Dr. Patrick Pennefather

Dr. Patrick Pennefather | faculty

Faculty (MFA, BFA, CELTA, PhD)

  • Master of Digital Media Program
  • Centre for Digital Media

Dr. Patrick Pennefather (BFA, MFA, CELTA, PHD) is a founding faculty member at the Master of Digital Media Program. Patrick embodies the spirit of disruption; a hybrid Trickster who unlocks the creative problem-solving potential that a person has and relentlessly coerces it to surface. In Patrick’s courses, students learn how to identify then systematically deconstruct a problem, structure it through visual maps, adapt to changes fluidly, improve communication abilities, understand the kind of collaborators they are, re-learn that play is an essential component of creation, build impossible structures spontaneously then scope them down, negotiate creative impulses with others, trust their team mates, practice listening, and through persistent reflection take ownership over solving problems. 

He empowers learners to transform into creative and effective collaborators on multi-disciplinary project teams with the end goal of becoming the designers of their own digital future. His innovative/iterative approach as an educator is fueled by ongoing research into collaborative practices, project-based learning, and a relentless commitment to bridging the gap between what he designs and teaches, and what is demanded by a rapidly changing, team-based digital media industry. He has shared his ‘project-based learning evangelism’, work shopped his methods for educators, and is regularly requested at various institutions and conferences internationally in Canada, China, Japan and most recently at SXSW in Austin, Texas.

The path to achieve these ‘soft’ skills that are usually taken for granted, are through systematic practice of improvisational techniques gathered from many artistic disciplines. In addition, his choice of tools and method of facilitating their assimilation are based on his experience leading and being led on interdisciplinary teams as a designer, producer and comedic performer on over a thousand large-scale events and performances, from live theatre productions to international ad oriented campaigns situated in large scale sports events with Palmer Jarvis, Cossette Communications, and DDB.

He has mentored, managed and designed instruction on the MDM Program’s industry-funded projects with Ubisoft, Microsoft, Exploding Barrel Games/Kabam, Roadhouse Interactive, Skybox Labs, Disruptive Media, Cultural Olympiad Digital Edition 2010, First Nations Technology Council and more. As an international award-winning sound designer and composer, he has worked with numerous clients including Bard on the Beach, Push Festival, Electric Company Theatre, Touchstone, Arts Club Theatre, University of Florida, UCLA Long Beach, CBC Radio & Television and Bravo Television. He has also led interdisciplinary teams. For ongoing writings on collaboration, teaching, and to hear some of his music and the stories around their creation, head to his living blogs. 

Courses: Collaborative English Language Learning (Digital Media Edition), Interdisciplinary Improvisation

Projects: InTransit BC, Anthymn, Bateman Centre Interactive Visualization Project (BCIVP), Big Bertha Studios, Business Simulation Training, Carbon Chaos 2010, Chinchilla, Clarity Toolkit: Bringing Business Back To Its Senses, CODEstruction, CoLab, Community Pulse, Curate Your Own Collection, CyberPatient, D-Sign Touchless Interactive Systems, Digital Decisions, Eagle Eye, Fashion Game, GO, kindamals, Man Kind, Man Up Canada , Mirage, Monsterholic, O:N Studios, Precipice, Pwny Arcade, RAMsquared, RDM, Redshift, Shift Seven Interactive, Sofa So Good, Studio 777, TaxiCity: Vancouver, Team Labyrinth, The Road Less Travelled, THESIX, Timber, UBC Fisheries Project, V-Track Project, Virtual Rainforest Initiative, WOMP!, YATTA