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2012-13 View Book vol. 2 no. 1

Sustainable Toy Design in China Designing the Freedom Memorial in Palau Furniture Made from Reclaimed Street Trees Fashion Runway Project Design>Build: Architecture/ Landscape/Interiors Installations Lowrider Bikes

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Editors in Chief

Yvette Sobky-Shaffer, Dean of Admissoins Margaret Reeve, Director of Communications

Creative Direction and Design

Anne Swett-Predock, Creative Director

Design Assistance and Production

How this book was made The clear poly envelope is recyclable, biodegradable, and compostable.

Davis Ngarupe (‘12)

Contributing Writers

John Axtell, Media Relations Manager Margaret Reeve Yvette Sobky-Shaffer Anne Swett-Predock


Kelly Akashi (’07), Kristy Campbell, Tom Carey, Jessica Fleischmann, Nicole Jenkins, Allison Knight, Ana Llorente-Thurik, Ari Marcopoulos, Wayne McCall, Anne Swett-Predock, Holly Tempo, George Widodo


Typecraft, Wood & Jones, Inc.


“Gustan” designed by Communication Arts faculty member Greg Lindy “Newsald” by Kris Sowersby

The papers for this book’s cover, insides, and insert are sustainably manufactured and recycled.

©2012 Text, illustrations, and photographs may not be reproduced or utilized in any form without the written permission of Otis College of Art and Design. Information in this publication is subject to change without notice.

Otis is training us to be superheroes and to use the skills they have taught us to solve the world’s problems. We work together and learn from each other, because we can’t save the world on our own. — Tianna Poanessa


vol. 2

Why Otis?

no. 1

Yvette Sobky-Shaffer Dean of Admissions

So when I run into that alum who is a lead designer at Mattel or when I see the Sony campaigns produced by our former workstudy student—that’s when I know that what he or she did at Otis made a difference.

and professional practice, developed time management and discipline, and learned how to be critical and solve problems. So when I run into that alum at the local grocery store who is a lead designer at Mattel or when I see the Sony campaigns produced by our former work-study student—that’s when I know that what he or she did at Otis made a difference.

I want parents to know that their son or daughter can get a job with a degree in art.

In order for me to tell you why I believe in an Otis education, you need to know a little bit about me. I am the daughter of an immigrant from Egypt, and a first generation Hungarian/ Lithuanian. When I was seventeen and considering my college options in suburban Ohio, I could not depend on my parents or a career counselor to help me sort through all of the options. My dad went to college on another continent, and my mom never completed a degree. So, what did I do? I applied to the college that the girl who sat next to me in class did. I didn’t apply for financial aid, I made all the mistakes, and were it not for a little luck and some decent grades, I would never have obtained a bachelor’s degree. In retrospect, while I do not regret the college I selected, I certainly could have done a better college search! I had been told that I was good at math and that I should do something smart people do—not be an artist. I was told that if I became an artist, I would never get a job and that I would live in my parents’ basement. I majored in what amounted to “undecided” and while I took a lot of art courses, I also took many mainstream courses that I could fall back on. When I came to Otis fifteen years ago, I was immediately impressed by the students’

work. The skills exhibited by first year Foundation students far exceeded my own, and the pieces from junior level students looked like they had been done by industry professionals. I was also struck by the level of diversity at Otis. As I walked through the halls, I was met by students from all over the US and the world—rich and poor, and of all ages. Here were students who all had one shared goal: to be professional artists and designers. In the fifteen years since Otis moved to the Goldsmith The students I Campus, we have worked with fifteen grown from 650 to years ago are now 1,200 students and professional added two buildings. artists and designers. We still maintain that ethnic and fiscal diversity, and as a first generation American, I am proud that we have developed a community of artists who can respect and learn from each other’s differences and embrace our shared values. More importantly, those students I worked with fifteen years ago are now employed as fine artists and designers. The education they received was transformative. It wasn’t just about their growth or getting a degree for the sake of having that piece of paper; here at Otis, they balanced their creative

I see myself in all of the students who apply to Otis. Each digital file is a person who wants to go to college to become an artist. I work in a profession that makes dreams come true. We want that girl who was told that she should be an engineer to know that following her heart and becoming an artist is just as smart. I want the parents of that first-generation student to know that their son or daughter can get a job with a degree in art. I want that student to know that there are choices beyond the U.S. News and World Report “Top 50 Colleges in America.” I believe in the investment and the value of an education at Otis. Otis has maintained its ethnic and fiscal diversity.

I also believe that each student deserves attention and assistance in their college search. Please feel free to reach out to us to visit, to ask questions, and to decide if Otis is the place for you, just as I found it to be the place for me.

Contents Introduction Why Otis? | Letter from the President 2 Meet Mr. Unicorn

Programs of Study Thumbs Up

3 Majors | 5 Minors 6 Liberal Arts and Sciences | 7 Foundation

10 Show Your Stuff | 12 Digital Peek 13 Books | 15 Sports and Games

How Was This Made? From the Sustainability Desk

Future Stock



Discover the secrets behind the great work


How would you envision the future?


Sustainability is the New Now


A focus on human-centered design solutions


From the Sustainability Desk

Regeneration Revolution From the Sustainability Desk

Wood for Good Feature

Otis Connects

29 Paris in Spring | 30 Toy Design in China 32 Designing the Palau Freedom Memorial



33 For the Home | 34 For Play

Preparing for Professional Life

36 Fashion Runway Project 38 Design>Build: Architecture/ Landscape/Interiors Installations


Change Agents

Art and Design in the Community


35 For the Street

Los Angeles Inspires Otis

Life After Otis

44 Creativity Is Serious Business | 45 Otis in the Biz 46 Right Out of School, Moving Up the Ladder, Running the Show

Where in the World? How to Apply

Students and Graduates from Around the Globe


42 44


53 Five Steps to a Bright Future 54 Applying Is Easy | 55 Preparing a Portfolio 56 Transfer Students | 58 AP and IB Exams 58 International Students | 59 Decisions 59 If You’ve Applied Before | 59 Other Programs 60 2012–13 Cost of Attendance | 60 Financial Aid


letter from the president

Otis College of Art and Design is ideally located in Los Angeles. Both are fertile grounds for artists, innovators, and achievers. Otis has charted the development of art and design in Los Angeles, and radiated its influence from this Southern California epicenter. At Otis, professional practices, social engagement, and the creative economy converge with new ideas, diversity, and a concern for sustainability. Otis is a forward-looking art and design college with a real-world orientation.

Realize your dreams

The future is bright for our graduates. In the twenty-first century, creativity is a force as important in shaping culture as in economic and social development. The 2011 Otis Report on the Creative Economy reveals that one of eight jobs in the Los Angeles region is supported by the arts, design, and entertainment industries, and these jobs generate a market impact of over $201 billion. Otis’ unique mix of majors offers pathways for young talents to develop their creative best while linking them to careers in this powerful creative economy, and to opportunities in bettering our world. Our alumni surveys consistently evidence the success of Otis graduates as creative professionals, and their satisfaction in college and career choices. An Otis education is an investment in your personal and professional development. I hope you will join us to realize your dreams. Samuel Hoi, President


If you’re a young doodler and tinkerer, take heart. You’re living in a career candy store, filled with cool jobs your parents and career counselors probably don’t even know exist. — Kay Hymowitz in an NPR interview with Kai Ryssdal



Meet Mr. Unicorn Cole Moss (’11) I’m the chief illustrator, primary concept developer, full-time researcher, and resident fool at Unicorn Industries/Grey Rainbow. I am working to make projects that are for adults, but can be understood by children.

Peek-a-Boo! Look for Mr. Unicorn throughout the pages of this book. He shows up in the darndest places!

Otis gave me the opportunity to explore every whim and passing fancy. It allowed me the chance to delude myself, rationalize my actual skill set, and then proceed to make things that, in their outward appearance, seem relevant to society.

