Monthly Archives: January 2009

Why I’m Coming: Kate Shaw

kate_shaw1I’m coming because creativity and collaboration are central to what we do at Lucasfilm, but the more we work at it, the more we realize there is to learn.  I’m coming to C2 because it will provide me with the a unique opportunity to not only reflect back on what we do here, but also learn from others who are working in a different but familiar environment.

I’ll be leading the “C2 clinics” at the retreat, based on my experience as Director of Training for Lucasfilm.  Here’s a bit more on what I do and the experience I’ll be bringing to the clinics:

I oversee training and education for artists and engineers working in visual effects, games, and animation at Industrial Light + Magic, LucasArts, Lucasfilm Animation, and Lucasfilm Animation Singapore. This includes:

  • New hire training in proprietary tools and pipelines for artists entering production;
  • Production-driven training in proprietary and vendor tools;
  • Cross-training to enable artists to transfer to or better understand nearby disciplines;
  • The Jedi Masters Program, an extensive training and education program in Singapore to identify and develop high-potential regional talent for our Singapore studio;
  • Professional enrichment courses, such as story development, acting, sculpting, lifedrawing, photography, cinematography, and improvisation for all members of the company;
  • Knowledge sharing, ranging from small discipline-specific practice groups to company-wide presentations on recent tools and techniques, which are designed to explore the opportunities in the intersection of visual effects, animation, and games;
  • Design and development of an extensive on-line repository for technical documentation;
  • High school outreach programs, delivered in collaboration with the San Francisco Film Society’s Education Program, to demonstrate for Bay Area high school students the intersection of art and science in the entertainment industry;
  • Lucasfilm’s internal Creative Collaboration Forum, which shares ideas and best practices regarding the development of new content; and
  • The Lucasfilm Speaker Series, a forum which features luminaries from the worlds of art, science, entertainment, design, and popular culture.  This season’s guests have included David Fincher, Darren Aronofsky, Seth Green, Vincent Laforet, Carolyn Porco, Salman Rushdie, Toshio Iwai, and Paul Ekman.
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Why I’m coming: Darcie Fohrman

immersed in art
immersed in art – Blue Tree by Claude Cormier

I’m thrilled that we are doing this again.  Having co-organized two previous NAME Retreats looking at models of Creativity and Collaboration from outside the museum field, I have experienced the value of taking time out from the daily grind to reflect and regenerate with colleagues. If you attended the 1980’s Boulder Retreat or the one in Tucson in the 1990’s, I hope you will let us know how the experience affected you. Once again, I relish the opportunity to commune with experienced exhibition colleagues from all types of museums to discuss, compare, contrast and experience ways that we try to maintain creativity while collaborating across our personal differences. We learn techniques from each other and the “outsiders” we’ve invited ways to keep the creative spark alive during complex collaborative projects.

In my projects I’m looking for ways for visitors to be participants in the collaboration – contributing during exhibition planning and in the exhibition space. My experiences at Burning Man http://www.burningman.com/ show me that collaboration, creativity and participation are possible at a huge scale. I’m really looking forward to finding out from Harley Dubois how they work together to perpetuate their creative vision year after year.

On the other end of the budget spectrum how does Lucas Films/ILM inspire creativity in their staff under the shadow of the master George? And how do they manage communications and collaboration over so many divisions? I’m thrilled that we will get the inside scoop with Kate Shaw. This is bound to help me improve communications with my clients.

My knowledge of the game world is weak and I know that Ken Eklund’s experience collaborating with gamers around the world will open me up to a whole new way of looking at creativity, collaboration, and play. I never underestimate the value of play in exhibitions.

We are so lucky to get to create with Karen and Mike, from the Exploratorium. My world view is more of an observer than a participant. Yet I know I (and our visitors) only truly learn, feel, and remember when we participate. I’m excited to see how their techniques encourage creativity and collaboration.

Thanks to many of you for suggesting outsiders for the Retreat. Now that they’re in place, the planning team (Jenny Sayre, Nina, Eric, Dean and Greg from AAM and I) are seeking your collaboration in creating a valuable experience for us all. Why do you want to come? What are you’re issues? What do you want to experience at this immersive two and a half day retreat? I’m looking forward to working and playing with you.

until C2 – darcie