Week #4

IBM by Paul Rand

Week 4 – The Principles of Design / Layouts and Visual Relationships

Need to review Week#3? Go here.

Using a Grid Format – Gestalt, Contrast, Repetition, Alignment & Proximity

Did you complete Part 1 of the Elements of Design Assignment? Lets take a look. Class Presentations & Discussion.

**Need a visual example of Part 1 of the project? Check here

Class Exercise: Assignment #2 – Part 2

Working with Photoshop. Lets apply additional layers, filters and image manipulating techniques to customize our progress. Class demonstrations.

Working from the original psd. document / template that you have created in part 1 of this assignment, students will use and apply additional layers to enhance and manipulate their image selections for the Elements of Art.

Outcome – Students will save two variations of the project as a photoshop psd. file as well as exporting the files as a .jpeg for the web (demonstration in class) Students will also print out a CMYK .jpeg version of the project as well.

Assessment of the project: How has illustrating the vocabulary with images helped your understanding of each term? Discussion.

Color Theory Continued – What did you think of the links posted last week on Color Theory? Let’s dig in deeper this week. (Image via Arhaus‘  via Justcreative)

The link below was published via – JustCreative.com – This is great guide to understanding color in design with an emphasis on logos, identity and branding.


I highly recommend visiting and learning from JustCreative.com aka – Jacob Cass – Jacob is an amazing graphic designer and conduit of great design resources.

Video Screenings –

Photoshop Tutorial – The top 10 Things photoshop Beginners Want To Know How To Do

I love and recommend Terry White’s Youtube channel. He is an Adobe software wizard! Subscribe here.

Who is Michael Bierut and Why is he important? Please watch the video outside of class this week and respond in the comments section below. This is mandatory)


What is GESTALT and why is it important in Design? An introduction.


Assignment #3 – Part 1:

The Principles of Design – Working with and applying color to the principles of design – Continued layout, composition and peeking into adobe Illustrator.

Assignment Specifications: Students will generate a series of visual examples and solutions to define, communicate and illustrate the vocabulary of the Principles of Design. Each term will display an example of : Balance, Contrast, Direction, Economy, Emphasis, Proportion, Rhythm & Unity.

Size: – Students will determine the size of the layout – The final design may be a composite of 8 shapes composed and arranged onto one single page.


Part 1 – Student will first create a layout based on research and investigation via the Internet and class resources. Each term for the principles of design will be illustrated by cutting, formatting and placing an example into a composition. (the example from last week is one example, you can create your own)

Part 2 – Students will generate their own examples of each term using techniques learned in class with both photoshop and adobe illustrator.

R&D – Where will you find visual inspiration and research?

Students should conduct research! (and not select only one image) Build a small repository of images and references! We will discuss this in class – generate or organize a series of thumbnails using pencil and a sketchbook (or their preferred method) to brain storm and illustrate their process.


Students will prepare their final works for both print out put in (CMYK) as well as presentation and application on the web (RGB).

Due dates for next week: We will be working on and completing part 1 of this project in class  2/21 and moving on to part 2 next week.

Please re-review the vocabulary below.

The Principles of Design

The principles of design are applicable to all design disciplines including – but not exclusive to – architecture, art, graphics, fashion, industrial design, poetry, writing, and web design.

The principles of design are tools used to format the elements of design.

Balance – The elements of design converge to create a design or arrangement of parts that appear to be a whole with equilibrium.

Contrast – The “automatic principle.” Whenever an element is placed within a format, contrast is created in the various elements. Can be emphasized with contrast in size, shape, color,

Direction – Utilizing movement to create the visual illusion of displacement.

Economy – A principle operating on the “slim.” Especially important when dealing with clients, where their product or service is more important than the elaboration of design elements. Can also be considered “precise,” or “simplistic.” Or, it can be considered great design.

Emphasis – Also known as dominance. This condition exists when an element or elements within a visual format contain a hierarchy of visual importance.

Proportion – A two- or three-dimensional element defined by other elements of design.

Rhythm – A recurrence or repetition of one or more elements within a visual format, creating harmony.

Unity – Oneness, Harmony, The condition of completeness with the use of all visual elements within a format.

5 thoughts on “Week #4

  1. Petra Zion

    I enjoyed the readings. I was wondering why white didn’t get any negative warnings as the other colors got besides brown.
    I didn’t know that Gestalt psychology was a movement from Germany, Berlin even though I lived there for a while. This article helped a lot to find images for my homework.
    The photoshop tutorial is amazing. It’s clear on point and many good tips and least but not last the life story from Michael Bierut was simple fantastic.

  2. Pingback: Week #5 | BMCC MMA 100 Foundations of Digital Graphic Design

  3. Jordan Fender

    Michael Bierut’s speech was a fun one to watch. He’s a artist that’s been around for a long time. I especially liked his story of how he realized that although the school play itself was the big production, his work reached tons more kids than the play actually did. That, to me, was very inspiring. It made me desire to reach people, much like the guy we watched in class a couple weeks ago who makes all the very cool retro logos. Michael Bierut is important because through his years of learning, he is able to share with us things he’s gained wisdom on throughout his career. The thing I took the most out of was to not even ask someone to be a mentor- just force them to be!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *