The School of Web Design & New Media’s Fall 2016 Ideate Conference Showcases Innovation and Opportunity


    Photo by Raina Maes.

    The School of Web Design & New Media’s Ideate Conference debuted in Fall 2015, but already the daylong summit has become a must-attend end-of-semester event. With a combination of one-on-one portfolio review sessions, face time with prospective employers and a tech showcase featuring trailblazing projects, the multifaceted conference offers students an indispensable tool for building industry knowledge and highlighting their work.

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    Steam Greenlight Offers Path to Success For Indie Game Developers

    About a year ago, An “Rolf” Chung (M.F.A. ’16) and Fred Lin (M.F.A. ’16) were having dinner together after class when an exciting email arrived. Their game, Magic Masks, had been “greenlit” on Steam Greenlight—an online platform where members of the community vote on the games they like best.

    “All of a sudden this message hit us by surprise. We could hardly believe it,” recalled Chung, Magic Masks lead designer. He clicked the link to Magic Masks' Greenlight page to confirm it was true, and sent screenshots to the rest of their development team—Andrew Miller (M.F.A. ’13) and Yulong “Tobby” Tao (M.F.A. ’16). “We all got really excited and immediately started planning our next steps.”

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    Banana Republic Empowers Styling Students


    (L–R) Kati Brandt and Marlena Griffin of Banana Republic. Photo by Bob Toy.

    Room 200 at Northpoint was buzzing with fashion forward students on Oct. 12 as Banana Republic’s Human Resource Manager Marlena Griffin and Assistant Manager of Women’s Product Kati Brandt came to talk to the styling and merchandising students of Academy of Art University about what it takes to work at the company’s flagship location here in San Francisco.

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    Disney Animator & Academy Alumnus Jorge Ruiz Cano Gives Students an Insider's Look at 'Moana'


    (L–R) Elham Sepehrjou (Teatime Animation Club), Jorge Ernesto Ruiz Cano (Disney animator and Academy alumnus), Gaby Rojo (Teatime Animation Club), Fernando Penafiel (Teatime Animation Club) and Josephine Sun (Teatime Animation Club). Photo courtesy of Becky Johnson.

    Save for perhaps Dwayne Johnson himself, Disney could not have sent a more charismatic ambassador to introduce its newest animated film, Moana, to Academy of Art University students. Venezuelan animator Jorge Ruiz Cano, who holds a Master’s in character animation from the Academy, visited 620 Sutter Theater on Nov. 1 to discuss the film at an event hosted by the Teatime Animation Club and the School of Animation & Visual Effects.

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    Alumni Q&A: Moonyoung Oh of Riot Games


    Academy of Art University alumnus and Riot Games Character Technical Artist Moonyoung Oh. Photo courtesy of Moonyoung Oh.

    Meet Character Technical Artist Moonyoung Oh, an Academy of Art University alumnus, who is currently working at Riot Games.

    Please introduce yourself.

    My name is Moonyoung Oh. I’m a technical artist who is working at Riot Games in L.A. after graduat[ing from] Academy of Art University in Spring 2016. My major was 3-D animation and visual effects … [I learned] about 3-D arts with engineering languages at school.

    What do you do for Riot Games?

    For 3-D films, games, ads, and also so many media arts need technical support to create them. Technical artists support artist and create arts themselves to use technical tools. In 3-D arts, they have different types of technical artist too. I am a character technical artist; [a] rigger, who is set up character controls for animating characters. I create technical tools for modelers and animators to support them to make art more effectively and also what we want to make it.

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    Blue Sky Studios Reps Stress Importance of Color Values and Advise Prospective Interns to Make Them Laugh


    Photo by Edgar Mojica.

    Flying high on the success of The Peanuts Movie, representatives from Blue Sky Studios came to Academy of Art University on Feb. 17 to share information on internship opportunities and what it’s like to work at their company. But what students found most interesting was a detailed presentation by Blue Sky color key artist Mike Lee on color and light. 

    “I’ve been experimenting with color on my personal projects, trying to get good at it, so I took some notes,” said Academy senior Angela Harris, a 3-D modeling major. “My favorite part was when he was stressing value, because that’s what I believe I was missing. I’m gonna go back and study value more.”

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