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  • CV/ BIO


                                                           JEFFREY T. RAY

                                  4620 Long Branch Avenue, San Diego, CA 921077

                            (415) 517-3452 • •


Digital Arts Instructor, Artist, Curator, Front End Web Designer and Programmer

To teach all levels of digital art, web design, web art, net art, activism and art, mixed media, sound art, video art, digital photography, sound design, as well as other art courses. To continue to develop and design innovative web sites and applications. To continue to learn, develop and update my skills related to all my various jobs and tasks. To continue to support students in their technological and educational needs. To continue developing as an artist professionally and personally.


Art and Technology Lecturer at Cal State University of San Marcos                                   

January 2018 – Present

  • Currently teaching one class, VSAR 404 ART and Web Design for Spring, Summer and Fall semesters
  • Available as general support and back up lecturer for related art and technology courses.
  • Available for support for events and projects related to the art department.

Creative Director and Owner of Twin Ray Creative                          

August 2018 - Present

  • Starting, sustaining and being the owner and creative director of Twin Ray Creative, a company that offers website building, digital marketing, and original visual and sound content.
  • Helping create the vision and business plan of the company.
  • Leading teams on web design, graphic design, social media and marketing projects and plans.
  • Currently introducing music soundtrack composition to the list of services offered.
  • Currently combining forces with another web design company.
  • Front end designer, developer and user interface designer.
  • Keeping up with trends in software, graphic design, and web design. Currently learning UX, interaction and visual design, as well as augmented, virtual and mixed reality programs for the company and my own artistic practice


Technologist for The Realignment Group, Lean California

September 2017 - Present

  • Technical support for a leading Lean construction mediation and consulting company based in San Diego.
  • Developing the construction technology consultation side of the business.
  • Learning construction related software such as CAD and BIM
  • Helping develop an online learning platform.
  • Learning all aspects of Lean manufacturing and construction mediation.
  • Helping develop their videos, power points, and other visual presentations to their clients.
  • Helping develop their language and editing the content of their interactions with present and future clients.
  • Helping with digital marketing and various duties related to the website and blog.
  • Researching technology related to the construction industry.



Creative Director and Co-owner of MAKTA Creative                         

November 2016 – August 2018

  • Being the creative director of MAKTA Creative and helping create the vision and business plan of the company.
  • Leading teams on web design, graphic design, social media and marketing projects and plans.
  • Front end designer, developer and user interface designer.
  • Keeping up with trends in software, graphic design, and web design. Currently learning UX, interaction and visual design, as well as augmented, virtual and mixed reality programs for the company and my own artistic practice

Digital Media Instructor, University of Nevada, Reno           

January 2017 – May 2017

  • Teaching upper-level digital media class, ART381 Critical Play, which includes instruction in 3D printing and design, using a Formlab resin printer as well as Dremel PLA 3D printer, instruction in game art and design software including Maya, Unity, Cinema 4, Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator, Fusion 360, as well as Adobe Premier.
  • Alongside teaching technical skills and design software, I am lecturing on media theory, game theory, game art, architecture, architecture theory, and history of digital media. Since the course is part of the Fine Arts department and partly a studio class, I am often focusing on the aesthetics and conceptual ideas of the students’ work.

IT Level 5, Technologist, Digital Media Lab Director at University of Nevada, Reno

March 2016 – March 2017

  • Provided tech support for digital media classes and students, the digital media lab, and the music lab. Some of the duties extend beyond digital media and the music lab, including general tech support for the Fine Arts and Music Department. Teaching and assisting students in learning Max MSP/Jitter and various other art and music software.
  • Served on various committees within Fine Arts, including the marketing, space allocation, and technology committees. Also joined the ad hoc committee, helping with the development and implementation of the graphic design program as well as the development of the maker/fabrication space in the new arts building.
  • Did the marketing and newsletter for the Fine Arts Department. This included helping design an outreach program for possible MFA students
  • Received excellent reviews under the supervision of Professor Joseph Delappe and electronic music professor, Jean Paul Perrote, which are available by request.

Visiting Lecturer at San Francisco State University

2011 – 2014

  • Taught in the Conceptual Information Arts (Art and Technology/New Media) program within the Fine Arts department at San Francisco State University.
  • Mostly taught sound art but within this subject taught art and technology, time-based media, history of new media, drawing, photography, mixed media, sound theory, computer programming, Arduino hardware and software, physical computing, pure data, processing, Max MSP/ Jitter, and various other related subjects.
  • Studied and taught under the guidance of program director and professor, Paula Levine.

Worker/Owner, Webmaster at Rainbow Grocery Cooperative.        

1992 – 2015

  • General IT and admin work and support, including understanding and implementing various software.
  • Webmaster, which included most front-end work, some back-end work, as well as content management, graphic design, public relations, and marketing.
  • General building and facility maintenance including everything from carpentry to electrical and plumbing.
  • Established donations committee, now one of the most giving businesses in the Bay area. Participated in various committees, including ecology committee, making Rainbow one of the greenest businesses on the planet, cooperative and community outreach, and food activism.
  • Helped design and build stand-alone, modular building for a café and food vendor.

