Here at UCLA Extension, we’re proud to welcome instructors from a wide range of professional and cultural backgrounds. Tzeitel Sorrosa is a multicultural creative director who brings her diverse experience to our Illustrator II online course beginning in winter quarter. Born in Costa Rica, Tzeitel was raised in Ecuador and received her education at Boston College.
She says, “My most valuable training, however, has come through my extensive travel, diverse areas of studies, and consistent curiosity to explore beyond the world around me.”
Below she shares how her artistic intuition has shaped her work, as well as some info on what you can expect in her upcoming course.
What brought you to this field?
During my childhood, I frequently expressed my thoughts, feelings, and wild ideas through doodles and sketches almost always with graphite or charcoal, and Stonehenge paper. In unstoppable mode, I graffiti-ed everywhere in school, including my text books, wooden desks and freshly-painted walls (to the chagrin of my teachers). Doodling has been an excellent channel of communication for me because it has given me much room for imagination to continue to explore freely across multi-surfaces and formats. I knew at a very young age I would be a fine artist, but I did not know I would evolve into a digital artist. Technology forced me to evolve. Mobile devices have become vehicles of unlimited potential for self-expression and imagination. These devices are all fueled with unlimited energy awaiting to be channeled through YOU to create surprisingly memorable and beautiful things.
Tell us about an especially rewarding project you’ve worked on and why you enjoyed it so much.
I creative directed and designed the American Diabetes Association’s Welcome Kit for newly diagnosed children with Type 1 diabetes. The concept for the packaging initially started out as a very complex hexagon resembling a sugar molecule, made up of tangram shapes that kids would unfold as colorful puzzle pieces. As much as this design was engaging and playful, the costs to produce it were prohibitive. In the many rounds of feedback from our stakeholders, the iterative process took us back to a simpler but more intuitive model. Yet, the final product was one that still embraced the three key emotions I wanted to convey in the initial welcome kit design: Courage. Wisdom. Hope.
The project felt very special from the start, but it was also a journey of discovery. In design, one of the most important steps to consider is the iterative process. As designers, we’re usually biased in favor of our very first idea, and we say “Eureka!” even before we build a prototype. Prototyping, however, is not just a way to test an idea, but is also a doorway to a more meaningful conversation about the needs of your users.
Why is your course, Illustrator II, important for my design education?
Teaching creative applications, such as Adobe Illustrator, is a doorway to constant learning. For the always-thirsty, curious mind, it creates not only a 2-way channel of giving and receiving, but an opportunity for collaboration and personal growth. There is always something new to learn from anyone and everyone, and you will be the beneficiary of a storehouse of perspectives, ideas, experiences, and information that you can later resource to in your next project.
Do you have a sample assignment?
In one of our assignments, we will be recreating IBM’s logo into 3D type miniature office buildings utilizing Illustrator’s powerful isometric tools.