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EXCELLENCE BY DESIGN; GRAPHIC ARTS CLASS PRODUCING WINNERS AT AGOURA CAMPUS.

Byline: Kevin F. Sherry Daily News Staff Writer

Just one year into a new computer graphics class at Agoura High School, students already have won awards for their designs.

The 28-member class, which uses computer design programs to create images in fine arts and advertising, aims to give students real-world skills. Those skills might one day translate into jobs in the motion picture, graphic arts or advertising industries, said teacher Nancy Rizzardi.

Not many people can make a living as artists, Rizzardi said.

``Even if they do, they start out having to support themselves somehow,'' she said.

Sophomore Robert McInerny said he spends about an hour a day drawing at home on his computer, and his dedication appears to have paid off.

Robert won $50 and first place in the Golden State Sculptors Association design contest. His logo was transferred to T-shirts worn by all the staff members at the organization's May 31 exposition at the Civic Arts Plaza in Thousand Oaks.

Robert said he might one day use his skills at a job.

``But right now it's just for fun,'' he said.

Freshman Crystal Karr's image of hands working a chisel earned second place and $25 in the same design contest.

And junior David Nasan's computer-created collage is one of five finalists in the logo contest for the All Sport L.A. Watts Summer Games sponsored by the Los Angeles Junior Chamber of Commerce.

Rizzardi believes entering contests helps the students in a variety of ways.

``I think it's good experience to have real deadlines,'' she said.

Students also build their resumes and add to their portfolios with contest-winning artwork, Rizzardi said.

A computer graphics class has been a dream of Rizzardi's for several years. The school's new lab of 36 high-powered Macintosh computers finally provided the technology to support the class.

The class attracts everyone from artists to computer buffs, and is used as a way to bridge the two disciplines, she said.

``We've got some people who have done some things before, and others who have never touched a computer,'' Rizzardi said. Others ``may be computer whizzes, but they don't know the principles of design.''

Students began the year slowly, creating designs for diskette labels and mouse pads. They soon encountered the challenge of drawing an image with a mouse on a computer screen rather than with pencils on paper.

``In the beginning of the year all we did was hand-draw,'' said Crystal, the second-place finisher. ``Now it's all computer.''

The students' final project required them to find a magazine advertisement that they did not like and redesign it.

Students added pictures, text and new designs to the ad to make it more appealing. They also submitted notes about the elements they didn't like and why they thought those items were unattractive.

CAPTION(S):

3 Photos

PHOTO (1--Color) Lucy Kim, 17, works on a computer design project using hand-drawn models.

(2--Color) Students' Mother's Day greetings use a cup motif.

(3) Graphic arts teacher Nancy Rizzardi and student David Mason, 17, show off Mason's design that made him an art competition finalist.

Bob Halvorsen/Daily News
COPYRIGHT 1998 Daily News
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1998, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

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Publication:Daily News (Los Angeles, CA)
Date:Jun 4, 1998
Words:518
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