Member of Various Boards of Directors and Festival Founder

  • A Ship in the Woods, Escondido, CA. May 2015 – Present. Currently President of the Board of Directors of this artist residency, gallery and community outreach organization. Presently working on helping design a new recording studio to expand on the artist residency to musicians and sound artists. Recently co curated a music and arts festival. Currently curating a film program.
  • Mediate Soundwave Festival, San Francisco, CA. January 2012 – January 2016. Board President in 2015. Curator and artist-in-residence in 2014. Lead much of the curating including coming up with and developing the 2013/2014 festival theme, Sound and Water, and the 2015/2016 theme, Sound and Architecture.
  • Adobe Books and Arts Cooperative/Adobe Books Backroom Gallery, San Francisco, CA. June 2013 – January 2016. Founding board member. Gathered a group to save this Mission district-based bookstore and gallery, known for being the center of the Mission Art School movement. Still curating events there, including a Children’s book festival.
  • The Lab, San Francisco, CA. January 2008 – January 2009. Board of Directors. A seminal artist space in the Mission of San Francisco. Helped develop the Collision festival, which combines different art practices. Helped it survive financial ruin and to hire new directors. Curated new emerging artists, including Trevor Paglin and Dynasty Handbag.
  • Mission Creek Music and Arts Festival, Oakland, CA. June 1999 – August 2012. Founder and Executive Director of the Bay Area’s largest music and arts festival that featured local acts. Featured emerging artists such as Devendra Banhart, Deerhoof, and Joanna Newsom. Helped a co-producer expand the festival to Iowa City in 2006, where it is still a vibrant and established festival that features such acts as Phillip Glass, John Waters, and Laurie Anderson.


Working Artist and Musician

Please refer to my CV/Bio for information and artist statement.



University California San Diego Extension May 2018

Certificate in Full Stack Programming


San Francisco State University         May 2010

Master of Fine Arts: Conceptual Information Arts

  • This program includes New Media, Art and Technology, and Art and Science. Studied under Steve Wilson, one of the founders of the Art and Technology pedagogy.

Virginia Commonwealth University    May 1991

Bachelor of Arts (BA): English major


Computer and Design Skills

  • Well versed in front end web design and development including HTML, CSS, and JavaScript
  • IT Level 5, Highly competent with applications for business and management of Mac and PC
  • Led and created instruction on software, coding, graphic programming languages Pure Data and Processing, Max, MSP and Jitter
  • Working knowledge, installation, configuration and instruction of graphic, web, audio, video, 3D design, gaming, music and business software
  • Diagnosis and resolution of software problems, installation, new software testing and research of software
  • Well-versed in micro-controllers and software, such as Arduino
  • Recently taught 3D design and gaming software, Maya, as well as game engine and design software, Unity


  • Familiar with marketing software and strategies such as Mailchimp
  • Technologist helping businesses with their technology and software needs.
  • Well versed in online teaching and can design and create online courses.
  • Working knowledge of the entire Adobe Suite including After Effects, Illustrator and Photoshop
  • Graphic designer for over 15 years.
  • Working knowledge of creating augmented and virtual reality.
  • Professional level video editor and a high understanding of Final Cut Pro and Premiere Pro.

Financial/Accounting Skills

  • Budgeting and contracts
  • Grant writing and grant management

Teaching Skills

  • Instructor of art and technology focused classes

Professional Skills

  • Facilities management, project management (for building expansion), building design, mediation and conflict resolution, public speaking and presentations, research, sales, meeting facilitation, grant research, and building management.
  • Leadership skills in running nonprofits. Have been President/Vice President of three Board of Directors.
  • Carpentry, plumbing, electrical, HVAC, construction, mechanical repair, and painting.
  • Over 18 years of marketing and public relations experience.


4620 Long Branch Avenue, San Diego, CA 921077 • (415) 517-3452 • •



2007 – 2010    MFA, San Francisco State University

1992 – 2006    Music and art classes, San Francisco Art Institute, City College, San Francisco, CA

1986 – 1991    BA, English Literature, Virginia Commonwealth University


Jeff Ray is a visual and performance artist, musician, sound artist, web designer, filmmaker, curator, festival founder, and activist. He was recently an instructor for the Digital Media Arts program in the Fine Arts and Music Departments for University of Nevada, Reno. He was a frequent visiting lecturer at San Francisco State University, Fine Arts Department, Conceptual Information Arts. In 2010 he received an MFA in Conceptual Information Arts (New Media/Art and Technology) from San Francisco State University.

He has won numerous awards, including a Murphy Cadagon award from the SF Foundation, and in 2004 was an Artist-in-Residence at the Headlands Center for the Arts. Ray has shown/performed at various venues and places, such as SF MOMA (San Francisco), Kulturhuset (Stockholm, Sweden), New Langton Arts (San Francisco), and SOMA Arts (San Francisco).

