmly received by a standing ovation. The crew of over a hundred students, from juniors to seniors, also attended a “family and friends” screening the next day. The film was produced by students Kimberly Mucha and Samia Khalaf, and the trailer can be seen here.

We wish Youri Dekker and his crew good luck in the festival circuit, and hope that many well deserved awards will crown this marvelous production.


Alumni Reunion

Animation/Illustration Celebrates 20 Years of Firing it Up!

Photo provided by Raquel Coelho

The SJSU Animation/Illustration (A/I) student organization, The Shrunkenheadman Club, celebrated its 20th year anniversary with a reunion bash over the August 29-30 weekend. The festivities lasted two days, kicking off on Saturday at the Historic Dolce Hayes Mansion and concluding Sunday with brunch at San Jose State’s Art Quad with tours of the A/I facilities in the Art building. Over 250 alumni returned to celebrate with faculty and students, reconnect with former classmates, and update each other about the many great accomplishments they have been making. Attendees represented companies including Disney, DreamWorks, Industrial Light and Magic, LucasFilm, Pixar, Sony Pictures Animation, Electronic Arts, Blizzard Entertainment, Sony Play Station, Zynga, Google, Storm 8, Double Fine Productions, Film Roman (Simpsons), Fox Animation (American Dad), Ghostbot, Bardel Entertainment (Rick and Morty), Nickelodeon, and Brazen Animation.

On Saturday, club members past and present gathered at the Dolce Hayes Mansion to enjoy everything from student-made music videos, speeches, raffle prizes, and late evening dancing. Alum Jeff Biancalana, who has worked at Dreamworks, Blue Sky Studios, ReelFX, and Warner Brothers gave a speech honoring the program founders, Bunny Carter and Courtney Granner. In recognition of their dedication and hard work, he spoke of the program as being “the house that Bunny and Courtney built”, and presented them with a collection of alumni testimonials and artwork showing how the program helped generations of students realize their dreams of becoming artists. In true Shrunkenheadman style, the festivities continued long after the venue closed, with the group moving to the patio entrance area of the mansion to reminisce late into the evening. 

On Sunday, alumni returned home to meet current students and see the latest work of the program, as well as tour the 2-D and 3-D animation labs and A/I rooms. Many brought their spouses and children to show their families where they spent many late nights working on projects.

The 20th anniversary exemplified the unique spirit and camaraderie found every day in the program. Students volunteering their time to help out with the reunion, alumni interested in what the latest generation of Shrunkenheads are doing. Alumni regularly return to teach classes, mentor, give talks to the students and alert them of internship and job opportunities—it is this generosity and passion that has fueled the A/I program for twenty years and counting. Keeping with the club motto club “fire it up”, the reunion attendees are definitely keeping the fire burning strong.


Industrial Design Foundation Exhibition

Industrial Design Foundation Exhibition

Monday-Friday, 9am-5pm
September 21-October 2, 2015
Art 214 Design Gallery

The study of Industrial Design is a patina of learning how to draw, how to give forms beauty and usability, and how to deliver technical information about products to others who will be responsible for manufacturing. The ID Foundation courses at SJSU strive to teach students to “see” objects in their minds’ eye and then formalize them into drawings, physical modes, and 2D visual stories that communicate the experience of interacting with the object.

This exhibit is a snippet of some of the great work that our students produce through their first year at SJSU. Learn and enjoy!


aigasf

AIGA SF + City Studio Youth Design Workshop

National exposure on AIGA SF + City Studio Youth Design Workshop led by our faculty member—Julio Martínez with BFA GD teaching assistants—Glenn Cardenas, Jonathan Heath, Lorenz Ortiz, and Rachel Poage.


mcpeak

AIGA Enrichment Scholarship 2015 Awards

Our BFA Graphic Design student Preston McPeak is awarded the AIGA Enrichment Scholarship 2015 Awards. You can see his work at www.prestonmcpeak.com.


Star Light

The 2015 International Interior Design Association’s Educator of the Year Award recipient is Virginia San Fratello, IIDA, Assistant Professor and Program Coordinator at San Jose State University.