Unicorn Feeding Bacon to the Pigs Published by Harper Collins, Unicorn Being a Jerk is a book of comic illustrations that document the antics of Mr. Unicorn. Available at Urban Outfitters, museum bookstores, and Amazon. See Mr. Unicorn in action at

After One E-Mail In 2011 I took a road trip through Northern California. A friend asked me what I was doing to promote my new book. One evening, tucked away in a run-down 1970s strip motel, I pulled up a few humor sites that I had initially missed and sent a few cold promotional e-mails to them. A few days later, I was standing in line at LAX heading home to Missouri when I felt a buzz in my pocket. It was a text from a friend letting me know that my book was on the front page of Reddit, a major social aggregate site. After one e-mail to a humor website, the floodgates opened. Within the week, I had over 200,000 visitors to my website, and by the end of the month, I had offers from a handful of great publishers to produce my book.

programs of study Architecture/Landscape/ Interiors

Advertising Design

The four-year BFA degree curriculum promotes flexible, adaptive, and entrepreneurial thinking.

Majors The Choice Is Yours

Digital Media

After completing First Year Foundation, students select one of eleven majors. Architecture/Landscape/ Interiors Advertising Design Digital Media Fashion Design Graphic Design Fashion Design Illustration Photography Painting Product Design Sculpture/New Genres Toy Design

Graphic Design



programs of study Photography



Sculpture/New Genres

Product Design

Toy Design

programs of study

Minors But wait, there’s more! Challenge yourself.

Art History Artists Community Teaching (ACT) Book Arts Creative Writing Cultural Studies Interdisciplinary Studies Sustainability



programs of study


Liberal Arts

Sciences A selection of course titles...

Shamanism, Art, and Sacred Spaces California Dreaming

I have experimented with learning and technology, including teaching an English class this year in the iPad. What I have learned is that the “new normal” requires adaptability, creativity, and innovation.

History of Rock and Roll Vampire Literature and Lore

New Chinese Cinema

Imagination and the Brain

Harry Potter: Literary Tradition Horror Film and Pop Culture

Virtual Worlds

The Future Is Idea-Based

Visual Culture was the first class that changed my perspective on how I see the world. I enjoyed it because I can totally relate to what I see on media every day: T.V, billboards, and magazines!

forge interdisciplinary connections

communicate complex ideas clearly

The rapid development of digital technologies has given the visual a preeminent place in our everyday lives. We live in an intensely visualized world where things seem to be in constant flux; artists and designers are becoming the idea makers and drivers. They create or influence what we see, hear, and think. And with that power comes a need for social awareness and responsibility. Getting a job is important—getting a job that you love, where you are not bored but always invigorated is more important, and realizing that you can create new ideas and use your creativity to change and better things will probably lead to the most rewarding life you can ask for. We are faced with daunting wicked problems but you can use your creativity to imagine and create better possible futures, and help transform our world. —Debra Ballard, Chair, Liberal Arts and Sciences

develop information literacy skills



I learned things I never thought I’d have an opportunity to; I tried things that I never thought I would, and honestly, I’ve turned into someone I never thought I’d be. I went from being a distant wallflower to being a bold, confident nutcase. The people I’ve met along the way have been incredibly inspiring, unbelievably annoying, simply beautiful, and everything in between.


Fast-track creativity, forge friendships, and have fun!



learn aesthetic fundamentals

sharpen visual acuity

develop cultural and information engage literacy the larger


hone the essential thinking and making skills



During Foundation year, you will critique your own work and pursue a spirit of investigation. In Liberal Arts and Sciences courses, you will examine how meaning is constructed during the creative process. You will learn both to question everything and to see that everything is connected. The skills you acquire during Foundation year will allow you to focus on WHAT to make during your next three years at Otis, not HOW. These skills will allow you to express your concepts clearly and effectively.

I am not the observer I used to be; things I usually glanced over I now look at again, trying to break down, digest, and synthesize the qualities that make them stand out from their surroundings.

Mr Unicorn as a sustainable ecosystem



thumbs up

Freak Show, 2010

Show Your Stuff

Fine Arts students curate and exhibit their work at Otis, as well as in galleries throughout L.A.

Metrosexual, 2010

thumbs up

Anomie, 2009

Unknown Knowing, 2011

Fine artists add poetry, beauty, and meaning to people’s lives. L.A. is probably the best place in the world to study art. It’s a dynamic, varied environment, and a place where, after graduation, students can become involved in a community. —Meg Cranston, Chair, Fine Arts

Wavelength, 2010 Green-Themed Exhibition



thumbs up

Digital Peek Scenes and Stories for the Screen

I feel like I am part of a gumbo rather than part of a salad bar. —Derek Thompson (‘94), Storyboard Artist at Pixar

Animation The old cameras resent the appearance of a new camera in the store.

Concept Design “Carmageddon” traffic caused frustration among drivers, but their road rage was nothing compared to the freeways’ pent-up ire. Not even public transportation patrons were spared.


thumbs up


The Craft of the Letterform and the Page

Book Design Contest All Communication Arts students are invited to submit work to the annual contest, which is judged by their peers.


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Orale Typography specimen poster for Orale, a studentdesigned typeface.

reset This magazine explores the (anti) meaning of gay male identification.

Zombie Bunnies Humorous illustrations representing the world of Zombie Bunnies.

Passions in the Sand Using the graphic language of romance comics, this episode is from the series A Terrorist Romance Novel.

thumbs up


Sports and

Games Imagination = Play

Who Will Win? The Chronic Crybaby? The Angry Seether? Or the Joyful Cheerleader? This graphic design piece explores the Emotional Olympics. We’ve all been in training our whole lives, but who surpasses their peers and wins gold in Love, Sadness, or Joy?

Three D Game The 3-D excitement of Killer Swamp Trees! Ordinary willows morph into murderous bark monsters when the full moon is high.

Building Blocks for Young Astronomers Find your favorite constellation or create your own by rearranging the starry blue and white blocks.


how was this made? Mylar tubes burst from a wall, like projectiles from space Simplicity of Material: A video monitor behind a wall projects light through rolled mylar

Hidden video monitor creates holographic prismatic patterns


Kaleidoscopic wonder!

H Otis students use technology, but are not technicians or engineers: they are creators, artists, and makers who thrive on diversity and engaging design challenges. — Steve McAdam, Chair, Product Design

how was this made? A new generation of artists and designers effortlessly makes the transition from low to high tech. Replacing “recycle, reclaim, reuse” with “sustainable innovation,” they evaluate every aspect of the creative process from initial concept to fabrication, packaging, delivery, and retail. Global manufacturing requires that a product’s environmental life cycle or footprint be measured—from raw material extraction through materials processing, manufacture, distribution, use, repair and maintenance, and disposal or recycling.

Global Warming Campaign from Sang Youb Shin (‘11) and Wu Hyun Lew (‘11)

The team combined elements from After Effects, Photoshop, Maya, Illustrator, and Cinema 4D to create the movie.

? HOW was this made?

Band It! The image of randomly placed bands was transformed into a model.

Two halves of the image were printed in a 3-D milling machine and glued together.

After the rough seams were sanded, the bowl was ready for casting.



how was this made?

Sculpted and cast snake heads have goldleafed eyes Found Caribou Antlers

Spotlight casts dramatic shadows

Snake heads fixed to painted antlers, mounted and chained to wall

Midsummer New Mexico Nightmare

how was this made?


The world is changing as organizations and institutions look to creative people for answers to small and large problems. Designers are invited to the table in this great global initiative.

A chair from shredded plastic

A native Hawaiian turtle became the model for a character in an animated piece

A sampling of materials: Sculpey, styrofoam, fabric, train model pieces, doll parts, and magnets

The bent sheet was placed onto a welded metal frame

Flakes of landfill plastic were melted and pressed into a flat sheet then bent into a chair shape

This book, made from wood bark, presents advice about living green

—Kali Nikitas, Chair, Communication Arts


how was this made?

A virtuoso drawing can bring any creature to life Anatomy studies, concept, and character motion sketches were made

amazing drawing skills Historical and visual research are key elements in creating detailed, credible environments

Digital modeling starts with a wire frame and is then layered with texture and color

how was this made?