He was the Founder and Executive Director of Mission Creek Music and Arts Festival, which expanded from San Francisco to Oakland, CA in 2006 and Iowa City, IA in 2010. In 2004 he introduced one of the first Bay Area multimedia performance series, Collision. He has been on the Board of Directors, Advisory Board and Programming Committee at The Lab Art Space in San Francisco. He is currently a founding member and was recently the Board President of Adobe Books and Arts Cooperative, where he gathered a group together to save a failing Mission-based bookstore and gallery. He was recently the President of the Board of Directors and programming committee of the Mediate Soundwave Festival. He was the lead curator and resident artist of Soundwave Festival 2013-2014, where he explored the theme of the festival, Water. He continued his lead curatorship as Board President for Soundwave in 2015-2016 with the theme Architecture and Sound. He is currently a Board member of A Ship in The Woods artist residency and gallery in Escondido, CA where he is helping create a summer music and arts festival. .


I create sound and video installations, digital photographs, drawings, paintings, and performances. My subject matter often focuses on nonlinear narratives set in and around the landscape in which I live and work, in other words, my home and neighborhood. My work also engages the mythical and fantastic to question what is familiar. To this end, I appropriate narrative and thematic elements from literature and historical record. Elfin spirits, conspiracy theories, mythical civilizations, human attempts at achieving utopia, and post-apocalyptic dystopia are some examples of these themes.

In my current work, I explore the idea that nature engenders architecture, which in turn influences how we see and relate to the natural world. Within this dynamic conversation, I explore the way community structures have been affected by the interfusion of architecture, space, and nature.



June -2019       Solo exhibit, Complex/ Complex. Teros Gallery, San Diego. New mixed media work, experimental documentary,  and sound art.

May- 2019         Music performance, Taser Island project, Ship in the Woods Music and Arts Festival, Escondido, CA.

March-2019      Group Benefit Show, Ship in the Woods, Escondido. New mixed media work, and sound art. Performance.

December -2018 Group Benefit Show, Orb Architecture, San Diego. New mixed media work, and sound art.

February -2018 The Architecture of Clouds and Mountains II  Group show, and performance at San Diego Community College. Part of the show Contribution II, Urban and Contemporary Art in San Diego.   Featuring larger mixed media, sound art, inspired by the architecture and writings of Junya Ishigami and the surrounding mountain landscapes of Reno, NV. Multi media performance with my project Taser Island with San Diego musician/ composer  Kenseth Thibedeu

February -2018 The Architecture of Clouds and Mountains:. Solo show at Orb Architecture, San Diego. New mixed media work, and sound art inspired by the architecture and writings of Junya Ishigami and the surrounding mountain landscapes of Reno, NV. Also featuring a collection of past work.

January – 2018  Lecture on Web, Net, Computer Art. Aesthetics and Activism at Riot Con, in Oakland

August – 2016 Cathedrals Grace Cathedral in San Francisco. Sound and video installation and performance. Part of Sound Wave’s SonicLabs 7. Exploration of the sounds inside of various cathedrals.

Apr – Jun 2016           Cathedrals: Solo show at SDSU Downtown Gallery, San Diego, CA. Cathedrals was a site-specific, multi-sensory solo-show that continued my exploration of the intersection between nature and architecture. I reimagined familiar surroundings and structures, such as cathedrals and coastal bunkers, as monuments, taking the viewer on a journey from reality to imagination. After the presentation in San Diego, a portion of the work moved to the Grace Cathedral in San Francisco for a subsequent, unique installation and performance as part of SonicLabs 7.

Jan – Feb 2015           Beach Town Anthems: Artist-in-Residence at A Ship in the Woods, Del Mar, CA. For this project, I created anthems and soundscapes for the surrounding towns of North County San Diego. These anthems were presented to the local government in hopes of the anthems being official. Accompanying the sound aspect of the project was an installation with both 2D work as well as a performance with projected experimental video exploring town’s architectural and natural elements presented at the opening and closing of the show.

Sep 2014         Ark and Surroundings: Alterspace Gallery and Artist in Residence at Mediate’s Soundwave Festival, San Francisco, CA. Large-scale installation of sculpture, sound sculpture, video, and 2d mixed media. Building on the fear associated with environmental degradation, water pollution, and global warming, Ark and Surroundings posits photos, drawings, maps of imagined environments, a boat, and a bridge with post-apocalyptic livable structures and commercial spaces.

I built my version of a post-apocalyptic water structure,The Beacon, a custom-built, life-size sailboat. The Beacon is turned into a musical instrument, outfitted with pipe organ pipes and a pump organ, acting as a tool to communicate with water dwellers, much like a complex version of a fog horn. Different tones emanating from the boat represent unique messages that include warnings, as well as announcements from a town crier of sorts. An experimental documentary film projects onto the sail of The Beacon and features interviews of dockworkers, architects, environmentalists, artists, merchant marines, freighter ship captains, and other experts related to the subject of livable structures and boat life. Interspersed between the video segments are abstract photos and drawings that feature manipulated photos taken from around the waterways of the Bay and revised into imaginary environments, mappings, and structures that service needs pertaining to education, home, community, commerce, and spirituality.

