Skip to content


Switch branches/tags

Name already in use

A tag already exists with the provided branch name. Many Git commands accept both tag and branch names, so creating this branch may cause unexpected behavior. Are you sure you want to create this branch?

Latest commit


Git stats


Failed to load latest commit information.
Latest commit message
Commit time


LMU 182 Programming Creative Applications - Fall 2017

Art 182: Programming / Creative Applications

Fall 2017

Instructor - Lee Tusman

Department of Art and Art History

Art 182 (3 Units)

Monday and Wednesday

7:10pm - 9:40pm

Burns 214

Course Website:

Email : lee dot tusman at lmu dot edu

Office Hours by appointment before our regular class.

Senior Administrative Coordinator: Nicole Murph

Course Description

Emphasis on programming as an art form and as a tool for creative applications. Introduction to computer programming within the context of art and design. Concepts and skills taught enhance student ability to excel in future courses about Internet, animation, interactive media, and game design. Weekly exercises balance concept and techniques to reveal potential of computer as medium and tool.


Art 182 is an introductory computer programming course that explores the use of open source programming environments to create media based artwork. We will explore the history of media and computer based artworks as well as contemporary practitioners of the subject. Students will be introduced to the fundamental concepts of programming through the study of the p5.js javascript library. Assignments and readings will cover topics such as interactivity, typography, animation, and games.

Studio, 5 hours.

Outside Study, 4 hours.

Course Objectives

1. Develop an understanding of the principles of programming.

2. Ability to use programming as a medium for creative work.

3. Awareness of the field, its pioneers and contemporary practitioners.

4. The ability to excel in future courses about the Internet, animation, interactive media, and game design.

Methods of Instruction

Course experience will include lectures, in class workshops and studio time, and project critique and viewing. There is out of class work assigned to this class.


We will make use of the online alpha P5JS editor. We may also use a local copy of the p5js library. The Brackets editor is recommended for working with javascript.

Use of Technology

You will need access to a computer or laptop to complete the coursework for this class. All software used in this class is free of charge and open source.

Required Reading and Viewing

Code Resources

Additional Resources


60 pts. divided between four projects (12 pts. each)

30 pts. final project

10 pts. participation

Grading Scale

A 93-100% Excellent (A)

A- 90- 92.9

B+ 87-89.9

B 83-86.9 Good to very good (B)

B- 80- 82.9

C+ 77-79.9

C 73-76.9 Satisfactory (C)

C- 70- 72.9

D 60-69.9 Marginally acceptable (D)

F below 59.9 Not acceptable (F)


Learning to program is a cumulative effort, each new thing building on what you have learned before. Missing class can substantially set you back in this process, therefore it is very important that you attend every class. Three unexcused absences will lower your final grade by one unit (i.e. an A will become an B). With each additional unexcused absence, the grade will drop an additional unit. If you are 15 minutes late, you will receive a tardy. 3 tardies will turn into 1 absence. If there is an emergency or otherwise extenuating circumstances that prevent you from being on time or attending class, please e-mail me.

Cell Phones and Food / Drink

Please no cell phones, checking email or facebook during class. Food and drinks are not permitted in the computer lab.

STAR Course Professionalism/Courtesy Rules

Students are responsible for developing a professional manner towards their work, the work of fellow artists, and respecting the instructor, guest artists, the studio and the discipline. Students will demonstrate professionalism by the following:

• Meeting course attendance requirements and checking lion email or Brightspace for updates as designated.

• Following directions for given assignments, and having supplies as specified by the assignment.

• Completing assignments and/or projects within a given time frame.

• Committing to STAR’s diverse studio classroom by respecting the creative work and opinions of others.

• Participating in formal and informal course critique and discussion.

• Using the work of other artists/designers only with appropriate citation or permission.

• Turning off cell phones or devices during class time unless permission is granted by your professor.

• Helping to maintain clean and safe studios by assisting faculty and staff with clean-up duties, and not eating or drinking unless invited to do so during class or at a STAR event.

• Scheduling time to discuss your progress with faculty to clarify concepts or discuss course material outside of class time.

