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CSUEB Electronic Art Seniors share their thoughts!

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Coding Inspiration

My final project is a website that is a magical journey through other worlds. To create the website I had to hand draw numerous drawings using colored pencil on paper, and digitally scan them to put them in to a website. The drawing itself took a long time and there were some learning experiences transferring them to the computer digitally, but the real work was in the coding.

I chose to code a website as my final project in order to challenge myself and also to (hope) to prove that I  could code such a thing. The code is fairly complicated as all of the drawings I made are animated with it.

To find help and inspiration I turned to a few different online sites and communities. A classic is w3schools which is an incredible resource for coding examples, and is especially great for animation code which I used the most in this project.

Another great source is Codepen, where coders can share coding snippets which they have come up with. This is very useful if what they are doing is similar to what you are looking for.

Stack Overflow is a community where coders can post their code with issues and others can come along and fix it. I have never posted my own code but just survive off of finding others’ mistakes that match my own. It’s a great resource for when you hit a wall.

Lastly, I have come to love CSS Animate beta because I can tell the “Drag” shape what I want my drawings to do and steal the code from what it comes up with. It took me a second to learn what this program wants me to do to get the correct results, but once I did it was fairly easy and a lot quicker than if I kept trying to tweak it myself.

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All in all, it’s been a great project. I have been able to figure some things out, and am still working on others. Hopefully in the end, it all pulls together.

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PearFleur

Throughout this journey for making my cartography cafe, I have to thank PearFleur for my inspirations. When I first saw her watercolor tutorials on YouTube, I was hooked on her style. As I browsed, I discovered a tutorial on a celestial painting, I knew this was my theme.

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When I found more artworks of hers, I was immediately drawn to her choice of medium: watercolors. Through her, I gained the inspiration to paint more over summer break. I also want to practice more traditional art. As a graphic designer, I don’t get a chance to really explore traditional art on my own time. It is through her that I want to paint something big in the course of six months. She has multiple tutorials on different watercolor techniques as of this post (June 2017) and intend to make use to her tutorials an draw more.

Aside from her artwork and style, she was the first to draw bigger and draw smaller. Before seeing her artwork in full size, I have always drawn in smaller scales and just end up scraping the design all together. On camera, she is not shy to admit she made a mistake, but it how she fixes them on camera that inspires me to do the same.

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Keith Haring

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When I think about artists whose work has influenced me, has inspired me, my mind often drifts to Keith Haring. Although I truly didn’t embrace learning of the graphic arts until I was much older, it was his work that kept me doodling all throughout my childhood.

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I recall the first time I saw some of his work, which shown on Sesame Street. I remember being enamored with the simple shapes and lines that I saw on-screen and thought to myself, “Hey, I can do something like that”. Growing up, I didn’t really learn of the significance of his work or the meaning behind it until I was in the 8th grade. My art elective teacher had shown us a book with several pieces of his work within it. It was then that she explained a bit about what inspired him and how the work that we see now came to be.

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While Haring’s work was provocative, exploring subjects such as sexuality, politics, and life, it was his later work that dealt with life and death that truly captivated me. Having been diagnosed with AIDS himself, Haring felt the surge, the need to produce as much work as he could before his passing. Even though he no longer is with us, his work, just as he most likely wished, lives on for ages to come.

Jessica Watson

An illustrative artist I’ve been fond of and have been following over the years is Naomi Otsu, she has a certain style that is modern and edgy. She has collaborated/worked for brands that I adore such as “Opening Ceremony” a clothing brand and “Pintrill” that specializes in pins. For more of her work, you can visit her website here.

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Aside from Naomi, I’ve loved web design/coding and recently got into motion graphics. A big part of choosing to be a Multimedia option is because of the motion graphics course offered in it. I have always loved vector art and web design. I love flat design as well as 2D. And I’ve grown to love iconology, so why not incorporate all of this into my senior project. As Naomi as well as rebound artists, I aspire to to make a name for myself and i’m glad I chose the art career that I love. 

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– Ashley Tabar

A Steadily Narrowing Interest

I have long since been intrigued by pixel art. Generally speaking, it’s a talent that pulls from many different backgrounds of the art world. Having an eye for form, an understanding of anatomy and lighting will help you to achieve realistic and compelling pixel art pieces. That’s not to say there is specific way to approach the art–no, not at all. In fact, you can tackle it any way your heart desires. The more minimalist style is probably the most beginner friendly; I would assume this is where most people find their footing. That’s what I did. Or, uh, where I’m still at. In the winter quarter I spent some time really sinking my teeth into the practice, and took a liking to isometric art. I found that if I stuck to geometric shapes, it was a breeze to create some pretty impressive looking stuff. It was when I tried my hand at more organic shapes that I started to lose confidence. Had I been convinced of my ability, I likely would have centered my senior project around pixel art, but at the last second I decided against it. More to the point: I have been gaining a steady interest in grungy punk art, and a couple months ago I stumbled across the work of an indie game developer who combines pixel and punk. Together, he and a person that goes by “miascugh” are working on a game called Kerfuffle, which when I saw the demo clips they’ve show off of it, I was taken a back. It’s everything I wish I was capable of making. It’s like it was crafted specifically for me. The big blocky characters, the colors, the fluid animations, the landscapes and overall mood of the game… It’s awesome. It’s definitely my biggest inspiration at the moment. I’m planning on getting back into pixel art in the coming weeks, it should be fun.

– Jesse Dacosta Call

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Packaging Galore

Throughout my years here at East Bay, I could say that my favorite projects were the ones involved in creating concept packaging. The way in which the visual designer has the freedom of creativity to create vividly interesting packaging design, is what sparked my interest for my senior project.  Packaging has since evolved over time and it’s no longer just boring boxes with the regular serif font, now we see that packaging and branding has gone to a whole other level. I know I am not the only one who gravitates to more brightly and interesting packaging when I am out shopping wherever, and not only that but I appreciate it more because of the amount of creativity that the designer put in their work.

I have been following the blog BP&O (Branding, Packaging, and Opinion) which was created by Richard Baird, a freelance designer and writer. He writes on different designers from all over the world and their design projects. I picked up on his blog a few quarters back when I was struggling with one of my packaging projects. I have since looked back at it not only to get a little inspiration, but to see other designers in my field and the work they have created. I have developed my senior project to incorporate elements of packaging design, logo, and branding in an interesting way. My goal for my project was to make all of my elements cohesive to each other. I wanted them to all complement each other, and have similar elements throughout it to create visual harmony while still sticking true to my design style.

~ Andrea Serrano

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A Fulfilling Journey at East Bay

Before enrolling into the Art Department at California State East Bay, I did not know what to really expect. But I did know one thing, I wanted to get a Bachelor degree with a concentration in Graphic Arts, to improve my employability and better my salary. And, I intended to do so the fastest I could by taking the more classes I could. As an foreigner or “immigrant” if your prefer that term ;), I guess it’s what you do. You start over your life. Your goal is to integrate the American society and the culture the fastest you can in order to melt easily and live like everyone. My first classes at East Bay were rather reviews since I did work as graphic designer since 2003 for some companies abroad. In addition, I was doing some design work as freelance, while working 2 part time jobs and more importantly raising my new born daughter. I taught myself design software at different design jobs I got over the years by doing my best to be resourceful. So that was a huge weight off of my shoulders. Also, I was transferring from a community college where I got a certificate in Applied Graphic Design and and Associate Degree in the Arts. However the further I got into the Graphic Art program at East Bay, the best I learned about design, the basics of good design and how to do great design.  I was impressed by the professionalism of the staff and faculty of the Art Department; not only for teaching aspect but also the willingness to help and share their experiences. I want to express here how lucky I am to be a product of this Arts Department and how humbled I am to have received all of the advises and the (occasional) nice chats I had with my teachers and the staff.

For my senior project I am working on a packaging for a fictitious beverage company in San Francisco. I had the chance to use the ezRouter in the woodshop, where I got valuable help from the faculty and staff. I also had great inputs from my teacher who gave me tips and advice to reach my goal in term of concept, design and production. As a graphic design major, my project consist of tangible products that include one wood product. And the choice of the woodworking was quite an exploration for me since this was almost the first time I used the woodshop. This lead me to realized all of the possibilities that woodworking might offer to graphic designer. I am a big fan of the information technologies and the infinite windows they open to designers, but I believe that woodworking and iron working that some consider low tech give graphic designer a broader perspective in term of tangible product. The possibilities are limitless. We should not limit ourselves as designers. That’s why I really value this insightful tough of one my favorite designers, Massimo Vignelli: “If you can design one thing, you can design everything.”

Have a great Summer!

Inspiration through Awareness

By Kim Zib.

 

I wanted to create a documentary showcasing the LGBTQ+ community that is a whole inspiration in itself–but I really didn’t want it to be something that would be considered an activist documentary either. I was inspired by the MTV documentary “White People.” I honestly wanted to invoke conversations about the LGBTQ+ community, or more so wanted people to listen to the stories of those within the community. I wanted their voices to be heard, and talk about things that many of us never ask of them. From someone who is the community, I feel that the regular questions, and also harder questions to answer are never really asked, or no one really listens. I wanted to spread awareness that wasn’t in your face, but more a more casual setting.

MTV’s “White People” does that. It talks about the harder things and creates a safe space about how those whom are considered white feel, and the views on white people from those who are considered POC (people of color). I wanted to mimic the open-discussion styled documentary, but still create new dialogue throughout as well.

I was really inspired to come out of my comfort zone and create a video that is very personal, and something that could one day impact my life in some way, shape, or form.

Inspired by old masters.

Creating my project, a set of animated illustrations to fairy tale “Hansel and Gretel” by Grimm Brothers, I was inspired by a set of postcards I used to have as a child. I think they were my mom’s postcards, they were quite old. Being a child I was fascinated by these scenes as they were transferring me to a magic world. I almost forgot how they looked or how they were made, I just had this memory of a fairy world I was immersed in when looking at them. Luckily I was able to find these postcards in a scanned version. These illustrations were made by Soviet illustrator (born in 1926) Askold Kantorov. Kantorov created a new technique (at least it was new for Soviet Union of 1970s), where he set up a scene using  clay figurines and made photographs of it. I think what fascinated me the most is that figures looked 3-D; the color scheme and lightning added up to this illusion.

Dina Arakcheyeva

Senior Project Inspiration–Peter McKinnon

One of my biggest inspirations for my senior project is Youtuber, Peter McKinnon. I started watching him because my sister, Rachel, actually recommended to watch his film tutorials. Before senior project, I wasn’t a pro at filming (I’m still not pro), but I really liked the idea of creating videos. I only took the Digital Video course the quarter before that I really liked that class. That class definitely sparked my interest in pursuing film as my medium for my senior project. So fast forward to now, I started grabbing most of my inspiration from Peter’s videos and tutorials on how to produce better footage. My concept of my video is definitely not the same as Peter’s videos, but I enjoyed learning from his tutorials in order to make my video better.

I also like that Peter focuses on trying to capture better footage on a budget. Personally, I can relate to that because I don’t have a ton of camera equipment. For example, some of his videos talk about how to get better footage by just using natural light or how to get a specific effect on Adobe Premier. Below, I just added some videos from him that helped me throughout this senior project. Hopefully, it could help some of you that are interested in learning how to film in general or just want to produce better footage.

–Melanie Dela Cruz

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