Making a model for digitization

Oldfashioned sculpting tools serve the purpose for carving

Bringing clay to life

Sculpey is the material of choice: it is soft and malleable but sturdy Physical model is scanned and digitized using 3-D software



from the sustainability desk

“ ”

Imagination: Where would we be without it? Would we even exist?

—Tuna Tarugno

Future Stock How would you envision the Future?

No More Texting? :-0

Insect Transport?

Industrial felt is folded and bound to create a magazine rack.

from the sustainability desk

Sustainably Sourced Storage? This handmade ceramic vessel blends the natural form of a stone with the element of fire

Rocks on Fire?

Walking toolboxes?

While in the Air Force, I was an airplane mechanic. I had to carry an enormous and heavy toolbox with me everywhere across long tarmacs and huge hangars. I wished the toolbox could sprout legs and walk itself. So that is what I built— a walking toolbox.



from the sustainability desk

Claustrophoria: The Ecstasy of Spatial Thinness In downtown L.A., a fabric awning stretches across a very long and narrow building to allow rooftop access and a communal space for all residents.

Shards of Space

“ ”

The world can keep changing. The world cannot flatten as long as we exist to change it. Bring it on, world! —George Peaslee (‘11)

from the sustainability desk

Blade Runner Living? Closer Than You Think.

Digital Media Bromance Five students envisioned future worlds with different cultures and environments.

Designers not only ‘solve’ problems but frame— and even invent—them. — Linda Pollari, Chair Architecture/Landscape/Interiors Department



from the sustainability desk

Water-Saving Buildings? Seattle Health Academy Slices/gaps in building sections facilitate water collection and the flow of natural light. Exhibited at Go Green Expo.

Ban the Bottle, Abolish the Bag Working with Surfrider Foundation, this student campaign raised awareness of single-use plastic consumption, particularly at SoCal beaches.

Nature Will Win

Will Nature Win?

Rise Above Plastics

from the sustainability desk

The new “triple bottom line” is profit, people, and the planet. If you take care of people and the planet, profit will follow. — Rosemary Brantley, Chair, Fashion Design Department


Regeneration Revolution Sustainability is the New Now. Get With The Program In this collaboration with Nike and Hurley, students created designs that reduce waste, use fewer resources, and are more respectful of human life. Their goal was to design for the global context, thinking differently about the fashion cycle of Paris–Milan–London–N.Y. and Tokyo–L.A., in which too much is produced for too many seasons. They focused on personalization, self-expression, consumer participation, and input; reversible fabrics and clean stitching for a “second life”; unisex tailoring; seasonless looks; wrapping, tying, and

folding; detachable collars and cuffs; educational care labels; and repair kits. Some were inspired by the web-based experiment “Six items, thirty-one days” in which participants selected six garments to wear for a month, and blogged about their experiences. The average American has 35 T-shirts and 4 pairs of jeans, which are washed four times a week. Convinced that consumer habits are changing, students designed garments that educated consumers about washing, excessive consumption of low-priced clothing, and the value of ‘heirloom” and multipurpose clothing. Youth leads the way, as Hurley’s tagline “microphone for youth” states. Fashion designers are doing it now rather than thinking about what to do next.

Trash Chic! A bold, new classic made from newspaper, chicken wire, glass, foil, pencils, and plastic (Communication Arts).


from the sustainability desk

“ ”

I love computer modeling, but nothing helps you understand a form better than actually making something that you can hold in your hands. —Ryan Robinson (’11)

Ryan Robinson (‘11) This senior thesis showed how elegant furniture can be made from felled trees.

Wood for Good

Last spring, Robinson heard about the hundreds of 300-yearold oaks and sycamores that were felled in Arcadia, California, and decided to do something to save them save them from becoming mulch. He created a plan to use this wood from trees on government land that are cut down for development. His plan was to allow artists and designers to transform the valuable hardwood into furniture and other useful objects. “What I set out to do was create an outline for how this system could work, and to create an example of what can become of the beautiful materials. That’s where my furniture comes to play.” “I focus on human-centered design problems, but physical making is a huge part of my process. My design for a prosthetic leg for underserved economies uses found materials. Because users assemble it themselves and maintain it throughout their lifetime, they aren’t just receiving a new leg, they’re receiving the tools to be self-sufficient.” Interview from Ready Made blog

otis connects Mr. Unicorn ‘s the City of Light

Paris in Spring During spring break, students have the opportunity to travel to Paris, where they encounter European design, culture, and sensibilities, while visiting great museums and seeing outstanding architecture.

It’s so valuable to get outside of Otis. Those experiences become some of the greatest memories of school — opportunities to be immersed in the world. —Danny Phillips (’08)



otis connects

Global Engagement and Integrated Learning This summer, Otis students and faculty took their creative capital abroad and focused on two distinct projects: sustainable toy design in China and a Freedom Memorial for war veterans in the Western Pacific nation of Palau. From Shanghai to the Rock Islands, they hiked bamboo forests, ate bat soup, dove in Jellyfish Lake, worked with industry leaders, met queens and presidents, and were even interviewed on local television.

Toy Design in China Furthering its commitment to sustainability, Otis teamed up with eco-forward German toy company Hape International to create an international think tank and integrated learning experience.

Lessons in State-of-the-Art Sustainable Manufacturing Faculty members and students joined Hape International employees and members of the China Academy of the Arts to study the complexities of sustainable business and manufacturing, while developing new product designs that will move into formal production at Hape in the coming year. The group traveled to China for a twenty-nine-day journey through the bamboo forests of Zhejiang Province, to the city of Hangzhou and the NingboZhoushan Harbor, one of the largest ports in the world. There they observed and exchanged ideas with local craftspeople, manufacturers, educators, and students from distinguished design schools such as Bauhaus University, Weimar, Germany.

otis connetcs


subsidized, and waste is collected and shipped to the pig farm. Workers earn piece rate and receive bonuses if they exceed production standards.  Cost reduction savings are shared with employees who find ways to improve the process.  After the factory tour in Ningbo, students headed to Hape’s bamboo workshop and research facility in the rural mountains of Beilun. True to form, Hape repurposed an aluminum processing plant once closed by the government for exceeding pollution standards. At the plant, local craftsmen trained the students to use hand tools and larger machinery, introduced them to various techniques for working with bamboo, and showed them how Hape integrates efficiencies into all stages of the process. Afterward, students hiked through the bamboo forest that Hape leases and manages. Known by locals as the bamboo ocean, when it is viewed from afar the whole forest rolls in the breeze like waves in the sea.

This kind of collaboration is invaluable for industry and academia. … It’s real-world learning for next-generation designers, and smart R & D for industry leaders. ­—Drew Plakos, Toy Design Faculty Member

Students deeply experienced the culture; worked with local artisans; toured factories, museums, and academic institutions; and shared their ideas with an international group of artists, educators, and designers. Faculty members and students joined Hape employees and members of the China Academy of the Arts to study the complexities of sustainable business and manufacturing, while developingnew product designs that Hape will consider for formal production. As one of the world’s largest producers of toys made from sustainable materials, Hape strategically considers surface treatment, energy consumption, and packaging to minimize environmental impact and maximize efficiency. Touring the Hape factory, students saw what it takes to truly walk the talk of sustainability; the factory was an inspiration. Steam is piped in from the local coal-generating station to heat the production facility and quick-dry paint, then cold water is sent back to the generating station. Sawdust is vacuum collected at every machine and shipped to a mushroom farm. Processed

water treated on site is used to flush toilets and mop floors. Wood scraps are burned for energy. Staff members move about on electric scooters, and plans are in place to install a solar charging station on the roof of the parking area. Sorting plant waste is a profit center and business for local entrepreneurs who gather recyclables for off-site processing. The factory floors are modular; machines, power, and lighting can be moved for each project, instead of powering up entire lighting bays and power banks when only a few workstations are in use. Hape’s other innovative approaches include not only paying double for low water-content paint, but also applying half as much to their products, using less energy to dry the paint and producing brilliant results at a lower cost. Thin pallets made from recycled paper result in 96% efficiency container loading. Meals for employees are

