Jenna Spevack | COMD3504_OL08 | FALL 2021

Discussion: Introductions

Add a comment to this post introducing yourself to the class.

You could include your academic interests, why you chose your major, what you enjoy reading, listening to, watching, and doing in your spare time, who or what has influenced your creative work, or anything else you want to share (include your pronouns, if you wish).

Include a link to a drawing, photo, or video of yourself and/or something or someone who has influenced your creative work.

Please add your introduction before by Friday, Aug 27th at 11:59 pm to allow time for replies. Before our Week 1 Agenda is posted on Monday, read and reply to the comments, and get to know your classmates! 


  1. Jenna Spevack

    Hello everyone.
    I’m your professor for Communication Design Theory. You can call me Jenna (or Professor Jenna or just Professor, if you prefer). I love animals, gardening, bird watching with my partner, and hanging out with my niece.

    I’ve been a full-time faculty member in the COMD Department since 2002 and an OpenLab Co-Director since 2011. I’ve taught courses in web design, interactive media, animation, design foundations, and now design theory. I wrote this course four years ago for our BFA Degree. I’m excited to work with you in this asynchronous format.

    Before coming to City Tech, I worked as a freelance web designer and an animator/illustrator at Sesame Street’s Interactive Media Department. I’ve also been a visual artist for 25 years. My creative work is influenced primarily by my experience of solitude in nature and by artists and designers whose aesthetic tendencies might fall under the heading of postminimalism, like Eva Hesse.

    Here’s a photo of me on Governor’s Island preparing a public art installation:

    • Ebony Star

      Hi everyone!
      I’m Ebony and its a pleasure to meet you all. Before starting at City Tech, I started a small business. When I officially left my 9-5, I decided dedicate all my time to my business and go back to school for Communication Design. I chose Communication Design because I figured everything I could try to teach myself at home with google, I could go to school, incorporate what I learn in my small business, and earn a degree… it seemed like a win win. During my spare time I like to listen to all types of music (anything with a rhythm), exercise, family time, and visiting galleries. One of my favorite artist is Kobra a street artist who creates murals internationally. I appreciate how he uses bold lines, bright colors, shapes, an unifies them all with a portrait as if he morphing them together. Like pictures inside a picture . I recently visited the Eden Fine Art Gallery in SoHo, were I had the opportunity of seeing some of Kobra’s work smaller then his norm. If you have time take a walk around the city to see some of Kobra’s work, he’s hard to miss on a NY building, its awesome!

      Here is an amazing smaller portrait of Nelson Mandela that I saw at the gallery.

      • Jenna Spevack

        Hi Ebony! Great to have you in class again. It’s been a while! Thanks for sharing your interests, favorite artist, and link to the Nelson Mandela portrait. Unfortunately, the link you posted is private, so I’m adding another here so others can view it. Pretty incredible.

        • Ebony Star

          Yes, I’m excited to have you as an instructor again. Thank you for adding an additional one for the class.

  2. Lily Yu

    Hi! My name is Lily. I love to draw, game with friends, and hang out with my brother watching movies or anime. My major is Communication Design, and I chose this major because I love to draw. A lot of artists had inspired me but the most recent artist I look up to is Rokkuๅฐ้Ž– on Youtube I just love the way she colors her art pieces. The most recent piece I’ve done and that I am proud of is this Alice and Wonderland book cover that I did for a class last semester. It is nice to meet you all! (I am not sure how you post a comment with a photo so I hope this link works for you.)

    • bryanmendez

      WOW that art work is insanely cool

    • Jenna Spevack

      Nice to meet you, Lily! Thanks for sharing your work. Agreed, Bryan. Wonderful!

      Have you explored the lineage and history of anime? It might be an interesting research topic, starting with early emakimono and kagee and through the early work in the 20th Century. Here’s a cool montage starting with early Japanese animation:

    • Ebony Star

      Hi Lily nice to meet you. I checked out your book cover, pretty cool. It is very detailed and I like how everything is all over the place, and your eyes get lost. It’s kind of a Where’s Waldo, but with Alice, nice work.

