MakerSpace - Specialised Spaces

04 August 2022

 

THE OPEN WINDOW MAKERSPACE:

Welcome to the Open Window MakerSpace, our advanced fabrication and technology facility located on the Open Window Campus. The aim of the MakerSpace is to give students and staff access to affordable advanced technologies, in order to spur creativity and innovation within the creative industry!

Machines
The MakerSpace has a wide range of advanced fabrication technologies, and the following contains all the information you need to start accessing the MakerSpace machines!

1.FDM 3D Printing
Full Deposition Modelling 3D printing is the most common form of 3D printing.

2.Stereolithography Printing
SLA or Stereolithography 3D Printing used for high detail prints, such as jewellery design, or character models.

3.Laser Cutting
The C02 Laser cutter can cut and engrave several materials ranging from paper to 5mm MDF, perfect for projects that require precision!

4.CNC Machine
The CNC Machine allows us to cut out and carve simple or complex designs on wooden surfaces. It is also used to create custom PCBs for our electronics classes.

5.Vinyl Cutter & Large Format Vinyl Cutter
The vinyl cutter cuts self adhesive vinyl to any design that students need.

6.Large Format Printer
The MakerSpace houses our large format graphic art printer, which is capable of printing up to A0, as well as print directly onto self adhesive vinyl for custom sticker printing!

7.Sublimation Printer
The MakerSpace houses our new sublimation printer, sponsored by Epson, which allows students to print their design onto a number of different materials and objects. Print applications consist of T-Shirts, Mugs, Fabric*, Mosaic Tiles, Peak Hats, Coasters and Aluminium Sheets. This tool is great for branding across a wide range of physical media!

Electronics & Digital Library
The MakerSpace also offers a wide range of Electronics components and Digital devices that students can book out and use for free. Bookings are made by request from the MakerSpace Technician.

VR Headsets
The MakerSpace stocks a number of Oculus Quest 2’s for VR exploration and development. 3.2 Electronics library
The MakerSpace also provides students with a comprehensive Electronics library. Students can book out or purchase a number of microcontrollers and electronic components.

Open Face with Paulo Vilela

16 May 2022

 

3D ARTIST / GAME DESIGNER / GAME DESIGN LECTURER

Paulo Vilela lives and breathes Game Design! After extensive industry experience in design, animation, and VFX, he now practices and shares his passion as an avid and independent game artist and Open Window’s Game Design Lecturer.

 

GIVE US A QUICK BIO.

Originally, I studied Graphic Design, since no one offered a course: “Comic Book Artist – The Career”. A few years later, this led me to a 3D Animation degree which ultimately offered me a foot in the door of the game industry. To wrap it all up, I completed my Honours in Game Design.

The first stage of my professional career was filled with commercial work in design, animation, and VFX, especially for commercials. Some recurring clients included Sasol, Discovery Health, Sanlam, and SANBS. I’ve also had the opportunity to work on broadcast television on Innocent Times, Van der Walt’s Fault, Hopla, and Lappies.

The second stage of my career has been dedicated to games! Bounty Arms was a small team that got some interest from GAG magazine, a cool chat with Epic, and eventually landed with an American publisher. Bladeslinger is local, by studio Luma, and takes a look at the Wild West.

 

WHAT ARE SOME RECENT PROJECTS YOU’VE BEEN INVOLVED IN?

I have two projects in development at the moment. The first is a wacky third-person sandbox game filled with comedic reflections of society. The early vertical slice got a Pangolin Awards Nomination, so this is good?! The second project bouncing around is set in the same world as project one but plays around with management and simulation.

Links to some of my work below!

Bounty Arms
Bladeslinger
Innocent Times


WHAT IS YOUR LECTURING PHILOSOPHY?

  • If I love what I do, that passion will spill over. 
  • Students are individuals, and if you acknowledge that, their world becomes less scary.
  • Lead by example, and embrace the fact that we are all learning new things all the time. That’s what makes it exciting.

 

WHERE CAN WE FIND YOU?

Check out recent work on my website!

The Creative - Lauren Opia!

04 May 2022

 

The surrealist style and nature of @lauren_opia animations will leave you feeling mixed emotions. Opia’s animations and illustrations have a deeper narrative that makes a greater impact on all audiences. You do not need to speak the same language or have the same cultural background for the animations to leave you slightly uncomfortable – and in awe.

Opia is a multi-disciplinary animator and illustrator that graduated from Open Window last year and continues to create at Opia, her personal creative studio.

#TheCreatives

1. What’s your favourite cake flavour?
Carrot – my tastebuds are as old lady-esque as I feel.

2. Who or what inspires your practice?
I’m heavily inspired by music! I love getting a feel of the visuals and aesthetics that are portrayed through sounds and lyrics. I’m a big King Krule fangirl. He, his hands and his music have inspired about 80% of the art that I’ve made in the last year!

