Foundation Visual Art & Design Program Advisory Board | Vancouver Film School

Advisory Board

The proven education at VFS is built on a premise that the skills students learn here must prepare them for a lifetime of personal and professional opportunity. Our mission is to ensure that students come here and, in one year, learn what they need to move directly into the industry.

As part of this mandate, we involve prominent industry professionals in the development of our programs. These advisory boards serve as lifelines to the industry, providing students with direct connections to the professional world. Advisory board members come from many of the world's top companies, and include independent thinkers and scholars from their respective fields.

Phil Byrne | Steven Cox | Miguel González Virgen

Phil Byrne

Phil Byrne has worked as a film picture and sound editor on features and TV series such as Short Circuit 2, Cowboys Don't Cry, and The Twilight Zone, and also with companies such as TriStar and Atlantis Films. With 15 years of teaching experience in film and media arts, he currently teaches in the Industry Connect Film & Broadcast program, a comprehensive production course for high school students throughout Burnaby, BC, and is the head of the Visual & Performing Arts Department at Burnaby North Secondary School. Many of his former students have found success in the film and broadcast industries.

Steven Cox

Cause+Affect Design Ltd.
Principal and Design Director

Steven co-founded Cause+Affect in 2004 with his wife and partner, Jane Cox. Since that time, Cause+Affect has become one of Vancouver's most influential design companies, responsible for many of the city's most talked-about cultural projects, including Fuse at the Vancouver Art Gallery, the Movers and Shapers exhibition series, and Pecha Kucha Night. In addition to their work in the cultural sector is a slew of corporate brand projects, including work for Volkswagen, Jorg&Olif, Vancouver Film Studios, Rize Alliance Properties, and the Vancouver Art Gallery.

Prior to starting Cause+Affect, Steven relocated to London, UK, from 1998 to 2003. There, he designed the award-winning VXO House with Alison Brooks Architects, and went on to design architectural environments for Selfridges, John Smedley, and Virgin Atlantic Airways as Associate Director of Softroom. Upon returning to Canada, he spent almost two years in the office of Arthur Erickson before co-founding Cause+Affect.

As a former architect, Steven's work is grounded in a clear understanding of the physical experience, which has given him a unique perspective on his firm's graphic, web, and video work. A true multidisciplinary designer, Steven has received numerous design awards and been published internationally, positioning him as a critical design visionary and leader in his generation of designers. Steven received degrees in Environmental Studies and Architecture from the University of Manitoba, and professional qualifications as a British architect from South Bank University in London, UK.

Miguel González Virgen

Born in 1964 in the West Pacific Coast of Mexico, Miguel completed his undergraduate studies in art at Harvard College in 1988, and later received a Master of Architecture degree from the Graduate School of Design at Harvard University.

His interest in both art and architecture has stemmed from his deep curiosity in the nature of the creative process itself, at a time when the image and digital production seem to be overriding physicality.

Miguel is a born traveller. While doing his undergraduate studies, he spent a year at the Academy of Fine Arts in Venice, Italy. Later, between 1991 and 1993, he worked for an architecture design firm in Tokyo while practicing his judo. He then spent two years in Switzerland helping to develop different cultural projects. In 2002, Miguel began a career as an architect in Mexico, though he is better known there as one of the most relevant art critics of this generation; in 2004 he wrote Of Games, The Infinite and Worlds: The Work of Gabriel Orozco, a critical analysis of the most important artist in Mexico, which was published by the Douglas Hyde Gallery of Trinity College, Dublin.

Since 2006, Miguel has been the head of the arts program at CEDIM, the Center for Design Studies of Monterrey.