The same spirit of imagined structures is translated onto the framed photos and drawings that surround The Beacon. Two of the framed pieces are graphic notations with accompanying compositions, and the viewer is encouraged to listen along. The installation was built using architectural models, metal, designed in CAD, and cut with a CNC machine, and recycled material.


Apr – Jun 2016           Cathedrals, Solo show at San Diego State University, San Diego, CA

Jul 2015          Together, Adobe Books Backroom Gallery, San Francisco, CA

Apr 2015         Beach Towns, Featured Artist and Artist in Residence for the “My Name Is” group show, A Ship in the Woods, Del Mar, CA

Nov 2014         More Than One Way, Southern Exposure, San Francisco, CA


Jul 2014          Ark and Surroundings, Alterspace Galler, San Francisco, CA

Sep 2013         Iowa City Neighborhood, Adobe Books Backroom Gallery, San Francisco, CA

Sep 2013         Cargo Ship from Philippines, Rock Paper Scissors, Oakland, CA

Oct 2012         From West Oakland to Fairyland, Magic Lantern group show, Fairyland, Oakland, CA

May 2012        Ark and Surroundings Phase 1, Luggage Store, San Francisco, CA

Mar 2012         Canyon Oakland #2, Root Division, San Francisco, CA

Jul 2011          Iowa City Office Building, We Art Space, Oakland CA

Jul 2011          The Yoga Project, Louis V e.s.p. video and composition Gallery, Brooklyn, NY

Dec 2010         Home, Royal Nonesuch Gallery, Oakland, CA

May 2010        Shelters, MFA Thesis show, SFSU State Gallery, San Francisco, CA

Mar 2009         The Yoga Project, Stillwell Awards, SFSU, San Francisco, CA

Feb 2009         Heterotopia, Murphy Cadogan Fellowship Awards Show, San Francisco Arts Commission Gallery, San Francisco, CA

Oct 2007         Mission Football Field, Read Read Group Show, Bolinas Library, Bolinas, CA

Sep 2007         Utopian Visions, 868 Space, Bolinas, CA


Jul 2013          Mission Creek, Audiobus Tour, an experimental sound performance and bus tour through the Mission district, Soundwave Festival, San Francisco, CA

Mar 2013         Taser Island, multimedia performance, From Fairyland to Oakland Cemetery, Mission Creek Midwest, Iowa City, IA

Mar 2012         Taser Island, multimedia performance, Neighborhoods, Mission Creek Midwest, Iowa City, IA

Aug 2010         Extraordinary Forest, multimedia performance, Home, Soundwave Festival, The Lab, San Francisco, CA

Mar 2010         Pipe Organ Forest, sound installation and performance, Sound Device show, Root Division Gallery, San Francisco CA

Mar 2010         Pipe Organ Forest, sound installation and performance, at Window Space Gallery, San Francisco Arts Commission, San Francisco CA

Jan 2007         Southern Ocean, Flags and Anthems, art/video installation and performance, Keys that Fit Gallery, Oakland CA

Jan 2005         Extraordinary Forest, Multimedia performance and installation, performing Elves in The Tunnel, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, Wattis Theater

Sep 2004         Extraordinary Forest, Multimedia performance and installation premiere performance of the piece, Elves in the Tunnel, Headlands Center for the Arts, Marin County, CA (Artist-In-Residence)


2011 – Present           Taser Island. Synth based, experimental music, noise, video, performance project. Soundtrack for the visual art pieces. Also soundtrack for contract video and film projects.

2011 – Present           Custom Made Song Project. Music and performance project, where I make custom m

                           pop/experimental songs for others based on the individual’s life story

2011 – 2014    Matti Byes Ensemble. Experimental improv project with Swedish musician Matti Byes

2010 – 2012    Radius and the Spheres. Vocal ensemble with electronica

2008 – 2011    Pipe Organ Forest. Sound art installation with pipe organ pipes, guitar, Max MSP, and air

2008 – Present           Existential Karaoke. A sound installation and performance project using sound and animation software

2004 – 2009    Extraordinary Forest, solo/ensemble, experimental multimedia performance and video project, director, principal songwriter

2003 – 2012    Radius Experimental, electro-acoustic folk, duo/solo project with Mark Edwards

1996 – 2003    Zmrzlina, Experimental Music, Alt Rock, with an ensemble.



