The electronic arts are beautiful and extremely difficult art forms. I believe that to effectively teach in this space there are six critical ideas to teach in addition to the theories and processes in the field.
I make it my personal goal to instill these values in my students. My hope is that all of my students will go on to fulfill their creative dreams.
School of Motion
Contributor, September 2016 - present
Art Institute of Pittsburgh, Online Division
Assistant Professor, Senior Full Time Faculty, Game Art and Design Department, April 2013 - present
Adjunct Faculty, Media Arts and Animation Department, January 2008 - April 2013
IGDA Faculty Advisor
Subject Matter Expert (Course Development):
Instructor for the following courses:
I possess the credentials to instruct the following additional courses:
Education & Development
Education & Professional Development
Faculty training, The Art Institute of Pittsburgh, EDMC, Webex Training Sessions:
Faculty training, The Art Institute of Pittsburgh, EDMC, Asynchronous Training:
Faculty training, The Art Institute of Pittsburgh & Brand Tool Box, 7 Weeks:
"Sara I have to admit, the way you talk is so inspiring to me and it really pushes me to look even more deeper into myself in order to create things with meaning. I've been an artist for a long time and animation was never my nitch. I do a lot of anime character drawings that require a lot of anatomical knowledge. Making cartoon characters that have the Looney Toons touch was never something I was interested in, but for some reason, creating these whacky chars with the way you explain things is really helping me. Please continue, I need the push."
"Thank you Professor for the vast amount of knowledge you have shared with everyone, it has helped us grow to what we are now. Please inform me if you have any other classes that you teach, I sure would like to be in it."
"I think you're one of the best instructors I've had! You gave me ideas to overcome my problems I was having within my software. Also, I really like how you do the video critiques. I think it's easier to understand someone and what they mean when you hear them rather than reading what they think. You told us why things worked and didn't work, rather than saying 'good job'. Thanks for that, because simply saying 'good job' doesn't help a bit."
"This has been one of the better courses that i have taken. I loved the video critiques. It really felt like you took the time to review our animations and to fill us in on what you thought. It is so hard to convey so much information about a highly visual medium without such a critique. If there is anyway you can twist the arms of other AIO professors to do the same it would be great."
"You're one of the best online teachers I've ever had. Video/audio crits are a great way to help out us. No BS, you always answer all my questions, and are a dedicated teacher."
"First and foremost, I would like to thank Sara Wade for the job she does in instructing this class. I can say, and I genuinely mean this, that you have made this one of the more enjoyable classes I have had since I embarked on this journey. Looking back from when I began, this is without a doubt in the top three – and I truly mean that. One thing that stands out above all the rest that appreciate, and I am sure that my classmates would agree, is the video critiques on our assignments. It creates a more personal “classroom” style vibe, and it really gets the points across. An added bonus too is that it keeps you from having to do a lot of extra typing, and us from doing a lot of extra reading! This is the first class I have taken where an instructor did assignment evaluations that way, and I wish they ALL did it that way. I like it because you can show on the screen exactly what you are talking about, changes and alterations you suggest, and precisely what part you are referring to. There is no question to what you mean because it is right there on the screen in front of me! As I said, I love this, and I wish all my classes were done this way.
I also appreciate the way you make succinct statements that pinpoint accurately what looks “off”, what needs to be changed and more importantly “why”. That goes a long way when I am learning about these various processes. You go the extra mile to not only tell me what needs improvement but why it needs improving, and that makes a world of difference when as a student I want to understand all of the intricacies involved. Honestly, I think you do an awesome job in teaching this class, and I really can’t think of any areas that need development. I wish you all the best in your career, and I hope that my future classes were as enjoyable as this one! "
"I love how responsive you were, very to the point and detailed not only with what the problem was but how to fix it and information on the subject matter as well. My favorite part of the class was your critiques on youtube it provided a much clearer perspective on exactly what and where the attention was needed making it easier and faster to maintain and retain."
"I will take this opportunity to let you know that because of the time that you took to explain to me the critiques that you had for my work, you are one of the best instructors i have had sinnce attending this school. I thank you so much for taking that time, I think I have had one or two other instructors get that much involved in the teaching of their students."
"First I want to thank you for showing and teaching me more 3D animation fundamentals then I have learned in the past 4 four years. I know I benefitted by being the only student in the class but the video critiques where the best; not only could here your revision, but I could see what you where talking about and that helped me a lot, it really made my short and gave me the extra ambition to try and make it better.
Thank you so much for your time and direction...it made me a lot better. "
I run the Art Institute chapter of the IGDA (International Game Developers Association). Check out what my IGDA students are creating on the Project forums. We are currently creating a game about a robot called LiBot which was a finalist at the 2016 MIA Animation Festival GAME ON Competition
Play our last game development project here: Play the Nightmare!
Check out this video detailing what it's like to be part of the online IGDA chapter: What is Project Nightmare?
This is the game my IGDA students created in our January 2015 24 hour game jam: The Grim Escape. This was the first of our quarterly game jams for the Art Institute Online chapter of IGDA.
The Art Institute has some pretty confusing legal restrictions on public display of student work created in the classroom. I hope to find a way to do this very soon.
My students are amazing and I can't wait to share more of their work here.
I am constantly influenced and inspired by all that surrounds me. The light just before sunset, a well designed space, an artfully crafted novel or a perfectly ripe garden tomato all inspire. My alma mater, Carnegie Mellon University, and the faculty, staff and students there have shown me the beauty of interdisciplinary thought and collaboration. It's an amazing thing to look at a problem through the eyes of another discipline. The melding of thoughts and resources from across varying fields of study has resulted in some of the most amazing discoveries and creations in human history.
I draw inspiration from too many amazing artists and animators to list here. Instead I will share a a few of the many teachers in my life who have most inspired both my work and my teaching: