STUDENT SHOWCASE: University of Toledo

Winner of the 2012 Achievement in Digital Art & Design Award

idmaa rear view new headerIn the Digital Art and Design division, works of digital art in all media are considered including, but not limited to, individual or team-based student digital design, illustration, interactive works; animation; video/film; installations, game art, and 3D modeling. “Stories from Toledo” was an innovative, collaborative project that connected University of Toledo students to their community.

Through a collaborative partnership with Lamar Outdoor Advertising, the work of UT art students appeared on 20 local digital billboards from mid-October through the end of December, 2012. Art students from the “Time, Motion, Space” class, joined by others representing the UT BFA program, created fictional film still as a part of the series.

Student images were interspersed among the regular scheduled advertising throughout the period, thanks to billboard time donated by Lamar. The images were shown for two and a half months, but moved to different billboard locations throughout that time in order to have the work shown in numerous places in Toledo.

Whittaker_UT_Billboardds_web-1Barry Whittaker, Assistant Professor of Art and Coordinator of New Media Design Practices at the University of Toledo directed the project. He says this project provided the opportunity for students to see their images directly connected to the city. “For their work to be considered for display, the students had to consider ways to suggest movement or story beyond the frame in order to suggest a larger narrative.”

This experience provided students with a chance to experience art production for large format media types and exposure to the technical considerations and limitations of outdoor, public display. The images had to be easily read at a distance or from a passing car. The students had to create each image for multiple billboard sizes, so they could easily be shown on any of Lamar’s digital billboard locations. Each image was constructed to work within two different aspect ratios.

For those reading the billboards, the works briefly altered the advertising format of the billboards to display another look at life in and around Toledo.

The student artists who participated in the project are Clinton Bales, Alyssa Brown, Kasia Gacek, Yang Gao, Morgan Hayward, Philip Herman, Thomas Johnson, Marko Milliken, Halah Mohamed, Jessica Ostrander, Jeremy Pellington, Noah Roszczipka, Austin Tuttle, April VanSlambrouck, Jon Wittes and Mark Yappueying.

For a gallery of the images and a map to the billboard locations, please visit the Student Works – Featured Projects page online at

Whittaker_UT_Billboardds_web-5   UT_Johnson_SHORT_LOGO9   UT_Brown_SHORT_LOGO6   UT_Herman_SHORT_LOGO8

Submitted by Barry Whittaker, Assistant Professor of Art and Coordinator of New Media Design Practices at the University of Toledo

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