Monday, September 6, 2010

First Week: Not Bad!

Let's go through the schedule! On Mondays, I have Anatomy for Toy Designers. We have a wonderful professor by the name of James Reid. I have heard from other professors that he is a master of anatomy; something that my classmates and I soon discovered. This guy REALLY knows his stuff. It is like being taught by an old master from the Renaissance. To be completely honest, I feel like I learned more about general figure drawing from a 2.5 hour lecture than I have in all my life drawing classes combined. I am psyched about the coming classes. I appreciate how laid-back the class is; we're allowed to use essentially any material and work in any size we want. We also learned that you can use skim milk as a spray fixative for your drawings. Awesome. On Tuesdays, we have Drafting and Product Materials/Safety Considerations. Drafting is, well...drafting. The first class I've ever had on the subject. Looks like it might be tedious, but I do love precise line drawings and schematics, so it'll be cool to learn how those are made. The Materials/Safety class is interesting, too. We learned about several types of plastic used in manufacturing this week. The second half of the semester will be focused more on electronics and stuff. At the end of class, we got a project: A toy that we will eventually take apart and examine. Mine is a medical kit: Included is a stethoscope, thermometer, syringe, band-aid, blood pressure checker, and a nose/throat examining doohicky. Wednesdays start out with Developmental Psychology, a course that I'm fairly stoked about. The professor seems really enthusiastic and very articulate, and the subject matter is extremely relevant to our major. We're going to have team debates later in the semester, which I am somewhat nervous about. I never got to do much of that in high school and I'm not excited about doing it for a grade. After that, we have Marker Rendering. The professor we have is new, but he seems pretty laid back and I'm excited to learn cool rendering techniques. His style of rendering objects is different from the one we learned in the summer workshop and Intro to Toy Design class, but I'm eager to see what he has to offer. Rendering things in marker is super-fun. Industry Overview is the name of our only Thursday class, and it's a really cool one. Each week, an industry representative will come and give us a lecture. This week, Franklin La Barbara (Vice President of Product Design) from Hasbro came and told us about the development of an R/C Car that just hit store shelves. It was such an interesting story and we learned a lot about what kind of work goes into the making of a toy. Check out the Ricochet 4x4; it's a really cool toy that can flip over and has a monster truck mode.

We will be making field trips in this class, as well! And on Friday, we have our hardcore classes: Drawing for Toy Design and Toy Design I. In the first one, we learn how to draw products in perspective and how to use our tools. We'll work out a few toy concepts later in the semester, but first comes the practical stuff; how to draw a toy concept and how to make it pop! The second is the meat and potatoes of the semester. Each week, we'll have a new concept theme to explore; for example, our first theme is a "Try Me!" toy. We'll have a week to research and come up with at least six toy concepts around that theme, then another week to make a presentation board and render it. It starts out slow, but we'll eventually be pumping out one board a week because the projects will start to overlap. We'll receive a new theme and have to research it while turning in concepts for the last weeks' theme while turning in boards for the theme from two weeks ago for a class critique. Whew. This week, we recieved our mission and took a trip to Toys R Us to research and play with the "Try Me!" toys on the shelves. It's a pretty broad theme, so I'm excited to see what our class will come up with. My first week of classes went very well and I'm pretty flipping enthused about the coming months of work. I try to not worry about the sleep I will loose or the social life I won't have; instead, I focus on where I'll be in two years' time. Worrying about stuff is a waste of time and energy.

Sorry about the lack of images, but there isn't really much to show yet. This coming week will be a short one, with class only on Tuesday and Wednesday. Sewing lab starts up this week for me as well; Tuesdays from 9-12 and Saturdays from 10AM-6PM. I'm not sure if I'm excited about that one yet.

Stay Tuned, -J

P.S. Here is what I ate for breakfast today. Bacon-pinach-egg-pepper jack on a soy pita. It's my breakfast taco. I love the Trader Joe's that opened down the street. I also love having an entire package of bacon to myself. The flash isn't very flattering, but...