Student work:

                                                                         CURRENT WEBSITES

                                                                    JEFFREY T. RAY

4620 Long Branch Avenue, San Diego, CA 921077 • (415) 517-3452 • •


The main principle of my teaching philosophy focuses on the idea that successful teaching should extend beyond the classroom and resonate at a level with the students that affects the way they may think about and approach art in its many varied forms in their daily lives. I believe it is the professor’s job to help awaken the talent, ideas, imagination, and creative output of a student, hopefully in a way that they can apply in all aspects of their lives. It is a teacher’s responsibility to always strive to improve upon their teaching skills, to work on creating a learning environment that is engaging and empowers both teacher and students to learn and engage in class discussions, to question and critique and allow ideas to develop, and to help guide ideas along until they are further developed. Improvement is the lifelong goal.

I try and attain the goals of this teaching philosophy through various means and techniques. Some of the most important keys that I have found are by treating each student individually and with respect, understanding that each student brings their own knowledge and experiences into the class, giving students direct engagement and support, and critiquing the student in a way that is constructive and never demeaning. At the same time, I work at integrating the students into the class in a holistic manner, making sure that everyone participates in group discussions and critiques. The simple act of calling on each student to respond to the subject or lecture being discussed is not enough. I work towards making the student comfortable in the classroom, finding a way for them to relate on a personal level, and inspiring them to participate.

With my background in activism and experience with worker-owned cooperatives, I am aware of how important supporting diversity and representation is to foster learning and encourage participation. I have had several anti-oppression trainings and consider myself a trained ally of the LGBTQ community. It is incredibly important to me that I use these skills to embrace and celebrate diversity and to make my classroom a safe space for all, especially those who may feel disenfranchised in life. Furthermore, sharing one’s art can be a particularly vulnerable and emotional experience. This further emphasizes the importance of the class being a safe space for all.

In addition to my understanding of group dynamics in relation to education, I have a strong understanding of the history of digital media. I use this knowledge to provide reference to the students’ works and teach them about key figures and works of digital media. Also, I feel that it helps inspire the students to see other artists in their field as well as possibly generate ideas or help them see their work from a new perspective.

The immersion of students into the professional world is an important aspect specifically to the instruction of the arts. From visiting galleries and museums to having gallery shows for end of the year classroom projects, it is important to get the students comfortable with showing their work to the public. I also require the students to attend outside lectures, regardless of the topic. Lectures in topics other than art help promote works that are interdisciplinary, expand the students’ knowledge, and help them realize the educational resources of the University as well as the community.

It is important to me that the student can articulate their ideas through written work as well as visual projects. Often, I will assign the reading of contemporary articles within the subject that I am teaching and assign a paper addressing the student’s interpretation and response. Other written assignments have included summaries of the outside lectures or museum and gallery visits, or research on an assigned artist. Another tool that I have used in conjunction with written assignments that encourages participation is an online classroom blog. It is another way for the students to share their work and perspectives, see the works of fellow students, encourage students to document their work, and understand differing interpretations of works and reading materials. Furthermore, it helps inspire the students by engaging with their peers as well as ensures they stay on track by requiring regular participation.

I relate to my students and understand how best to inspire them because I am a perpetual student. Always curious and seeking knowledge through creative means and expressions, I spend a great amount of time researching and reading about digital media and other subjects beyond art. I am constantly improving my technological skills and learning new software and programming languages. By constantly acquiring new computer skills, not only do I experience first-hand the best methods to learn technical programs but it also helps the students trust in my competency when teaching software to students in labs. To have a deeper understanding of the technology so that I can have answers to students’ technical questions, I am constantly learning and see myself in my students. You cannot effectively instruct without first doing the work and analyzing how best to study and immerse oneself in it. Ultimately, I strive to be a great student of the digital arts to be an example to my students. Not only do I relate to them as a student, but I am a working artist as well and try to relate to them my experiences in the art world. When I share my work with them, I am an example of how they can talk about and share their work. Often, they will get to see first-hand my creative process and provide feedback and see how these critiques affect the outcome.

I believe it is important to have a method when addressing the students’ visual work. I always encourage them to question their pieces and process. They should be able to explain their work and what it means to them, how the piece relates to the assignment as well as to society any societal issues the piece may address, how others might interpret the piece differently, and how different contexts may affect their interpretations. I can provide them the knowledge of how their aesthetics often refer to other artists and even theorists. I encourage them to explore how affective the aesthetics are in relation to the purpose of the work. They need to analyze the concept and the aesthetics, how well they work separately and how they relate in conjunction with each other. The classroom environment, sharing their works, and talking about others’ works is critical for the understanding of how a piece can be interpreted differently. By hearing how others view their work as well as seeing how their peers interpreted the assignment, students always gain further insight into their own work.

Another way in which I encourage my students to step out of the student role beyond showing and discussing their work critically is by having my students write an artist statement. This helps them further expand their understanding of their own work as well as helps them practice writing about art and art theory. It forces them to see themselves as professional artists, not just students completing assignments, and helps them become invested in their work and the class.

In the same way that I show my students that learning is more than just showing up for class, I make myself available to them outside of class hours. I offer convenient and flexible office hours for my students, I serve on committees that can further the experience, support, and resources of our students and University. I also am open to attending workshops, seminars, and peer to peer evaluations and discussions.