Virginia has more than a decade of experience educating young designers and making them think outside of the box,” said Executive Vice President and CEO Cheryl S. Durst, Hon. FIIDA, LEED AP. “Through her years of professional experience, Virginia has been a part of some of the most innovative and interesting research projects in the world. She has actively shared her love of materials and inventing with her students – opening them to a new way of thinking and transcending traditional interior design thought. She is looking to the future and teaching her students to go out and change the world. At her core, Virginia is an educator and has a love of learning and teaching. She is the ideal recipient of the IIDA Educator of the Year Award. http://www.iida.org/content.cfm/educator-of-the-year-award 


Senior Show at The Glass House

The Interior Design Students will be having their Senior Show at The Glass House on Wednesday, May 20 from 6 to 10 PM. Please join us for a celebration of their work!

http://www.inprocess2015.com/event-info/


linkedin ranking

SJSU Department of Design is ranked #2 best universities for designers.

https://www.linkedin.com/edu/rankings/us/graduate-design?trk=edu-rankings-ctg-card


Please mark your calendars! 

The Design Department Graduation Ceremony is scheduled for Thursday, May 21, 2015 from 11:00-12:30 PM in the New Student Union Ballroom. Students who graduated in Summer 2014, Fall 2014, Winter 2015, and Spring 2015 are invited to participate.  You must RSVP on the sign-up sheet in ART 120 by May 1st.  This will give us ample time to include your name in the program.  There is no fee to attend, but there will be a limited number of tickets per graduate.  The ticket limit is yet to be determined and details of the event will be provided in a follow-up email after the May 1st deadline.  

The graduates should wear full regalia (cap, gown, and tassel). You may rent the regalia at the Campus Bookstore.  Please contact the Campus Bookstore directly to make an appointment to place your order.

Thanks for your cooperation.


first place winnersecond place winnerAdrianna HamzelueFrances SinAll winners
 

Congratulations to our SJSU Interior Design students who won big at the 2015 International Interior Design Association Awards for Northern California.

1st Place - Sylvia Wong
2nd Place - Diana Rodriguez
Honorable Mention - Adrianna Hamzelue
Honorable Mention - Frances Sin


Amaranta Hernandez

Amaranta Hernandez is Selected as the 2015 SJSU IDSA Student Merit Award Winner

The Student Merit Award (SMA) is sponsored by the Industrial Designers Society of America and recognizes talented student designers in their senior year with exceptional academic records. This year's finalists included Samuel Backes, Eric Chen, Amaranta Hernandez,Hassib Jordan and Nic Matsuda. The students portfolios were evaluated by a jury of professionals in the design field representing the IDSA.

Amaranta Hernandez will now be presenting at the 2015 IDSA Western District Design Conference, which is being held here in San Jose, CA on April 11th. She will be competing against SMA winners from others schools for a chance to present at IDSA's 2015 International Design Conference.

The IDSA Merit Award is highly regarded in the design community and represents an extraordinary level of rigor and professionalism recognized across the industry.


compassion

COMPASSION

DsGD 120 Exhibition Design (part 3)
9AM–6PM, April 6–9, 2015
Art 214

Design is our passion and our work shows it. Our process is full of blood, sweat, and tears...fueled by the compassion we have for our audience. We work so damn hard because we care.

We are ten designers from the San José State University BFA Graphic Design program coming together to show that the final product is only the surface. The process, influenced by each person's personality, is where the heart lies.


Refind

dis/ORDER

DsGD 120 Exhibition Design (part 2)
9AM–6PM, April 1–3, 2015
Art 214

dis/ORDER is a compilation of the work of 9 graphic design students which stands as a representation of our thinking, creativity, and struggle. With these works we would like to showcase the two sides of design: structure and creativity. Come see how we bring focus to confusion as we tie creativity and structure together to create what we call dis/ORDER.


