CalArts: Student Work for Redcat

CalArts students in David Vegezzi’s Advanced Motion Workshop produced short animation pieces to be shown in the lobby of CalArts’ Redcat theater.


There’s some interesting stuff in there, but I’m especially fond of the first piece. It has an effortless Dada quality to it that’s fairly hard to pull off, despite being totally nonsensical.

About the author

Justin Cone

Together with Carlos El Asmar, Justin co-founded Motionographer, F5 and The Motion Awards. He currently lives in Austin, Texas with is wife, son and fluffball of a dog. Before taking on Motionographer full-time, Justin worked in various capacities at Psyop, NBC-Universal, Apple, Adobe and SCAD.



Last time I checked, concept and nonsense weren’t the same thing

Justin Cone

Oh, sounds like I touched a nerve. ;-)

Fred Camino

what if the concepet is nonsense? what if it isn’t? nothing makes much sense about nonsense so why bother trying to make sense of it?


Haha… spoken like a true Dadaist.

Seriously: nothing is wrong with nonsense. My comment wasn’t a put-down of any sort.


loooooove it! :D


The last piece is wonderful.

TJ Welch

Such a great idea… i like almost all of the pieces a lot. FYI. The Bird’s name is Clancy in the last piece.
He’s available for additonal shoots if you need him. ;-)
Good job people. Lauren… you rock.


not impressed… i like nonsensical stuff but this wasnt worth front page.


“front page”

Someone’s been spending time on Digg.


I do agree some of the pieces are worth the experimental exploration, but I would never categorize this with the Dada label. I would barely give it the “advanced” motion label.

Dadaism was an amazing genre of art that was created from desperate times, times of poverty, times of rebellion which then created an outlet for the artist to express their emotions. From this emotion, the art that was created had a since of chaos but amazing harmony at the same time… and incredibly smart to boot.



Dadaism was escapist self-indulgent bullshit that openly and admittedly bit off of everything that the Futurists did.

But your opinion’s cool too.


Why do so many people pretend to know more than they actually do?


The neurological basis for pretending to know more than one actually does is truly fascinating. Because of an influx of type B neurotransmitters at 7A receptors, certain delusional behavioral states become much more likely, including the belief that one really understands something about neurophysiology. This phenomenon is precipitated by habitual egoistic activity, such as contributing to a blog or even leaving comments on a blog. The only known remedy for this condition is regular doses of intrapersonal epidermal contact, preferably with a cohort familiar to the afflicted individual.


You all heard Justin, go out and hire some hookers to touch you!

(Uh, I think thats what he said.)


who gives a shit, it’s art. It looks cool, it is cool, but it’s not gonna cure cancer, and no one’s gonna “win” this argument. Either like it or don’t, but why waste your time debating its true relation to dadaism…….
Since defining Dadaism seems slightly difficult, why don’t you define “advanced” motion? Anyway, i thought it was one of the more interesting things i’ve seen in a while.


Well, having teached motion classes before, I guess my frustration lies in instructors giving assignments that are very arbitrary and really have no place in this industry. I’m not saying exploration is a bad thing, every student needs to explore, but, one can explore and create something that will help them direct their focus on real world projects. Of course I’m basing this off the fact that it’s a “advanced” class.

I can’t tell you how many students that I know, graduated with a gigantic loan and not even a reel to help them in the real world.

But, if I threw all that out the window, I would agree with Jay, it’s fun, it’s art, some of the pieces are really well done.

Lastly, I’m definitely not saying I know everything, that is retarded. I disagree once with Justin and he takes it as a personal attack. Lighten up, I was simply stating this work does not feel “dada” like.


Aw c’mon, I didn’t take it personally. I wouldn’t have joked about it so much if I did. :-) If you read my “neurophysioloy” comment carefully, you’ll see that I’m poking as much fun at myself as I am anyone else.

I just think it’s hilarious that so many of these comments have to do with one poorly chosen adjective that’s likely the result of me taking a contemporary art class right now.


I’d just like to make a comment in regards to the “advanced” label for the class. I was a student in this workshop, and I think it helps to know that CalArts is very much a concept driven ART school, and not a trade school. There are hundreds of places in this country where you can go to learn how to make a 3d stroke crawl around some text or whatever you like, but what’s attractive (to some) about this school is it encourages risk-taking and creativity more than anything. For me that kind of education has more lasting power than spending my tuition learning a program that will be obsolete by the time I finish paying off those giant loans. Just ask the optical printing masters that teach here! Also, this was not a technical workshop. Every week we came in and showed our progress and discussed it as a class, from storyboarding to final sound. This isn’t in defense of any critique that has been made, but maybe just some insight into the class and the school. Thanks!


Very nicely put. And reading your comment made me ultra-sensitive to my use of quotes in the name of Prof. Vegezzi’s class, which look a little ironic (even though I didn’ mean for them to be at all). I’m removing them.


By no means did I make reference to going to a trade school. I mentioned there are teaching methods where you can be both practical and explore theory. Trust me, this debate can go on forever, it’s just like the debate of calArts vs. Art Center, we don’t even want to open that door.

I know cal arts extremely well, I know many students and I know a lot of the design instructors. I will say, students that attend Cal Arts have to be extremely motivated in order for that program to successfully work and you do sound like one of them. As long as you know what to expect while you are there and what to expect when you graduate. I know many that didn’t do their research before going and when they graduated, they walked away with nothing tangible, a lot of knowledge…YES, but nothing tangible. Yes, that is their own fault for not doing the proper research!

In today’s industry, it’s imperative that you have something, there is just too much competition. So, to go back to what I was saying, I do believe you can teach theory and be practical at the same time.

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