The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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First GigaJam creates a platform for digital artists

The first annual GigaJam created a space for technology and art to collide and display the work of Texas A&M’s most talented digital artists.
GigaJam is a three day event created by Texas A&M University Association for Computing Machinery, where contestants had 36 hours to create technology-based art. Contestants could enter three competitions including, time based, interactive and still work. All artwork had to fit the prompt “Wabi – Sabi,” which is a concept in traditional Japanese are where the brokenness or imperfectness of an object or thing is looked at and appreciated.  After the competition, TAMU ACM SIGGRAPH also held a GigaShow where they displayed each contestant’s artwork and gave out prizes on April 2.
Visualization senior and President of ACM SIGGRAPH Nathan Ayres said the program was meant to give artists the time and space they need to create art of their choice.
“We started GigaJam with the intention of letting people have 36 risks free hours to develop whatever they wanted to,” Ayres said. “To a portfolio piece, or  just a thing they have always been curious about.”
Over 40 contestants competed in this years GigaJam varying in artwork from 3D animation to virtual reality. Visualization Sophomore and winner of honorable mention in timed – based competition, Jasmine Derrey said she decided to do GigaJam to refine her skills.
“I went through GigaJam for a chance to improve my skills with animation, because when you are in this tight 36 hour time frame it forces you to think creatively and come up with solutions,” Derrey said.
Derrey said should come out and compete next year because of the large variety of artistic avenues available at GigaJam.
“A creative jam really lets people explore their options and see what you want to do.” Derrey said. “Plus it really opens it up to nonvisual majors too, so really everybody from A&M can come in.”
Ph.D Computer Science student Nic Lupfer and Visualization junior Brieyh’leai Simmons were the winners of best in show of the interactive competition. Lupfer said attending Gigajam offers many opportunities.  
“There are low-cost meals the whole weekend and you get to spend doing something you love and being around other people who are working hard and not sleeping,” Lupfer.
Ayres said students should join GigaJam to focus on the art aspect and to not worry about the competition as much.
“There is a competition aspect and it’s nice to win a prize but what I care more about is seeing what people learned and accomplished,” Ayres

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