• Participating in the STAR community by attending one out of class arts lecture, event or exhibition.

STAR Safety

Students are responsible for following the safety practices posted in each studio/classroom. Should an emergency situation occur during or after class studio hours, or to report suspicious activity please call public safety at xt. 222 or 310-338- 2893. You may also go to the nearest call box located in the BFA center. Evacuation directions are posted. For safety information and preparedness tips, visit

KaleidoLA: The Speaker Series of the Department of Art and Art History

The speaker series provides a context to explore a ‘kaleidoscopic’ range of interdisciplinary and intersecting experiences in the art world. Drawn primarily from Los Angeles arts professionals, the speaker series features presentations and workshops by a spectrum of emerging and veteran practitioners, as well as recent alumni from LMU’s art and art history program. A portion of your lab fee will be used to support our guest visits.

CFA/STAR Credit Hour Policy and Workload Expectations

Students in the College of Communication and Fine Arts are expected to spend a minimum of 9 hours of total course-time per week per 3 credit hour class (1 credit hour equals 3 hours work/week). Therefore, for a three credit hour STAR course that meets in-class approximately 5 hours per week, a minimum of 4 additional hours of out of class work is required each week. The nature of artmaking especially often involves revisions and reworking to learn and improve conceptual and technical abilities that will involve extra time and attention on projects and learning. Students should expect to devote a significant amount of time to their creative work and project development over the course of the semester.

Americans with Disabilities Act-Special Accommodations

Students with special needs as addressed by the Americans with Disabilities Act who need reasonable modifications, special assistance, or accommodations in this course should promptly direct their request to the Disability Support Services Office. Any student who currently has a documented disability (physical, learning, or psychological) needing academic accommodations should contact the Disability Services Office at 310-338- 4535 as early in the semester as possible. All discussions will remain confidential. Please visit for additional information.

Academic Honesty

Academic dishonesty will be treated as an extremely serious matter, with serious consequences that can range from receiving no credit for assignments/tests to expulsion. It is never permissible to turn in any work that has been copied from another student or copied from a source (including Internet) without properly acknowledging the source. It is your responsibility to make sure that your work meets the standard of academic honesty set forth in the “LMU Honor Code and Process” which appears in the LMU Bulletin

Final Meetings

Monday December 11 and Wednesday December 13

Tentative nature of syllabus

If needed, this syllabus may be revised to better suit the class. Students are responsible for keeping up with any changes distributed during e-mail or in class.


Help out your classmates, make comments, ask questions!

This is a hard course, you must learn to think like a computer.

Come to grips with this process of iterating on an idea. Make a thing, then make it a better thing.

Learning to program is failure followed by success.

Don’t take error messages and crashed programs personally.

Savor the small victories!

This class is a collaboration between all of us. If you are feeling left behind, stuck, or frustrated in any way, please let me know immediately. I am here to help you :D


Exercise 1 - Four Examples

Bring in links to 4 interactive or new media projects listed on The Creator's Project or Creative Applications

These must be artworks related to code / technology / the internet / software in some way and possibly are examples of something you would like (or not like) to get out of the class.

Who made the work? What is the concept? How was it made? What do you find compelling in the work?

Project 1 - Two Faced

Part A

Design an abstract or simplified face composed of 10-20 basic shapes (rectangles, ellipses, lines, triangles, polygons, stars). Look at the links and images below as a reference. Create two emotions for this face, one neutral, and one exaggerated. For instance, a very sad frown, and a neutral expression. Have a plan in mind for how the face might transition from neutral to exaggerated. You may only move, rotate, and scale the facial features, it should not “pop” from one expression to the next. Think about all the different faces we’ve looked at and how you can construct a face both human or non-human.

