computer screen showing students working via Skype

Animation/Illustration Collaborates with Texas A&M

computer screen showing students working via Skype

Graduate students at Texas A&M connect with SJSU students with Skype (Alice Carter photo).

By Alice Carter, Animation/Illustration Area Coordinator

This fall, the SJSU Animation/Illustration program started an important collaboration with Texas A&M. Lead jointly by SJSU Assistant Professor Raquel Coelho and Texas A&M Associate Professor and Department Head Tim McLaughlin, a team of seven students are working together to create fully rigged 3-D characters. The characters were designed and modeled by SJSU students and are being rigged by a group of graduate students from Texas A&M with input and feedback from the SJSU animators. Classes are taught virtually using Skype, while blogs and Google Docs are used to keep information flowing between all involved. The group makes use of widely available software to connect creative minds with the goal of generating memorable characters for use by animation students at both universities. Professor Coelho notes that this project “is a way to explore a new model of a virtual classroom, which we hope will benefit students across both campuses.”