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New faculty at Laguna College

Fantasy artist Greg Spalenka to teach course in illustration for print and film.

September 04, 2009|By Ashley Breeding

Artist Greg Spalenka has joined the Laguna College of Art & Design as the new professor of fantasy art.

Classes began Monday.

The course is an advanced and comprehensive study of fantasy art as it relates to the entertainment and print media fields, Jennifer Daniels, media relations manager for the college, said.

“Science fiction and fantasy art will be studied and its context through historic and contemporary periods. Students will conceptualize, design and produce fantastic and fictional content using a variety of drawing and painting methods. Topics covered include exaggerated anatomy and imaginative creatures, worlds and environments.”

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Spalenka said he is grateful for the opportunity to talk to students about “Artist as Brand,” a distillation of knowledge gleaned from his years living and working as a freelance artist.

“The goal of this [class] is to align your talent with your heart, create products and services out of your unique personal vision and finally market these gifts to the world through High Tech and High Touch venues,” Spalenka said. “Students will be given the tools to become an empowered artist entrepreneur.”

Rendering and color illustration is a prerequisite for the three-unit course (IL316).

An Arcadia native, Spalenka graduated from the Art Center College of Design in 1982, before moving to New York City, where he spent the next eight years pursuing a career in illustration.

For 26 years, he’s been creating art for major publications in the world of books, magazines and newspapers, and has taught and lectured at colleges and universities in the state and abroad.

“My first association with LCAD was when [then-dean of illustration] Lenny Scarola invited me to teach back in the early ’90s,” he said. “In 2004, my focus shifted to film, and I began working as a concept artist.”

His film projects include “The Ant Bully,” “The Golden Compass,” “Escape from Planet Earth,” “Prince Caspian: Voyage of the Dawn Treader” and “Kamlu.”

“I am always involved in a myriad of personal book, film and music projects,” he said.


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