Bamboo, or iron grass as it is sometimes called, is recognized as a sustainable material used in environmentally conscious design. The ISO (International Organization for Standardization) has awarded it three standards as a construction material. Its carbon dioxide storage capacity is four times that of hardwood; its mesh roots can prevent soil erosion; and its rapid growth, without chemical fertilizers or pesticides, allows for a three to five year harvest cycle. Certain species of bamboo can grow up to three feet in a day and about twenty percent can be harvested every year by collecting culms that are four to five years old. On their hike through the forest, students learned that some of the tallest bamboo, sixty feet or more, were just three months old. Bamboo exchanges more oxygen than a stand of trees, and everyone marveled at the fresh and cool air inside the forest. Once acclimated to the facilities and their new surroundings, the students set out to work with the Hape team on new product development. Experimenting with sustainable materials and renewable resources, they designed projects ranging from role-play toddler games and construction sets, to nested drums for a new Hape instrument line. Through a series of workshops, presentations, and critiques the team honed their designs, and before the trip was over, Hape selected several designs to consider for formal development. The students gained invaluable experience in sustainable business practice while teaming up with a leading manufacturer to develop new product designs and bring them to market.


otis connects

Designing the


Freedom Memorial

Since 1994, Palau has received defense, funding, and access to social services as a US protectorate. More Palauans per capita serve in the American military than in any other state or protectorate. Palau has war memorials for both the Americans and the Japanese, yet there are no memorials for Palauans. Otis students designed the memorial to honor these veterans who bravely fought for freedom in American wars.

Spending time immersed in a culture rather than having a distinct line drawn between us and the people we were trying to get to know helped me practice some of the skills that I will be using throughout my career.

A Cultural Journey In June 2012, a group of nine students and four faculty advisors went to Palau to continue a design project started in 2011. Working with residents and artists, they completed the design for a Freedom Memorial commemorating those who lost their lives serving in the US military from WWII to the present. If you haven’t heard of Palau, you’re probably not alone. One of the world’s youngest and smallest sovereign states, the archipelago, officially known as the Republic of Palau is located 500 miles east of the Philippines and 2,000 miles south of Tokyo in the Western Pacific Ocean. Perhaps you’ve heard of Palau if you are a Survivor fan (the tenth season was filmed there), or a diver. Divers frequent premiere spots like Jelly Fish Lake, where resident stingless jellies have existed peacefully for millennia without having to fight off predators.

7.342º latitude by 134.479º longitude: bat soup … yum

Like England and Canada, Palau has both democratic and traditional bodies of power. The traditional side is divided equally among women (Matriarchs) and men (Council of Chiefs), with one woman and one man representing each of their sixteen states. Socially, Palau follows strict matrilineal practices in nearly every aspect of its culture, from marriages and funerals to inheritance and the passing of traditional titles.

The first to see their design for the memorial were the Bilung—Palau’s Queen—and the Matriarchs. As the women spoke, Palau’s oral history came to life, and the students were thrilled to hear analysis and critiques from the “History Makers” themselves. During the following week, the students incorporated feedback, honed their designs, and presented to the governor of Koror, the president of Palau and his cabinet, the Council of Chiefs, and finally the general public. Local television station OTV filmed their presentation, and a short Q & A session. By the end of the trip, the Chiefs announced official support for the project and a commitment to help with fundraising efforts to complete it. The proposed design locates the Freedom Memorial on the shores of Koror, incorporating eight monoliths to represent the sixteen states of Palau, arranged in a pattern resembling a conch shell. In Palauan culture, blowing the conch shell symbolizes calling people home or gathering them together. Students learned the history of this unique pocket of Micronesia and immersed themselves in its politics and culture. Using their creative problemsolving skills, they synthesized everything they learned to create a lasting tribute to the Palauan people. Residents were particularly impressed with how their thoughtful designs incorporated Palauan culture. During their free time, students explored the landscape, local art, and architecture; they enjoyed swimming, boating, and snorkeling in Jellyfish Lake; and culinary treats such as fresh sushi, tarot root, and a local favorite, bat soup. It took some courage to try the soup, but reports confirmed that, while the wings of the bat are a bit chewy, the dish is really quite palatable.



marketplace For the Home 1

Students address real-world issues of engineering, production, and market appeal when designing for the home, for play, and for transportation. 4

1 Felt Chair Folded layers of colored felt wrapped in an outer quilted shell connected with rope 2 Side Table with glass top and painted steel legs 3 Leather Chair Slitted leather reinforced with bolts For Your Ears pot cradled 4 Teapot Chrome in ceramic structure 5 Electrical Adapter Little helper for all your electronic needs 6 Coffee Table Table can double as a lamp 7 Barbe-Que Stylish grill and accessories 8 Table made with bent plywood 9 Cat Jars Glazes are informed by a variety of cat colors (Product Design)





4 7





2 1


For Play 1 Viking Ship and action figures (Toy Design) 2 Skootle plays music as it scoots (Toy Design) 3 Spin Words Toddlers build vocabulary by spinning the cat’s arms to match symbols and words (Toy Design) 4 Banjouke This hybrid instrument has a banjo construction, but plays like a ukulele (Product Design) 5 Uniforms for 2010 Brazilian World Cup Soccer Team (Fashion) 6 Puzzle Plush-covered interlocking shapes in a variety of plaids (Toy Design) 7 “Jacks” Speaker Omnidirectional speaker based on the childhood game “jacks”

4 5

(Product Design)







Attack of the Lowrider Bikes Beach cruising will never be the same. 1 & 2 Using CAD Design, metal work, upholstering, painting, and finishing, and outsourcing specialty fabricating, students designed lowrider bikes. (Product Design)



3 Outerwear, for mentor KaufmanFranco (Fashion Design)

4 Sportswear for mentor Hurley (Fashion Design) 5 Design for City Parkway (A/L/I) 6 Enabled, three-wheeled vehicle for the disabled (Product Design) 7 Sandals made out of recycled materials (Integrated Learning) 8 Platform Shoes (Product Design)



For the Street 8 7


preparing for professional life

Fashion Runway Project

Mr. Unicorn enjoying his Project Runway moment

“In a nature-themed collection for men and women of all ages, incorporate three elements: vintageinspired textiles; handcrafted detail; and a recycled or reused item.” —Todd Oldham, Mentor

Under the guidance of the professional design mentors and the Otis and fashion design faculty members, teams of juniors and seniors work through the design process—researching, sketching, draping, fitting, and accessorizing the final garment. This year, mentors included Anthropologie, Dominique Lemieux of Cirque de Soleil, David Meister, Max Studio, Morgane Le Fay, Michael Maccari for Armani Exchange, Scott Williams (‘90) of Nike, Red Carter (‘92), Bleu by Rod Beattie (‘86), and Stewart + Brown.

1 2

Mentor presents project direction and inspiration boards Students develop sketches, known as croquis


Next they collect material samples, and assemble textures and colors


Students draw and cut patterns

5 6

Accessories with handcrafted trims and details are added Working with runway models, students fit their designs, revise, and fit again

Todd Oldham working with students at a fitting

preparing for professional life

To see them run with it, and do such beautiful work is very impressive. … The excitement of seeing it all come together is like a gift. (At Otis) the students almost do it for real before they hit the market, and they’re feeling their way, but this school is really, really good. —Bob Mackie, Mentor, Fashion Design



preparing for professional life

Architecture/Landscape/Interiors design>build

A/L /I Landscape Extrusion A permanent outdoor social space for Otis students, constructed of steel tubes and wood decking.

Architecture/Landscape/Interiors seniors design and build a full-scale spatial environment as their final project. These installations are sited and built in exterior and interior spaces, and students verbally present their work via a Pecha Kucha (rapid-fire presentation) at the public year-end exhibition. Interior installations include physical and digital displays of drawings and/or models, which further highlight the students’ cumulative work. Design and construction are modeled after professional practice, and proceed sequentially with a fixed budget and deadline. Students act as the design and documentation team under the direction of an instructor who is the project architect, and fabricate and install the project as directed by another instructor, who is the contractor. This process mirrors how students will work professionally when they graduate, providing vital real-world experience.