3. What are your favourite tools or resources that you actively use?
To animate I usually use Procreate > TvPaint > AfterEffects. They’re my trusty, holy trifecta.

4. What is your favourite season?
Autumn and Winter because it means people cancel plans so I get to stay in more! 😊

5. What is your favourite project to date?
Definitely my animations “I’m Not Here” and “My Mind Seeps”. I felt like I really started to come into myself in those projects. I was able to find my style a bit better and they also helped develop my number one passion and love which is frame-by-frame animation. Those projects are very dear to me.

6. What are you listening to or watching at the moment?
Always listening to King Krule! But also Men I Trust, Clairo, Blood Orange, Black Marble and Boy Harsher. And then I’m just watching a lot of reality shows to unwind but I’d rather not expose myself by naming them!

7. If you could work with anyone in your field, who would it be?
@ramandjafari for sure! He reignited my passion for animation last year so I’m really grateful for him and his magical work.

8. If you could give any aspiring creatives advice, what would it be?
Don’t overwork yourself! You will become mentally ill and take 5 years to finish an undergrad!
Share your work! We are really privileged to create our own platforms that can be viewed by anyone, anywhere in the world.
Just create. My animations used to be ugly, robotic, and jagged just two years ago. The more you create the faster you’ll find your voice.

This sound is Nowhere: Open Window Sound Design team help bring kykNET’s Nêrens, Noord-Kaap to life

03 May 2022

 

Good sound design should be invisible. Not inaudible, obviously, but so seamless, subtle, captivating or convincing that, for most, it escapes a mention. 

That said, when prompted, what self-respecting movie watcher could dismiss Ben Burtt’s iconoclastic acoustic world-building for Star Wars? Or claim not to have heard the haunting heptapod vocals of Denis Villeneuve’s Arrival (2016), for which sound designers Michelle Child and Dave Whitehead hiked for days through New Zealand forests, to capture the rare kōkako, solving for a sound Villeneuve termed ‘sacred’. When engaging with a well crafted audiovisual experience, we should remember that we are listeners, just as much as we are viewers. Audio guru Michel Chion puts it like this: “Vast is the sea of hearing around the raft of vision”. Recent critically acclaimed films like The Sound of Metal (Marder 2019) and Memoria (Weerasethakul 2021) skilfully use sound design as central storytelling elements. In the exciting burst of innovative new cinema and television currently being created in South Africa, sound designers are playing a prominent role in elevating locally produced media to new heights.

Nêrens, Noord-Kaap is a meditative Afrikaans drama adapted from a play of the same name. It tells a story of three estranged brothers who find their way back to their childhood farm, Nowhere, to uncover the secrets, sadness and truth about their mother’s death. Written by Nico Scheepers, who co-directed alongside Johan Cronje, Nêrens, Noord-Kaap is deliberate and human, deserving of a sound landscape that authenticates its place in the world and brings the reality of the farm, its family and their fates, to life.

Open Window’s team of Sound Design lecturers — Jozua Loots, Dawid de Villiers and Louwrens Ferreira — along with one of Open Window’s recent Sound Design graduates, Alessandro Turchino, took on the challenge to sound design and final mix the 13-part series for kykNET. Jozua (who also fulfilled the role of supervising sound editor for the series), Dawid and Louwrens all happen to be musicians as well as audio professionals, and all three hold Master’s degrees in music.

To quote Jozua, “The world’s quite noisy.” Creating a world on screen that is at once cogent and compelling requires dedication to sound as medium, commitment to collaborative process with director, composer and production team, spectacular attention to detail, and more often than not the incurable habit of taking your field recorder on holiday, to gather ambient recordings that can be woven believably into the world of the story. The cold, distant Atlantic Ocean would be remarkably alien on a balmy beach in Khao Lak, Thailand, and vice versa (see episode two).  

Thoughtful, story-focused sound design can be wielded to inform context, layer meaning and invoke emotion, allowing us to see and hear and feel beyond the screen. As with other crafts, sound design may be elevated to a form of art, and, as is the case with Nêrens, Noord-Kaap, support and complement remarkable homegrown filmmaking.

Nêrens, Noord-Kaap was commissioned by kykNET and premiered in 2021.

Open Window prides itself on lecturers who stay alive in the fields in which they teach. Not only does professional practice maintain awareness of industry and nurture credibility of the academic staff, but live briefs often call for student assistance or involvement, providing enriching opportunities.

