Talkin’ dialogue: A Writers’ Studio workshop

August
10
2016
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“Consider what you want to say to whom, and how you can say that most effectively,” explained SCAD writing consultant Carrie Nelson. “When you’re writing dialogue, you don’t need to include every word of a conversation.”

On Friday, July 29, 2016, Nelson conducted her workshop "Writing Effective Dialogue" as part of the SCAD Writers’ Studio Summer Workshops series. Nestled in a corner of the award-winning Jen Library, the studio was quiet except for the low hum of the air conditioner as Nelson addressed the attendees directly: “The most valuable resource for learning how to write dialogue is listening to the way people talk. When Nabokov was writing ‘Lolita’ he used to sit behind girls on the bus to hear their conversations. As if the book wasn’t already creepy enough!” Everyone laughed.

"Writing Effective Dialogue" is an important skill for students in a variety of SCAD majors, including dramatic writing, cinema studies, film and television, writing, performing arts and sequential art. This workshop focused on the form and function of dialogue, while clarifying how the conventions of dialogue differ depending on genre. As Nelson said, dialogue in a screenplay has different requirements than dialogue in fiction or comic books, but all writers should consider each character’s distinct voice, as well as how the dialogue can move the plot forward. “You want dialogue to build,” she said, “but not be redundant.”

Without giving away all Nelson’s pointers, here are some basic guidelines for writing effective dialogue in any creative endeavor:

  • Show, don’t tell
  • Ground your dialogue in the scene
  • Use dialogue tags (e.g., he said, she said) to avoid confusion
  • Instead of relying on adverbs or exclamation points, use word choice to convey emotion
  • Avoid writing phonetically in dialect or using long, grammatical sentences
  • Read your work aloud to check for pacing and flow

About the SCAD Writers’ Studio

The Writers’ Studio is located in Room 220, on the second floor of Jen Library at the corner of East Broughton and Abercorn streets. For more information on workshops geared toward SCAD students, faculty and staff, log in to MySCAD. Students seeking a one-on-one session with a writing consultant can make an appointment or stop in during drop-in hours daily until 5 p.m. Follow the Writers’ Studio on Facebook.

Taking queues from SCAD Themed Entertainment Design

July
28
2016
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Hey theme park fans: Ever bide time in a line that blew your mind?

While the idea may sound antithetical to the thrills of a corkscrew 'coaster, amusement parks are increasingly dedicated to making the waiting-to-board process a superlative experience. The Themed Entertainment Design (THED) program at SCAD is at the forefront of improved queue-line conceptualization, as illuminated in a brand new piece by industry-leading journalist Arthur Levine.

SCAD THED offers both a Master of Fine Arts degree and a minor concentration. Program alumni currently work across the industry, from show production to exhibit design, at companies including Walt Disney Imagineering, Herschend Entertainment (Dollywood, Silver Dollar City), and Universal Studios Theme Parks.

“Themed entertainment ultimately encompasses more than theme parks,” explains Gregory Beck, dean of the School of Entertainment Arts. “It includes resorts, hotels, museums, and visitor attractions, which can all involve lines. Our Queue Line Design class directly addresses the experience of waiting in line, and how it can ultimately enhance the guest experience.”

Next time you’re in line — whether at Disneyland or the DMV — think about how your time can become something sublime.  

Summer Swarm brings in the new Bees!

July
27
2016
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Summer Swarm is an optional orientation session for first-year incoming students enrolled for fall quarter in Savannah. The goals of Summer Swarm are simple: lower anxiety, introduce students to one another, and familiarize them with the SCAD facilities.

Over the course of two days, students rotate in small groups through orientation sessions. These sessions introduce them to SCAD’s resources and policies, including:

After checking in on a Thursday morning, incoming students and their families gather in Trustees Theater for a warm welcome to Savannah and SCAD.  Students then tour the facilities most commonly used by first-year students, and participate in a foundation studies demo class. One demo class introduces the basics of portrait-drawing with charcoal. While many students started by admitting doubts about their drawing skills, the demo class soon put them at ease.

“I didn’t know what to expect,” said Cassandra Emilianchik from Clermont, Florida. “The demo class helped relieve some of the stress over what classes will be like.”

New students’ biggest concern — besides math classes — is making friends. Summer Swarm’s answer is “First Night,” featuring games, snacks and live music at the Student Center. Afterwards, students spend their first night in a SCAD residence hall.

“I really enjoyed the night session,” Emilianchik said. “I got to meet people, hang out and make friends.”

So, how much of an advantage does attending Summer Swarm give first-year students?

