West Liberty University’s Media Arts and Design Festival (MADFest) continues its job of inspiring creative high school students this spring with a chance to participate in a variety of media arts activities on the hilltop campus. This year organizers expect to welcome up to 400 students from the tri-state.
The 17th annual MADFest will take place from 8 a.m.-3 p.m., April 7, 2017 in various locations on the WLU campus.
Students can participate in two hands-on workshops throughout the day. A total of 16 workshops are available at the event, 15 for students and one for teachers. Workshops cover a spectrum of activities from electronic music to stage combat.
“This is just one example of how we grow arts in the area,” said Brian Fencl, department chair for WLU’s College of Arts and Communication.
“We know many art teachers who now plan their whole school year around our MADFest to make sure their students are prepared to compete. Both students and teachers get to see what kids from other schools are doing. This sense of competition forces them to be better,” he said.
For example, Fencl and his students will offer a workshop on digital image making. Participants will learn more about image-making software and creative photography projects done on i-Pads.
Students with no prior experience in graphic design are also welcome to attend all workshops. Associate Professor of Art Moonjung Kang is organizing a step-by-step session on pop art style illustration.
“Many students don’t have any knowledge of Photoshop, so this workshop will be a good introduction for them,” Kang said. “What’s even more important is that it’s just a very fun and colorful activity, and students like it.”
“This is how we show creative students that you can make a living being creative. You don’t need to choose safe careers. You can be creative and be successful,” Fencl said.
Besides workshops high school and WLU students can submit up to two and four pieces of original work respectively in 11 categories. Winners will receive prizes and scholarships and there are no entry fees in the competition.
The college portion of the competition is only open to currently enrolled West Liberty University students. The High School portion is open to students in grades 10 – 12, who are currently enrolled in a public high school, private high school, or home school in the states of West Virginia, Pennsylvania, and Ohio.