What Do You Mean, the Arts Department Got New Tech?
After months of waiting, the Media Arts department of the Creative Arts, Literature, and Languages program have been able to fully move into their new facilities. These new facilities mark the first time that the Media Arts department has had a space solely dedicated to itself. This has many advantages to both teachers and students. The teachers are in closer proximity to each other as well, as the lab technicians, making for an easier time for all.
Located on the second floor of the Herzberg building, the new labs are equipped with new Apple computers as well as projectors and display areas that are detrimental to the courses offered there. There is also a photography studio that did not previously exist in the old photography department. This allows the students access to a controlled environment for their projects.
Along with the new digital labs, a new darkroom has been set up as well. I had a chance to interview one of the photography teachers, Illiria Bicovnik Carnevale, about the new darkroom. “We fought to keep the old one when most schools were getting rid of theirs. Surprisingly we were given this new one with new enlargers, a computer, and a scanner, making the link between analogue and digital so much easier for our students.”
The new labs have impressed students as well. The larger classrooms and work spaces will add to the learning experience as well as the overall environment of the labs. The old labs were smaller and crowded; the new labs offer a spacious alternative.
The filmmaking lab has a sound proof room which makes capturing sounds and filming easier. “Last semester we were working on our soundtrack and my friends had to go to the girls’ bathroom to find a quiet space,” media student Josh Fagen said when asked to compare the new labs to the old ones. With the new labs, trips to record in the bathroom will be a thing of the past.
The investment by the college also means a lot to the students and teachers. It shows us that while we may be an art program, we are still worth funding.
The new labs have only been open for a little while, and all the kinks have yet to be worked out. There are cabinets that need to be moved, and some small pieces of hardware that still need to be installed. The kinks will take time to work out, as will getting used to working in a new area, but the teachers and students are eager to get to work.
Some of the courses taking place in the new labs have been modified slightly to fit the new programming, but the new labs themselves have not prompted a total overhaul of the existing courses.
Not all the courses in Media Arts are located in the new labs. The animation course still runs out of the first floor of Casgrain, and the TV lab is still open in the basement of Casgrain