I drove down to UCLA yesterday to meet up with a few friends to walk-through the Design Showcase West exhibit. For those that are unfamiliar with Design Showcase West, it is a portfolio review and presentation primarily for graduates from a variety of schools. The main schools at the showcase this year were UCLA, USC, CalArts, University of Texas at Austin, University of Kansas City at Missouri and Yale to name a few. It is the “Clambake” of the west as we often refer to it at school.
I had a great time at the showcase because there was a lot of amazing work and I got to hang out with a lot of my peers who I haven't seen in a while. Also, as I was unable to get to Clambake in NYC, I thought this might be a good opportunity to see what other designers were up to. I would estimate that there were a total of 60 presenters at the showcase, but the majority was scenic or costume based. I was a little disappointed with the low turnout of only five lighting designers, two of whom are friends of mine. The most impressive part of the showcase was the scenic models. They were incredibly detailed and accurate, and glancing briefly at the play titles they were for, they made a lot of sense in supporting each work. It was an enjoyable way to spend an afternoon with friends in the industry.