Open Window offers a 3-year Bachelor of Film Arts with the choice to major in Film & Television, Screen Acting, Screenwriting, Production Design and/or Sound Design. The Sound Design major is a stand-out in South Africa as it focuses specifically on the design of sound elements for audio-visual media, rather than on music technology. The major has proven to kickstart diverse careers, from Sound Recordist and Foley Artist, to Final Mix Technician and AV Sound Designer.

Watch: https://kyknet.dstv.com/program/nerensnoordkaap
Study: https://www.openwindow.co.za/sound-design/ 

Listen, always. 

The Creative - Lize-Marie Dreyer!

26 April 2022

 

If you are active in the creative community then it’s extremely likely that you’ve heard of, stumbled upon or been awestruck by the brilliant work that is being created at Aurora Creative Studio. Lize-Marie Dreyer is the wonder behind the studio’s detailed, natural, mystical style that continues to raptor its audience. After graduating from Open Window in 2013, Lize-Marie has quickly established herself as a leader in the SA illustration space. While attending the world-renowned LUCA School of Art in Belgium, where she did 6 months of Masters in Illustration, Lize-Marie was chosen as the first All-Star winner of the Portfolio Night in South Africa and was sent to the Art Directors Club (ADC) in New York where she was the youngest competitor amongst 23 creative All-Stars from 23 cities across the globe. In the short few years since then, she has won a Loerie award, several Loerie Craft certificates and a South African National Stamp Design Competition. Lize-Marie is now an official freelance designer for the South African Philatelic Office as well as runs her own creative agency and her own homeware company, Aurora Homeware. During her time running Aurora Creative Studio the Children’s Book she illustrated was shortlisted in The World Illustration Awards by the Association of Illustrators in London. We had the privilege to chat with Lize-Marie and gain some of her wonderful insight.

#TheCreatives

1. What’s your favourite snack and are you more of a salty or sweet tooth?
Most people think designers are also coffee connoisseurs but I much prefer a cup of tea and a rusk 🙂 Rusks are my favourite snack of all time, but it has to be a rusk that’s full of bran, nuts, seeds, raisins and goodness.
50% Salty 50% sweet tooth. I love a cracker with hummus and salami almost as much as I love a rusk.

2. Who or what inspires your practice?
Nature, Storytelling, the ability to take something ordinary and add something magical to it.

3. What are your favourite tools or resources that you actively use?
Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator and Indesign are my main tools

4. What is your favourite season?
Summer – I love to hike, play soccer, surf, garden and be in nature.

5. What is your favourite project to date?
Probably the current children’s book I am working on for M&C Saatchi Abel – no sneak peeks yet! Keep an eye on my Instagram for updates on that soon.

6. What are you listening to or watching at the moment?
Currently listening to 99% Invisible. Still one of my favourite podcasts of all time!

7. If you could work with anyone in your field, who would it be?
Ooh, good question. There are almost too many to list, but I’d love to learn from Victo Ngai. I’ve always been a huge fan of her work.

8. If you could give any aspiring creatives advice, what would it be?
1. Welcome constructive criticism, it’s the only way to grow.
2. Educate your clients about your design process to help set and manage expectations
3. Don’t work for free – People who value your work will be willing to pay for it.

The Creative - Josh MC Donald!

22 April 2022

 

After graduating from Open Window in 2020, Josh Mc Donald has taken the Creative Technologies scene by storm! Mc Donald is currently a UX/UI designer at KRAFT Designsmiths® @kraftdesignsmiths where he pursues his creative endeavours. In 2021, Mc Donald was ranked 2nd in the Loeries official rankings for design students in Africa and the Middle East. In the same year, Mc Donald also took home a Gold Loerie in Digital Media. Colour us impressed. We had a little catch-up with Mc Donald to see where his interests lie. We cannot wait to see where his work takes him! 

 

#TheCreatives

1. What is your favourite cake flavour?
Chocolate Guinness cake! But generally, anything that has Guinness in it is a winner.

2. Who or what inspires your practice?
Mostly the people around me like those at KRAFT Designsmiths, as well as my close friends and family. Another big inspiration in my life is my mum; she is the reason I do what I do and one of the hardest workers I know.

3. What are some favourite tools or resources that you actively use?
I am a big Figma advocate! Part of my essential toolkit is also the Adobe Creative Cloud suite, Evernote, Slack and Google Meet. Last but definitely not least is Spotify — a must-have for all that good auditory experience! From podcasts to introspective beats, it is a critical part of my daily toolkit.

4. What is your favourite season?
Autumn for sure! The season of turning leaves signifies scarves, coats and building fires. Not to mention the increase of my caffeine intake.

5. What is your favourite project to date?
I would have to say it is probably CTC Africa, a project where I had the opportunity to improve and rework the experience and design of a platform that connects researchers to clinical trial sites around Africa. They are still waiting on funding but will hopefully be up and running soon!

