By Juanita Bratcher
Attendees at PETAL et al’s training workshops got their game on…and liked it
After four successful training sessions on Video Game Design and Development in Chicago and South Holland, IL, PETAL el al. will hold three additional workshops focusing on Graphics & Animation for Video Games, Music & Sound Effects for Video Games, and Script Writing for Video Games.
A survey to get feedback from attendees was overwhelmingly gratifying to PETAL et al. administrators when learning from attendees that the training sessions were deemed meaningful, educational and entertaining. At times interactions between team members working on projects together brought out the “kid” in them, especially when putting story boards and game ideas together (they were split up in teams during the Script Writing session).
The next training session, a four-hour workshop, will be held Saturday, November 12, at the Avalon Library, 8148 S. Stony Island Ave., in the East Conference Room, from Noon-4 p.m. Pamela McMillan, President & CEO of PETAL et al., will give an overview of PETAL et al.’s training agenda, and Clarence McMillan, PETAL et al.’s Vice President & Chief Technology Officer, will teach Animation & Graphics for Video Games.
Attendance is already filled for the Music & Sound Effects session, scheduled for Saturday, November 26, from 1-5 p.m. That class is being taught by Michele McMillan, one of Chicago’s top notch programmers, and Samuel Piazza, an outstanding Musician & Sound Engineer. This class is for those who are interested in creating video game music and sound effects, and who like to create video games as well as soundscapes.
Currently, there is one seat available in the Animation & Graphics for Video Games class and two seats available in the Script Writing class.
Sonya Bratcher, Events Manager & Writer for PETAL et al., will teach a two-hour workshop on Script Writing for Video Games, December 3, from 3-5 p.m. This will be the final training session for 2011.
Classes are limited from eight to twelve people, unlike previous sessions that were open to about 30 people. This is done in order to give participants more attention to their projects. Invariably, these skills can be used for websites and animated movies as well.
For those who are interested in video game graphics and animation, and who like to write, draw, and come up with video game ideas, PETAL et al.’s training sessions will introduce an overview of the skills and education necessary to get into the industry. All participants must register prior to the event on the PETAL et al’s Website: training.petaletal.org.
Participants must bring a photo I.D. on first day of class.
A pen or pencil to write and/or draw with
Optional: Laptop (It is strongly suggested that participants bring a laptop so they can follow along.)
Pamela McMillan said after the first four sessions they decided to make the class size smaller to give more time to students individually. “Having smaller classes, we will be able to give more attention to students on an individual basis,” she said. “I was ecstatic to see that during the first four training sessions how participants were enjoying themselves and working in teams in a project-based environment. And although video games can be technical, the creativity portion of it tends to bring out the kid in everybody.
“At the start of the sessions, I inform participants that if they thought they were not creative I would prove them wrong. I feel that the brainstorming sessions reminded them that they don’t have to come up with ideas on their own, and when they finally understood how storyboards work and the different resources they could draw information on, it seemed that a lot of creative blocks were removed.”
Editor’s Note: All of the aforementioned training sessions will be held at Avalon Library, 8148 S. Stony Island.