Since its founding in 1972, The Group has worked to fund scholarships for deserving students of Otis College of Art and Design. The awardees met with members of The Group and presented examples of their work at The Group's Annual Scholarship Luncheon on February 16, 2017. One student from each of the seven undergraduate disciplines is chosen for the scholarship, and each week, we'll be highlighting a different awardee as we countdown to the 2017 Commencement Ceremony.
Charlotte Hitz ('17 Toy Design), seeks to create work about interaction, bridging the gap between creator and user, all while bringing joy and happiness to as many people as possible. "Kids will always find another way to play with something that you didn’t expect," wrote Charlotte. "You have to think of all these possibilities and really tap into your inner child. It’s inspiring to look at the world around you and notice trends that might seem small but are actually impactful and bring joy to people’s lives." Learn more about Charlotte and her work in the video and Q&A below.
What do you love about toy design?
I love my major because it encompasses so many things that I love about design but it is also fun and silly. It can be lighthearted and fun. I have always loved color, so being able to design things with bright saturated colors has always been appealing to me. I also love that we are designing an experience and how something is played with and not just aesthetics. We are also a really close knit group that watches out for each other but we are all very passionate about what we do.
Which class or project most surprised you?
Model making always surprised me because it just looks like a bunch of pieces that don’t make any sense until you finally put it all together and you see what you’ve done, and you can finally go to sleep.
Did you always want to be an artist or designer?
I didn’t think it would be a viable career until I was in middle school. I faced a lot of opposition from my family until they realized it would be a good career for me.
How do you handle creative block?
I always try to walk away from something for awhile and just talk it out with someone else. If you get too stuck in your own head you’ll end up getting nowhere so it’s always good to ask for someone else’s opinion.
Which instructor has most significantly shaped your experience at Otis College?
My model making teacher Mike Andrews has really shaped my experience in the toy design program because he showed me that it is always okay to ask for help. He genuinely cares about his students and is really excited to help his students' ideas come to life.
If you could boil down your Otis College experience into one word, what would it be?
What is your advice to incoming students as they start down the path to a creative career?
Things won’t work they way you want them to. You have to adjust and be constantly changing. Throwing yourself into something is the best way to learn but make three different plans for a project just in case.
What’s your favorite spot in L.A.?
Little Ethiopia has the best food!
To check out more of Charlotte's work, visit www.charlottehitz.com.