FARMINGTON — San Juan County high school students will experience filmmaking techniques first-hand today as part of San Juan College's effort to increase awareness in the job field.

The first Digital Media Arts and Design Day at the college will bring workshops, demonstrations and a trade show on multimedia production covering film, television and web usage.

Luke Renner, assistant professor of digital media arts and design, said the idea for the program came from working with the keynote speaker, Rod Sanchez, who has set up computer rendering for animated films. Sanchez will be giving a presentation for the New Mexico Film Office on economic growth and emerging media.

I've been trying to do as many things as possible in regard to drawing attention of the rest of the state and film industry to this area," Renner said. "The talent pools we have is what (Sanchez) was interested in."

Sanchez visited with Renner recently, and after a conversation with Farmington High School principal Tim Kienitz, set the wheels in motion for the program as the high school looks to revamp its digital media programs.

Students from area high schools who have shown interest in a career involving media production were invited to come to the program. Renner said he is happy the students are making an effort to learn about career possibilities available after high school graduation.


"I'm just really excited to have students on campus to see what we are doing up here and what is happening around the state," Renner said. "We want to show some of things that are happening around here to provide a future career path."

Kienitz said interest in art, technology and audio visual fields has never been higher, according to a Farmington High career survey.

"We hope this will make a difference in the class selection choices for the next school year, to get students to see the possible careers in emerging media and ensure a smooth transition to prepare for those careers," Kienitz said.

Following the keynote speach, students will attend three sessions of workshops on topics including techniques for low to no budget filmmaking, 3D animation demonstrations and HTML 5 web programming.

During lunch, a trade show will be set up for students to learn about companies and organizations from both the Four Corners area and the state that are involved in the digital and emerging media business.

The program will end with a demonstration from stunt coordinator Tomas Sanchez on how to film action scenes. Sanchez has worked on a number of movies filmed in New Mexico, including "Transformers: Dark of Moon."

The trade show will include local photography studios, news organizations, the Aztec Public Library and New Mexico Highlands University.