The Big Cheese Backlit prints and physical models mounted within voids of various sizes and shapes.



preparing for professional life

A single object (8’ x 8’ x 73’) consisting of 12 modules. Winner of an I.D. Magazine Annual Design Review Honorable Mention.




An array of seven very large objects (approximately 8’ x 8’ x 16’ each) with apertures through which student work is viewed. Detail: Seniors posing with their apertures.


An interiorized igloo-like environment of 490 circular rooms, constructed in three different sizes and hues.

A continuous, triangulated landscape. 2006


As an homage to the work of Dan Graham, four steel-framed walls feature alternating mirrors and open panels to both deconstruct and multiply space.

Big Bang Barcode


A three-dimensional field of 74 different shapes installed within 15,000 cubic feet of space.


Alternating opaque and backlit panels arranged in a continuous line and connected at various oblique angles to resemble a room-sized barcode.


art and design in the community

In IL courses, students are introduced to the way the real world works, and begin to define their role as creative problem solvers in the context of a world that needs a lot of creative responses.

Color, Motion, Magic! Collaborative mural project with students at La Tijera Elementary School in Los Angeles

Change Art and Design in the Community


Over the last five years, Integrated Learning (IL) has worked with more than thirty-five different community partners— researching, investigating, and designing solutions for a range of issues. Students from different majors work as a team, applying their particular skill sets to devise solutions that can bring about change for a site partner. They develop solutions to some very serious problems, such as the environment, health care, and education, by working for a real client and learning from community leaders and experts, who become part of the team. They will use these skills every day in the workplace—communication, collaboration, research, presentations, and critiques. Their awareness of ecological and social issues leads them to use design as a real change agent.

Planetary Solutions Collaborating with fifth graders, students designed sixteen projects, including gray water systems, gardening tools, a sustainability manual, and a shade trellis.

art and design in the community

Compassionate Response’s Art Therapy Program Students designed knapsacks for Haitian children, filled them with donated books, and shipped them to survivors of the devastating earthquake of 2010. The project “became an inclusive neighborhood model of designing and sharing locally in order to help those in need globally.” Using “yarn” made of hundreds of discarded T-shirts, students from Otis and Loyola Village Elementary School, along with Westchester Senior Center members, wove knapsacks.

IL gives our students very concrete and real skills to enable them to make a difference right now, in the workplace and in society.

Activism in the Oil Fields Working in cooperation with the social and arts collaborative Third Rail, students explored the politics and environmental impact of an active two-squaremile oil field, in which the oil company planned to drill an additional 600 wells over the next twenty years. Their sitespecific installations highlighted the dangers to the hummingbird and gray fox populations, and the local residents.



los angeles inspires Otis

Los Angeles Inspires Otis L.A. is the best place in the world to study art. It’s a dynamic, varied environment, and a place where graduates can stay and become involved in a community. Mr. Unicorn improvising at Muscle Beach, Venice

— Meg Cranston, Chair, Fine Arts

Toy Design students at Disney Animation Studios, Burbank

At Los Angeles County Museum of Art’s Urban Light by Chris Burden

A/L/I students visit the Walt Disney Concert Hall in downtown L.A.

los angeles inspires Otis

Landscape drawing along the L.A. River

Fashion Design student works on display at Neiman Marcus, Beverly Hills

Learning from the masters at Los Angeles County Museum of Art

The Long Beach Aquarium is a great place to draw

“Movies That Matter� poolside nighttime screening Sketching on the iPad at the beach



life after otis

Creativity can’t be outsourced; innovation stays onshore

An art and design education pays off!

Creativity Is serious business Eighty percent of Otis grads are employed in positions related to their majors. What are a few things that were “born” in L.A.?

Born in L.A. The modern bathing suit The fortune cookie The B-2 “stealth” bomber (a flying wing) The Space Shuttle The Internet The Mars Rovers The Mazda Miata Talking movies Barbie The first commercially successful TV station (now KTLA, Channel 5) Valet parking Tooth-whitening toothpaste The concept of modern makeup (Max Factor’s pancake makeup) Celebrity PR The skateboard (Venice) The Cobb salad The electric guitar And so much more!

Between 2009 and 2014, Creative Economy jobs are projected to grow 6.7% faster than jobs in other sectors. In 2010 the Creative Economy was the second largest business sector in Southern California, generating a market impact of over $201 billion.

life after Otis


Our Hollywood Heroes Alice in Wonderland Daphne Yap (’04) Concept Designer

Biz Otis in the

Avatar Daphne Yap (’04) Concept Designer and Lindsay Thompson (’07) Animator Bambi Tyrus Wong (’35) Concept Painter Harold and Kumar Go to White Castle Chevon Hicks (’95) Animator

Alumni have enriched the entertainment industry since Wilfred Jackson’s (‘28) animations for Disney’s Silly Symphony (1935) and Thomas McKimson’s (‘25) concept for Tweety Bird for Warner Brothers in the 1930s.

Center for Creative Professionals

annual portfolio internship reviews fair resume and cover

alumni mixer

letter writing


End-Of-Year Preview preparing students for careers as creative professionals

online job board

Mr. Unicorn ready for his first day on the job

Kung Fu Panda Raymond Zibach (’90) Production Designer Lord of the Rings, Trilogy Jim Rygiel (’80) Visual Effects Supervisor (Oscar Winner) Silence of the Lambs Dawn (Teitelbaum) Baillie (’86) Poster Designer The Ten Commandments William Major (’52) Production Illustrator Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby Susan Matheson (’92) Costume Designer The Sound of Music Dorothy Jeakins (’36) Costume Designer


life after otis

Right Out of School

Many students find jobs before graduating, and within three months of graduation, more than seventy-four percent are employed.

Charged with energy, experience, skill, and entrepreneurial spirit, Otis alumni are well prepared to enter the world as creative professionals.

Graduate Study Abroad Kelly Akashi (‘06)

Visit to learn more about successful alumni.

Deborah Sabet (‘05) Designed the suit worn by Glee star Darren Criss at the 2011 Grammy Awards.

Did graduate studies in Germany at the prestigious Stadelschule, Frankfurt, and is now in L.A. pursuing her photography career.

Designing for Stars

“I now have a clear and confident understanding of what I want from life and why [I want to] make art.”

“I love working in L.A. You have access to everything here. I always considered Otis my happy place.”

Daniel Phillips (‘08) Kim Karlsrud (‘07)

Seed Bombs

Phillips and Karlsrud met when they were students, and started their Greenaid project, Guerilla Gardening. “Johnny Appleseeds for the Twenty-First Century” is how Fast Company described their seed bomb project. All over the world, repurposed gumball machines dispense seed bombs (a mixture of clay, compost, and seeds) for 25 cents. Residents toss them into derelict urban spaces such as vacant lots and median strips to create instant wildflower gardens.

Danny and Kim returned to Otis to teach “Design for Social Impact,” a course in which students sourced local materials and industrial scraps, conducted lifecycle analyses, and creatively employed the ethics and aesthetics of “doing more with less.” Site partners included TOMS Shoes and the Boys and Girls Club in East L.A. Students used reclaimed materials from the garment district or bike shop inner tubes, transformed them functionally and In the twentieth century, designers were mainly and aesthetically.

concerned with form and function. Today designers are not only dealing with objects but also with systems and tools. Oftentimes, systems and tools can be intangible, but designers can use them to produce very real and useful solutions.

life after otis

Scott Derman (’05) Derman collected toys and action figures while he was growing up, and learned about Otis from his AP art teacher. While at Otis, he interned at Art Asylum in New York and at Lego in Denmark. He made lifelong friends at Lego, where he was offered a job after graduation, but Derman wanted to live and work in L.A. In his senior year, he interned for Mattel’s Games division, and began working there after graduation. Derman currently designs toys based on movie licenses for Mattel’s Entertainment Brands. Two recent projects are Green Lantern and the new Batman movie, Dark Knight Rises. Recently, he traveled to London where Dark Knight Rises was being filmed, to see the sets and meet the filmmakers. As he


To Infinity and Beyond!

explains, “When you work with the filmmakers, you get to see their inspiration.” When he was twelve, Derman had a Buzz Lightyear toy, but as lead designer for Toy Story 3, he created a new version. “The one I made was a little cooler. I had 14 years to get this right.”

