Chris Todd

Residential Faculty - Digital Art and Design

Art

Art

Office: AC 30 - Room: 4

480-461-7716

Office Hours

MondayTuesdayWednesdayThursdayFriday
11:00 AM - 12:00 PM11:00 AM - 12:00 PM   

Online

Online

Online

Online

Online

By appointmentBy appointmentBy appointmentBy appointmentBy appointment

Can meet online via webchat, or in person by appointment most times M-F.

Profile

Art + Design Approach

I am an alchemist at work in the Sonoran desert. My conceptually-driven 'pataphysical projects stem from technocultural analysis, demonic possession and Dissociative Trance Disorder, spiritual / ontological / phenomenological quest, suicidal ideation, and hyperactive media immersion. My critical design processes involve a heavy dose of research, iterative creative tinkering, and experimentation and dabbling in areas at the edges of my cognitive and bodily limits. The aesthetics of my work reflect a long standing interest in horror and science fiction. Additionally, as an american tagged as "Generation X" growing up, my pop cultural knowledge is rooted in skateboarding, punk rock, hip hop, underground / experimental art + design / comics / film / video / animation, and video games. My work has been shown in a variety of exhibition spaces, museums, public / commercial sites, and publications. I have done freelance and studio based media design projects for over 20 years. I have published research with psychologists, scientists, and engineers involving optical dynamics and visual perception. I have received numerous grants and awards in the fields of art, computer graphics, and education. The focus of my current work has moved past gallery or museum-oriented Art "objects and images" (Art games) towards the field of game and interactive design (art of games), with a particular interest in the therapeutic value and critical / exploratory capacities of the form. I also enjoy drawing, playing with algorithms, making music, and building instruments. 

Teaching Approach

My job is to equip students with the best knowledge, tools, and savvy that I can possibly give them. My teaching strategy is simple: to structure generous, low-risk learning environments where creativity is a must, play is encouraged, critical thinking is enhanced, collaborative problem solving is fundamental, and technical wizardry occurs as a byproduct of solid creative and conceptual ideas. I view my classroom as being similar to the "practice spaces" that musicians play in: students are encouraged to "jam" with their classmates and to test out their ideas through various art and design processes with a low fear of failure. I also have my students work on projects involving non profit agencies from around the community to help build their resumes, to learn how to network and deal professionally with clients, and to gain a sense of the potential impacts one can make on the world as an artist or designer. As automation and artificial intelligence continue to render technical software processes obsolete, my focus is to try to develop qualities in my students that are not easily duplicated by intelligent machines (such as rational compassion, media literacy, critical intelligence, and creativity). The projects in my classes are typically geared towards developing occupationally relevant software methods, but also mix in bits and pieces of media theory, art and design history, critical/creative idea development, and high level design thinking. Technical things that I teach and learn include: most apps in the Adobe Suite and their free or cheap counterparts, Cycling '74 Max, Ableton Live and other DAWs, various 3D apps, Unity, Processing, Arduino, and Javascript. I am currently developing a textbook focused building a fundamental yet pliable set of digital skills and creative problem solving techniques. I am also decent with power tools and hazardous materials. 

Classes Taught

Fall 2022

ART169 2D Media Design 3 Credits
Generation of two-dimensional (2D) images, designs, and media using digital and traditional methods of visual problem solving. Understanding digital and design-based techniques and workflows.
A grade of C or better required in all Prerequisites. Prerequisites or Corequisites: ART100 or permission of Instructor.
ART169 is required for the Certificate of Completion in Digital Arts: Web Design, Digital Illustration and Graphic Design. It is also required for the following tracks in the AAS Digital Arts Degree Web Design, Digital Illustration and Graphic Design. Software used: Adobe Illustrator Due to COVID related campus lab closures, students will be provided an Adobe Creative Cloud account tied to their MEID username, for home use on PC or Mac computers (smartphone or tablet mobile devices are not supported) during the duration of this course. Students should review the minimum configuration requirements to run Adobe CC on their personal device at: https://helpx.adobe.com/creative-cloud/system-requirements.html. Your instructor will provide login directions on the first day of class.
Section Location Delivery Dates Days Times Availability
28296
Dobson Campus
Hybrid
Lecture/Lab
08/22/2022 - 12/16/2022
Mo
12:30 PM - 3:15 PM