  3. Hadassah Boodhoo

    Hello everyone,
    My name is Hadassah, but you can also call me Dassah or Tiny, my name depending on the person, it can be a little difficult to pronounce and I’m short, I get that nickname (Tiny) a lot from my friends because most of them are taller than me. I chose Communications Design because at the time I was enrolled to City Tech, it was the only Art related major offered. At first, I had trouble getting used to it, but as time passes by, I grew to appreciate Design and it’s many aspects. In my spare time, I like to listen to music, sleep, draw and spend time with my family. What influences my creative work would be daydreaming or looking at pictures, and music.

    • Jenna Spevack

      Nice to meet you, Hadassah! I spend a lot of time daydreaming too. It’s a great way to find design solutions. I’d love to see some images of your creative work and/or the pictures and music that influence it. Can you share a link to a song or image that you think best represents your creative influences?

  4. Zi Hang Lian

    My name is Zi Hang. My major is Communication Design. I chose this major because I’m interested in drawing and animation. During my free times, I like to play games and watch anime. Sometimes, I would go online to find inspirations and draw. Although inexperienced, I would motivate myself to draw new things. What inspired me to draw and animate is the anime I watch and the games I play. I really like the style of their art which made me want to play that game or watch that anime. These two things are what made me interested in Communication Design.

    • Jenna Spevack

      Great to meet you, Zi Hang! Sounds like you and Lily have similar influences around anime. As I mentioned to Lily, looking at the history and influence of anime in the design field could be an interesting research topic. Have you ever looked at emakimono and kagee? Or Ukiyo-e Style of the Edo Period in Japan?
      Could you post a link to an image or video of your favorite game or animation?

      • Zi Hang Lian

        This is one of my favorite games. It’s called Genshin Impact. It’s the trailer for Version 2.1 that’s coming next Wednesday. I have been playing this game since its release.

        I heard of the Ukiyo-e Style of the Edo Period in Japan. This is an very unique art style. I have never heard of emakimono and kagee. I’ll be sure to check it out.

        • Lily Yu

          I loved playing Genshin Impact when it first was released and rolling for the characters was hell! But I haven’t been playing that game for a while now I should try to get back into it heard there are a lot more regents that were released.

          • Zi Hang Lian

            It was. You should go back and play. More Inazuma content has come out and also new characters. After Inazuma will be some filler patches and Sumeru. I also like Genshin Impact too. I play it everyday (Completing commissions, domains) at least half an hour to an hour.

  5. bryanmendez

    Hey what up everyone I am Bryan Mendez and my major is Communication Design like most of you and the reason I choose it was because I had an interest in graphic design especially things like logo’s, typography, posters, book cover, and similar visuals but I’m always interested with anything that has to do with graphic design. Somethings I like doing on my spare time is playing video games, watching anime, and listening to music. But I picked up a hobby recently I started to do film photography. The most recent piece of work I worked on was a just something random I thought of

  6. Nicole M

    Hi everyone!!!
    My name is Nicole Moya and my major is Communication Design. Within this major my main interest is graphic design: creating logos, typography, posters, book covers, etc. I like being able to design and play with color and challenging myself to be more creative each time. I have a full time and a part time job, and whenever itโ€™s my day off I love spending quality time with my son, I actually enjoy having a arts and crafts moment with him, I enjoy cooking, and absolutely love anything beauty-related. I am also a huge Disney fan and love watching movies (except scary movies!).

    • Jenna Spevack

      Hi Nicole! Glad to meet you! I see you and Bryan are both interested in graphic design. When you have a minute, would you share a link to a favorite project or designer that you love? Or are there any movies, beauty-related videos, or Disney characters that speak to you? Sometimes the things we consider entertainment or hobbies can actually be quite influential. Milton Glaser and Seymour Chwast of Pushpin Studios both cite Disney as an influence.

