Meet LSU Discover Scholar JaNiece Campbell
JaNiece Campbell, digital art and computer science double major, received the LSU Discover grant twice and was part of the National Science Foundation’s Research Experiences for Undergraduates at LSU Center for Computation & Technology.
JaNiece Campbell, BFA 2022 candidate, digital art concentration, is an LSU Discover Scholar who has been applying her skills as an undergraduate researcher. Working with faculty mentor Hye Yeon Nam, associate professor of digital art, Campbell has worked on projects that bridge nature and ecology, computational science, and humanity’s relationship with these fields.
“Between writing web applications that use artificial intelligence and learning to care for a microgreen garden, I’ve picked up a lot of varied skills!” She said.
Digital art was the perfect major for Campbell’s dual artistic and technical interests. “I’ve been drawing since I was a kid, and I’ve loved computers for just as long,” she said. “Digital art is the natural marriage of those two things, so the decision was very easy! It also provided a nice mirror to my computer science background, as I learned to join my artistic eye with my programming knowledge.”
In her years studying at LSU, Campbell has learned that there is far more to digital art than she knew initially. “I love how cutting-edge and multidisciplinary everything is!” She said. “There’s always something new to learn. When I came in, I was set on doing only character art and animation, but then I discovered creative coding (thanks to Dr. Nam’s class) and unique possibilities in art pipelines and interactive art.”
Campbell was awarded an LSU Discover Grant in 2021 for her research project studying pandemic responses. “The first project was titled ‘Code to Cope,’ a STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math) based response to student anxieties during the COVID-19 pandemic. Currently we’re working something very similar, but more so dealing with nature and ecology.”
“Whether it be research, extracurricular projects, or just career advice, my professors were always there for me.”
This semester she was awarded another LSU Discover Undergraduate Research Program grant for her project “STEM Accessibility through Creative Coding.” These interdisciplinary research projects bring together art and technology to explore real-world challenges.
After graduating this May, Campbell will be interning this summer at Epic Games on the Fortnite team as an Art Pipeline Developer. “I also hope to become more active in the local art scene again by attending local art markets and my own freelance work.”
Campbell offers this advice for future students: explore beyond what you know, and you may find new career possibilities you never dreamed of.
“When I came in to LSU, I very much had a one-track mind in what I wanted to do,” she said. “But I’ve found that saying ‘yes’ to anything that seemed even remotely interesting to me made my artistic world so much wider. Digital art is a big field and doing research with Dr. Nam helped me realize that. I never would have gotten that opportunity if didn’t step out of my comfort zone, so I encourage everyone to explore as much as possible!”
“I just want to thank all of my incredible instructors and classmates that made my time at LSU so unforgettable. I especially want to thank the Digital Art & Design Association, as they’ve allowed me to grow in so many ways.”