Zynga Visits SJSUAI

Zynga Visits SJSUAI

Photo courtesy of Ariana Barton

Zynga recruiters Tiffany Feeney, Jon Shih, and Concept Art Director Mike Mattesi called on SJSUAI in March. They gave a presentation on Zynga’s various studio locations and projects as well as the company culture. Mike discussed Zynga’s emphasis on building a community of artists, the importance of collaboration in the workplace in order to build better ideas, and how artists find inspiration from a variety of places. He also spoke about Zynga’s structure and history. Tiffany answered questions about the company’s hiring process and how artists can shift roles within departments in order to further their artistic development. The visitors provided an informative glimpse inside a studio which employs several A/I grads.


 

Nimble Collective

 

Animation and Illustration students partner with Silicon Valley startup “Nimble Collective”

All animation productions in the past were created with all artists working under the same roof in an animation studio. This production model is changing with the advent of cloud computing, social media and the internet, and new ways of producing animation are slowly emerging. Nimble Collective is at the forefront of this new frontier. They have been working in the creation of a new platform for collaboration between animation artists in the cloud. That has the potential to change the way animation is produced, enabling the independent filmmaker to access many professionals on the cloud, without the need of a big studio to create a film. More freedom means more creativity, diversity of voices, points of view and artistic expressions.

This past summer, SJSU Animation and Illustration students started a collaboration with Nimble collective. The project counted with the support of a RSCA grant awarded to Prof. Raquel Coelho (Design Dept), and it aims to experiment with new platforms for collaboration between animation artists working in different sites. In the center of the collaboration between SJSU and Nimble Collective is the short film “Roadside Assistance”, directed by SJSU alumni Kathy MacNeal. During the project, students had the opportunity to interact with industry veterans Rex Grignon, Jason Schleifer and Jen Dahlman, producing animation and 3D models for the short film. They also received two weeks of training in “Blender”, the open source 3D animation software used in this short film project. The project started in June 2016 and some students are still helping finishing up animation for the film. “Roadside Assistance” will be completed before the end of the year.


 

A/I Students Get Hands-On for Chipotle Commercial
September 2016

Over the summer,  SJSU Animation/Illustration students Chun Chen and Hung Nguyen interned at HouseSpecial and had the opportunity to work extensively on a Chipotle commercial, “Chipotle: Ingredients Reign.” HouseSpecial, formerly known as Laika/House, was the commercial arm of LAIKA (Coraline, Kubo and The Two Strings) until 2014, when it spun off to be an independent studio.  

The two interns were exposed to a variety of roles and responsibilities on several projects, even getting a chance to create assets for stop-motion animation.

“Thanks to the strong A/I courses at SJSU, it was a fairly seamless transition from being a student to working at a professional studio. HouseSpecial is primarily an advertising production company, and that meant Chun and I had to work pretty furiously to meet some tight deadlines. One day, I got the chance to work on three different projects with completely different tasks. We had to jump from working on storyboards to painting environments to designing props on various projects,” Hung said. “On the ‘Chipotle: Ingredients Reign’ spot, Chun and I worked on storyboards and environment and prop designs.  Since it was a stop-motion piece, we got a chance to help in fabrication, making and painting props for the commercial.”

The internship not only introduced the students to the fast pace and different jobs at a studio, it also gave them the satisfaction of seeing their work on mainstream media.

“It was really cool watching the sets you designed come to life or the sequences you storyboarded animated on screen...Learning about stop-motion animation at HouseSpecial was a really amazing experience for me. I've always been fascinated with stop-motion animation and getting to work on one was a dream come true,” Chun added.

To view the “Chipotle: Ingredients Reign” commercial, please visit: https://www.youtube.com/watch? v=fW_9toMB4Mo

To view HouseSpecial internships, please visit: http://www.housespecial.com/internships


Maaike

A/I Student Receives Animation Scholarship
Photo provided by Maaike Scherff

Aug 29 - ASIFA-Hollywood and Animation Educators Forum (AEF) awarded SJSU Animation/Illustration student Maaike Scherff a scholarship to support her continuing education in the field of animation. Maaike is 1 of 8 students from animation schools around the world to receive a total of $30,000 in scholarships for academic year 2016-2017. Applicants submitted portfolio/demo reels, individual proposals, and letters of recommendation from faculty. Scholarships were awarded based on merit and intended to support the students in their course of study.