Organic Style

It got easier when I got out of school. When you’re in school working on projects, you’re not part of a team. You have to do it all. Working with a team makes it easier, more fun. It only helps you be a better designer when you know what each team member does.

Kirk von Heifner (‘06) Von Heifner moved to New York after graduating to work for John Varvatos. After several years, he moved back to Manhattan Beach to be Design Director for the eco-conscious brand Vicarious by Nature. Combining fashion-forward design for men and women with a commitment to environmental issues, the company uses organic raw materials and methods. Their proactive mission includes educational initiatives with local and global communities, and partnerships with organizations such as Tree People and the Ocean Conservation Society.

“From the time you wake to the time you go to sleep, it’s important to eat organic, conserve, recycle, reduce plastic, and wear organic. It becomes your lifestyle. We are just trying to provide cool clothing for the organic sector and use any influence we might have to persuade our followers to join us during beach clean ups or planting a few trees.” —Kirk von Heifner


life after otis

Creative Warriors

Casey Hunt (‘06), Greg Gunn (‘06), and Reza Rasoli (’06), Digital Media Three Legged Legs (3LL): Commercial Directors Hunt, Gunn, and Rasoli met at Otis, where they started their business. Named by L.A. Business Journal as one of “20 in Their Twenties,” they have crafted animations, visual effects, and narratives for creative agencies and well-known brands, bringing their style to advertising. Left: Scenes from Virgin Atlantic and Method “We’re All in This Together” Below: Still from Wrigley’s “Evolution” commercial.

Through a collective vision, 3LL seeks to banish clichéd ideas with an unmerciful vengeance: sometimes scary, often exciting, always in the greater service of the project. While their ideas are edgy and often fiercely different, they’re pretty good guys to work with.

Tofer Chin (‘02) After producing several site-specific works on the streets in Spain, Chin continued the public art projects he had started at Otis in São Paolo, Brazil. Inspired by the murals done by Os Gêmeos, he designed murals throughout the city. He also created an installation for Rio’s Museum of Image and Sound in 2010. Chin returned to Rio to install Fourteen Black, acrylic and wood installations throughout the Parque Lage gardens, which have been described as “stalagmites—living and breathing souls, ghosts, spirits, voids, shadows.”

“The afternoon after I graduated from Otis, I booked a flight to Barcelona. This journey would transform my life forever. Upon arrival, I was greeted by David Quiles Guilló, who had published my work in his magazine, ROJO.”

life after otis

Moving Up the Ladder

Top: Animation for OfficeMax Ad Left and Right: Animation for Honda CRV Ad

Ben Go (‘00) and Dennis Go (‘01), Creative Directors, Brand New School L.A. and N.Y.

Ad Men

One in N.Y. and one in L.A., brothers Dennis and Ben Go are the creative visionaries for Brand New School. The firm’s commercial directors, designers, animators, and illustrators use an idiosyncratic visual style and witty conceptual approach in creating work for MTV, Fox Fuel, VH1, and Cartoon Network, as well as Apple, Nike, Pepsi, and Jeep.

Gajin Fujita (‘97) Born in 1972 to Japanese parents, Fujita honed his unique style as a graffiti artist on the streets of East Los Angeles, and later displayed his work on the walls of major cultural institutions such as L.A. Louver gallery, LACMA, Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art (Kansas City), and several international venues in Switzerland, Greece, and Belgium. Fujita blends Eastern techniques (ukiyo-e, anime, split screens) and elements (geishas, warriors, demons), with Western, urban imagery (Latino graffiti, tattoo art, and pop culture imagery) to create work that surfaces the cultural and class distinctions of urban L.A.

I kind of look at myself as a hip-hopper, the way a DJ would sample all sorts of great music from the past— sounds and beats. I’m just doing it with visuals.

Right: Getting Harey, 2011 White gold and gold leaf, acrylic, spray paint and paintmarker, and mean streak on two wood panels, 48 x 32” Courtesy of L.A. Louver, Venice, CA



life after otis

Running the Show

Derek Thompson (‘94) Since the age of five, Thompson has been obsessed with drawing dinosaurs and monsters. He first learned to tell stories in his major, Illustration. Many years later, as storyboardist for Pixar’s WALL-E, he and his team turned out more than 157,000 drawings. His early career included stints as a freelancer at Electronic Arts, Dark Horse Comics, and Maverick Studios, before he joined Industrial Light and Magic, and then Pixar in 2005.

Below: On a recent visit to Otis, Thompson gave a workshop on character development and the psychology of fear, beginning by having them sketch aliens, bugs, and dark closets.

Pied Piper for Pixar

“The storyboard artist has to wear a lot of hats, thinking like a director, actor, editor, cinematographer, production designer, art director, and more. Then you have to be able to draw your ideas to communicate them.”

Cynthia Vincent (‘88) Vincent received Otis’s Silver Thimble Award from Ann Cole upon graduation. Early in her career, she worked at Jane Ong & Co., London, where she rose to become head designer. She launched her first company in L.A. in 1993, and, ten years later, introduced Twelfth Street by Cynthia Vincent. Celebrities such as Miley Cyrus, Kate Hudson, Kelly Clarkson, and Ashley Tisdale are seen in her silk crepe de chine slips, velvet boudoir jackets, and luxurious sweaters.

Shoe Queen I always knew that I wanted to go into fashion, as I told my mom when I was six. Otis was great for me. I did the high school summer program. I was rebellious, and wanted to go more toward the creative end. Otis definitely prepared me for the real world of fashion. At my first job in London, there were a lot of incredibly talented designers, but when it came to knowing the calendar and how to put garments together, and their functionality and wearability, I realized how much I had learned.

life after otis

The Interventionist Ruben Ochoa (‘97) Ochoa works in an East L.A. studio, housed in a nursery that’s been vacant for years, next to a Mexican restaurant. He makes art that questions boundaries and intersections, echoing the Chicano experience of his community. One of his first projects was converting his family’s tortilla delivery truck into a mobile art gallery. Later, in a large-scale sculpture installation, he transformed a section of L.A. freeway by extracting a section of the wall and replacing it with a photo-realistic mural of the landscape that might be hidden behind it. Ochoa learned how to build things by trial and error. “I tell people I went to art school to be a construction worker,” he jokes. Several years later, after winning a Guggenheim Fellowship and exhibiting at the Whitney Biennial in New York and Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego, he continues to explore the tension among social class, urban architecture, and nature, examining cultural politics through conceptual art. Above: An Ideal Disjuncture, 2008 Concrete, wooden palettes, chain link, rebar, tie wire, dirt, approximately 14’ x 13’ x 7’ Courtesy of Susanne Vielmetter Los Angeles Projects; Photo credit: Ruben Ochoa


I’ve enjoyed drawing and making art since I was a kid but I didn’t know what it meant to be an artist, what it entailed, or how one sustains oneself. My family didn’t either, but as long as I wasn’t getting into any trouble they were okay. To get them to understand, I started incorporating them into my practice and into the work. … It’s a push-pull relationship. Same with friends. It becomes like a community.


where in the world

Where in the World? LOS ANGELES, CA

Where our students come from Argentina Brazil Canada China, People’s Republic of Cook Islands Denmark Dominican Republic Estonia Guatemala Hong Kong Indonesia Italy Japan Kazakhstan Kenya Malaysia Mexico Nepal Nigeria Norway

Poland Russia Singapore South Korea Spain Taiwan Thailand Turkey Turkmenistan Uganda United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Venezuela Vietnam Zimbabwe

Where our graduates go Austria Australia Bangladesh Belgium Brazil Cambodia Canada Colombia Croatia Denmark Doha Dubai Fiji France Germany Hong Kong Iceland India Indonesia Israel

Italy Japan London Macau Malaysia Mexico Netherlands New Zealand Norway Peru Philippines Singapore South Korea Spain Sweden Switzerland Taiwan Thailand Turkey Venezuela

Five Steps to a Bright Future Applying to college can seem intimidating. Our counselors make it easy. Visit. Call. E-mail. We are here to help you through this process.


how to apply

Check us out Look at our website. Visit the campus. See us at National Portfolio Day

Our counselors can answer all of your questions. We want to be your first choice.