6. What are you listening to or watching at the moment?
My favourite and most listened to podcast is Sh**ged Married Annoyed. Do yourself a favour and indulge in this hilarious, on-the-fly conversation between two of the funniest people I know. My music listening habits vary at the moment but I am currently listening to Khruangbin, a classic soul, dub, rock and psychedelia trio.

7. If you could work with anyone in your field, who would it be?
Definitely Tobias van Schneider. A product designer and all-round creative, who has worked on projects from Spotify to the identity of the Mars 2020 Perseverance rover mission. A diverse and creative being.

The Creative - Shann Daniels!

13 April 2022

 

After graduating from Open Window with a BA in Photography & Communication Design in 2017, Shann Daniels has thrived within the fashion photography industry! She has worked on projects for local and international brands and aligned herself with key model agencies. Shann has worked with brands and names like Adidas @adidas and Detox @theonlydetox from RuPaul’s Drag Race. She continues to gain notoriety for her individual voice in image making and is internationally published, featured in the likes of Mob Journal Magazine @mobjournal and Harper’s Bazaar Singapore @harpersbazaarsg. We are so excited to see Shann continue to push the creative envelope!

#TheCreatives

 

1. What is your favourite cake flavour?
Chocolate.

2. Who or what inspires your practice?
I’m inspired by the elation of creating something, with feeling, out of nothing. From start to finish curating the creation of that image is my favourite part. 

3. What are some favourite tools or resources that you actively use?
Adobe for programmes. Pinterest and Behance are bomb for getting inspired.

4. What is your favourite season?
That sweet spot in Autumn when it’s windy and warm.

5. What is your favourite project to date?
Getting to work with Detox from RuPaul’s Drag Race

5. What are you listening to or watching at the moment?
I am almost always rewatching Kath & Kim

7. If you could work with anyone in your field, who would it be?
Nadia Lee Cohen.

Open Face with Dr Stavros Halvatzis

07 April 2022

 

WRITER / EDUCATOR / FILM ARTS LECTURER / HOD, SCREENWRITING

Dr Stavros Halvatzis is a born storyteller. Also, a lover of cappuccinos. Educated and educator across the globe, Dr Stavros completed his Ph.D in narrative studies in Australia, while Head of Animation at JMC Academy. He has six novels on Amazon, the first of which went to number one in the hard science fiction category. He currently finds his home as Film Arts Lecturer and HOD of Screenwriting at Open Window. 

 

GIVE US A QUICK BIO.

My tertiary education began with a BA (Hons) at the University of Witwatersrand. I went on to acquire a Higher Diploma from the London International Film School (L.I.F.S.), and then my Ph.D on Multiform and Multistrand narrative structures in Hollywood Cinema, from The University of Southern Queensland, Australia.

 

DESCRIBE YOUR EDUCATOR JOURNEY.

I worked as Head of 3D Animation and Video at Open Window for six years, before taking the post of Head of Animation at the JMC Academy in Sydney, and then Brisbane, Australia, from 2007-2010. I have since returned to Open Window, to head up the Screenwriting department.

 

WHAT STANDS OUT IN YOUR WRITING CAREER?

I started my writing career as the resident screenwriter for Elmo de Witt Films in 1989, and hopefully have only improved my craft. I currently have six novels on Amazon.com. Scarab, my first novel, went to number one in the hard science fiction category on Amazon and remained on the bestseller list for several years.

 

WHAT IS YOUR LECTURING PHILOSOPHY?

I encourage students to find their own voice, while helping them establish good writing habits that will last them a lifetime. In an age of confusing narratives, delivering an artistic experience while having something of value to say is a gift worth cultivating.

 

WHERE CAN WE FIND YOU?

Twitter. LinkedIn. Instagram

I have a blog, Stavros Halvatzis PH.D. and a Youtube channel called Get Writing, where I share education, insights and musings on writing.

The Creative - Thomas Walsh!

06 April 2022

 

Thomas Walsh’s animations will leave you curious, emotional, and most importantly — wanting more. Walsh graduated from Open Window in 2021 and has become an independent 3D animator and designer, whose storytelling skills may just rival his impeccable work in the 3D field. Walsh won a Silver Loerie in 2021 for his animation Kung Pao, and continues to create engaging work which you can find at @thepotatothomas. We had a dainty chat with him to find out more about his work and creative process. Check it out!

#TheCreatives

The interview

1.  What’s your go-to snack?
Liquorice, but only the Allsorts kind!

2. Who or what inspires your practice?
Animation and storytelling that break the mould, especially the weird stuff.

3. What are some favourite tools or resources that you actively use?
Blender 3D, @blender.official. An incredible community!