Maaike is currently a contract artist and production assistant at Sony PlayStation, in addition to being a senior in the A/I program. Previously, she has worked on projects such as “The Green Ninja Show” and “Bound for Glory.” She has also interned at Nickelodeon and freelanced for various books, mobile games, and board games. She is set to graduate in May 2017. 

Congratulations, Maaike!


Dreamworks

SJSU Professor Presents “The Physics of Cinematography” at Dreamworks
Photo provided by Jasmine Truong 

July 27 - SJSU physics professor and friend to the A/I program, Alejandro Garcia, presented “The Physics of Cinematography” at the Dreamworks Glendale campus. He spoke about the characteristics of different camera lenses and light sources that can help produce a more effective picture. Topics included how to achieve the illusion of depth, depth of field vs. depth of focus, the pinhole camera, and the camera obscura. The presentation was originally requested by the layout department, but it was attended by the whole studio. Earlier that day Professor Garcia also did a special presentation on water exclusively for the FX department. His lectures have helped both animation/illustration students and professionals alike understand the scientific principles behind natural phenomena so they can make more convincing illusions in their art.


A/I Students Participate in Animation Jam

Animation/Illustration Students Participate in Cartoon Network’s Animation Jam

Photo courtesy of Grace Chen

July 9-11: SJSU A/I students Grace Chen and Christina Centron, currently interns at Cartoon Network, participated in the studio’s first “Animation Jam.” The network assembled students and interns from several schools to create 15-second animated short films based on the “O.K. KO! Let’s Be Heroes” show. The event took place over three days. On Saturday, students attended a reception held at Cartoon Network. On Sunday, students spent the entire day creating the shorts, followed by a screening of all submissions on Monday. There were eight teams total, six representing their schools and two intern teams. Industry professionals were on hand to mentor the teams. Some of the schools represented at the jam included USC, CalArts, Laguna College of Art and Design, CSU Fullerton, and SJSU.


Cloud Country

Pixar Art Director Noah Klocek Speaks About Cloud Country

In April, Pixar Art Director and SHM alum Noah Klocek presented a behind-the-scenes look into his personal creative project, Cloud Country, to A/I students. Cloud Country is a children’s story conceived and illustrated by Klocek, with the final written version by Bonnie Becker.

Klocek spoke about his evolution as an artist, saying he used to strive for more angst and edge in his work, but it was not authentic. He realized he was better at sentimental stories, and decided to pursue Cloud Country as an avenue to do personal artwork that he loved. Klocek set aside time from 9pm-12am daily to work on his book. The study/work habits he developed while in school he maintains today even after more than 16 years in the industry.

For more on Cloud Country, please visit: http://www.amazon.com/Country-Animation-Studios-Artist-Showcase/dp/142315732X


 

dreamworks

 

DreamWorks Visits SJSUA/I

photo by Charlie Ly

March 2016

Mar 4 - DreamWorks University Relations Manager Grazia Como and art director for DreamWorks TV Joel Fajnor gave a presentation to A/I students. The two representatives explained that while the studio does not offer many art internships because they are looking to hire longtime artists, once hired there is a training environment where the new recruit works with a mentor to learn the ropes. 

The two also advised applicants to be aware of what DreamWorks’ style is when applying to the company - in particular, the studio looks for interesting, quirky and memorable characters. Currently, story artists are in high demand. Students were also reminded to make sure every asset, from the business card, to resume, to portfolio, is well designed - a student’s failure to maintain a standard of quality in his/her professional identity will cause reviewers to question his/her taste.


 

Hallmark

Hallmark Visits SJSUA/I

photo by Charlotte Chen

February 25, 2016

Hallmark recruiters visited the Animation/Illustration program to speak to students, look over portfolios, and conduct interviews. Ramon Olivera and Adan Chung, both SHM alums currently at Hallmark, gave a presentation on what it is really like to work at the company and offered career advice to students. 