Turn in your stuff



Apply The priority

date is February 15. Be first in line for scholarships, housing, and all the other important stuff. The earlier you apply, the more we can help you! Enter valid e-mail address that you check. That’s how we will contact you.

Using the link we provide, upload your essay and portfolio. Don’t forget to send us transcripts and test scores. You will receive a list of items that you need to submit once you apply.



Paying for College

Our financial aid office will help you put together a package of grants, scholarships, loans, and/or workstudy to bridge the gap between your resources and the cost of tuition and fees. Be sure to apply for financial aid at (US citizens and permanent residents). This year, Otis will award $12 million in scholarship funds.

Choose your school May 1 is the day to tell us you will attend. It’s all about fit. We hope you choose Otis!


how to apply

Otis accepts undergraduate applications for the fall and spring semesters. Students can apply for entrance in the fall at Foundation, Sophomore or Junior level standing. The spring semester is available for Foundation students, secondsemester Sophomores, and the Architecture/Landscape/ Interiors “Jump Start� program students.


Applications open: October 1 Priority Date: February 15

Applying Is Easy To apply for the Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) program, please submit these items: Online Application

Apply online at

$60 (US) application fee

This is a nonrefundable fee. Pay over the phone by credit card, or send a check or money order.


Ten to twenty pieces (see portfolio guidelines below).


Choose a work of art or design that you consider to be significant. Imagine that the work had never been made. How would the world be worse off (or better off) without it?


Official transcripts showing all completed work to date. High school students must submit a final high school transcript after graduation. Transfer Students: Transfer students are required to submit final high school transcripts with the graduation date, and official transcripts from all colleges and universities attended.

Spring Applications open: September 1 Priority Date: November 15

International Students: International students are required to submit official transcripts from all high schools and universities/colleges attended. These records must clearly state the date of completion and the level of education received. All transcripts must be official copies. If your transcripts are not in English, please submit an official translation by a notary public or a recognized evaluation service, and submit both the translated records and the original documents.

Test Scores

Submit either an SAT or ACT score if you are in high school. Transfer students are not required to submit standardized test scores.

Mr. Unicorn hopes he remembered everything on the check list

International Students: If you live in a country where English is not the official language, you should take one of the three tests recognized by Otis: the TOEFL, the IELTS, or the Pearson Test of English (SAT/ACT scores not required). For minimum scores, please refer to the International Students section on page 58. If you are in high school and live in a country where English is the official language, please submit either the SAT or ACT scores.

Mailing in application materials? Please send to: Otis College of Art and Design Attn: Admissions Office 9045 Lincoln Boulevard Los Angeles, CA 90045 *Please make sure to write your name and date of birth on everything.

* * Otis Admissions Counselors are happy to meet with you to review your portfolio and/ or transcripts. To schedule an appointment, please contact the Admissions Office at (310) 665-6820 or

Preparing a Portfolio

how to apply


Select your best work to show off your technical skills and your creativity!


1st year Foundation Level


Transfer Students


Transfer Students

Ten to Twenty Examples of Your Best and Most Recent Work

Ten to Twenty Examples of Artwork

Ten to Twenty Examples of Artwork

Artwork can be of any medium, including

animation drafting drawings illustration mixed media motion-based projects* painting

photography sculpture three-dimensional design two-dimensional design video* * maximum two-minute excerpt

Sophomore Level Approach A

Sophomore Level Approach B

Show work that mirrors Otis’s Foundation year, including life drawing, observational drawing, and 2–D and 3–D design. Also include personal work that expresses your interests and creativity. It does not have to include work from the major you wish to study but rather the core skills of that discipline. For example, if you want to study Toy Design, your portfolio does not need to include toys, but should include examples of drawing and threedimensional design.

Submit work that shows advanced skills in your intended major. For example, students applying for the Architecture/Landscape/Interiors major may submit a portfolio that consists of drafting, rendering, and CAD projects, rather than life drawing and 2–D design. Remember, the portfolio must demonstrate that you have the skills to be successful at the sophomore level.

Second Semester Sophomore (spring only)

Note: There are no transfer students for second-semester Sophomore or Junior level in fashion design.


Junior Level (fall only) Highlight your skills in your discipline, and show that you are ready to succeed at Junior year level. Select work that shows your advanced professional skills and readiness for internships. For example, a student applying to be a junior in Graphic Design should show advanced graphic design work.

Once you apply, we’ll send you a link to submit your portfolio online.


how to apply

Taking the right classes before transferring is an important step in a smooth transition into Otis’ art and design programs. If your portfolio of artwork demonstrates the necessary well-developed drawing, design, and creative-thinking skills, you will succeed in being admitted at the sophomore or junior level. You must also have completed general education requirements such as English, social sciences, and art history.


Transfer students are required to submit final high school transcripts with the graduation date, and official transcripts from all colleges and universities attended.


Students must have earned a grade of “C” or better in each class in order to receive credit. All units must be earned at a regionally accredited institution.

* Questions about

Transferring? Feel free to call the Admissions Office and speak with a counselor. (310) 665 6820

Transfer Students To apply for the Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) program, please follow these guidelines: Sophomore Transfer (fall admission only)

To enter Otis at the sophomore level, you must have completed a minimum of 18 semester units of studio art. It is also advisable that you complete at least 15 general education units. Please refer to the chart on the right, and contact the Admissions Office for more information on which general education courses to take.

Jump Start Program for Architecture/Landscape/Interiors (spring admission only)

Transfer students interested in the Architecture/Landscape/ Interiors (A/L/I) program have a unique opportunity to “jump start” as a first semester sophomore in the spring semester. In the Jump Start Program, you complete the first semester of the sophomore year in the spring, and then immediately complete the second semester of the sophomore year during the summer, allowing you to be a junior in the fall. In order to stay on track and graduate on time, both spring and summer semesters must be completed!

Second-Semester Sophomore (spring admission only)

Transfer applicants with at least 27 semester units of studio art and design may apply for second-semester sophomore status in Architecture/Landscape/Interiors, Communication Arts, Digital Media, Fine Arts, and Product Design.

Junior Transfer (fall admission only)

Junior level transfer applications are reviewed on a case-by-case basis. Between 36–40 semesters units of studio art are generally required. You may have the transferable units, but you may not have a junior level portfolio (or vice versa). Otis recommends that all prospective junior-level applicants meet with an Admissions Counselor for evaluation. Otis does not accept junior level transfers in Fashion Design.

Studio Credit/Portfolio

Transfer credit for studio courses in art and design will be granted upon presentation of both official transcripts and a proficient portfolio of artwork. Studio credit will not be granted based on a transcript or portfolio alone. Please refer to the portfolio requirements.

California Students

California community colleges use the IGETC (Intersegmental General Education Transfer Curriculum) to prepare students to transfer to four-year colleges and universities. The IGETC alone is not effective in preparing a student to transfer to Otis because the curriculum does not include the art and design studio (drawing, figure drawing, and 2–D and 3–D design) classes taken during Otis’ Foundation (freshman) year.

Art History

Any survey of Western or non-Western art (e.g., Pre-Historic–Early Renaissance, High Renaissance–Mid. 19th Century) Modern (specifically 19th Century–1945)


semester units

*Subject to results from the Otis English Placement Assessment (EPA) or alternative demonstration of English proficiency. Contact for more information.

Capstone and Integrated Learning Please keep in mind that all students, regardless of academic background, must take Integrated Learning and Capstone Courses.