      Arts & crafts with young kids is the best. I find children’s creativity to inspiring because they work from instinct. ๐Ÿ™‚

  7. Shivonne Khan

    Hello guys. I am Shivonne Khan and I am a student studying the Communication Design major. I took this major to mainly because I want to learn more about graphic design and advertising as well as the creative process to making said advertisements. While I am not doing my usual schoolwork, I will play a few video games on my laptop. I will also draw my art in both traditional and digital forms during my free time as well. During my time learning this major, I am amazed at the people in the creative field who is willing to go out there and express their creativity to the world. Hopefully I will be able to inspire people with my art.

    • Jenna Spevack

      Nice to meet you, Shivonne! When you have a minute, would you share a link to a favorite advertisement or a designer that you love? Or a piece of art (digital or traditional) that you created that you are proud of? It could even be something totally unrelated to communication design. It would be great to get a sense of what kind of work you like (or dislike!)

      • Shivonne Khan

        Here are two of my art pieces I have illustrated. Both characters are from a game I played called Genshin Impact. I drew Klee and Venti because those two are favorite characters to use on my game and I love their personalities during the game’s storyline. Klee is drawn traditionally using fineliners and Copic Markers and my Venti art is drawn with an iPad app called Procreate.

        • Zi Hang Lian

          I didn’t know you play Genshin Impact too. I also like to play Genshin Impact too. My favorite character are Noelle and Ayaka. I wish I could’ve seen it though (It was locked so I can’t).

          • Shivonne Khan

            Sincerest apologies. I unlock it now so you should be able to see the art now.

          • Zi Hang Lian

            I saw it. Very nice illustration. I wish I can draw like that.

        • Jenna Spevack

          Thanks, Shivonne! Wonderful. And great to see both traditional and digital side by side. Procreate is fun! Maybe someday we will call digital tools, “traditional” and something else will be the alternative. Have you ever experimented with Virtual Reality drawing/sculpting apps, Tiltbrush or Quill? …. a totally different drawing experience, but I bet you’d make some really great work. Zi Hang, you might enjoy this too. Check out Dear Angelica:

        • Shauntaya

          cool style love the bright color and nice to meet you by the way

    • Nicholas Albanese

      Hi Shivonne! It’s great to see someone else who is passionate about graphic design and the communication design major as well as a fellow artist. It’s always a treat to see another illustrator.

  8. Nicholas Albanese

    Hello, my name is Nicholas Albanese but I usually prefer to go by Nick. My pronouns are he/him and I chose the COMD major due to my love and want to become an animator. I usually prefer to read fiction books and my favorite music to listen to is lo-fi (it’s sort of like a mix of jazz music with hip-hop beats. In my spare time, my two favorite hobbies are playing video games and illustrating. I enjoy almost all types of games with my favorite ones being roguelikes and FPS games such as Hades and DOOM Eternal. I also enjoy interacting with a variety of artists on Twitter and Instagram. I mainly draw inspiration from their own works and I am grateful to be able to interact with some of them through DMs.

    (Here is a photo of me)

    • Jenna Spevack

      Hi Nick! Happy to meet you. Thanks for sharing your photo! Have you taken any animation courses, yet? Do you imagine working in the gaming industry? You and Zi Hang should compare notes (see his intro above). Would be interesting to compare/contrast the visual styles and storylines of these two games:

  9. rahel lehar

    why you chose your major, what you enjoy reading, listening to, watching, and doing in your spare time

    My name is Rahel Lehar. I chose Comd because at the time I thought I wanted to edit videos but I’m really just seeing what other stuff this major has to offer. I love watching anime and listening to kpop. My favorite anime is attack on titan and my favorite character of all time is levi ackerman.

    • Jenna Spevack

      Hi Rahel! Glad to meet you! Thanks for sharing some of your interests and favorite anime & character. Would you say that Attack on Titan creator/illustrator, Hajime Isayama, has influenced your work in any way? Would you share a link an image or video that embodies the type of graphic / aesthetic style you are inspired by?

