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Success Stories features Virtual Artist Talks from Art Alumni

Published April 7, 2022

Success Stories — Digital Media & Independent Creators

Join us for a virtual conversation with four Studio Art alumni

Success Stories is a continuing series of talks with art professionals, many of whom graduated from the Studio Art program at FSU. The goal of these talks is to provide art students with insights, inspiration, and constructive advice for their own career paths.  

For this talk, our focus is on digital media. Our speakers will also share insights about their work as independent creators, freelancers, and entrepreneurs.     

The panelists will speak for about an hour, followed by a Q & A session.   

Friday, April 15 at 12:00pm-1:30pm on Zoom

To register for this free event: 


Our guest speakers are:   

Claudia Guerra (BFA ’20) 

Claudia Guerra (b. 1998 in Cuba) is a New York-based multidisciplinary artist. Receiving a bachelor’s degree in Fine Arts from Florida State University in 2020, she now works as a Creator for VaynerX by day and in her studio by night. 

Claudia uses her work to explore the nuance of gender and the paradigm of inherited womanhood. Through themes of religion: Catholicism and Santeria, iconography, and mortality, she undermines the inextricable worlds.  As the mediums and motifs she uses evolve alongside her, so does her craft and relationship with her art practice. She looks at anything from the mundane to the ethereal for inspiration. As well as experimenting with different materials to convey visual and conceptual complexity within her work. 


 Larry Weru (BA ’14) 

Larry received dual degrees in Studio Art and Biological Science in 2014 

Larry is an entrepreneur, visual storyteller, and data scientist whose contributions are featured by Fast Company, TEDx, and HackerNoon. In 2015, he gave a TEDx talk to discuss how color theory can help us make better election maps. In 2019, his “Muddy America” election map and color-balancing algorithm went viral, receiving over 250,000 visitors, and 12,000 upvotes on Reddit. Most recently, Larry’s app for Cornell note-taking, “Columns,” was approved for the Mac App Store. It has since gone global, reaching users in the USA and Canada, Europe, Asia Pacific, Africa, the Middle East, India, Latin America, and the Caribbean. 

Last year, Larry was selected to participate in the Media and Medicine Intensive Program from Harvard Medical School to explore how storytelling and visual communications can be used to impact public health. In the fall, he will be entering the Master of Science in Media program at HMS. Larry plans to develop a “novel public health intervention to help improve health outcomes for people with disabilities by helping us move the needle on web accessibility. I propose to use journalism and data viz as my creative medium(s).”  


 Sarita René (MFA ’14) 

Sarita is a business consultant, business professor, management and leadership researcher, and visual artist. 

She holds an MFA in Studio Art from FSU, an MBA, and is currently working on a Ph.D. in Organizational Leadership with an emphasis in Business Management and Leadership Development.  

Realizing her ability to bridge the gap between innovation and business strategy through pedagogy and consultation, she launched her boutique-style leadership education and business consultancy firm, Executive Business Design, LLC. She leads all of her courses and consultative work with an unconventional approach guided by human empathy, creative thinking, experience design, and business strategy. Consultative projects with organizations include Voice + Visibility Women’s Summit, Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA), Cheer Coaches Coalition, LLC, Builders Unity Group, LLC, Carson Life, ProjectTHINK SRQ, Microsoft Game Studio, Sarasota Memorial Hospital, Cirque du Soleil, and others. 

She is currently a professor teaching creative business courses at Ringling College of Art and Design in the Business program.  (Company Website)  (Personal Website) 



Skip Brea (MFA ’20)  

Skip Brea (b. Bronx, New York) is a New Media / Interdisciplinary Artist based in New York City, who received his MFA at Florida State University.

Currently he is a Professor of Digital Media at DePauw University and teaches Art History courses about art and the environment. His videos, graphics, animations, and installations examine tech consumerism and data management amongst the masses. Furthermore, involved are many other things that include what we are now calling the Metaverse and blockchain technology. From crypto and cyber art, to generative art and coded algorithms, Brea uses virtual information and digital compositions as environmental playgrounds of possibilities and digital commentary. 

The other side to Brea is inspecting, researching, and cognitively thinking about the history of representation especially throughout the canon of Art History. By transforming narratives and mediums with contemporary software: through image research and data analysis Brea creates works of art that embody master-type paintings.