4. What is your favourite season?
Winter. I love the cold.

5. What has been your favourite project to date?
Kung Pao, a short film. I worked with some really incredible people and had fun along the way.

6. What are you listening to or watching at the moment?
I am re-watching the amazing work of Love, Death & Robots.

7. If you could work with anyone in your field, who would it be?
Alberto Mielgo, @albertomielgo, is an incredible animation director.

The Creative - Tana Pistorius!

01 April 2022

 

Tana believes that beauty is in the why of the beholder.

Tana is the first Open Window alumnus in our new The Creatives series, which follows the lives of Open Window graduates post-studies. Tana studied her undergraduate and Honours degree in Film Arts at Open Window and graduated cum laude in 2020. She is currently a multimedia designer at @darkmatterza where she is skilled in film direction, art direction, camera operation, editing and writing. Her work has been officially selected for @durbanfilmmart (2020), @rapidlion_film (2021) and @liftoffglobalnetwork awards (2020). Tana lives, laughs and loves film and we cannot wait to see the waves she continues to make in the film industry! 

#TheCreatives

Tana Interview

Tana lives, laughs and loves film.

1. What’s your favourite ice cream flavour?
Triple chocolate ice cream sandwich (Paul’s Homemade Ice Cream), because it’s cheaper than therapy. OR, vanilla. Not because I am, but because you can build on it.

2. Who inspires your creative practice?
The people who are dear to me.

3. What are some favourite tools or resources that you actively use?
Everything Adobe, and for editor hacks, Envato Elements.

4. What is your favourite season?
All, they inspire flow.

5. What has been your favourite project to date?
Probably Wanneer Meisies Swem or The Orange Couch. They are both sentimental to me.

6. What are you watching at the moment?
Pen15 and How to with John Wilson.

The Creative - Balekane Legoabe!

28 March 2022

 

Remember the name Balekane Legoabe! After graduating from Open Window in 2018 with a degree in Film Arts and Visual Communication, Balekane continues to soar in the creative industry as an artist, curator, illustrator, and motion designer. In 2019, Balekane won the @stateofthe_art gallery award, and in 2020, held her first solo exhibition. You can find more of Balekane’s work at @bale__kane. Alternatively, visit the Late Summer Exhibition at The Atelier, Johannesburg. Bale is exhibiting and helping curate it!

#TheCreatives

Bale Interview:

1. What’s your favourite ice cream flavour?
Vanilla.

2. Who inspires your practice?
My practice isn’t necessarily inspired by a person. It’s generally inspired by and focused on the elements of play and exploration. In terms of artists, it’s constantly changing — right now I’m loving the work of Mark Rothko, Cy Twombly and Stanley Whitney.

3. What are some favourite tools or resources that you actively use?
Anything and everything. I love to invest in good-quality paper and materials. As a mixed-media artist, I also enjoy seeing how different materials react to one another and determining which approaches are un/successful.

4. What is your favourite season?
Definitely Summer!

5. What has been your favourite project to date?
I recently did a project for MSF Doctors Without Borders. I had to visually interpret the emotional and psychological trials endured by migrants. To visually interpret what happens in the mind and heart, and have people engage and connect with that is pretty awesome.

6. What are you watching at the moment?
I don’t watch TV. My favourite podcasts at the moment are Know Thyself, which is about ancient philosophy and self-knowledge, and Huberman Lab, a podcast about neuroscience hosted by Stanford professor, Andrew Huberman.

Open Face with Welmarie Momberg

04 March 2022

 

Product design and development is Welmarié Momberg’s true passion. She believes a meaningful product has the potential to create real, sustaining value on various levels. Empowering an individual or team to reach this goal provides Welmarié with enormous gratification. Thankfully, it’s what she does at Open Window.

Relevant and engaged in current practice, Welmarié has her own jewellery line and regularly consults for clients alongside lecturing. She was once awarded a top ten finalist position for Jewellery Designer of the Year for American Swiss. She won third place for a designer roof-rack for Holdfast in 2006. She was one of ten winners for a Point of Display stand for Xanita in 2006 and a shortlisted artist for Zepter International Design Award in 2013.

 

GIVE US A QUICK BIO.
Hello! So, a dedicated interest in design led to two design degrees. A BA Fine Arts degree (with Jewellery and Metal design) at Stellenbosch University, and a B.Tech Industrial Design degree at the Cape Peninsula University of Technology. Extra studies included a certificate programme in Innovative Facilitation of Learning through the University of Pretoria.

