"El Diablo Cojuelo"  Short Film 
El Diablo Cojuelo is a short film created by 3 School of Visual Arts students in the Computer Art, Animation and Visual Effects Department! Inspired by Kayleen's Dominican culture, a young girl named Yadira, takes on the challenge of reviving the Diablo Cojuelo's passion for music! 
Diablo Cojuelo (Large)
Diablo Cojuelo (Small)
Characters: Yadira
Character Designs created by Cindy Lee and Kayleen Acosta
We decided to choose Yadira as our main character. Once her design was final, Kayleen got started right away on bringing her to life. Kayleen was responsible for Yadira entirely, from model to grooming, to texturing. 
Ultimately, with Yadira, I wanted to create a character that is not often represented on screen. Latino characters or characters of color should be used to empower and represent real people. By using my culture as inspiration, it was most certainly a challenge to capture an energetic 12-year-old Dominican girl with bouncy curly hair. 
Here are some iterations of my progress while creating the amazing Yadira!
-Kayleen Acosta 
Characters: Diablo Cojuelo
The Diablo Cojuelo (both designs) were created entirely by Josette Ortega. We wanted to make sure he felt energetic and colorful as the Diablo Cojuelo's in Dominican Carnivals.
Color Script by Merlin Gonzalez
Inspired by the Dominican Republic and Mayan Temples in Mexico, Josette and Kayleen got started developing the world. Through research, planning and gathering reference, both Josette and Kayleen blocked out the environments to feel just as lively and wonderous as the characters.
Concept Art created by Ron Spivak
Gabriel Aguirre was responsible for animating the characters. His challenge was to capture the wise yet lively and joyful Yadira, along with the loud and boastful Diablo Cojuelo.
One of Kayleen's responsibilities was to light and composite the film! 
"I was able to use the color scripts created by Merlin and focus on matching the mood of the scene. I used Moana as a huge inspiration for my lighting and went through several iterations per shot as Lighting is something I aim to focus on as my specialty."
-Kayleen Acosta
The most challenging part of lighting was learning how to plan to light over 60 shots. Through the help of my professors and mentors, I was able to effectively come up with a plan to dedicate the most time to the shots that had no color key for me to follow along with the shots I felt would make great pieces for my reel. I felt strong connections to certain shots so it was definitely tricky trying to give love to every shot and not just a select few.