Olivera informed the students that a “team player” personality and ability to work is a key factor to getting hired at Hallmark, while Adan advised them to be adept at both technical (perspective and construction) and organic (plants and animals) drawing.

A/I student Sydney Sun remarked, “In the end you'll most likely be asked to draw and design things that you usually don't draw (i.e., a pink unicorn birthday party scene), so it's good to learn to adapt and embrace the challenges!”

Hallmark’s main motto is “to enhance relationships and enrich lives.” The company does so by relying on the diverse experiences and perspectives of its employees to create a more emotionally connected world.


 Disney

Disney Artist Brings a Little Zootopia to SJSUA/I

photo by Elizabeth Chee

February 19, 2016

The Animation/Illustration program welcomed Disney visual development artist Nick Orsi to campus this month. Orsi gave a presentation on character designs from the studio’s latest animated feature, Zootopia. He advised the students to allow themselves to do really bad drawings and finishing the drawing before revising it. He stressed the importance of thorough research when developing characters, such as meeting with the real life demographic to be represented, discussing with the art director/writer who they would cast in that role, and watching movies with the character types you are aiming to create. The students learned valuable lessons and had fun with the Zootopia headbands Orsi brought for them.


blue sky 

Blue Sky Visits SJSUA/I

photo by Truc Nguyen

February 18, 2016 

Blue Sky studios visited the Animation/Illustration program this month. Mike Lee, a color artist from the studio, demonstrated the pipeline for color comps. Talks given by industry professionals are extremely useful for students, as the artists give insight into professional practices and reinforce the artistic principles and spirit of collaboration students learn in school.

In this case, Lee shared his Photoshop process and how he uses just 3 main brushes (a soft airbrush for transitions and polish, a hard round brush for sketching/drawing/planning, and a scumbling brush for polish). He explained there is a strong collaboration between visual development team and animation team at Blue Sky, with color scripting done first, then passed to the animators to test the composition in a shot, and then back to the color artists to do a final composition.


B&C Retirement

SJSUA/I Says Goodbye to Program Founders

Photo by Elizabeth Chee

Feb 13, 2016

The Animation/Illustration program bid founders Alice “Bunny” Carter and Courtney Granner a fond farewell at a retirement event held in their honor. Alums from the program’s entire 20-year history, industry guests, colleagues, and current students gathered in the Student Union Ballroom to celebrate Carter and Granner’s achievements.

The evening’s program included speeches given by industry veterans and alums who have worked with and been taught by the two, as well as video tributes from colleagues and alums who could not attend.

With humor and with heartfelt gratitude, the speakers revealed the pivotal influence Carter and Granner has had on numerous lives, and recognized the dedication and hard work that gave so many students an opportunity to realize their dreams.

A/I professors Dave Chai, John Clapp, and Raquel Coelho presented Carter and Granner with a Shrunkenheadman trophy modeled after the stool with the paint mark that inspired the SHM logo. Following the tradition of retiring an athlete’s number in honor of his/her contribution to the sport, the A/I program retired the number “218” to recognize Carter and Granner’s contributions to education. The number’s significance comes from the fact that Animation/Illustration classes have been traditionally held in classroom 218 in the art building.

A/I student Sydney Sun said, "Retiring the number 218 for Bunny and Courtney was the coolest idea ever - I can't think of a better way to honor their impact on our A/I program." 

Though Bunny and Courtney are retiring from San Jose State, they are moving onto their next adventure - building up the educational resources at the Walt Disney Family Museum as co-directors of education.


WDFM

SJSUAI Program Founders Accept Director Positions at Walt Disney Family Museum 

February 2016

SJSU Animation/Illustration is pleased to announce that the program’s beloved founders, Alice A. Carter and Courtney Granner, have been appointed Co-directors of the Walt Disney Family Museum’s Education Department. After retiring from SJSU last year, Carter and Granner will help move the museum’s education and public engagement initiatives to its next phase.

According to the museum’s press release, Carter and Granner “will enhance current public program offerings and create new learning experiences for museum visitors of all ages.”

