Digital technology display at AET

"Digifest 2005," held at Santa Monica College's Academy of Entertainment and Technology campus, gave both students and faculty an opportunity to showcase their works of art created using digital media.
What is normally a quiet campus became full of excitement and energy on Friday as students, faculty and other members of the local Santa Monica community saw the creations of some very talented students and faculty.
The festival took place on the second floor of the AET building, where displays of graphic design pieces, presentations of animated and digital video story shorts, computers with interactive media, displays of figures in motion, and a television that ran a collection of story graphics adorned rooms 205, 235 and the lobby.
"It's truly exciting, the culmination of the work of all of the students," Katharine Muller, dean of the AET, said. "It reflects so well on the skill and expertise of the faculty and the staff that support them, and the fact that so many of our students are entering and winning and being accepted into competitions is just enormously rewarding."
This was Digifest's second year at SMC, but it was the first year for the Graphic Design Presentation. Several members of the newly formed Graphic Design Club were responsible for creating this gallery.
"We just wanted to be sure that we show everything that the AET represents in the graphic design world," Derrick McFarlin, student officer of the Graphic Design Club said.
The graphic design presentation was set up like what you would see in a metropolitan gallery. On the walls were the works created with computers. In the center of the room works created using a hands-on approach were on display. The creations of both faculty and student designers were on display.
According to Zeny Baduel, faculty advisor of the Graphic Design Club, about 200 pieces of artwork were submitted.
From this number, after several rounds of elimination, the final 60 with 15 alternates were chosen.
"We wanted to show a diversity of the programs that we offer at the graphic design program," Baduel said. "The first go-around was easy, it was the next go-around where we had to weed; the second round was harder because most of the work was really good."
In room 235 the screening of 10 different animated and digital video creations took place. The topics of each short were as different as each person who created them.
Chris Fria, instructor at AET for 3-D animation, oversaw the screening part of Digifest. He explained how the tape was made.
The professors chose what they thought were the best work from their classes. Fria then compiled the shorts together to create the final presentation. "It's rewarding for the students; this is really about them," Fria said. "There is no other experience like this. This is great." The last short to be shown was, "To a Man with a Big Nose," by Cecila Aranovich.
Her short is now in the semi-finals of 2005 Student Academy Award competition-which is sponsored by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.
This is the same organization that presents the Oscars at annual Academy awards show. "The recognition and exposure you get just being in this competition, just being nominated, is amazing," Aranovich said. The competition is very well known.
According to Aranovich a lot of new talent is searched for through the competition. If she makes the finals she will receive a cash prize. "This is really awesome. It keeps getting better and better every year," said Yulia Malinskaya, an SMC student who is majoring in animation.