I brought this philosophy to the Critical Play class. I purposely rewrote some of the class to address the College of Liberal Arts desire to work in a more interdisciplinary manner. The introduction of design, architecture, and 3D printing helps students explore the art in a conceptual manner as well as applied. I stayed true to many of the ideas of the class but feel by exploring architecture, to have them design future cities, the students are forced to think critically and explore the sociological aspects of art as well as take the tools they have learned and apply them to a large-scale project. Through the class, we also explore buildings around Reno and take architectural tours, which allow them to rethink the way they see everyday buildings and structures around them. It also addresses current societal concerns, such as global warming and how future cities will be affected by current issues.

In summary, I have only touched upon a few of my ideas and my passion towards teaching. I want to be ever-evolving in order to match the constantly changing needs of the modern student. My teaching philosophy changes in reaction to each class that I teach, the feedback I receive, and the outcomes that I see. I am forever a student, not just of the arts, but of teaching. I love teaching, and I look forward to the opportunity to teach at your institution.

                                                                    JEFFREY T. RAY

4620 Long Branch Avenue, San Diego, CA 921077 • (415) 517-3452 • •


San Francisco State University, Conceptual Information Arts

ART 412, Section (7/30/14)

Class Title: Computer Applications in Conceptual Design Location: FA 538

Day & Time of Class: Tuesday & Thursday, 2:10 - 4:55 Semester & Year: Fall 2014

NOTE: syllabus and schedule are subject to change


OFFICE HOURS: Tuesday and Thursday @ Noon OFFICE PHONE: Text only at (415) 517-3452



Using sound as a foundation and a jumping off point, with an emphasis on new media, this interdisciplinary course will explore technology and interactivity in sound, visual, physical and virtual formats. We will be using computer-programming language, primarily Pure Data and Max MSP, to create sound and visual projects.

Course topics include sound theory, virtual reality, site-specific art, how new media relates to contemporary art, history of New Media, aesthetics of art and technology. Technical studies will begin with hands-on training in software tools like Pure Data, Max MSP, Audacity, Processing, Logic, GarageBand, Audacity, Iannix open source sequencer, Final Cut Pro, Illustrator, and Photoshop. Students will then progress to integrating those tools with hardware devices including cell phones, laptops, analogue and digital synths, MIDI controllers, MP3 players, Arduino micro controllers and Raspberry Pi microprocessors.

In order to gain information and inspiration from artists working in these areas, the course includes field trips to art exhibitions, studios, and working labs. There will be guest lectures by visiting artists working in new media.

There will be at least two exhibitions of the students’ work.


Priority registration is given to students with an emphasis in Conceptual Information Arts, students majoring in Art or students with a minor in Art


Students will:

  • Read articles on New Media
  • Create patches from Pure Data and / or Max MSP
  • Create synth / musical instruments using Arduino/ microcontrollers
  • Work on a sound project as well as a visual/ video project
  • Work with the professor to correct any mistakes/ glitches that may happen with your projects
  • Participate in class discussions and critiques
  • Work on in-class exercises
  • Follow tutorials with notes and with proper execution and understanding of the program
  • Work on and develop conceptual ideas
  • Articulate and discuss these conceptual ideas in class
  • Finish one smaller project and then a final larger more complex project due with potential public exhibition for both projects
  • Participate in group critique of projects both in development as well as the final showing of project
  • Be required to attend at least one field trip (there will be at least three) or write an extra paper to compensate
  • Derive inspiration from other artists’ works, by viewing and discussing videos, websites and readings
  • Show a certain amount of flexibility and understanding in what software and hardware is used in order to complete projects


  • 2 – 3 finished assignments or projects
  • Critiques on all assignments
  • Class participation
  • You will turn in general homework assignments on time You will finish art assignments (art installations) on time
  • You will read articles assigned and expect to be able to talk about them in class
  • At least one field trip attended or a paper assignment
  • Participate in a class blog that may include notes on observations, links of artists that you have researched, and general notes on the class and the subject of New Media
  • Progress check-ins with meetings with the Professor
  • Listening and executing the tutorials on the computer programming language of Pure Data. Bring any problems, questions or any circumstances that hamper full participation in class to the attention of the instructor as soon as circumstances arise. Do not wait.
  • Completion of all work on time. Unless otherwise stated, ½ grade point will be deducted from work each class an assignment is late. Participate fully in all studio critiques, discussion, exercises and projects.
  • Attend all classes and arrive on time.


  • Consistent late arrivals, and missed class are unacceptable. (Except for a family emergency and/or a doctors note.)
  • Only two unexcused classes are allowed. Consequences of absenteeism:
  • 3 late arrivals equals 1 unexcused absence, and a full final grade deduction. 3 unexcused absences equal an automatic “F.” GRADING


Grades are based in part on:

  • Degree of effort in understanding and executing the assignments.
  • Class participation including discussions about assignments, readings, critique of others work, original ideas brought to discussion.
  • Listening and responding our main proponents to class participation.
  • Finishing assignments related to the tutorials.
  • Finishing projects.