“Walt Disney’s legacy is not only one to be remembered, but also continued through generations,” said Carter. “Through our state-of-the-art educational programs, we are allowing people to carry on that legacy, and I’m honored to be a part of it.”

"Walt Disney’s commitment to creativity and excellence has been an inspiration to me throughout my career,” said Granner. “I’m grateful for the opportunity to share that inspiration with others and to educate our visitors about the artistry of Disney animation.”

The Walt Disney Family Museum offers a look inside the story and achievements of Walt Disney, the man behind Mickey Mouse, Goofy, Donald Duck, and Disneyland. The museum features interactive galleries that include early drawings and animation, movies, music, listening stations, a spectacular model of Disneyland, and much more.


 

Jan Pinkava

Jan Pinkava visits SJSUA/I

November 2015

In November, SJSUA/I was privileged to have award-winning director and writer Jan Pinkava visit the school and work with the students over three days. Currently, Jan is a director at Google Spotlight Stories, where he is developing innovative new ways of storytelling. On Friday evening, Jan presented some classics of animation at a special 14F. Saturday, Jan spoke in depth about the growing field of virtual reality (VR), sharing his process and insights from his work with Google Spotlight Stories. On Sunday, Jan did an interactive workshop, challenging A/I students to develop real-time VR stories. He had teams act out their stories in a VR setting. The workshop and talks gave A/I students an inside perspective on a new form of storytelling.  

For more on Google Spotlight Stories, go here.

For a list of Jan Pinkava’s work, go here.


Pixar Dinosaur

Pixar visits SJSU for a special presentation on The Good Dinosaur

November 2015

Written by Raquel Coelho
Photo by Truc Nguyen

SJSU Animation and Illustration students attended a special workshop with Pixar artist Susan Fong. A Technical Director Supervisor, Susan was responsible for overseeing the massive production of the latest Pixar film, The Good Dinosaur. She was welcomed by a packed lecture room, with approximately 200 students in attendance. Her presentation included sneak peeks of awe-inspiring sequences from the film, which is scheduled to be released during Thanksgiving weekend. A versatile generalist, Susan has served on several Pixar teams performing lighting optimization work, shader development, pipeline development, and rendering. At Pixar, these roles would be defined as a Rendering TD, Global Technology TD, and Lightspeed TD. Thanks Pixar for another great presentation at SJSU!


pixar presentation

Pixar Presents at SJSUA/I

October 2015

In October, Pixar visited SJSUA/I. University Relations representatives Rachel Nartia and Ryan Howe interviewed animators in the morning and gave a presentation in the afternoon. Following their presentation, Pixar animator Andy Beall talked to the students about animation.


Animation show of shows

The Animation Show of Shows 2015

October 2015

Every year, Acme Filmworks founder Ron Diamond brings his Animation Show of Shows to SJSUA/I. As stated on its website, “Since 1998, The Animation Show of Shows has selected the best in animated short films from the world’s most renowned animation festivals and presented them at the major animation studios to inspire their animators and directors.” 

Curated by Ron, the Show of Shows features films that are otherwise difficult to view because of their limited availability. Often, directors of the films being showcased accompany Ron to answer questions from the audience, providing a great learning opportunity for Animation/Illustration studetns. This year, Ron brought John Lewis (The Story of Percival Pilts) Isabelle Favez (Messages Dans A'air), and Conor Whelan (Snowfall).


 sony playstation

Sony Playstation at SJSUA/I

October 2015

Sony Playstation visited SJSUA/I in October. University Relations Representative Teddy Papas, along with SJSU alums Jeff Sangalli, Lucie Roberts, and Rebecca Roberts, informed the students about internship opportunities at the studio, and the different roles and teams there. In particular, Jeff, Lucie, and Rebecca talked about their team at Sony, Pixelopus. They advised the students to cater their portfolio to whichever studio they apply to. For example, since the Pixelopus team is small, it looks for students who are generalists, able to take on a variety of roles. 


 mical makarewicz 

Michal Makarewicz and Animation Collaborative
 

September 2015

In September, Pixar animator and Animation Collaborative owner Michal Makarewicz spoke to SJSUA/I students on animation workflow. He gave a demo of his 3-D animation process using Maya software, awing the students with his efficient approach. For the students struggling with achieving believability and fluidity in their animations using the 3-D medium, Michal’s lecture showed how amazing results could be achieved quickly and effectively using the graph editor.

