Project Avatarah is one of Cogswell College’s on-campus project courses that creates character rigs for animators. Students design, model, texture and rig these characters using ZBrush, Maya, Photoshop and Houdini. Supervised by our industry-experienced professors, this cross-disciplinary project provides students the invaluable experience of working in a studio-like environment alongside their peers. This allows them to gain experience in team structure, efficiency in communication, working in a pipeline. The goal of this project is to provide professional quality rigs to animate – created by students for students - and eventually release them to animators around the world.
The first character from Avatarah, “Cogswell the Dragon,” has just been released via open source data to the general public. A few of the additional 11 original characters will be exclusively for usage by Cogswell College students, but a number of additional character 3D rigs will be released in the near future.
Jonali Bhattacharyya, Assistant Professor with Cogswell College’s Digital Art & Animation program, and formerly with noted game companies Secret Level and Factor5, spearheads the Cogswell student-developed 3D animatable rigs project in concert with game industry professional Sergio Sykes. Sykes, currently with EMOTIV and formerly with Massive Black, is involved with the Cogswell program as an industry rigging artist and Adjunct Faculty Member.
Project Manager: Jonali Bhattacharyya, Assistant Professor DAA
Technical Director: Sergio Sykes, Adjunct Faculty DAA
Character Designers: Katie Fortune, Michael Sardi
Character Modelers: Steven Mortensen & Robert Garcia, Adjunct Faculty DAA
Technical Artist: Wambugu (Bugi) Kaigwa
Animators: Emily Wiebe, Matt Peponis, Michael Sardi, Marne Pool