Before you begin coding, sketch this face out either on paper, or in photoshop/illustrator/your software of choice and bring them to class on Wednesday 9/7. Also arrive with your neutral face translated into p5 code. Make sure your sketch size is set at 500px x 500px. Here’s some links for inspiration:



Love Bytes

Nokia / Friends / Heathrow

Bruno Munari

Early Disney Sketches

Kasemir Malevich

Picasso & other cubist sculptures

Isamu Noguchi

Joge-e & two way pictures

David Hockney

Emojis & Mac Finder Face

Due Wednesday 9/6

Part B

Add variables to your project from Part A so that the face can move between the neutral and exaggerated expressions by changing the value of the variables. The variables can change the color, position, scale, rotation, etc. of your face. Don't forget to write comments in your code so that you know the range of the variable i.e int x = 100; // left eye x - coordinate with a value between 100 and 200. Be careful when trying out rotation and scale, they can be tricky.

Bring this code to class on Monday September 11 to work on during in class studio time. One more reference for you! Mattias Dorfelt's Weird Faces

Due Monday 9/11

Part C

Modify your code from part B so that the face changes fluidly from the neutral expression to the strong expression as you move the mouse across the screen. The map function will be your friend for this. You will need to include a setup() and draw() to your project so that variables in the draw() can be updated on the fly. Think about how you can develop in-between expressions and make the face as dynamic and emotive as possible.

Due Monday 9/18

Project 2 - Nonlinear Narrative

Part A

For project 2, you will create an interactive non-linear (i.e. choose your own adventure) story in the form of a photo-novel or comic book(A photo-novel is essentially a comic that uses photos instead of drawings). Your story should have a minimum of 10 and a maximum of 15 scenes and have at least three different conclusions. Try to keep it simple and spend more time thinking about the interactions, images, and text. Here's little short story if you're having trouble getting started writing...Do supertoys last all summer long

Make your project 600 x 600 px in size.

For part A, complete a flow chart storyboard with images and text diagramming the flow of your story. You may draw your chart by hand or create it in Photoshop or Illustrator. If you draw it by hand please make a digital copy. Be ready to present your story to the class on Wednesday 9/20!

Due Wednesday 9/20

Part B

Begin converting your story into p5 scenes. Make a new sketch for each scene / room in your story.

Due Monday 9/25

Part C

Once you have created a sketch for each of your scenes / rooms, combine them all into one single p5.js project using conditional statements. Use at least 3 sounds in your final piece. Here are some free sound resources


Free SFX

Sound Bible

Sound On Loop

Due Monday 10/2

Project 3 Anim-instrument

Part A

For project 3 we will be creating a musical instrument that can be played by pressing different keys. When you press a key your program should play a sound and trigger an animation. For the first part of this assignment, create between 5 - 26 different sketches that have their own distinct sound / animation combo. Make sure each animation is encapsulated inside of a function. Think about the relationship between sound and motion? What motions make sense with what sounds?

Due Monday 10/11

Part B

Now that you have all of your animations created, combine them all into one larger sketch so that you can play your instrument.


Patatap Due: 10/18

Project 4 A Game!

Part A

For project 4 we will be creating a simple game in p5js with the library p5play. You will need to determine a concept, rules, objectives, win-state, and lose-state. Think about collisions, points, and the start and instruction screens. Is this multiplayer or singleplayer (multi-player games encouraged!). Plan on paper, begin sketching, and transition to sketching digitally.

Game Plan

  • Due Monday 10/30

Part B

Now that you have all of your sketching created, run mini playtests, and code up your game iteratively, fixing problems as you go and testing to make sure it makes sense and is fun to play.


  • 11/23

Final Project

Out assignments so far have been fairly restrictive. For your final project, I want to open up the field for you to create an artwork of your choice. The only requirement is that it use code in some way in the project. You don’t need to use p5.js if there is another library or language that you prefer. I’m open to you working in something like Max Msp, Touch Designer, or other node based editors.

Please prepare a proposal to share with the class for Monday November 27. Your proposal must include a description of your piece, how you plan to show it, and at least three references or inspiration projects. The proposal doesn’t need to be more than 2-3 short paragraphs. I will do whatever I can to help aid in the completion of your project.

Due Monday November 27 (Proposal only)

Final Project Due Monday December 11 & Wednesday December 13


LMU 182 Programming Creative Applications - Fall 2017






No releases published


No packages published