Posts Tagged ‘Events’

Animation Show of Shows – The Student Perspective

Monday, October 6th, 2014

On Thursday evening, the 25th of September 2014, Cogswell College was given the privilege of once again being host to the Animation Show of Shows. A collection of the most intriguing (and at times perplexing) animated shorts of the year from all over the world, the 16th Annual Show of Shows demonstrated a diverse number of contributors, ranging from studios like Disney and Pixar to small indie production teams.
Prior to the show, the two shorts that were easily the most anticipated by students were titled LAVA and Feast, from the studios of Pixar and Disney respectively. Feast followed the technique of an earlier short by Disney called Paperman, using 3D animation with the appearance of a 2D medium. With Feast, more concentration was placed on the language of shape and color in contrast to each other.

Feast by Disney

The story follows a stray puppy that is saved from the streets and given a home. The puppy is very lucky indeed, because his new owner is the kind of person who enjoys cooking for their pet on a daily basis. Consequently,

the pup is showered with bacon, eggs, spaghetti and meatballs. (At this point, I was feeling rather envious and really wishing I was the dog instead of a college student who doesn’t have time to cook.) Suddenly things change for the dog when his owner finds himself a girlfriend! *Gasp* Much to the dog’s horror (and to mine, being raised in an especially carnivorous family where meat takes up the top three food groups), his meaty, greasy diet is replaced by sprigs of parsley and brussel sprouts due to the girlfriend’s health-conscious influence. I won’t detail out what happens next, as the ending should be saved, but the resolution was pretty satisfying and it was easily one of my favorite shorts in the whole collection.

Other shorts in the program were more figurative instead of having an obvious plot (at the end of one, a friend turned around to me and whispered “What the hell did we just watch?”) and some in particular were on the depressing side and made the audience question life in general. One distinctive short was titled We Can’t Live Without Cosmos, which was simultaneously humorous and heartbreaking as it followed the story of two astronauts who were as close as brothers.

The biggest impact of all was made by the short titled Hipopotamy which the show’s curator, Ron Diamond, saved for last because – in his words – we wouldn’t be able to concentrate on any other shorts after we’d seen it.
Hipopotamy, by Piotr Durnala, framed humans in a light as if we behaved like hippos—the reverse of the concept of anthropomorphism. What we didn’t expect was that every character in the short was pretty darn naked in the most blatant sense. It was also disturbing as we found out that the humans behaved with extremely animistic instincts—children were not spared from violence, and women were subjugated to open force. It was a raw outlook on perhaps how similar humans’ behavior really is comparable to that of animals like the hippopotamus, and could be interpreted as a statement about things that desperately need to be changed about society.

After going to the Show of Shows last year, I was hooked and eager to see the presentations again this year. I definitely was not disappointed—I walked away inspired and feeling just a little bit different. It’s a refreshing perspective to see things from someone else’s eyes, and Ron Diamond’s collection achieved that for me once again.

by Sierra Gaston, Digital Art & Animation Student

Photos:
Feast by Disney
Ron Diamond (left), curator of Animation Show of Shows with Cogswell College Dean (right), Jerome Solomon

Pixar Animator Visits Cogswell on October 19

Monday, October 15th, 2012

Michal Makarewicz, Directing Animator at Pixar Studios and Instructor at Animation Collaborative, will provide an hour-long animation demo at Cogswell. Whether you are new to animation or more experienced, Michal offers tips and techniques for developing your animation project. The presentation is in partnership with Animation Collaborative – an organization that offers workshops throughout the year on various animation industry specialties.

Date: October 19, 2012

Time: 7:00PM to 9:00PM

Place: Cogswell College, Dragon’s Den

Pizza and sodas provided

RSVP required to jalexander@cogswell.edu or rreisdorf@cogswell.edu as seating is limited.

Michal joined Pixar Animation Studios in early 2003, where has been an animator on The Incredibles, Cars, Ratatouille, Wall-E, Up (Supervising Animator on the Up DVD short: Dug’s Special Mission), Toy Story 3, and a Directing Animator on Cars 2. In 2008, he was awarded an Annie for “Outstanding Charcter Animation in a Feature Production” by the International Animated Film Society for his work on Ratatouille. In addition to his work at Pixar, Michal has been teaching animation since 2005. He has contributed lectures as well as taught classes at the online school, Animation Mentor, and instructed classes at California College of the Arts and the Academy of Art University.

Aspiring Game Developers – This Event is for You!

Monday, August 24th, 2009

Game Demo Night

Silicon Valley Independent Game Developers Association (SV IGDA) is bringing back last year’s highly successful GAME DEMO NIGHT!

Cogswell Polytechnical College will once again play host.

Standing room only was the order of the evening as more than 150 enthusiastic gamers packed into Cogswell’s Dragons Den to listen to developers talk about their projects. After the presentations the developers moved to tables around the room where attendees had the chance to ask questions and interact one-on-one with the developers.

This year’s event will be held on Wednesday, September 30. Visit Cogswell’s website to learn more.

-Bonnie Phelps, Dean of Institutional Advancement