A = Excellent Work.

B = Very Good Work.

C = Average Work.

D or F = Below Average or Failing Work.


Work can be up to one week late with a grade lowered one to two letters due to the lateness.


Tuesday, August 26

Introduction to each other, description of class, questionnaire.

Discuss lab work.

Add Drop information

Thursday, August 28

Lecture. New Media artists, History of New Media, Reading discussions

Review homework, Intro to Audacity

Ideas for first art assignment, show at least one sound artist (YouTube video)

Example of a Pure Data patch

Tuesday, September 2

Review homework assignment / critique the assignment / review syllabus / discuss the field trip / videos / examples of artists.

Buy Biophilia tickets. Go over Biophilia App Continue working on Audacity.

Students to go out and record sounds around campus. If time, critique the sounds. Readings: Brian Eno, Marshal McLuhan and John Cage

You have one month to read these.

Thursday, September 4

Review any homework not done

More details about the first assignment (art object) / create material list, mp3 players: who has them? Assign / loan out those who don’t. Lab fee discussion. What does it get you? Assign space in the gallery for exhibit. More YouTube videos of sound and new media artists.

We go over sound theory. We go over definitions DSP, MIDI, Pure Data tutorial Hello world.

Tuesday, September 9

Sound theory continued. Review definitions DSP, MIDI, Pure Data Pure Data Tutorial #1: Pure Data Basics, Hello World.

Pure Data Tutorial #2: Help!

We continue discussion of the first art project, we do an equipment check in.

We show a video on at least one sound artist, one new media artist, and give an example of other computer software and languages

Thursday, September 11

Lecture. New Media artists, History of New Media, Reading discussions Pure Data Tutorial #3: Basic Math and Bang Order Patches

Pure Data Tutorial #4: Metro Patches

More sound theory, examples of other programming languages you can use for sound and visuals such as Xennakis,

We discuss how our first installation is going. Homework: work on patches over the weekend.

Tuesday, September 16

Lab time! We switch over to the Lab room today. Meet at Lab room 238.

Go over patches you worked on over the weekend. Pure Data Math and Bang and Metro patches. Review of tutorials. New tutorials.

Pure Data Tutorials #5: Pure Data MIDI Mac and Make Note. Create and play with this patch. possibly record and save a song.

Short introduction to Max MSP and the similarities to Pure Data.Introduce Arduino hardware and software for Arduino synth/ instrument project

Thursday, September 18

Lecture. New Media artists, History of New Media, Reading discussions

More work on Sound Graffiti project. Put together the MP3 players, (low cost kit ordered online), Download sound project onto SD card, Load and test the player.

Pure Data Tutorials #6: Conditional Logic

Tuesday, September 23

Sound Graffiti pieces are due.

Lab work, Pure Data tutorials continued, #6: Conditional Logic review. Pure Data #7: A Simple Sequencer.

Finish up with Sound Graffiti. Install Sound Graffiti pieces.

Thursday, September 25

Sound Graffiti show Gallery opening!!!

Pure Data Tutorial #8: Record and Save sounds.

Continue with Arduino  sound project.


Tuesday, September 30

Final Assignment Project introduced, “Altered Sound and Video”

Three possibilities

  • Medium to High Grade: Alter your sound graffiti using Pure Data patches
  • High to Higher Grade: Use Pure Data GEM, Jitter or Vissex to alter a video
  • Highest Grade: Do both plus create Arduino synth. Use a soundtrack created or altered in Pure Data as well as a Visual component created or altered in GEM

Lecture / discussion: Instructables and tech labs. What is Instructables? Why are we visiting Instructables? What is The Exploratorium? Why are we visiting the Exploratorium?

Pure Data Tutorial #8: Random Numbers Pure Data Tutorial #9: Send and Receive

Thursday, October 2

Field trip to Instructables. Class meets at Instructables at 3:00pm, Address: Pier 9, Embarcadero, 94111

Tuesday, October 7

Meet at Lab. Field trip discussions

Introduction to visuals (GEM) on Pure Data and Jitter, Vissex on Max MSP Discuss Biophilia App

Syllabus change/ review

Pure Data Tutorial #10: Lists with Reactivision

Readings discussed. Those who have gone on field trips only have to do one short paper. Those who haven’t have to do two papers on readings or things we have covered in class.

Thursday, October 9

Presentation and show by PINE and Elia Vargas (speaking on visuals, Max MSP, Jitter and Pure Data)

Saturday, October 11 2:30PM

Extra Credit Field Trip: Bjork Biophilia Live

Tuesday, October 14

Papers on readings and new media.