Closed

ART178 Digital Arts Studies 3 Credits
Designed for broad overview of the digital arts. Experience in digital based media, creative problem solving, design and aesthetics.
Prerequisites: A grade of C or better in ART100 or permission of Instructor.
ART202 is required for majors in the AAS in Digital Arts. Due to COVID related campus lab closures, students will be provided an Adobe Creative Cloud account tied to their MEID username, for home use on PC or Mac computers (smartphone or tablet mobile devices are not supported) during the duration of this course. Students should review the minimum configuration requirements to run Adobe CC on their personal device at: https://helpx.adobe.com/creative-cloud/system-requirements.html. Your instructor will provide login directions on the first day of class.
Section Location Delivery Dates Days Times Availability
28327
Dobson Campus
Hybrid
Lecture/Lab
08/23/2022 - 12/16/2022
Tu
12:30 PM - 3:15 PM

Class Started

Notes: Hybrid classes include face-to-face format on campus at the time listed in the class schedule. The other part will be held online either without a set time to attend or a Live Online session. Students enrolling in a hybrid class acknowledge they already possess the skills described in the Minimum Computer and Technology Requirements at https://www.mesacc.edu/online/get-started for additional information.

Class 28327 Students may contact instructor at: eddie.webb@mesacc.edu

36737
Online Course
Online (On Your Time)
Lecture/Lab
08/22/2022 - 12/16/2022

Closed

Notes: This is an Online class that does not meet at specific class times. Students are required to have access to a computer or mobile device, and Internet access, unless otherwise specified. Before enrolling in their first online class at MCC, students need to view the online orientation and complete the readiness survey on https://www.mesacc.edu/online/get-started for additional information.

Class 36737 Students may contact instructor at: ron.rangel@mesacc.edu

ART183 Digital Graphic Arts I 3 Credits
Graphic design use in microcomputer; black and white graphics, standard and color brushes, lines, shapes, area fills and fonts. Application to illustration, advertising graphics, typography, and video interaction.
A grade of C or better required in all Prerequisites. Prerequisites or Corequisites: ART100 or permission of Instructor.
ART183 is required for the Certificate of Completion in Digital Arts: Web Design and Graphic Design. It is also required for the following tracks in the AAS Digital Arts degree: Web Design and Graphic Design. Software used: Adobe InDesign. Due to COVID related campus lab closures, students will be provided an Adobe Creative Cloud account tied to their MEID username, for home use on PC or Mac computers (smartphone or tablet mobile devices are not supported) during the duration of this course. Students should review the minimum configuration requirements to run Adobe CC on their personal device at: https://helpx.adobe.com/creative-cloud/system-requirements.html. Your instructor will provide login directions on the first day of class.
Section Location Delivery Dates Days Times Availability
28317
Online Course
Online (On Your Time)
Lecture/Lab
08/22/2022 - 12/16/2022

Class Started

Notes: This is an Online class that does not meet at specific class times. Students are required to have access to a computer or mobile device, and Internet access, unless otherwise specified. Before enrolling in their first online class at MCC, students need to view the online orientation and complete the readiness survey on https://www.mesacc.edu/online/get-started for additional information.

Class 28317 Students may contact instructor at: nicholas.gratzl@mesacc.edu

Class 28317 This class requires the following: Subscription to Adobe Creative Cloud Graphics Tablet: Wacom entry level or similar required Computer/laptop with the following Minimum system requirements: PC - Intel® Pentium® 4 or AMD Athlon® 64 processor - Microsoft Windows 7 (64-bit) with Service Pack 1 or Windows 10* (64-bit) - 4 GB of RAM (16 GB recommended) Mac - Multicore Intel processor - macOS version 10.15 (Catalina), macOS version 10.14 (Mojave), and macOS version 10.13 (High Sierra) - 4 GB of RAM (16 GB recommended)

Degrees & Awards

MFA in Intermedia, Arizona State University

BFA in Digital Art, Central Washington University

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