Information on Michal’s school for animation and design can be found here.

A list of films Michal has worked on can be found here.



 

Alumni Reunion

Animation/Illustration Celebrates 20 Years of Firing it Up!

photo provided by Raquel Coelho

September 2015

The SJSU Animation/Illustration (A/I) student organization, The Shrunkenheadman Club, celebrated its 20th year anniversary with a reunion bash over the August 29-30 weekend. The festivities lasted two days, kicking off on Saturday at the Historic Dolce Hayes Mansion and concluding Sunday with brunch at San Jose State’s Art Quad with tours of the A/I facilities in the Art building. Over 250 alumni returned to celebrate with faculty and students, reconnect with former classmates, and update each other about the many great accomplishments they have been making. Attendees represented companies including Disney, DreamWorks, Industrial Light and Magic, LucasFilm, Pixar, Sony Pictures Animation, Electronic Arts, Blizzard Entertainment, Sony Play Station, Zynga, Google, Storm 8, Double Fine Productions, Film Roman (Simpsons), Fox Animation (American Dad), Ghostbot, Bardel Entertainment (Rick and Morty), Nickelodeon, and Brazen Animation.

On Saturday, club members past and present gathered at the Dolce Hayes Mansion to enjoy everything from student-made music videos, speeches, raffle prizes, and late evening dancing. Alum Jeff Biancalana, who has worked at Dreamworks, Blue Sky Studios, ReelFX, and Warner Brothers gave a speech honoring the program founders, Bunny Carter and Courtney Granner. In recognition of their dedication and hard work, he spoke of the program as being “the house that Bunny and Courtney built”, and presented them with a collection of alumni testimonials and artwork showing how the program helped generations of students realize their dreams of becoming artists. In true Shrunkenheadman style, the festivities continued long after the venue closed, with the group moving to the patio entrance area of the mansion to reminisce late into the evening. 

On Sunday, alumni returned home to meet current students and see the latest work of the program, as well as tour the 2-D and 3-D animation labs and A/I rooms. Many brought their spouses and children to show their families where they spent many late nights working on projects.

The 20th anniversary exemplified the unique spirit and camaraderie found every day in the program. Students volunteering their time to help out with the reunion, alumni interested in what the latest generation of Shrunkenheads are doing. Alumni regularly return to teach classes, mentor, give talks to the students and alert them of internship and job opportunities—it is this generosity and passion that has fueled the A/I program for twenty years and counting. Keeping with the club motto club “fire it up”, the reunion attendees are definitely keeping the fire burning strong.


D DAY CHEN

D-Day 2015                                                                                                                 Photo by Charlotte Chen

This May, A/I students, family, and alumni gathered together for the Shrunkenheadman event of the year, “Draw Day.” Better known as “D-Day,” the annual event is an exciting and fun celebration of art and pop culture. Animation/Illustration students performed on stage and engaged in draw battles alongside guest emcees, alumni Andrew Harkins and Januel Mercado.  Among other things, there was hurtling candy, crazy costumes, hilarious skits, videos with high production values, and a whole lotta fun.


sasaki ly visit

Pixar’s Chris Sasaki Visits SJSUAI                                                                           Photo by Charlie Ly

In May, Pixar character designer Chris Sasaki gave a talk to Animation/Illustration students, discussing his work on the upcoming Pixar film Inside Out, as well as sharing his journey from budding artist to character designer at Pixar. He went over his process when creating his designs, stressing the importance of research and “finding the heart of the character.” He also answered student questions and shared a clip of the new movie.


