For about a year now, on the first Thursday of the month, students have been taking their lunch breaks to sit down and talk with professional artists in their respective fields.
From hybrid designers like Lisa Krohn, whose approach to design reflects on her belief that the best ideas combine several different fields at once, to Julia Haft-Candell, who creates three-dimensional collages using ceramics and mixed-media, there is a multitude of professionals to gain invaluable insight from.
The Noontime Artists’ Talks series are short, 45-minute talks where students get the ability to learn from and interact with professional artists from different fields in the industry.
Scott Robertson, an author, educator, designer and the former chair of Entertainment Design at Art Center College of Design will be the next guest speaker for the Noontime Artists’ Talks on Feb. 5.
Robertson has authored and co-authored 13 books on design and concept art and has worked largely in the entertainment industry, collaborating on projects such as “Hot Wheels Animated Series Battle Force Five” and theme park attractions, according to a press release.
Maryrose C. Mendoza, the associate professor and drawing coordinator for the Visual, Media and Performing Arts Division, came up with the idea for the Noontime Artists’ Talks. She wanted to create an opportunity for students to sit down and gain insight into different types of art from professionals regardless of their major.
“It gives access to the students that just want to get a taste of what being this type of artist is,” Mendoza said. “I think we have a lot of artists that are teachers that bring in visiting artists to their classrooms, but this is an opportunity too in that it’s open to (everyone). Even if you’re not an art student, maybe you’re just interested in the art program but you don’t know what it’s like. So they can just come out and spend their lunch hour with us. It’s a little bit more informal too.”
Stan Kong, professor of product design and rendering, first brought Robertson to Mendoza’s attention. She had been asking colleagues for suggestions for guest speakers and thought that Robertson would be a perfect fit for the talks.
Kong feels that this program offers a lot to the students, and especially this particular speaker who would have useful information for those wanting to transfer to Art Center College of Design in Pasadena. Kong pointed out that many PCC Design students do in fact end up going there and who better to talk to current students than a previous Chair of Entertainment Design?
“The tie-in would be that a lot of PCC kids have gone on to that program, to that college. There’s quite a few faculty now, including the associate chair of Design, that are PCC alumni,” Kong said. “I just think it’s a really great program.”
He went on further, noting that while PCC also has the Artists in Residence program, the Noontime Artists’ Talks are not necessarily better, but different in the fact that they are not as formal and open to everyone.
“The Artists in Residence program is really huge,” said Kong. “It’s different. I think the intent of both those programs is that students have an ability to interface with somebody that’s not their teacher.”
Kong also points out why both of these programs are so crucial to students with one question: how?
“I think the more important question, often times, for our students is ‘how did you actually get there?’” Kong said.