At the beginning of my career, I worked as an Industrial Designer at Edgi-Tech (PTY), which included design registration and IP portfolio administration, sourcing and liaising with suppliers internationally, funding applications and commercialisation plans. I stocked up on extensive industry experience, including work for Interbrand, who manages Polo, Cellini, Sissy Boy and others. This gave me an opportunity to draw-up tender documents, set quality control measures, formulate component specification sheets, liaise with suppliers and design physical products that made their way into the real world.


WHAT ARE SOME RECENT PROJECTS YOU’VE BEEN INVOLVED IN?
I was honoured to give workshops in Saudi Arabia as a consultant for Global Systematic Incubation and Innovation Management.
Also undertook project management and production of office furniture design for CO Designs.
Consult regularly, and recently for MIC Distributors (Bidvest Group); a project geared towards kitchenware for Wilkinson Sword.
At work with bespoke design and manufacturing of my own jewellery and cutlery range!

WHAT’S EXCITING TO YOU AT THE MOMENT IN THE WORLD OF PRODUCT DESIGN?
Product Design is such a dynamic field with interconnected entities; people, processes and technologies. It is ever-evolving.
What’s exciting me is the growing awareness that governments and researchers need to pay attention to the lifespan of consumer goods, and the opportunity that product design brings for circular business models.


WHAT IS YOUR LECTURING PHILOSOPHY?
To create a learning environment for students to discover and to maximise potential through facilitation.


YOUR CREATIVE FOCUS FOR 2022 IN ONE-THREE WORDS:
Experimentation. Innovation. Action.


NAME A BOOK/SONG/MOVIE/PIECE OF ART THAT RECENTLY CAPTURED YOU.
The Pretoriabased artist Craig Muller’s work is inspiring to me. It encompasses brilliant linework, usually a combination of something mechanical and a natural element that provokes thought. 


WHERE CAN WE FIND YOU?
In the CT classroom! And, you can follow @welmarie_momberg_design or my stream on Coroflot.

Exquisite Corpse: The Creative Currency of Collaboration

Creativity can be tricky to articulate. It may be easier to feel.

08 February 2022

 

A rehashed sitcom, a banal logo or a familiar lyric can be fine, but it’s neutral in the body. Something creative… now that ignites us. When we come across newness, or something that’s successfully alchemised ingredients and influence in an unexpected way, our eyes perk up, our hearts flip flop, our brains literally light up.

Some of you may remember a game played as a child, in which players took turns drawing sections of a body on a folded sheet of paper. The first player draws a head, then folds the paper for the next player, whom with perhaps only a hint of what came before, draws the torso. And so on and on, to create a creature that, once unfolded, is fanciful, funny or downright bizarre.

Surrealist artists created this parlour game in the 1920s, titling it the macabre but catchy Exquisite Corpse. It’s easy to see the appeal; the spontaneity, the element of chance, the thrill of unfolding a creative gift, the lack of pretension and preciousness that so often comes with creating what may serve to represent us, the individual (hello ego!).

Cadavre Exquis with André BretonMax MoriseJeannette Ducrocq Tanguy,
Pierre NavilleBenjamin PéretYves TanguyJacques Prévert Figure 1928

© 2022 Estate of Yves Tanguy / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

The game touches on perhaps the foundational aspect of creativity — surprise. A honked blip in the ordinary; a disruption of the day-to-day. There is delight at a creation that could only ever exist because it passed through a number of startling minds, and became more creative because of it. Exquisite Corpse serves as a stellar reminder that creativity profits from collaboration.

“I’m not creative.” – Many people

 

Many people like to say they are creative, or they aren’t. 

But creativity is not inherent; an ever-spurting fountain for a few creative chosen. It is an ability, not unlike athleticism, cooking or accounting, that benefits from discipline. A muscle that strengthens with exercise. It is a way of looking at the world that welcomes and allows for tangential thinking. A person who may want or need to be creative will realise that the ol’ synapses get well-trodden, and tools (such as Brian Eno’s Oblique Strategies) simple techniques, field trips or collaboration will force neural networks into non-default areas, and a maker to walk creative roads they’ve never known

Creative people use strategies, modes of play, dreamwork (!), self-imposed constraints and collaboration to see and combine things in a new way. This is creativity as behaviour.

Open Window, and the School of Visual Communication, are big fans of creativity — can you believe it! — and stand foundationally on collaboration. The annual Exquisite Corpse event was established to celebrate the Surrealists’ original game. The premise is simple. Students, staff, alumni, industry professionals and friends are invited to gather and make together. As participants or collaborators, the artistic outcomes are unknown. No one maker can control how the end product will turn out, and this loss of control is thrilling, terrifying, loosening! 