Final Assignment / Project Introduced “Visually and Sonically Altered” Review  (The Prelinger Archive)

Pure Data Tutorial #11: The Espression Object Pure Data Tutorial #12: Altering video in GEM


Thursday, October 16

Pure Data Tutorial Reviews

Continue with Arduino sound project

Class, Guest Lecturer/ New Media Artist Greg Gigawatt,

Tuesday, October 21

Pure Data review, catch up. Class makes their own patch. Pure Data Tutorial #13: Sub patching.

Pure Data Tutorial #14: Altering Video with Gem, Vissex and Jitter

Thursday, October 23

Continued Lecture on New Media artists. Examples of new media artists. Reading discussion. Pure Data Tutorial #15: AU Lab / MIDI controllers

Pure Data Tutorial #16: Visuals with Gem, Vissex, Jitter Paper or Papers due on Reading

Tuesday, October 28

Review previous Pure Data patches

Pure Data Tutorial #17: AU Lab / MIDI controllers

Pure Data Tutorial  #18: Visuals with Gem, Vissex, Jitter

Thursday, October 30

Lecture. New Media artists, History of New Media, Reading discussions Pure Data Tutorial #19: Creating a Beat Machine,

Pure Data Tutorial #20: Visuals with Gem, Vissex, Jitter Work on Final Project

Videos of sound and new media artists

Tuesday, November 4

Pure Date Tutorial #21: Tables and Array

Pure Data Tutorial #22: Visuals with Gem, Vissex, Jitter Work on Final Project

Thursday, November 6

Lecture. New Media artists, History of New Media, Reading discussions Pure Data Tutorial #23: Reading Tables with Expression

Pure Data Tutorial #24: Visuals with Gem, Vissex, Jitter Work on Final Project

Tuesday, November 11

(School is closed for holiday)

Thursday, November 13

Lecture. New Media artists, History of New Media, Reading discussions Download free trial version of Max MSP and Adobe Creative Suite Review both programs

Pure Data Tutorial #25: Useful Objects, Simple Abstractions Pure Data Tutorial #26: Visuals with Gem, Vissex, Jitter Work on Final Project




Tuesday, November 18

Review Max MSP and Adobe Creative Suite

Pure Data Tutorial # 27: Smoothing Amplitude, Beginning FM Synthesis Pure Data Tutorial #28: Visuals with Gem, Vissex, Jitter

Work on Final Project

Thursday, November 20

Lecture. New Media artists, History of New Media, Reading discussions Pure Data Tutorial #30: Reverb and Delay

Pure Data Tutorial #31: Visuals with Gem, Vissex, Jitter Work on Final Assignment



Tuesday, November 25

(School is closed for holiday)

Thursday, November 27 (School is closed for holiday)

Tuesday, December 2

Final assignment rough draft due Critiques

Fixes, changes,

Thursday, December 4

Lecture. New Media artists, History of New Media, Reading discussions Work on Final Assignment

Critiques Fixes, changes

Tuesday December 9

Install Art show opening

Thursday December 11

Art Show closing. Party and Celebration


Monday, September 1

Labor Day Holiday, No Classes, Offices Closed

Monday, September 8

Last day to drop a class without a “W” grade.

Tuesday, November 11

Veteran’s Day Holiday, No Classes, Offices Closed

Monday – Wednesday, November 24 – 26

No Classes, Campus Open

Thursday – Sunday, November 27 – 30

Thanksgiving, No Classes, Offices Closed

Monday, December 15

Last day of classes.



If you are on academic probation, make an appointment with your faculty adviser as soon as possible to work out what you need to do to meet the terms of your probation.


(All syllabi will include the University’s statement regarding disability access)

The Disability Programs and Resource Center provides university academic support services and specialized assistance to students with disabilities. Students with disabilities who need reasonable accommodations are encouraged to contact the instructor. The Disability Programs and Resource Center (DPRC)  is available to facilitate the reasonable accommodations process.  The DPRC is located in the Student Service Building and can be reached by telephone (voice/TTY 415-338-2472) or by email ( ([])



Withdrawals are accepted after the drop deadline, through week 12,for serious and compelling reasons only. Withdrawals during weeks 13-15 are permitted only in cases of verified accident or documented serious illness. Students should speak with the course instructor about withdrawing from the course.

University Withdrawal Limits:

An undergraduate student may withdraw from a course a maximum of two times and from no more that 18 semester units of course work. This does not include total semester withdrawals of all courses or classes taken in CEL (College of Extended Learning).


Bring own thumb drive. Do not leave files on studio/ lab/ desktops.


Please refer to safety hand out.


Effective Fall 2014, students enrolled in classes that requires a lab and/or course fee, the fees will be included with their campus tuition and mandatory local fees.

Applicable course fees, as noted in the class schedule, are non-refundable regardless of enrollment date, or attendance on and after the 1st day of instruction, per new SFSU

policy. Students that add a course after the first day of instruction will be required to pay fees the day after they add the course. Unpaid balances in the student's university account result in a financial hold that can affect registration, graduation and other campus services.