80 Hours to render

Sandee Seehagen is a UVU alum who studied motion graphics and design, and worked on the student collaborative work 'Seven Days.’ was shown in FONOTECA NACIONAL in November 2018 and at the ELECTROACOUSTIC MUSIC FESTIVAL “ECOS URBANOS” in Mexico City.

About the project

The Seven Days project was definitely one of the highlights of my time at UVU. I love motion

graphics! I somehow managed to take Motion II three times (shhh don’t tell anyone). Not

because I failed, but because it was my absolute favorite. This particular semester Professor

Brandon Truscott came to the group of us who had taken the class before and said that he was

working with another university (Malone University) who wanted to collaborate with us. They

created an original music score and wanted to make a music video of sorts to go along

with it. After some discussion as a group we decided we would be willing to take on

the task. From there we did a LOT of storyboarding and discussion on how to approach

the project.


The music is highly instrumental, so ultimately we went with an abstract approach. The music

was made to represent the seven days of creation - and each track was a different day, therefore a

different feel or theme. All of our creations were highly driven and inspired by the music. So

there was a lot of learning involved there, experimenting with different ways to get our objects

in Cinema 4D to be driven by the music. Not to mention the time that it took to render some of

our scenes. I had one segment that took over 80 hours to render. I know some of the other

students had longer render times than that. Now that's dedication. We must love creating.

My particular track was titled “Waterlife.” If you’ve ever tried to create something that moves

and looks like liquid in Cinema 4D you feel my pain. The lighting and textures alone took hours

to get just right. But I like a challenge and am to this day still very pleased with what we were

able to create in less than a semester's time. I also really love that Brandon gave us the

freedom to create what we wanted to. I think that that freedom helped us create something

really interesting and captivating. It taught us how to collaborate with each other and still have

individuality in our work. Perhaps the best part was seeing it play at the Ragan on a

giant screen and getting to answer questions about how it was created.


An alum's reflections


I loved my time at UVU. I especially loved when we got to collaborate with other real life

businesses and clients. I think projects like these were most useful to prepare me for the career

world outside of school. I still use my motion graphics knowledge today. During my internship

at ObservePoint I created several videos for the company with 3D graphics and logos. Of

course it wasn’t as abstract or experimental as Seven Days, but definitely prepared me with the

skills and knowledge. My manager who hired me later told me that my knowledge and skills

with motion graphics and 3D is what got me the job. Honestly, I struggled with corporate work

life, the freedom to create is huge to me. I guess my style is more abstract and outside the box.

I recently moved to Arizona and have been doing a lot of freelance graphic design work. One of

my contracts, Dillon Aero, just offered me a full time position and I am super excited about it. I will be

continuing my knowledge of 3D there. I have recently been given the task to design a manual

for their newest rifle. Attempting to break the barriers of boring, flat and instructional to

beautiful, 3D and useful. What I love the most about my new job is that more than anything,

each task is to be a work of art, something you want to look at or wear over and over again,

and something created freely with concept and passion.


Never give up


There was a brief time there between graduating in May with my BFA (Graphic Design) and my

internship not offering me a job where felt like a real crappy designer. I had many job

interviews, all of which told me I had a great portfolio and that I was highly creative and

talented. Yet, none of them offered me a job. If I had one piece of advice to give, it would be to

believe in yourself. Keep doing what makes you, you. And when the time is right, it will all work

out, and your job will be AWESOME! Do what you love, love what you do and do it well. Even if

it takes you over 80 hours to render.


Seven Days from Brandon Truscott on Vimeo.

Seven Days features the work of seven graphic design BFA students from the Motion Graphics II course. The UVU students created animated motion graphics synchronized to an original music score composed by Jack Ballard, in collaboration with Malone University students Ben Mariano, & Jake Peters in Ohio. Jack Ballard is a PHD in music composition, full professor, department chair and Fulbright scholar. Seven Days was first screened in the UVU Ragan Theatre on May 2, 2017.