Vanessa B. Cruz, University of North Florida

This poster explains and explores the experiences brought about when two colleagues began to discuss the differences between Fine Art and Design. My colleague, Sheila Goloborotko and I wanted to ask our selves where does one begin and the other end?  We know that our students have two very different expected outcomes when creating work. One side looks to create conversations between its viewers, and the other wants the idea specifically and clearly communicated at first glance. However the visuals of both solutions can end up being similar to one another, so why this distance between our students? We thought to place ourselves in our own experiment: to try on one another’s medium. To learn how to express ourselves in an unfamiliar medium. As anyone who has experienced when learning another language, the same was true in the other’s medium- some of the conversation got lost in translation. As we stumbled over each other trying to learn and adapt to the fluency level of our partner, we learned much about each other’s talents, gifts of teaching, as well as what our students may feel when entering in our classroom.

The process of Printmaking and Motion Design have many similarities. Both require a very specific processes in order to create a final piece, take days to create, and both require great attention to detail. However, there is a huge disconnect in that one is a static piece of visual art and the other exists in a purely digital format, existing for a specific amount of time. It was fascinating to see the Printmaker focus on her mark making while the Motion Designer made those marks come to life. As I was taught some fundamentals of mono printing, I began making cycles immediately thinking how it would translate into time-based media. While my colleague, was fascinated in exploring all the ways to make a single image move and evolve.

The result of this collaboration resulted in a short film titled: Call and Response. The film was debuted at the 2016 Southern Graphics Council International conference in a peer-reviewed film festival curated by renown filmmakers Barbara Tetenbaum and Marilyn Zornado at the White Box Gallery in Portland, OR. This experience served as an explosive catalyst for future course development. A cross-boundaries course is currently being developed for graphic design and printmaking students, in which graphic design students will learn the traditional meaning of printing in CMYK through silkscreen, and printmaking students will get to experience translating their work into motion graphic pieces. As our students advance, they need to be challenged to redefine their relationship to the respective disciplines. Artistic literacy is increasingly necessary to understand the implications of our radically changing environments, and for students, engaging in the aesthetics of other disciplines can facilitate this critical dialog.



Vanessa B. Cruz received the prestigious Fulbright Award twice: first as a Scholar Award in 2012 in Media Arts, where she lived in Dublin, Ireland working with the National College of Art and Design, and gathering research for her latest projects: RUIN and Pub Stories, and second as a Specialist Award in 2014, teaching MFA and BFA students at the FachhochschuleSt. Pölten, in St. Pölten Austria. She attended The California Institute of the Arts in Valencia, CA, where she earned her MFA in Experimental Animation and holds a BFA in Film/ Video/ Animation from the Rhode Island School of Design. In 2005 she joined the University of North Florida faculty after working in the animation industry for over ten years.