Collab by Nicole van Niekerk and Gerrie Bezuidenhout

Changes by Jade Rawson, Chanel Slabbert, Balekane Legoabe

Collab by Savanna Sinden and Jade Rawson

Collab by Iman Motani and Lethabo Mphahlele

When creations are revealed at the Exquisite Corpse exhibition, the element of surprise is what makes engaging with the final works so exciting. Through the input of multiple creatives, mediums are tested and novel patterns emerge. New narratives form and perspectives expand. Makers try new things that might otherwise have been explored with less ease. One sees ideas as diving boards. The process offers us growth within our own practice.

When viewing the works alongside each other, a critical message emerges: creativity is for everyone. Just like yoga is for all bodies. And olive oil for all salads.* 

 

“When you sing with a group of people, you learn how to subsume yourself into a group consciousness … That’s one of the great feelings — to stop being me for a little while and to become us”. – Brian Eno 

 

When we work together and add to one another’s work (no matter what we’re given), a space for experimentation opens up and creativity gets excited. New ideas!

We’re reminded that our creativity as a collective is powerful. That we’re all creative. And when we’re feeling bereft and uncreative, it is not a personal failing. Rather, simply, a cue to take a cue.

This year’s Exquisite Corpse exhibition will take place on 3 August 2022, at the Now Gallery. Stay up to date and get the brief by following OW’s social media or our blog. Hope to see you there.

*Unless you’re allergic to olive oil.

Open Face with Zinhle Zulu

Illustration Lecturer / Visual Storyteller

04 February 2022

 

Zinhle Zulu is a Gold Craft Loerie award-winning illustrator and Illustration Lecturer for Open Window’s School of Visual Communication. Zinhle has been featured in Visi, Between 10 and 5 and on the David Krut podcast. She is a contributor to galleries and events such as David Krut, Gallery 2, Art Lovers and the Turbine Art Fair. Her work centres on the honest and contemporary capture and communication of culture, particularly her own Zulu culture.

GIVE US A QUICK BIO.

Hey! I was born in Kwazulu-Natal and grew up in Johannesburg. I’ve wanted to be an illustrator since about Grade 5, when I realised I couldn’t draw. Drawing was difficult! Frustrating, challenging, intoxicating. I attained my Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in Visual Communication, majoring in Illustration, from Open Window. I’ve recently completed my Masters in Visual Communication with University of Johannesburg, (hopefully) soon to be conferred.

WHAT ARE SOME RECENT PROJECTS YOU’VE BEEN INVOLVED IN?

The Jewel City Mural — I was one of five artists chosen to design and illustrate an area of the Maboneng precinct. I got to meet (actual!) street artists and work with a team to bring my illustration to larger-than-life.
The Curious Five — I’ve been partnering with the David Krut gallery in Johannesburg ever since I knocked on their door in 2018. The Curious Five is a screenprint series inspired by African stories told and sold to tourists and foreigners.
Gallery 2 — Right now I’m contributing to a group show called Through the Window: A collection of Visual Narratives.
Wanderland Collective — I’m a contributing artist to this luxury, local textile brand which has printed my illustrations on scarves, purses and coffee cups, which is great!

WHAT’S EXCITING YOU AT THE MOMENT IN THE WORLD OF VC?

I’m thinking a lot about the metaverse. It’s philosophical and frightening, but there’s so much opportunity to create and make these new spaces. How will creator roles adapt from IRL? What new roles may emerge? What could this space mean for illustrators? Illustrators often find themselves in a sticky space between design and fine art. My hope is that the metaverse opens up the market. I’d like to see more hubs and spaces for illustrators to thrive in their chosen discipline.

WHAT IS YOUR LECTURING PHILOSOPHY?

  • Respect is important and mutual.
  • You are what you repeatedly do — your actions make you who you are.
  • Be ready and willing to take each student as far as they can go in the time you have with them.
  • We’re all on a journey on which learning never ends.
  • I’m determined to prepare students to navigate the financial survival of creative work in the real world.

YOUR CREATIVE FOCUS FOR 2022 IN ONE-THREE WORDS:

Authenticity. Representation. Capturing current culture. (Yes, yes, more than three words).

NAME A BOOK/SONG/MOVIE/PIECE OF ART THAT RECENTLY CAPTURED YOU.

Song: Distance by Yebba
Art: Animals with Children Inside of Themselves, 2021, Balekane Legoabe

WHERE CAN WE FIND YOU?

At Open Window a lot of the time. ☺
Also, you can follow @zhizulu

Open Window Ranked Number One Top Educational Institution in 2021 Loerie Awards

25 February 2022

 

We are beyond proud to celebrate a number one Top Educational Institution spot in the 2021 Loeries Official Rankings. It is a beautiful testament to our students, academic staff and all-round team effort, enthusiasm and creative courage!

