Art Center College of Design | Pasadena, California | Learn to Create. Influence Change.

Leslie Evans

Graduate Industrial Design

5th Term

Why did you choose to attend Art Center?
I've always loved making things. Prior to coming here, I took some fine arts classes as an undergradate, but I don't think I truly understood how design differed from art or what skills one needed to pursue a design career.

I think it's important to be exposed to design projects that have practical, immediate significance as well as blue-sky, imaginative explorations. Art Center does a great job at fostering both kinds of work.

In what ways has Art Center helped you grow as an artist and designer?
My technical ability has improved greatly in the last two years. I also think it has helped me to develop a more disciplined way of approaching abstract and under-constrained design problems.

What is the most valuable lesson you've learned so far at Art Center?
To believe in your own projects. If you're really passionate about what you're working on, it will come out great. I think taking a strong stand on your point of view has infinite value; passion isn't something you can fake after a few hours of Internet research.

What's the most challenging aspect of studying art and design?
Art Center demands a lot of your time and focus. During finals it requires ALL of your time and focus. Sometimes it feels like your projects are never really complete; you usually can find some aspects that you would like to explore further.

If you're not originally from Southern California, what surprised you most about the region?
I had no idea how spread out the city was, and how many different enclaves there are within greater L.A. Pasadena is totally different from downtown L.A., which is totally different from Santa Monica. When people back East ask me what L.A. is like, I almost have to ask, “Which part?”

Tell us something that people would find surprising about you.
If I'm struggling with a project, I think about how I could turn the design into a plush toy. There is great therapeutic value in transforming a source of frustration into something cute that you can hug.

Evans graduated from Art Center in 2011.

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