Welcome Back Updates – Fall 2019

Dear Students, Faculty, and Staff,

Welcome and welcome back. Hope you have had a productive and enjoyable summer. Our summer has been eventful within the School of Film/Video as we’ve been refreshing and integrating new equipment into our facilities that will aid you in your coursework and filmmaking.

We have a bunch of updates regarding our facilities and equipment but, first a few important meeting reminders:

Mandatory Technology and Facilities Updates Meeting for continuing Experimental Animation, Film Directing Program, and Program in Film and Video students on Friday, September 6th from 10am to 11:30am in A111 Mix Theater.

Please join us for our first annual Ice Cream Social (with Pizza) to be held Friday, September 6th in BB3 from 11:30am to 1pm. All School of Film/Video new/returning students, faculty, and staff are welcome.

Mandatory Technology and Facilities Updates Meeting for continuing Character Animation students on Friday, September 6th from 1pm to 2pm in A111 Mix Theater.

As usual, software on all FV computers has been updated. Here are a few notable changes: macOS Mojave 10.14.6, Adobe CC 2019 (login now required), Pro Tools Ultimate 2019 (now available in all computer labs), Avid Media Composer 2019, Maya 2019, Cinema 4D R20, Blender 2.8, and Substance Painter 2019. On the backend, our OpenDrives storage which powers FVCentral received a major software update.

Our computer labs received various updates. New iMac Pro workstations have been installed in E60 Computer Lab. Both A108 and A109 Animation Computer Labs have been reconfigured and a new projection screens have been installed. We will have more information regarding new computers for our animation labs later this semester once Apple finally releases the new Mac Pro this Fall.

We’ve installed new Mac minis with eGPUs in all of our classrooms (not computer labs) as well as the Character Animation carts. A new projection system, whiteboard, and AV rack have been installed in E58 Classroom.

In the Character Animation area Cintiqs have been installed on the pencil test systems and all of the large format scanners received an update. A new projection screen has been installed A221T The Palace.

We have updated the large format scanners throughout the Experimental Animation area as well. There are 2 new Vive Pro kits and an Oculus Rift S kit available in F105. In F103, VR base stations have been installed. A new refrigerator, microwave, and motorized projection screen have been installed in A115.

All legacy tape transfer equipment has been consolidated to E104 Transfer Room. The Video Studio will no longer do legacy video transfers.

The Digital Editing and Post-Production area offices and edit suites have seen a minor reorganization. E45 is now a student lounge and bullpen with 3 production level iMacs and desk space for laptop use. Additional high-speed 10Gb fiber drops have been installed in E39, E46, and E47. 4K HDR monitors have been installed in several edit suites.

Our Production and Installation facilities have received several updates this summer. In A404 Black & White Studio, the truss has been permanently mounted and the column in the white cove has been cleared. A new black drape has been installed in C117 Permanent Set. The dimmer systems and light board have been replaced in C115 Video Studio. A standard package of grip gear consisting of apple boxes, c-stands, flags, etc. are now available in A404, C115, C117, and BB3M. We have a new DIT cart available for classes.

Installation equipment checkout in C105D has 6 updated Mac minis, 2 new high-performance MacBook Pros for projection mapping, 6 new Andor 1 media players. All of the Cage projectors have been relocated to C105D for checkout. The Fisher dolly has been relocated to the C-block as well. A Fisher Model 20 jib arm has been added to the Fisher dolly which replaces the old crane in the C115 Video Studio.

We have some new gear and changes in the Equipment Cage this year. The Sound Devices 722/744 have been retired in favor of new MixPre3s and 6s. Some notable new items: 1 Zeiss CP3 Prime 5 lens kit, 2 Sound Devices MixPre3 (Character Animation), 10 Sound Devices MixPre6s, Vive Pro kit, Oculus Rift S kit, 2 HP ZBook 15 G6 for VR, Dana Dolly, matte boxes, and 2 Tokina 11-16mm lenses.

Large equipment lockers are now available in E61. Checkout will be handled through the Equipment Cage.

Christina Nguyen was busy compiling our new School of Film/Video Student Handbook and the new 2pop.calarts.edu website. 2 Pop is our new mobile-friendly, online home to the new student handbook as well as the place to go to submit a support ticket to report issues within our facilities for such things as logins and hardware issues. Support tickets can also be submitted by emailing 2popsupport@calarts.edu. Our old websites, FVTech and FVTechSupport have been taken down and you will now be redirected to the new 2 Pop website. Thank you to Christina Nguyen for leading this incredible undertaking as well as Jill Kane for her support.

Suggested computer specs for new students can be found on 2 Pop here.

A reminder that if you have problems with CalArts email, WiFi, or The Hub please visit cait.calarts.edu or email: cait@calarts.edu.

Solly Benzacar joined us in July as our new Equipment Coordinator in the Equipment Cage. Please join us in welcoming Solly.

Thank you to our incredible team of staff who made all of this possible: Solly Benzacar, Tom Evans, Justin Hogan, Edgar Jorge Baralt, Jill Kane, Scott Kozberg, Gordon Kurowski, Paul Kyle, Michael McNeff, Nate Meier, Christina Nguyen, Patti Palmer, Kye Potter, Aidan Reynolds, Gina Roen, Jennie Serrano, Terry Spraker, Nathan Strum, and Chris Sullivan.

A big thank you to student workers who helped us this summer preparing our facilities for this new academic year: Blake Derksen, Sonya Fayzieva, Matt Hardy, Dave Hess, Aaron Holmes, Lucy Kerr, Alex Lopez, Alicia Maye, Alex Michel, John Henry Theisen, and Marco Zhang.

The School of Film/Video Garage Sale will happen again this year on Thursday, September 5th from 10am to 3pm in E58.  We will be featuring the usual unusual assortment of equipment. Of particular interest this year are sound recorders, iMacs, and Mac minis.

We look forward to seeing you all soon.

Best regards,

Nathan Crow
Director of Technology

Sara Thompson
Director of Operations