  10. Kyle Djemani

    Hi, Iโ€™m Kyle. Ever since I was a little, Iโ€™ve always been interested in animated shows and movies. I chose this major to learn how to create characters and stories similar to the animated shows and movies I grew up watching. I enjoy playing all kinds of games mainly ones being in the roguelike or RPG genre like Risk of Rain 2, Hades, and Dungeons and Dragons. In my spare time, I usually play games with friends, go for walks by the park, and think of some character ideas. Recently, I and a few of my friends started playing Dungeons and Dragons where we can create fantasy characters and go on fun adventures together.

    (This is a picture of me and my brother)

    • Jenna Spevack

      Hi Kyle! Happy to have you in class again! Thanks for sharing a little bit about yourself, your interests, and your photo. It would be great to see some of your recent character designs or other projects you’ve been working on. If you have some links to share here, please do!

  11. SimonWill21

    Hello everyone, my name is Simon and I do like to design covers and ads, however recently I have had a big interest in motion design and video editing as well, which is part of why I choose this this major. I like to listen to pretty much any kind of music if it sounds good to my ears. I don’t watch much shows, but do enjoy watching and going to the movies (big fan of Marvel Movies). I also enjoy dancing when I have free time.

    (link to a couple of videos I have edited on my portfolio )

    • Jenna Spevack

      Hi Simon! Nice to meet you! Wow. Excellent video editing skills. Did you shoot the video for Devon and Asha’s video? It would be fun to research the design history and lineage of the graphic styles and title effects you used for your Get Lit video. It has a compelling mixture of retro design trends. And do you have a favorite Marvel movie or character?

  12. Angela

    Hi everyone! I hope you have all had a great first week. My name is Angela and I go by She/Hers or any pronouns. Feel free to call me Ang or Angie for short ๐Ÿ™‚

    I am a COMD major and this is my third year of college and second year being at City Tech. My previous major actually was Photography, influenced by a passion I had since I was young to document life and family, friends, and feelings around myself. Despite this, I felt as though dedicating all of my work to one medium felt lackluster and discovered the Communication Design program where creation expands beyond one medium~ something that includes a little bit of everything like photography, filmmaking, design, etc. ๐Ÿ™‚

    In my free time you can find me thrift shopping, taking pictures, exploring the city with loved ones or playing sandbox games such as, and 90% of the time, Minecraft hahaha. I have recently delved into listening to/watching mystery movie recaps on YouTube and some well acclaimed films such as Pulp Fiction, Kill Bill and others.
    I can never really name one artist directly that has influenced me, but I feel like nature, cityscapes and emotions around me really impact creative work and its outcomes.

    I have a ton of more photos to upload, but please check out my art insta page! Theres a mix of film, digital and video work there. Thank you!!

    • Jenna Spevack

      Hello Angie! Great to meet you. Thanks for sharing a bit about yourself. Your photography work shows a range and I can see how you could move easily between different mediums. I’m partial to your graphic, abstract images that have strong compositional relationships. I like the contrasts in this one, especially. Nature, cityscape, and emotions all in one:
      Looking forward to seeing more of your work!

  13. Vanessa Luna

    Hello everone ,
    Hoping everyone was able to endure NYC’s hot weather this week and stay cool.My name is Vanessa Luna I’m a fellow communication design major here at City Tech.This is my 2nd semester here from transferring from Kingsborough as well as changing my orginal major which was science.I’ve recently over the years started liking aspects of the art world and decided to take a leep towards it.My current job is in social media / public relations with art exhibits in the city , small indie games and tattoo shops.With anything like design I will be honest, I’m far from good and have a hard time with the basics but would like to improve on it so I can apply it to my current job.
    In my spare time I love doing community service in Hispanic/Mexican communities in the Bronx and Brooklyn where I do clothing drives,school supplies distributions and plan recreational events.I also enjoy learning how to use Dj equipment and doing graffiti/wall murals.If anyone is interested with donating or learning more in general about the community organization I do there’s info on insta @mexicanosxunidos.