Awards will never be what the work is all about, but to receive public recognition for the energy and determination that goes into every year at Open Window is a reminder that the work we make is meaningful beyond these walls. Creativity matters and always will.

“The truly wonderful thing is how Open Window staff constitutes one-third of the Loeries top 15 lecturer ranking. Great to be part of such company. Great to be part of such an institution.”
Pluto Panoussis, Chief Strategy Officer at UXi Group

Join us in celebrating the individual students, lecturers, and alumni that grace the rankings pages!

Top Educational Institution
01 Open Window

Lecturer Awards
02 Pluto Panoussis
04 Morne Venter
05 Maaike Bakker
11 Nina Torr
13 Sean Viljoen

Student Awards
02 Josh McDonald
05 Luzanne Potgieter
06 Arne Boshoff
11 Jack Singer

Agency Art Director
11 Alumna – Kevin Radebe

Designer
09 Alumna – Lucinda Jordaan
10 Alumna – Wessel Mathews
29 Alumna – Lauren Mitchell

Congrats to all!

View and download the official rankings here.

SA Game Jam 2021 - Good Boi, Puggo

03 November 2021

Our Game Design students and lecturers competed in the 72-hour SA Game Jam given the theme, “The urge to discover”. Good Boi, Puggo is an adventure RPG where Puggo must find out who the good boi really is.

Download available at
https://virtualwindow.itch.io/good-boi-puggo
SA Game Jam: https://itch.io/jam/sa-game-jam-2021

CREDITS:
Jared Brandjes- Lead Dev / UI
Christiaan De Jager- Level Design / Dev
Paulo Vilela- Lead Art / Dev
Anzel Larkins – Music / Narrative / Graphic design
Chris Solomon – Dev / Technical Artist / Rigging
Andre Terblanche – Dev / Sound
Bronwin Henn – Animation
Mark Shope – VFX
Willem Willemse – Dev
William Basson – Moral Support / Code / Models
Marnus Labuschagne – World Building
Jonathan Bala – QA

#SAGJ2021
SA Game Jam

Congratulations to the following 2021 Loerie Award Winners

25 October 2021

Rewarding creative excellence across Africa and the Middle East

The Loeries has been rewarding creativity for over 40 years.

As Africa and the Middle East’s premier award that recognises, rewards inspires and fosters creative excellence in the advertising and brand communication industry, winning a Loerie is the highest accolade for creativity and innovation across our region. The Loeries, a proudly not-for-profit company, promotes and supports creativity by helping marketers, agencies and consumers appreciate the value of fresh thinking, innovative ideas and outstanding execution.

Digital Media
Gold
Rooted (Own Brand) Mobile Application
Josh McDonald

General Design
Silver
011 Creative Club
Jack Singer

General Design
Bronze
What would happen if we went a different route?
Chanel Slabbert

Online Film, Short Film & Music Videos
Bronze
Short Animation Explorations of Femininity
Alexandra Botha-Green

Online Film, Short Film & Music Videos
Silver
Short Animation Kung Pao
Thomas Walsh, Ruben Venter, Celia Kumpf

Online Film, Short Film & Music Videos
Silver
Onvermydelik Short Film
Arné Boshoff

Television, Film & Video Crafts
Craft Certificate
Onvermydelik: Original Music
Barnardo Bloem

Television, Film & Video Crafts
Craft Certificate
Onvermydelik: Original Screenplay
Arné Boshoff

Television, Film & Video Crafts
Craft Gold
Onvermydelik: Cinematography
Luzanne Potgieter

Loerie Award Winners

Azelda Olivier wins SA National Award for Sony World Photography Awards 2021

10 February 2021

Olivier’s photograph was shot for a project that studied colour theory and uses a warm colour palette. The image further explores colour by analysing its socially constructed meaning – using the colour pink, which is often associated with femininity, to blur the lines between gender stereotypes.

Olivier is a 22-year-old second-year visual communications student at the Open Window Institute for Arts and Digital Sciences, South Africa. She never took art in school and only began her creative journey in 2020, when she left her studies in finances to study graphic design. She considers this a big leap of faith that led to her finding her true passion.

Commenting on her win, she said: “This award truly means the world to me. I shot this photograph at the very beginning of my photography studies, so the recognition from this award will unquestionably help me trust my creative instincts and to be more self-confident. I’m filled with gratitude for the opportunity to showcase my work and to receive a voice through this wonderful platform. I hope that this photograph inspires at least one individual.”

As the South African National Award winner, Azelda Olivier receives Sony digital imaging equipment.
The overall winners in the Student, Youth, Open and Professional competition of the Sony World Photography Awards 2021 will be announced on 15 April 2021 via the World Photography Organisation’s digital and video platforms.

For more information about winners and shortlists, visit www.worldlphoto.org