Digital Art is a contemporary form of visual expression which uses the computer, its associated hardware and software, and supporting commercial production methods as primary tools and techniques for art-making.
It is fundamentally different from graphic design in its focus on self-expression rather than other-oriented design that is intended to meet clients' needs. MHCC correctly places this relatively new discipline in the Visual Art Department. Digital art courses concentrate on developing facility with computer materials, tools, and techniques, just as printmaking, ceramics, sculpture, and other art areas require competency in the use of their specialized equipment and methods.
As with any college level art course, MHCC digital art courses place early emphasis on the conceptual aspects of students' work. Development of creative-thinking and rational problem-solving skills as well as a maturing aesthetic sensibility are expected during the exploration of all assignments. Discussions of contemporary cultural influences and art historical issues are a part of the process from idea generating stages to the critique of student work.
Courses in the media of digital art are intended to prepare our transfer students to continue with the computer as an art medium of choice, as well as to enable students to apply these computer skills in other areas of the fine and applied arts, such as printmaking, sculpture and painting, and interior design, fashion design and architecture.
All digital fine art courses at MHCC are intended to be fully transferrable into four-year college art programs. Our plan of a six-term digital art course series should culminate in graduating students who will enter any four-year program with the distinct advantage of thorough training in the use of the computer as an art-making tool. Students graduating with an emphasis in Digital Art from MHCC, can be expected to demonstrate sophisticated skills in creative problem-solving, competent handling of technique, and advanced level of understanding of fine art practices all of which will be evidenced in the production of mature portfolio pieces.
Currently, digital art classes are held in MHCC's Macintosh Computer Lab. There are 20 G-3 PoweMac workstations equipped with internal zip drives and 17-inch monitors. Scanners, color and laser printers are available for student use.
Digital art courses are taught by full-time instructor Mary Girsch