•  Course Description

    Welcome to the world of Graphic Design, also referred to as visual communications. You will be using some very basic drawing skills, but more importantly, you will be asked to THINK. Your concept (idea) is what sells. In this class you will learn how to create quality art that communicates a specific idea in visual form. Graphic designers use combinations of shapes and forms, words and images, in either a two-dimensional or three-dimensional form (fabricated or manufactured) in order to convey that information to a specific, targeted audience. The purpose of graphic design is to to express, inform, and influence the thoughts and actions of its audience.

    You will become acquainted with the basic principles of Graphic Design found in a standard advertising and/or design studio. Emphasis will be placed on conceptual design, illustration and color theory. You will also explore the fundamentals of advertising layout, typography and digital media used in illustration and advertising. Use of the computer, Wacom tablet and Photoshop software will be introduced as design tools.

    Your class is your “design company” and your projects have specific deadlines. Assignments should be completed and on the due date prior to the class critique. Submission of work must follow the correct procedure or work may not be graded. Late work will be marked down. Class critiques will include examination and analysis of student work. You will also be asked to provide at least one written self-evaluation. All on-time work that has been completed with a visible investment of time and energy can be reworked or redone for an improved grade with permission from the instructor. Homework assignments will support or prepare for class work, or finish studio projects.


    Course Questions:

    1.    What is design?

    2.    What are the elements and principles of design? Why are they important?

    3.    What creative processes and critical thinking skills do you need to design?

    4.    What constitutes a “good” design?   How do you great good, original design and still remain within copyright regulations?

    5.    How does design impact the quality of visual communication? How can you increased the level of sophistication in well-crafted design?

    6.    What does the progression from experimentation to execution in a graphic design look like?

    Class Standards

    Major Assessments (Summative Assessments) – 50%:

    ·      Studio Projects:

    o   Punctual submission of work

    o   Incorporation of all given specifications or parameters

    o   Originality of the creative process – Finding a unique solution without violating copyright regulations    

    o   Craftsmanship in execution using digital media and tools

    o   Use of elements and principles of design in execution

    o   High Standard of Visual Accomplishment - well-crafted design, clear communication and high level of interest.

    ·      Critiques (written or verbal) and self-assessments

    ·      Major writing assignments 

       ·   Class Participation

    Minor Assessments – 50%:

    ·      Homework (image retrieval, sketches, brainstorming, etc.)

    ·      Visible progress benchmarks (formative assessment)

    ·      Quizzes

    ·      Short writing assignments


    CHS Google account (an absolute must, so remember your user name & password!)

    Wacom Tablets, desktop computers and Photoshop software are used during this class. All materials must be respected and in good condition at the end of the class or you may incur a fine. Anyone who does not respect or misuses the equipment, computer or internet privileges will be given alternate written and drawing assignments as course work. 

    Skills Gained

    •   Define and utilize the correct terminology for graphic design .

    •   Plan and execute a graphic design using the elements and principles of design.

    •   Work professionally within a design team.

    •   Discover how typography works and use it effectively.

    •   Understand how to create an attractive layout that communicates a message successfully.

    •   Create original imagery for a design and use it effectively.

    Through the critique process, develop creative vision and visualization and the ability to distinguish between strong and weak methods of design.