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Archive for 'August 2017'

    Getting Real With Stop Motion

    Interest grows in the School of Animation & Visual Effects’ program that has use of one of the largest university stop motion labs in the country

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    The imaginative vision of stop motion students of the Academy of Art University can’t just be drawn with paper and pencil or digitally designed, it must be physically created. World after world, down to the tiny hairs on a character’s head to the cracks on a sidewalk must be created from scratch. 

    “Stop motion is something real. It’s not just drawn, you can touch it,” said recent stop motion graduate Tada Kongjonrak. “We are building small worlds. It’s so cool.”

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    When Art Meets Science

    Art history alumna Kim Selvaggi shares how her Academy experience is helping her in the scientific world of archaeological conservation

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    School of Art History alumna Kim Selvaggi pictured near the London Tower Bridge in London, England. Photo courtesy of Kim Selvaggi.

    Many students attend the Academy of Art University because they want to create art, but those enrolled in the School of Art History (AHS) choose to study art within its cultural context. Art history students learn how to analyze and become critics of historical pieces of work from all over the globe, with an emphasis on gaining a deep knowledge of what these relics mean within a cultural and global timeline.

    Most AHS students move on to become researchers and curators in galleries or museums, but recent alumna Kim Selvaggi took her studies in a more scientifically-based direction. Shortly after graduation, she was accepted into the University of College London’s Master of Science in Conservation for Archaeology and Museums in England, where she pursued art preservation.

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    Meet Your Campus Hosts: Donald Shields

    Originally from Memphis, Tennessee, Campus Host Donald Shields has been working at Academy of Art University for seven years. “As a Campus Host, my job is to ensure that all people and properties are safe,” said Shields. “I’m extra vigilant and observe everyone that enters and exits the premises. As a front line host, we are also problem solvers and always troubleshoot any issues that arise.”

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    Illustration Alumna Opens New Surrealist Painting Exhibition in the Big Easy

    When we first wrote about Anne Faith Nicholls, School of Illustration alumna from the Academy of Art University, she was coming off of a successful exhibit called Neosurreal, displayed at the San Francisco Martin Lawrence Galleries location in 2015. We recently caught up with Nicholls again as she opens a new show at the Martin Lawrence Galleries in New Orleans this month, where she explores the Big Easy’s art, culture and history through her surrealist paintings. 

    Nicholls’ work is stark with symbolism that touches upon one’s subconscious, and how it relays to ideas of identity, truth, power and especially, feminism. We were eager to know more about how Nicholls’ ideas meshed against the rich heritage and culture of New Orleans and Louisiana in her art, so we spoke with Seattle-raised painter on her creative thought process, what parts of New Orleans inspired the paintings and where she finds continuous inspiration, both in the United States and outside of it.

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    Changing the Game

    In response to a growing demand within the gaming industry, the School of Game Development is introducing a dedicated UX/UI track

    Pieces of art, in general, want to be seen and noticed. In terms of UX/UI in the video game world, however, going unnoticed is a good thing. 

    UX/UI, which stands for “user experience” and “user interface,” is the newest track in the works for the School of Game Development at Academy of Art University. Gaming students have the opportunity to study coursework focusing on one of the gaming industry’s most in-demand positions, according to Gregory Eichholzer, lead UX/UI instructor and former associate art director for RockYou games.

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    COM Instructor Toan Lam Spreads Inspiration Through the Alchemy of Storytelling

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    School of Communications & Media Technologies instructor Toan Lam. Photo credit: CocoTran.com.

    Toan Lam’s message remains the same, no matter the audience. He could be talking to viewers of the inspirational videos posted on his multimedia platform, podcast listeners, crowds gathered to hear him speak or a classroom full of Academy students. Lam guides them all toward the same goal: Be better. Do better. Discover your superhero power, and use it to serve others.

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    NYFW: The Shows - Meet the Designers

    Meet the School of Fashion student designers heading to NYFW: The Shows, whose talent and inspiration lead to unique solo and collaborative collections.

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    (L–R) B.F.A. womenswear student Carlos Rodriguez and M.F.A. fashion design student Dina Marie Lam. Photo by Bob Toy.

    Collaboration: Lam and Rodriguez with support from Oliver-Palanca

    Dina Marie Lam, M.F.A. fashion design, was born and raised in Los Angeles, California. Inspired by the myriad of emotions surrounding her aunt’s recent passing, Lam wanted to convey a feeling of transition in her collection. She selected soft and luxurious materials to evoke warmth and comfort. Additionally, she was inspired by those who demand the best in fabric, function and form. Lam stated, “The collection is simply for the dope and opinionated girls.” Lam was honored with the BCBG Max Azria Super Intern (2017) recognition, presented annually to one outstanding intern across the entire company, and was selected for the CFDA Fashion Future Graduate Showcase (2017).

    Carlos Rodriguez, B.F.A. womenswear, was born in Mexico City, Mexico and grew up inClarksburg, California. He was asked to collaborate with Lam to create the embroidery details for her collection. Here, Rodriguez uses a mixture of traditional hand and machine embroidery techniques to enhance the contemporary feel of the garments. Recently, Rodriguez interned at tech-fashion start-up Savitude.

    Rheanna Oliver-Palanca, M.F.A. fashion design, was born and raised in Kennebunk, Maine. She created knitwear for the collection that mimics Lam’s own prints and Rodriguez’s embroidery. The knitwear is made of wool blends to enhance the sense of warmth and comfort that Lam’s collection was inspired by. Oliver-Palanca was selected for the CFDA Fashion Future Graduate Digital Showcase (2017).

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    School of Fashion Alums Amy Bond & Brandon Kee Cast on ‘Project Runway’

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    The cast of designers for Project Runway season 16.

    Sixteen new contestants look to make their designs work as they grace the catwalk during the 16th season of Lifetime’s Emmy-nominated series Project Runway, which premiered on Thursday, Aug. 17. Not only is the show celebrating their “super, sweet 16,” it is also celebrating body diversity throughout the season, featuring size-inclusive models (size 0-22).

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    Survival in the Underbelly

    Academy Art U News sat down with directors Ben and Josh Safdie and actor Robert Pattinson to discuss their latest film, Good Time

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    Robert Pattinson and Benny Safdie. Photo courtesy of A24.

    In new movie Good Time, Constantine “Connie” Nikas occupies an underbelly of New York City where the reward always outweighs the risk. There’s no such thing as hindsight for the Queens thoroughbred, and when a get-rich-quick scheme goes awry, Connie (played by Robert Pattinson) must break his developmentally-disabled brother Nick out of jail by maneuvering through a night of petty crimes involving the borough’s forgotten – and sometimes seedy – characters.

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    Lady Dione: Creating Luxury Through Mixed Patterns & Materials

    Lady Dione Bevel’s high-quality cut-and-sew garments have won her celebrity fans, including neo-soul singer Erykah Badu

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    Photo credit: ladydione.com

    All artists seek validation in one form or another, and for Lady Dione Bevel, hers came via a New York Times story from November 2016.

    She wasn’t the centerpiece for the feature, however, nor was her name mentioned anywhere in its text.

    Bevel’s stamp on the piece sat front and center in the lead photo: Neo-soul singer Erykah Badu, the article’s subject, sitting in a chair as she gets her hair braided. The golden kimono she’s wrapped in is of Bevel’s brand, Lady Dione. Badu purchased the garment from Bevel just days before the shoot at her concert in Santa Ana, California.

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