“My freshman year, the people who did Summer Swarm seemed to have a leg up on everyone else,” said Elisabeth Pritchett (B.F.A. film and television), a current student and Summer Swarm orientation assistant. “They already knew people and were familiar with the campus.”

Other big benefits Pritchett sees students getting out of Summer Swarm are having their questions answered before starting classes and “being able to meet other people, and realizing that their anxieties aren’t only their own.”

The 2016 Summer Swarm season is over, but the new Bees are just getting started. They’ll buzz back for classes when Fall quarter starts September 12.

SCAD’s best and next shows at international furniture trade show

July
7
2016
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The International Contemporary Furniture Fair is the premiere trade show for fine interior design in the United States. Twenty furniture design students, along with program coordinator Fred Spector, represented SCAD at ICFF New York in May with a custom-built booth.

The SCAD exhibit at ICFF was designed by students in furniture design professor James Bazemore’s spring “Design Studio: Furniture for the Market” class. Their final design was a clean-cut combination of open and closed structures: a solid wall behind an angular, geometric wrapping platform fenced in by skeletal walls, the perfect pedestal to put SCAD student furniture design in the spotlight.

Some of the furniture on display came from collaborative projects created in the fall 2015 studio class taught by furniture design professor Sheila Edwards. The senior class worked with EcoMadera, a sustainable forestry company, to design products using sustainable woods.

ICFF features “What’s Best and What’s Next” in global contemporary design, luxury interiors and high-end furniture. Extraordinary styles by top international furniture brands and emerging new talent highlight unique furniture, accessories, lighting, outdoor furniture and more.

AT ICFF, the students gained feedback from industry professionals. They also received offers to buy or commission pieces on display, and networked with companies for internships and job opportunities. With the experience of how a trade show works from start to finish, these students are ready for the next step in their careers. They might even return to the exhibition as the next big names in interior design

5 Things I Learned at SCAD with Ariel Mael

December
17
2015
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It's no surprise students spend their whole time at SCAD learning and preparing for their creative careers, but learning goes beyond the classroom. We reached out to students across all disciplines and asked what they've learned during their time here. This week, our list comes from Ariel Mael (B.F.A., advertising).

  1. Volunteering at Career Fair as a freshman/sophomore will be tremendously helpful when it comes time for you to start applying for internships and jobs as a junior/senior.
  2. Being a student ambassador was one of the best decisions that I made as a freshman. I learned the campus better than most seniors and it really helped motivate me to maintain a high level of academic achievement. It also was a great experience in terms of networking, thanks to all of the events we had attended with many influential people.
  3. Apply for internships even if you don’t feel like your resumé or portfolio are strong enough. Sometimes companies see the potential that you may not see and are willing to help you grow.
  4. Don’t limit yourself when it comes to internship and job searching. Even though your dream may be to live in NYC, sometimes the most unlikely of places could end up exceeding your expectations.
  5. Don’t go into a group project thinking you can get away with doing nothing. In the real world, doing nothing gets you fired. In college, it gets you known as the person nobody wants to work with. Don’t blacklist yourself; do your part.

UX Design: What's defining the Digital Age

December
10
2015
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In collaboration with Google, SCAD launched its new User Experience Design degree this fall — the first in the country! Google tapped in to SCAD's unique expertise at the intersection of technology and design to build a degree program that puts SCAD students at the forefront of this emerging discipline. Google will continue to be a valuable resource, holding annual workshops with students, introducing collaborative projects through the university’s Collaborative Learning Center, and instituting a mentorship program for SCAD’s UX Design students. Already, the program has caught the attention of USA Today.

User experience design might not be a familiar concept to everyone, but the process of enhancing a user’s satisfaction with the experience of using a product is not a new idea. It even predates Don Norman, a well-known contemporary expert in the fields of design and usability engineering. You can find early inklings of UX design in the 15th century designs of Leonardo da Vinci, who saw the art in science, and vice versa. The best UX designers possess the same vision.

UX design actually got its start with industrial design. The industrial designers created the tools we began to rely on for everyday activities—from door handles to toothbrushes—but it’s the UX designers who made each of those tools easier for us to use.

Since the beginning of the digital age and the birth of the Internet, the first of the UX designers started applying the same principles to digital design. It wasn’t enough for something like a website to be functional; the person visiting the site needed to easily find what they wanted. It’s basic knowledge now, but UX design evolved over time, along with our digital habits.

The digital revolution happened so fast that UX design for these new devices struggled to keep pace. We were still figuring out how UX design applied to the web when suddenly web design seemed… if not outdated, certainly more of a subset of the digital experience.