 
 
who i am bartonMarch 2015

SJSU A/I Student Wins Scholarship

Congratulations to SJSUA/I student Ariana Barton for winning a student scholarship from the Society of Illustrators! Ariana’s animation, Who I Am, won the In Memory of Albert Dorne award. Every year the Society holds a student competition, choosing over three hundred works from more than 8,700 entries submitted nationwide. The submissions are evaluated by a jury of professional peers, including illustrators and art directors. The awards reception will be on Friday, May 8 in New York City.  

Ariana’s winning entry can be viewed here: Who I Am ("My Name Is" BFA Intro Video Fall 2014) 


Zynga Visits SJSUAIMarch 2015

Zynga Visits SJSUAI

Photo courtesy of Ariana Barton

Zynga recruiters Tiffany Feeney, Jon Shih, and Concept Art Director Mike Mattesi called on SJSUAI in March. They gave a presentation on Zynga’s various studio locations and projects as well as the company culture. Mike discussed Zynga’s emphasis on building a community of artists, the importance of collaboration in the workplace in order to build better ideas, and how artists find inspiration from a variety of places. He also spoke about Zynga’s structure and history. Tiffany answered questions about the company’s hiring process and how artists can shift roles within departments in order to further their artistic development. The visitors provided an informative glimpse inside a studio which employs several A/I grads.


Blue Sky Studios

February 2015

Blue Sky Studios Visits SJSUAI

Photo courtesy of Ariana Barton

In February, Blue Sky recruiter Deb Stone and artist Matt Munn visited SJSUAI to present internship opportunities and talk about life at the studio. Matt shared his work, his animation process, and his inspiring journey from studying computer science to falling in love with 3D animation and becoming an animator at Blue Sky. He stressed to the students the importance of never giving up in the face of roadblocks.


 

various

Join us! 5:30–8:30 pm, Oct 6, 2016 at 439 S. First Street, San José.

As part of the SoFA Design Crawl 2016 the San José State University Design Department will be holding an exhibition showcasing student work. The Design Department at SJSU strives to maintain a comprehensive curricula that provides training in the practice and theory of design.

Vari•us is a collection of student work from the BFA Graphic Design Program at SJSU. This collection shows the variety of work the students produce while maintaining their originality in the process.

Free Admission and open to public.


2016 BFA Graphic Design Senior Show

2016 We're On It: BFA Graphic Design 2016 Senior Show

May 8–11

SJSU Student Union Ballroom, Second Floor 
One Washington Square San José CA 95192 
Open to the public 

2016isOnIt.com


Rough Cut BFA Graphic Design Senior Show

Rough Cut: BFA Graphic Design 2015 Senior Show

Dec. 7–12 
11am–5pm 

SJSU Student Union Ballroom, Second Floor 
One Washington Square San José CA 95192 
Open to the public 

roughcut2015.com


aigasf

AIGA SF + City Studio Youth Design Workshop

National exposure on AIGA SF + City Studio Youth Design Workshop led by our faculty member—Julio Martínez with BFA GD teaching assistants—Glenn Cardenas, Jonathan Heath, Lorenz Ortiz, and Rachel Poage.


AIGA Enrichment Scholarship 2015 Awards

Our BFA Graphic Design student Preston McPeak is awarded the AIGA Enrichment Scholarship 2015 Awards. You can see his work at www.prestonmcpeak.com.


compassion

Compassion
DsGD 120 Exhibition Design (part 3)
9AM–6PM, April 6–9, 2015
Art 214

Design is our passion and our work shows it. Our process is full of blood, sweat, and tears...fueled by the compassion we have for our audience. We work so damn hard because we care. We are ten designers from the San José State University BFA Graphic Design program coming together to show that the final product is only the surface. The process, influenced by each person's personality, is where the heart lies. 


disORDER

dis/ORDER
DsGD 120 Exhibition Design (part 2)
9AM–6PM, April 1–3, 2015
Art 214

dis/ORDER is a compilation of the work of 9 graphic design students which stands as a representation of our thinking, creativity, and struggle. With these works we would like to showcase the two sides of design: structure and creativity. Come see how we bring focus to confusion as we tie creativity and structure together to create what we call dis/ORDER.