June 24, 2011 10:43:46 AM PDT
I went to CSSSA! Let me see if I can answer for you. I'll run down the classes the best I can. My memory is a little shoddy. You will be doing a LOT of figure drawing. Here, I just found a schedule from my second week at CSSSA. I'll type it up so you can see what it'll be like. I'll explain it all after each day. Your animation concentration will be split into four sections of people, and you'll all switch between classes, so we'll pretend you're in group A
I just found my CSSSA week 2 schedue. Here's what it says:
9-11:30 life drawing with Steeve
12:30-1:30 Bijou screening
1:30-4:00 animation class
4:15-5:15 TA presentation
6:00-10:00 Open lab
Live drawing classes with Steeve focus on cartooning and relating figure drawing to the actual act of animating. The Bijou is a small theater near the animation wing, where they'd show us short animated clips. A lot of these clips are old or experimental. Some you will like, and some you will think are weird. In animation class we would normally start on a project. We did abstract animation, made a stop motion character, did a continuous group animation, a dance animation, and a few others.
A TA presentation would be one of the Animation teachers talking about theirs specialty in animation. Sound, 3-D effects, paper cut-outs, or something like that.
Open lab is time for you to work on your own on your projects.
9-4: LA Zoo drawing field trip.
Trip to draw animals at the zoo!
9:30-11:30: animation class
12:30-1:30 Bijou Screening
1:30-4:00 Life drawing with Johnny
4:15-5:15 sound design
6:00-10:00: open lab
acting----I'm not so sure what that was, probably just a little improv session, or a talk about acting in animation. I don't remember, really! Figure drawing with Johnny focuses on developing style, loosening up, and being expressive with your art. Sound design is what it sounds like. A lecture on sound design.
9-11:30: animation class
12:30-1:30: Bijou screening
l:30-4:30: life drawing with steeve
6:00-10:00 Open lab
9-11:30 animation class
12:30-1:30: Bijou screening
1:30-4:00: life drawing with Steeve
10:0-12:00: Visiting Artists: Veronica Hwang+ Bryan Garver
2:00-3:00: Animation Gallery opening
6:00-10:00: Open Lab
we had visiting guests quite often. Sometimes they had worked on things you were familiar with, and sometimes they had not, but all were interesting to listen to. In this case, Veronica had worked as a puppet fabricator on Robot chicken and Morel Orel, and Brian had worked on Coraline, Robot chicken, the PJ's, and some others. This was right when Coraline was coming out on DVD, so the craze for it was going on. I noticed they bring in a lot of guests who have worked on stuff popular at the time. They had Pen Ward come in, and this was just before Adventure time had premiered, but we all knew the short online, and a few other people who had worked on Coraline. The animation gallery was a gallery of student work for all of CSSSA to see what the animation department was doing. Our flip books and figure drawings and paper-cut-out puppets were all on display. That stayed up for a few days.
10-12 Open lab
1-5 Open lab
6-10 open lab
Sunday was kind of a rest day. We didn't have classes, but we were still working on our projects.
So that's a week of CSSSA! If it's the same as it was when I was there, all your weeks should be fairly similar to that. The class that was most helpful to me personally was probably Johnny's figure drawing class. That really effected my figure drawing portfolio when applying for CalArts, and I got in, so I guess it worked!
to answer some of your other questions:
The dorms are nice. If you attend you will most likely living in a room with two other people. The room you are living in will connected to another room by means of your bathroom. So you'll be living in a suite of about six girls, but I never found all of us sharing one bathroom to be a problem. They do certainly feed you. I think you get three meals a day. (I don't remember perfectly, maybe you only got two on Sunday or something, but I'm not sure). I would bring some costume stuff with you. Anything you have that you think might be versatile. They have themed parties at CSSSA, and there's one project where costume stuff will be useful. You can get your full 8 hours every night if you want. It really depends on how much work you want to put into each project, and how much procrastinating you'll do. You'll be given a sketchbook at the beginning of the session, and you'll be expected to have filled it up by the end of the four weeks. so sketch all the time! Take notes on everything in there!
Do's and don'ts? Let's see.
DO make lots of new friends. And you will. No probs.
DON'T get too caught up in hanging that you forgo your work!
DO get inspired by the awesome artists around you.
DON'T be too intimidated by them. Don't get down on your self if you don't think you draw as well as they do. they can do things you can't do yet, and you can do things they can't do yet. Uphold and work with your own strengths, or you'll come back from CSSSA majorly depressed.
DO order pizza with your friends sometime! You deserve it!
DO bring your swim suit! Fun at the pool!
DO have spending money on you at all time. There always CalArtsians hanging around the always of the dorms and school selling old clothes, CDs and accessories. Sometimes the stuff is really cool and cheap!
DON'T go too crazy with the spending, though! It's easy to forget how much money you've spent and what you have left. Especially if you're out of state and have to fly back and really need that last $50 to ship your stuff back.
Uh, that's all I can think of right now. Let me know if you have any other questions, though, and I'll do my best to answer!