Nowadays, there’s an app for everything. Those apps create a new opportunity for UX designers to shape and tailor users’ digital experiences. And thanks to the advent of social networking, the universe of users has expanded exponentially. Pre-teens and Baby Boomers are all connected to each other with the same technologies. With such a diverse audience of users, can you design intuitive interfaces for everyone?

We believe you can. With a diverse creative skillset and the ability to adapt, the next generation of UX designers will deliver smooth product experiences to an increasingly dynamic digital world.

It’s our hope that this program—and the collaborative nature of the program—becomes a model for others and a springboard for a new generation of UX design professionals.

Click here to request more information or apply to SCAD.

5 Things I Learned at SCAD with Stephen Amicucci

December
3
2015
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It's no surprise students spend their whole time at SCAD learning and preparing for their creative careers, but learning goes beyond the classroom. We reached out to students across all disciplines and asked what they've learned during their time here. This week, our list comes from Stephen Amicucci (B.F.A., motion media design).

  1. If you live on or near campus, join in on all the activities SCAD offers. One of my favorites is Casino Night during fall quarter. Every quarter has a ton of events to offer so attend as many as you can.
  2. Put forth your best effort with each project. Every assignment you get is a chance to learn something new or gain a skill. Why not work hard and get the most out of your experience here?
  3. Learn new skills and hobbies. Professor Whittington in 3-D Design introduced me to laser cutting freshmen year. I still constantly come up with new ideas of things to cut and build.
  4. Meet new students from around the world. SCAD is very diverse and it's easy to learn about many cultures.
  5. Always make time to attend a presentation when a professional or company visits SCAD. You never know if you many one day work for them.

Spotlight on SCAD Historic Preservation

November
23
2015
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There's more to historic preservation than just rehabilitation and restoring parts of the community. Students in SCAD’s historic preservation program focus on issues of advocacy, restoration, economics, project management and neighborhood renewal.

Get a first-hand look at the sort of work SCAD students do with this video about the Cuyler-Brownville project.

In just the past four years, SCAD's historic preservation program has earned bragging rights to 12 Association for Preservation Technology International Student Scholars, 3 National Council for Preservation Education Student Scholars, and 2 National Trust for Historic Preservation Mildred Colodny Diversity Scholars.

On the international scale, SCAD continues to win recognition for rehabilitation efforts around the world, including the revitalization of the SCAD Museum of Art in Savannah, Georgia; La Maison Basse in Lacoste, France; and the historic North Kowloon Magistracy in Hong Kong.

Click here to request more information or apply to SCAD.

Spotlight on SCAD Photography

November
9
2015
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Photography is more than a snapshot; it's an expression of a personal vision. But do you know what it takes to turn that vision into an award-winning piece of art? Students in SCAD's photography programs do — as a result, they are among the most renowned up-and-comers in the industry.

Students and alumni have been spotted in eminent places, working and interning for big names such as Annie Leibovitz, Turner Broadcasting, Vanity Fair, Vogue, CNN and Google, just to name a few. Just last month, Elliot Ross (B.F.A., photography) was featured in National Geographic’s Daily Dozen series.

Feast your eyes on a sampling of work from SCAD's stand-out photographers:

Click here to request more information or apply to SCAD.

Alfie Allen's Top 5 Pieces of Advice for Actors

October
30
2015
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The Savannah Film Festival brings incredible screenings, spanning from documentary to animation to shorts to featured films. Actors, producers, directors, casting agents, fans, movie-lovers and so many more attend the festival for the celebration of the creative spirit within the industry. But for SCAD film and performing arts students, the festival includes master classes: intimate, hour-long discussions with visiting established industry professionals. This year, HBO "Game of Thrones" star Alfie Allen was among those sharing his experiences and advice.

When Allen took his seat in the wing-backed chair situated on the stage of the Mondanaro Theater at Crites Hall, silence fell upon the audience. Then nearly every hand shot up to ask a question for their own career. These are the top five pieces of advice he gave:

  1. “The best acting advice I received was from my dad. It sounds cliché, but acting is really through the eyes. If you can show the emotion in your eyes then the rest of it will show, as well.”
  2. “I like to bond with people. The actor who plays Ramsey — I wanted to be friends so it’s a real relationship on screen. That way we are actually connecting on-screen.”
  3. “People can smell desperation and that’s not an attractive trait. So make sure you are acting for yourself and not for those you are auditioning in front of.”
  4. “Bring yourself into the character. Step into the character as much as you can. Make it naturalistic as possible. It’s tough, but can be done.”
  5. “A lot of people in this industry forget it’s about having fun. Too many people take themselves seriously. Don’t be too hard on yourself. This industry is incredible — enjoy it.”

Click here to request more information or apply to SCAD.