2011 R.A.W. Video Contest Showcases Student Life In and Out of the Studio (Including a Burger or Two!)

Congratulations to this year's juried R.A.W. Video (real artists at work) contest winners! The contest, open to all current CCA students, challenged contestants to create a two-minute (maximum) high-resolution digital film (including audio) with “In and Out of the Studio" as the required theme.

The goal was to encourage students to pick up their digital camcorders and highlight their community at CCA—whether in the classroom, studio, residence hall—or away from the college altogether. And the goal was definitely met several times over!

2011 R.A.W. Video Contest Winners

First Place: James

Film Program students Lina Vezzani-Katano, Erik Lee, Fred Kolouch, and Yeni Che are the collective first-place winners for their short documentary about an industrious Fashion Design student who gives fashion design his own personal makeover! Watch video »

Second place: CCA Life

Bander Saleh (Film Program)
This film busts a move with a fast-paced view of CCA's charms. Watch video »

Third place: Hamburger Art

Sky Richards (Film Program)
Here's something to chew on when the creative process seems overwhelming. Watch video »

Special Distinction: Finding Yourself

Grant Kolton (Animation/Illustration)
Don't we all want to meet our creative inner self? Perhaps we can. Watch video »
(Kolton is a veteran R.A.W. Video contestant: Ubiquitous, Ubiquitous took top honors in 2008 and Final Critique was entered in 2009.)

Audience Award: Embossed Alchemy: The Fine Art of Printmaking

Printmaking students Kate Klingbeil and Grace Lannon bring to life the magical printmaking process. Watch video »

Top-place awardees received a $500 cash prize per film; the Special Distinction and Audience Appreciation Award recipients each received a $100 cash prize per film. Additionally, all awardees received a $40 gift certificate from Arch Supplies.

Visit the 2011 R.A.W. Video Winners playlist on CCA's YouTube channel to see the winning videos as a collection.

Film Program Reels In Top Honors

In a noticeable flip from last year’s R.A.W. Video contest, which procured winning submissions representing multiple programs, this year’s top-ranking filmmakers are all Film Program students.

Film Program chair Rob Epstein remarked: “Students were able to have a lot fun with this year's theme. All of the submissions showed a range of stylistic approaches and originality. Students in the Film Program made this year’s top three films. Each is a wonderful example of work emerging from our students.”

About the Winning Film

A collaborative piece, the film James allows the viewer to step into the world of James Zormeir, a fourth-year Fashion Design student, where we vicariously learn how this talented artist creates and recreates—though the two are not mutually exclusive to Zormeir—both in the studio and while living in downtown San Francisco.

Initially a solo project, Lina Vezzani-Katano enlisted fellow Film classmates to help bring her film to life. Her intuition told her if they chose a subject with a unique character, the work would reveal itself through film. They didn't know Zormeir, yet they all felt an affinity toward him.

Regarding the process, Vezzani-Katano admitted, “Collaboration was so much more fun than we expected it to be. We gradually became hooked with the project and excited about making it. I learned from everybody involved in this video and I saw that we all believed in the work together."

Kolouch, Film student (and Media Services work-study), added, “I really enjoyed shooting the night footage off campus -- it was a bizarre experience. We ran into a flash mob, tons of people were running down the streets at one point . . . it was weird. But James added this fantastic charm to the whole mix. It was adventurous, and that's what I love most about the filmmaking process."

R.A.W. Judging

This year's jury was composed of seven judges (a combination of staff and faculty) who reviewed all submissions and deliberated accordingly. Final results were determined using a point system: first choice = 3 points; second choice = 2 points; third choice = 1 point. In addition to the winning films from Film students, the jury also viewed student submissions from a wide sampling of majors:

Fashion Design
Graduate Program in Design
Individualized Major
MBA in Design Strategy

First R.A.W. Audience Award

Measuring what constitutes a good film can be highly subjective. Does technical prowess outweigh, say, subject matter? Does a film that veers away from the assigned theme, but is otherwise exceptional in terms of quality, warrant nonplacement? For such matters we often turn to judges to decide. Yet what about popular opinion? After all, shouldn’t a nonplacing film that wins over a jury of one’s peers be applauded as a winner, too?

Well, that’s exactly what happened this year with the introduction of the R.A.W. Audience Award. We asked the CCA student body to put in its two cents, and the results were crystal clear: Printmaking students Kate Klingbeil’s and Grace Lannon’s Embossed Alchemy: The Fine Art of Printmaking won by a landslide! Students praised the film with enthusiastic comments that ranged from “it was well shot, dynamic, engaging, and representative” to “super creative” to “the most fun, visually interesting, and honest without selling out.”

According to Klingbeil, “Printmaking works in mysterious ways. The intention of a piece is always altered through the laborious but rewarding process of creating the final image. Stop motion animation works in the same way. Grace and I wanted to showcase this mysterious medium through stop motion.

“The R.A.W. Video contest was a great chance for us to explore printmaking through the lens of animation, and it was the first time that both of us have received recognition for our work. I hope that people who see our piece are intrigued by the process of printmaking and want to learn more.”

Another appreciative student selected the film because it was “a great depiction of the Printmaking Department and shows the ancient processes of lithography and etching -- something many CCA students don't ever see.”

Other notable audience favs:

In and Out of the Studio
Kevin Cho (Film)
Watch now »

Afton Love (Painting/Drawing)
Watch now »

Mev Luna (Individualized Major: Textiles / Media Arts)
Watch now »

R.A.W. Contests: Interdisciplinary Opportunities

Whether it's R.A.W. Video or R.A.W. Photography, unique contests like these unite CCA's student population in creative ways regardless of discipline. Each R.A.W. Video contestant is encouraged to review the previous year's awarded entries to grab a hold of the creative range this contest yields.

Note: Be sure to vote for your favorite image in this year's R.A.W. Photography contest. All votes must be received by 4 p.m. on November 22, 2011. (Only one vote per student CCA email address.)

In addition to technical skills, participants must engage a designated theme -- structurally, thematically, visually, or all the above. Past themes include “CCA’s bike culture” (2010); "the culture of critique" (2009); and "the CCA experience (from a student's perspective)" (2008). Depending on which program a student is enrolled in, the outcome for how the theme is expressed can be quite imaginative and effective. Students approach the theme quite differently, and the collective result is often a wondrous display of interdisciplinary exploration.

Watch Past Winning Videos
2010 R.A.W. Video Winners
2009 R.A.W. Video Winners
2008 R.A.W. Video Winners

"What can I say? Organizing the R.A.W. Video contest is one of my favorite aspects of my job," said Senior Marketing Manager Clay Walsh, who ensures the college's creative contests are not only challenging in terms of process but also creative through and through. "Our students never cease to amaze me.”


Have a comment you'd like to share about this year's R.A.W. video contest? Want to suggest a theme for next year's video or photography contests? We welcome your feedback! Send comments and suggestions to Senior Marketing Manager Clay Walsh.