Posts Tagged ‘Careers’

Guests from Massive Black and EA to speak tomorrow

Monday, November 15th, 2010

Tomorrow night, Cogswell is hosting a special event.  We are pleased to have two representatives from the companies Massive Black and Electronic Arts come out and talk about their experiences in the gaming and animation industries. This should be a very informative lecture, as most of Cogswell’s student body has the goal of getting into these industries, and there is a huge amount of interest in learning about what to expect in their future career.  Not only is it beneficial to get an intro of what to expect straight from those who are experiencing it, but it is also prime time to make connections you can utilize.  I heard there will be pizza, so no need to worry about food during the dinner hour.

In other news, the ASB (Associated Student Body) is hosting another Cogswell movie night this Friday.  This week’s offerings?  The newest Harry Potter movie!  As a fan of the series, I’m incredibly excited for this movie night!  I urge students to please sign up ASAP, because spots are limited.  ASB hosts various events throughout the semester and the movie nights are definitely one of the most popular. Depending on the movie, even faculty will get in on the action and join the massive Cogswell mob that inhabits the entrance of various movie theaters.  Unfortunately, we are not seeing the midnight showing, but maybe that’s best for the sake of any Friday morning classes.

-Rachel

Senior Producer at Nickelodeon Kids and Family Games Speaks at Cogswell

Tuesday, October 27th, 2009

kevin richardson

Cogswell graduate, Kevin Richardson, will share his wealth of knowledge and experience in the casual game industry during a presentation on campus. His topic will be, “Creativity and Unlocking Your Own Unique Talents.”

Date: November 3, 2009
Time: 6:00 to 8:00 p.m.
Where: Dragon’s Den at Cogswell
1175 Bordeaux Dr
Sunnyvale, CA 94089
MAP
Pizza will be served
RSVP

Kevin graduated in 2003 with Bachelor of Arts in Computer and Video Imaging – the precursor to Cogswell’s Digital Art and Animation program. He currently works for Nickelodeon Kids and Family Games group in San Francisco as their Senior Producer of games. Kevin also just launched his own casual independent game series for download under the Gamespin banner, Ghost Town Mysteries. He has produced over 30 “E” rated games, including the Family Feud and Risk games and several Hasbro titles including Boggle and Trivial Pursuit while at iWin.com. Prior to iWin.com, he worked at The Learning Company/Mattel Interactive where he was Executive Producer on numerous Reader Rabbit and ClueFinders adventures and at EA/Pogo where he worked on Tumblebees ToGo. He began his career as an animator and special effects artist working for ILM and Hanna Barbera-Wang Films.

Learn more about what it’s like to be a Senior Producer at Nickelodeon.

-Bonnie Phelps, Dean of Institutional Advancement

What is Video Game Level Design?

Monday, October 26th, 2009

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We asked Assistant Professor Albert Chen to explain level design

If Game Development covers how games are made and Game Design determines what the game is and how it is played, Level Design is about defining the moment to moment experience for the player. It includes planning and creating the actual spaces that the player travels through and orchestrating heart-pounding encounters and events that happen along the way.

Can students learn level design at Cogswell?

This past summer term, we offered a six-week Special Topic – Intro to Level Design Workshop. This intensive course introduced students to the fundamentals of 3D level design for 1st person shooters. By using Unreal Tournament 3′s level editor to build playable multiplayer levels, students were able to experience the level design process first-hand. They also learned the theories behind competitive multiplayer map creation to control play balance, intensity and flow.

In Spring, we will offer an Advanced Level Design course. Check the Spring schedule when it is released in early October.

Want to learn more about our Game Art, Game Development, or our Digital Art and Animation programs?

Visit the Cogswell College website or better yet, arrange a tour of our campus and see where you can begin your career in video games.

-Michael Martin, Dean of the College

Raymond Crook On What It’s Like to be an Animator

Thursday, July 16th, 2009

RaymondCrook

I am working as an animator and character modeler/rigger at Double Fine Productions in San Francisco. I started working here shortly before graduation from Cogswell College in 2001. All of the animators in our department are required to know how to model characters as well as rig them. We all wear several hats. We released Psychonauts in 2005 – and our game Brutal Legend that just premiered at the E3 Expo was nominated to receive the Game Critics Award for Best in Show.

The thing I like most about my career is that it gives me a creative outlet. I’m doing something that I love to do and making a living at it. I am happy to say that I truly enjoy my job but that doesn’t mean that it’s easy. It can be very stressful at times and the hours can also be long but the satisfaction of seeing your work inside the game is very rewarding.

If not for Cogswell, and particularly some key faculty members and alumni, I would not have this job or this career. The courses at Cogswell College gave me the foundation in fine arts and digital media to be able to step into my position here at Double Fine and immediately begin working. This is what the company needed at the time. Of course I have learned a lot and made a lot of mistakes since then, but I had enough practical skills and know-how to hit the ground running.

When it was time for me to find a job, it was a faculty member and one of our alumni who helped me get my first interview and get my demo reel to the right people. I will always be grateful for that. The classes were small enough that I was able to get to know some of my instructors on a personal level and have remained good friends with them. I attended a much larger university before transferring to Cogswell, and because of sheer size of the classes and the inapproachability of the professors, I was not able to create the kind of relationship with them that I did with the Cogswell faculty.

I think a key distinguishing factor that sets Cogswell apart from other colleges is the leadership and vision that focuses resources as needed, pays special attention to the experience of the students and builds relationships with alumni and the community/industry.

If you are planning on being an animator, know that this field is very competitive but also very gratifying. I would suggest to anyone seeking a career in animation that they develop strong, traditional, fine arts skills – then move into the digital realm. The computer is only a tool that you will use to apply the traditional skills of drawing, sculpting and painting at your job. It is important to have some talent for the arts before going into this field. Remember, the job is not glamorous, don’t do it for the bragging rights. Do it because you love to be creative. And certainly don’t do it for the money. Like most art-based careers, you can make a living but don’t plan on it making you wealthy. However, I have found when you do what you love and what you are good at, the rest works itself out.

Click here to learn more about Cogswell’s animation degree program.

- Bonnie Phelps, Dean of Institutional Advancement