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Graphic Design Lessons & Projects

This Graphic Design course has been developed with a UbD framework and a project-based methodology. Using a blended learning approach, projects are differentiated depending on a student’s skill level. Concepts are presented in tandem with projects that also build the technical skills of the student with each project building upon the previously learned skills. There is a heavy emphasis on visible thinking methods, visual research, and critique.
Take a look below for some examples of lessons & projects.

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Daily Dishonesty Poster

This project coupled the concepts of typographic color, contrast, & scale with an introduction to graphic design styles and students were tasked to create a “Daily Dishonesty” Poster. This poster was to be an homage to those little lies we tell ourselves just to make it through the day. This sentiment was to expressed using the power of design and typography.
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Pairing Fonts Poster

Students are introduced to the art of typography in this project. This is an exploration of pairing fonts to personality attributes and their visual relation to each other. Students use two personality traits that epitomize themselves and pair those with a silhouette to start exploring typography and its intersection with design. The project culminates with a class critique.
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Design Principles Poster

The project is an exercise in exploring the basic principles of Graphic Design and putting that knowledge into practice. Students explore each principle by doing visual research via Pinterest & the Visual Research doc, refresh their knowledge of using Illustrator via video tutorials. Students follow the project constraints to explore each principle.
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Independent Project

In this final project for the course, students proposed a self-directed project that utilizes the mediums, skills, and concepts learned over the span of this course in order to come up with a fully fleshed out body of work. Students have the opportunity to work either individually or collaboratively. Each project is required to participate in the Class Blog, create an Artist Statement, & presentation for the class critique.
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Explain that Graphic Design Principle

After students are introduced to the core principals of Graphic Design they break into groups to create a video that presents this information. Each group gets a separate principle and an information packet for reference. The team members are tasked with creating a video that acts out & explains their principle, as well as to find examples.
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Type Illustration

This project is an exploration of using typography as an art form and the juxtaposition of text with imagery. Students combined creating a silhouette of a object with a chosen quote to create a simple typographic illustration. Students continued their exploration of the art of typography and continued refining their Illustrator skills and learning some advanced techniques. The project culminates with a class presentation and critique.
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Magazine Mockup

This project began with a an exploration of how to create a typeface palette, typography guidelines, and general verbiage in design. Students were tasked with creating a biography article mockup layout. Students interviewed & photographed their subject and utilized their knowledge of graphic design & typography to create a typeface palette and a appealing magazine layout spread.
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Color Temp. Poster

Students are introduced to color theory and explore the concept of color temperature with a fun project where they pick a “temperature” word or saying, create a color palette, and create a poster that reflects that expresses that temperature. Students have a chance to learn a little about the cultural significance of color. The project culminates with a class presentation and critique.
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Graphic Poetry Book

In this project students were challenged to use their combined knowledge of Graphic Design Principles, Typography, and Color Theory to create a Graphic Poetry Book. This book was a visual response to a poem where students used a poem with strong imagery that mixed both original visuals and typography and then created a book that illustrated that poem.
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Holiday Card

‘Tis the season… for holiday cards!! This project was an exercise in creativity based around one design principle. Students created a non-denominational holiday card to flex their design muscles. Each student had to work with both Typography, Color Theory, and the constraint of the size of a card in order to create their original design. The project culminated with a class critique and a giving of the card to their chosen recipient.
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Get Positive Poster

Students were tasked with creating a poster that dealt with form and design elements using two sheets of different colored paper. Students choose one main principle and one element to concentrate on. The project culminated with a gallery walk where they had to respond to the work and title the piece to capture the feeling it evoked for them as viewers.
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Creating a Concept

Students are guided through the real-life design process with the creation of a concept and proposal for a publication. Each student creates a comprehensive Design Guide for their concept which includes a creative brief, mood board, color palette, typography palette, graphic elements, and a cover. Each student shares their work and participates in a peer-to-peer PQP feedback session.
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