Immersive, collaborative and designed to unlock your creativity—for over 130 years Cogswell has been helping people turn their passion into their professions. Today, it’s your turn. Explore our program offerings to help you develop the skills you need for the job you’ll love.
Pairing business, technology and creativity, our students come to the heart of Silicon Valley to deepen and grow their passions. The result? A skilled and dynamic community with a social life that is surprisingly robust.
3D Modeling Concentration
3D Animation Design Concentration
Technical Art Concentration
B.A. Digital Art and Animation:
Remedial classes are required when a placement test is not passed.
Second Academic Year (Fall, Spring, and Summer)
Third Academic Year (Fall, Spring, and Summer)
Students should consult with their faculty adviser or staff adviser when selecting or registering for any general education or elective course to ensure that the course meets the requirements of the program.
Intermediate Algebra including exponents and polynomials, equations and systems of equations in one and two variables, functions and graphs, and exponential and logarithmic functions.
Credit earned does not count towards a degree.
Extensive written work stressing correct spelling, accurate sentence structure, and logical paragraph development.
Credit earned does not count toward a degree.
Students are introduced to the principles of two-dimensional image making with an emphasis on visual communication. They utilize the elements and principles of design while working with traditional and digital media. Students will analyze the form and function of design, various principles of perception and Gestalt theory. The importance of presentation and craftsmanship is emphasized.
This course introduces the fundamentals of drawing. Students learn basic skills and techniques for drawing from direct observation using subjects such as still life, landscape and architecture. Perceptual skills and the use of line, shade, perspective, and composition are developed. Analysis of drawings, critiques and classroom discussions build vocabulary and enrich the students' understanding of drawing.
This course develops written communication and critical thinking skills. It explores techniques and practices of expository and argumentative writing. Students learn to generate ideas for writing based on readings, learn to organize and support their ideas, and learn to apply techniques of revision to produce polished, professional work. Content, format and correct grammatical structures are emphasized.
Prerequisite: Passing grade on English Placement Test or Grammar and Composition
This course provides a broad introduction to the nature, vocabulary, media, and historical development of the visual arts. Major categories are architecture, sculpture, painting, and printmaking. Exposure to major art works in Western tradition from Paleolithic times to present. Students develop criteria for answering the question "what is art?"
Principles and applications of inequalities, functions and graphs, polynomials and rational functions, systems of equations and inequalities, matrices and determinants. Analytic geometry including conic sections. Trigonometric functions, identities, equations, inverse functions, trigonometric applications including vector definition, operations, and dot product. Students are introduced to the basic concepts for computer graphics.
Prerequisite: Passing grade on Math Placement Exam or Intermediate Algebra
This course is an introduction to color theory. Color properties and color relationships are studied through formal exercises and creative thinking. Additive and subtractive color principles are addressed using a variety of media. Students build a vocabulary for analyzing and identifying color phenomena. Color use in a variety of fields are examined to understand the application of color theory.
Prerequisite: 2D Design I
This course explores advanced image processing using image editing software and graphics tablets. Coursework addresses image creation and manipulation, color and contrast adjustment, compositing, image matching, and non-destructive editing techniques. An emphasis is placed on creating photorealistic illusions.
Students will study life-drawing from unclothed models. The course addresses the structure and anatomy of the human form, proportion, volumes, light and shade. Students will develop a basic understanding of the figure in motion. Drawing skills developed in previous courses are further refined by using a variety of drawing media.
In-depth study of perspective and the application of light and dark values to geometric forms to convey a sense of form. Students learn to create core shadows and shadow projections to achieve believable grounding in space and they examine the color of shadow and light. Rapid visualization techniques are used to create the desired shape and material finish.
Explores three-dimensional form. Emphasizes concept development, expression, spatial concepts, and comprehension of 3D space. Students learn techniques and tools used to create 3D artworks. Students work in traditional clay media.
Prerequisite: Figure Drawing I
Creation of 3D organic and industrial models using one or more software modeling packages. Topics include modeling construction using polygon and/or spline-based techniques, texture mapping, lighting, shading, and rendering. Students apply these techniques to the creation of 3D models.
This course serves as an introduction to traditional photographic image making with the addition of a digital perspective. Through a combination of lectures, demonstrations, assignments and critiques students learn the technical issues of photography and learn to control the photographic medium. Students examine various photographic approaches and philosophies to explore how photographic imagery can be used for personal artistic expression.
Students are introduced to World Wide Web concepts, visual and technical web site design, information management and delivery. Covering topics including, building content for the web, HTML, preparation of graphics for the web, Cascading Style Sheets (CSS), information architecture, interface design students practice basic principles of interactivity. Students create, publish, and maintain a multipage interactive website.
Introduces the principles of animation drawing: gesture, simplified geometric construction for anatomy, technique to capture movement and weight. Students develop the graphic language to maximize expression and movement for animation and learn methods for using line to convey overlap, form, torque/compression, and the line of action.
Basic concepts of digital video editing, theory and techniques of motion picture editing, post- production methods, media file management, sound editing, titling, and effects. Students are introduced to graphic matching, rhythmic editing, coverage, continuity, and montage editing. Uses video editing software.
Students develop entrepreneurial and managerial skills for the global dynamic business environment. Students explore functional areas in business making decisions on feasibility, finance, operations, marketing, recruitment, execution and pitching among other topics.
Students gain a basic understanding of U.S. intellectual property law as it applies to business. This course provides students with a fundamental framework for analyzing and understanding issues connected to intellectual property including copyright, patent and trademark law.
Students learn the discipline of project management. Students will become fluent in project management tools through the creation and management of timetables, schedules, project completion, progress tracking and results evaluation.
Prerequisite: English Composition
A collaborative, interdisciplinary, practical project. May be a live project with real-life client(s) and strict deadlines. Students work on one or two full-cycle audiovisual productions in an visual production team, where students will be required to fulfill various roles including, but not limited to: Storyboard Artist, Concept Designer, Texture Artist, 3D Modeler, 3D Animator, 2D Motion Graphics Artist, 2D Animator, Compositor, Video Editor, Colorist and Project Manager.
Full-cycle production may include client meetings, concept development, production, postproduction and delivery of final product. The lecture part of the course will include client communications, team management, and communication principles, the EER (Effective, Efficient, Relevant) approach and file management practices. The deliverables of the course can be integrated into individual student portfolios.
Prerequisite: Faculty Approval
This class is a practical introduction to programming using the Python programming language. Topics include the concepts of declarative (“what”) versus imperative (“how”) programming, problem breakdown, and solution techniques. Basic subjects and terms in computer science will be introduced, such as data structures, efficiency of a program and object oriented programming. Emphasis is put on the syntax of the programming language, and the process of starting with a problem and writing a program to solve it. Students will implement several small programming projects during the course.
This course in painting emphasizes perception development through specific painting exercises. Students will develop an orderly approach and disciplined perception. Students learn about painting materials and their specific uses. This course increases the student’s understanding of color theory.
Prerequisite: Color Theory and Sketching
A continuation of Figure Drawing I. Life Drawing from unclothed models. Study of proportion, volumes, light and shade, and simple anatomy of the human form.
This course is designed to present the student with the fundamentals of traditional illustration for professional application. Primarily, traditional painting media are used. The course will cover illustration theory but will emphasize studio practice and skill development.
Prerequisite: Color Theory and Figure Drawing I
This course involves the use of layering color maps on digital surfaces to create specific material shaders. Texture map painting in 2 D is covered extensively. Analysis through physical observation on the light gathering of surfaces teaches students how to digitally reproduce any material. Students learn UV texture layout and projection techniques for shader creation. Procedural versus painted shader maps are explored along with complex layering. Emphasis is spent on specular, diffuse, color, bump, displacement and normal mapping to achieve the desired result.
Prerequisite: Introduction to 3D Modeling
This class focuses on principles of Storytelling in a visual medium and concentrates on film or editorial boards used to pre-visualize animation or live action film. Topics include scale and camera angle, camera movement, character staging, composition and basic editing processes. Students pitch their ides in class and get feedback on projects that include dialogue and action sequences from selected scripts as well as building animatics and story reels.
Prerequisite: Figure Drawing I and Perspective and Rendering
The course in painting emphasizes perception development through specific digital painting exercises to develop an orderly approach. Students learn about painting textures for shaders and fully realized scenes. Students increase their understanding of color theory through visual development and matte painting.
Prerequisite: Digital Imaging Concepts
Students explore personal style in illustration. Course focuses on development of a cohesive body of work. Symbolic and narrative concept development is central. Various traditional media and digital applications will be used.
Prerequisite: Illustration I
Portfolio 1 is the preparatory class for Portfolio 2, the final element in the DAA program. Students will use their skills in traditional and digital painting, texturing and lighting of 3D models, and portfolio preparation to scope and design a finished portfolio that demonstrates their abilities in Entertainment Design. The portfolio will have a recognizable aesthetic and professional presentation quality.
Prerequisite: Senior Status
Students work in teams to create a short animated film. Focus is on working as effective team while delivering individual specialized skills, the animation pipeline, project management, and communication skills are covered in depth. Students may enter as any of the following, concept artist, modeler, rigger, animator, technical director, and compositor. Training in all of these fields is comprehensive and will prepare student for entry into the job market.
Explores portrait sculpture for character development. Emotive qualities of human expression using plastine. Students focus on the anatomy of the head and neck as critical to the development of emotionally convincing characters.
Prerequisite: Introduction to Sculpture
Introduces hard and organic surface modeling pertaining to control and refinement of form. Reproduction of machine made forms and detailed organic shapes. Advanced texturing for enhancement of models. Students apply these techniques to develop 3D models.
This course is designed to develop the student's understanding of the gestural, constructive and anatomical structures of the figure- applying the knowledge to unique character and figural sculpture in traditional sculpting mediums. May be repeated once with recommendation from the instructor. Students will demonstrate advanced skills in classical clay modeling techniques by building clay figures.
This course focuses on development and design practices used by concept designers. Students apply professional marker and/or CG techniques and media as an approach to concept drawings and renderings.
Portfolio 2 is the final element in the DAA program. Students will use their skills in traditional and digital painting, texturing and lighting of 3D models, and portfolio preparation to create a finished portfolio that demonstrated their abilities in Entertainment Design. The portfolio will have a recognizable aesthetic and professional presentation quality.
Prerequisite: Entertainment Design Portfolio I
Academic internships are online three-credit classes that run concurrently with external work-based experiential learning. As a faculty run course, students are required to complete academic assignments specifically designed to enhance the learning experience through in-depth reflection and critical analysis of the work environment. Students are expected to log on to canvas and/or meet weekly to complete assigned activities and interact with faculty assigned to the course. Along with the faculty interaction and assignments students are required to complete 135 hours contact hours with the internship site.
Prerequisite: Junior Status