English I

Freshman Level

English II Freshman Level One Social Science/Cultural Studies Freshman Level Intro Survey of Art History Freshman Level Modern Art History Freshman Level Sophomore English Junior Liberal Studies Elective Math (College Level) Trigonometry One Social Science Child Psychology One Natural Science Anatomy and Ergonomics Economics and Product Market Contemporary Art History Art History Elective

Junior Level at four-year college or university

Art History Elective

Sophomore Level

History of Photography Hist. of Graphic Design/Advertising/Illustration History of Ethnic Costume History of Product Design Textile Science level at a four-year college or History of Toys Junior university

History and Theory


Toy Design

semester units

Product Design


Fine Arts (Photography)

(Psychology, Sociology, Cultural Anthropology, and so on)

semester units

Fine Arts (Painting/Sculpture)

Social Science


Fashion Design

Reading and Composition College English Critical Analysis

General Education Transfer Credits by Major This is meant to be a guide only. Please speak with an Admissions Counselor for more detailed information about transfer credit. Studio art credits are evaluated separately.

Architecture/Landscape/ Interiors

College English*

General Education Curriculum Guide

Digital Media

To transfer on track as a sophomore, you will need the following General Education credits. Any missing credits will have to be completed at Otis before graduating.

Communication Arts

how to apply


how to apply

AP and IB Exams

International Students

Advanced Placement*

Admissions Requirements

Admitted students may submit scores from Advanced Placement examinations for credit.


Required Score

History, Math, and


Science English and


Art History *Due to the specialized nature of Otis’ studio programs, AP credit for studio art is not accepted.

International Baccalaureate

You are eligible to receive credit if you have completed the IB Upper Level Exams with a score of 5 or more in any of the following subject areas: Language (English) Individuals and Societies (Social Sciences) Experimental Sciences (Natural Sciences) Mathematics

To apply for the Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) program, please submit the items listed on page one as well as the items listed on this page. International students who live in a country where English is not the official language should take the TOEFL test (Test of English as a Foreign Language), iELTS, or the Pearson Test of English.

Test Scores

TOEFL Computer-based exam Internet-based exam (iBT) Paper-based exam

213 79 550

*Institutional TOEFL scores are not accepted.

iELTS Minimum score of 6.5 overall band score

Pearson Test Minimum score of 58 in English

6.5 or above

58 or above in English

International students who live in a country where English is not the official language should take the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), the International English Language Testing System (iELTS), or the Pearson Test of English. However, if you are in high school and live in a country where English is the official language, please either submit your SAT or ACT scores.

Visa Requirements

International Students for admission who require an F–1 student visa must submit the following: •

A Verification form will be mailed in the acceptance packet. Students must complete the form, including a permanent foreign address and a sponsor signature from the parent, sponsor, or agency guaranteeing the student’s financial resources. Students currently studying within the US must submit documentation of their status from their current school and have their Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS) record released to Otis.

• A copy of the current passport photo page and the current I–20, I–94, and visa (if applicable). • A bank statement or other documentation from the parent’s or sponsor’s bank, or sponsoring organization, certifying that sufficient funds (approximately $54,000 USD) for support of the student’s education and living expenses are available. Communication must be in English or accompanied by certified English translation, and funds should be in US dollars. Address these letters to Otis Admissions Office. When all required documents are received, an I–20 will be issued for the student. The student may take this document to the US Embassy or Consulate to obtain an F–1 Student Visa.

how to apply


If You’ve Applied Before

When will I know if I got in?


When all of your application materials are received by the Admissions Office, your application is complete. The Admissions Committee will notify you of their decision within three weeks.

After acceptance, how do I secure a spot?

Accepted students who plan to enroll are required to make a nonrefundable $250 tuition deposit to confirm attendance and to reserve a place in the entering class. The Intent to Register form and tuition deposit are due within two weeks of notification of acceptance or by May 1, whichever is later. The full amount of the deposit is credited to your first semester’s tuition. After the deposit is received, you will receive information about registration, orientation, housing, and tuition payment. Prior to enrolling, you must submit final high school or college transcripts. Acceptance is final only upon receipt of these documents.

Choosing a Major

Depending on the year, certain departments have a limited number of spaces available. You may have to submit your portfolio and grades for review in the second semester of Foundation. Since Otis cannot guarantee your first choice, you should identify more than one possible major.

Early Admission for High School Juniors

Occasionally, Otis admits advanced students who chose to forego their senior year in high school to study at Otis. The credits earned during the Foundation year are accepted by the student’s high school for completion of the high school diploma. A student applying for early admission must obtain approval from the high school. Contact for more information.

Admission is only valid for entry to the semester when it is offered. If you choose not to enroll that semester, you may request that the application be “reactivated” for a future semester. Applications and supporting materials are held for one year after submittal. New materials will be required if you request reactivation after one year. Contact for more information.

Other Programs Special One-Year Program

If you have a prior bachelor’s degree and wish to gain further specialized education, then apply to the Special One-Year Program! You could have majored in art or design or have a bachelor’s degree in a different discipline, but you must have considerable professional art or design experience. Most of the coursework is taken at the senior level, although some flexibility in class selection allows students to devise a program that suits individual backgrounds and needs. Fashion Design does not offer this program. Students admitted to this nonmatriculating program are subject to the same rules and regulations as matriculated students, and must meet the same admissions requirements as BFA applicants. You will receive an official transcript of credit earned at Otis but are not eligible to receive the BFA degree. Also, you are ineligible for financial aid.



how to apply

2012–13 Cost of Attendance

Financial Aid

The 2012-2013 undergraduate tuition and fees are listed below. The cost is based on classes in which you are enrolled, and does not include material fees associated with a particular class.

Fax: (310) 665-6884

Tuition (based on 12–18 units) $36,350

Federal School Code:


Contact the Financial Aid Office: Email: Telephone: (310) 665-6880 Hours: Monday-Friday 8:30-5:00 pm Web: What Types of Aid Might I Receive?



1. Federal Pell Grant, Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant, and Academic Competitiveness Grant



2. Cal Grant (for California residents only)

Registration Fee


3. Otis Institutional Grant



4. Federal Stafford Loans and PLUS (Parent) Loans



5. Federal and Institutional Work-Study

Tech and Materials Fee $250 Fall


How Do I Apply for Financial Aid?



Student Activities Fee


1. You and your parent (if applicable) must obtain a personal identification pin at





General Materials Fee






Health Insurance Fee*




When do I Apply?



The FAFSA is available after January 1 for the Fall 2013 semester.



We recommend that you complete and submit the FAFSA by March 2, 2013.

*Health Insurance is mandatory but can be waived with proof of coverage.

2. Complete the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) at

2a. Enter school code: 001251

2b. Prevent delays in processing by making sure that you answer all the questions in the FAFSA completely and accurately. Make sure that you (and your parent, if applicable) sign the FAFSA.

California residents should submit the FAFSA and file the Cal Grant Verification form by March 2, 2013. Cal Grant Verification forms postmarked after March 2, 2013 will not be considered for the Cal Grant. If you are unable to submit the FAFSA before March 2, 2013, you can still submit the FAFSA online and be eligible for other forms of financial aid.

What Happens Next? After you complete the FAFSA, Otis Financial Aid will notify you via e-mail if any additional information is needed. Please answer immediately to avoid delays. When your Financial Aid file is complete, your eligibility for financial aid awards will be determined and you will be awarded aid. The award will be for a specific amount. Awards and any missing documents can be accessed online at

Otis at a Glance Established in 1918 by the Los Angeles Times founder, Harrison Gray Otis.

Otis is a nonprofit Institution

students come from

26 countries & 39 states

Otis is among the most culturally diverse colleges of art and design in the US

L.A.’s first independent professional school of art

of students are from outside California

1,200 2,500 Degree Students


International Students

Undergraduate Majors


Advertising Design, Architecture/Landscape/Interiors, Digital Media, Fashion Design, Graphic Design, Illustration, Product Design, Painting, Photography, Sculpture/New Genres, and Toy Design

Graduate Majors


Student/Faculty Ratio


Fine Arts, Graphic Design, Public Practice, and Writing

All 314 faculty members are practicing professionals in their fields. Affiliations: Private, nonprofit institution accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) and the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). Member, Association of Independent Colleges of Art and Design (AICAD).

Continuing Education Students

9045 Lincoln Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA 90045 310 665 6800 800 527 OTIS (6847)

Non-Profit Org U.S. Postage PAID Claremont, CA Permit #77

View Book 2012  

Otis College of Art and Design View Book

View Book 2012  

Otis College of Art and Design View Book