    • Jenna Spevack

      Hi Vanessa! Nice to meet you. Sounds like you have an interesting job, enjoy learning new things, and helping your community. Learning to use DJ equipment sounds like fun to me. I’m curious about your switch from science to design. Not so different when it comes to research skills, attention to detail, and creative thinking. ๐Ÿ™‚ Please share a link to a drawing, photo, or video of something or someone who has influenced your creative work. I’d love to know more about your visual/media influences.

  14. Jennifer Salazar

    Hello! I major in communication design. I picked this major since I was interested in learning more different types of art forms like graphic design, and more motion graphics. This is my second to last semester at City Tech. I enjoy reading, drawing, and playing video games(Overwatch, Apex Legends). I am really influenced by my art by artists who work digitally.
    I like the way this artist in particular draws and paints.

    • Jenna Spevack

      Hi Jennifer! Happy to meet you. Thanks for sharing an example of the type of work you are inspired by. This person’s 3D/Blender rendering skills are quite impressive. Interesting to see their process in this post:

      Has your focus/concentration at City Tech Illustration? Looking forward to seeing your work and hearing more about your creative influences.

  15. Eric Sukhdeo

    Hello everyone my name is Eric Sukhdeo. This is my 3rd year here at city tech I chose this major because its something similar to what I did in high school we worked with all the Adobe design programs, and I feel like these are good skills to have even though I want to go down the career path of film making. I mostly read manga, the last one I finished was a demon slayer, music I’ve been feeling nostalgic and listening to some Big Time Rush. I also watch anime and love to watch some classic movies like Back to the future or the Matrix. Lastly, I like to record and edit videos in my free time and someone who made me think about it was a youtube by the name of Steezy Kane. His videos are really funny gave me the realization that I can do that too and I enjoy it.

    Here is my Instagram for photos of me

    (I’m sorry for submitting this late Iost track of time)

    • Jenna Spevack

      Hi Eric! Nice to meet you. Thanks for sharing a bit about yourself. I would love to hear more about your interest in filmmaking. Are you taking video and motion graphics courses here at City Tech? I’d suggest joining the Moving Pixels club if you haven’t already. They do some great work with Prof. Josh Kapusinski. And Prof. George Larkins is also an excellent connection. Looking forward to seeing your work.

  16. Shauntaya

    Hi, I’m Shauntaya, I’m 22 years old. I choose this major because it is nice to help people solve problems with the design aspect of the business but it is not my favorite form of art digital. I spend time help taking care of my autistic siblings which also happens to be my job. In the little free time, I have between school and work I like to play story and fps games , watch anime and movies. Due to depression and anxiety, I lost my love for art so I’m just trying to find it again. My favorite artists are Likehoodart , wlop,and Guwinez on Instagram

    • Jenna Spevack

      Hi Shauntaya. Great to meet you! Thanks for your introduction. Sounds like you’ve got a lot on your plate. I hope we can help you find your love of art again! The artists you’ve listed have a specific graphic style. Do you enjoy making illustrations in that style? And looks like Jennifer also follows “wlop”. I posted a link above on Jennifer’s intro. I enjoyed watching the process:

  17. Christian Paz

    Hello everyone, my name is Christian Paz. I am a third year in City Tech and I chose this major because I wanted to hone my skills in animation. When I was a young kid I spent a lot of time staying up till 12am endlessly watching cartoons. Those cartoons inspired me to draw and I would spend my free time creating my own characters and sloppily stapling together paper making my own comics. Once I got to middle school my mother gave me a laptop and I did what anyone would do. I pirated adobe flash cs3, photoshop and premiere pro and I also downloaded a music making program and audacity. With these programs I would spend most of my free time animating and learning new skills such as video editing and voice acting. Soon I was making cartoons that made me laugh. I want to bring that magic to other people, I want them to enjoy something I make.
    Below is a link to the production files of a personal project:

    • Jenna Spevack

      Hi Christian! Wow. This is great work. Thanks for sharing. I’m always happy to meet others who enjoy learning with whatever tools they can get their hands on. Good for you. I taught myself HTML/CSS and digital animation (way, way back in the day) and I’ve found the best way to always stay employed is to keep learning. Looking forward to seeing more of your work.

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