Tag Archives: Graphic Design

Week #6

Week #6

Did you miss week #5 or need a re-cap? Go HERE

**Please print and pin up your Elements & Principles of Design assignments (print as pdf. files)** Class critique.

Class Exercise – Continued lab work on last week’s in class assignment on shape, form, variety, color & composition using Illustrator. Click here for a .pdf example.

*Be sure to add your name and course info as seen in the example.

Color Theory Help?

Adobes awesome Color Wheel Simulator – Shared via Petra (Thank You!)

GO HERE to Experiment

Typography Continued: Class video screening – 

Typography in Adobe Illustrator – Screening – Usefulness

Class Discussion – Applying type to Images, fonts, typefaces, composition, formatting and output to print & the Web..

Class project – Poster Design with Type & the Alphabet.

Typefaces and Fonts are built out of shapes and forms. Integrated with color and interesting compositions they become a powerful tool for creative output and the ability to solve design problems through visual communication.

Assignment – Create a new poster design using typography and a balanced composition using each individual letter of the alphabet. The examples above are just a few potential examples. Find and discover your own inspiration and share the URLs in the comments section below. Each student will add 2-3 Urls in the comment section.

Size requirements – 8.5 inches X 11 inches

Typefaces – Limit yourself to no more than 5-6 different fonts and 4 color values.

Things to consider – Layout & balance – Using rulers and grids. Free transformation & typsetting style.


**Midterm Project Discussion –

Specific Communication – Composition, Type, Image & Color – Solving Problems

Next week is the mid point of the semester! Wow! Lets discuss our Mid-term project and up coming critique. We will have a full lab session to work on and prepare our Mid-term projects.


Video Screening – John Maeda

Who is John Maeda and why is he Important in Design? 

Talk on Design – Circa 2008 & 2012

Week #5

Week 5 – Organizing files, file formats, screen resolution VS print resolution, Vectors, Rasters and PDFs!

**Need to review Week # 4? Go here.

Assignment #2 – Part 2 – Its time to print your Projects – The Elements of Design & The Principles of Design – Visual Layout & Print Production.

We created new documents in CMYK color mode using Adobe Illustrator last week in class. Do you need to download an example of the Adobe Illustrator Template for the Principles of Design? PDF files are easy to open, print and are editable using Illustrator. Click below and open the pdf in Illustrator.

CLICK HERE for the Template

2/28 – Class exercise :: Illustrator. Creating shapes with the shape builder tool. Working with layers, simplifying and reducing images. Working with color, locating color books and pantone colors.

Video Tutorial – This past week we took a tour of Adobe Illustrator and practiced creating new documents and setting up our art boards for print production, (we will review that this week as well) Let’s take an additional tour with Adobe Wizard – Terry White

10 Things Beginners Want To Know How To Do (subscribe to Terry’s Channel!)


Click on the image to view a print ready pdf file

**In Class Assignment  2/28 – Illustrator Tutorials – Composition, shape building, alignment, form & color. What role does color play applied to shapes and forms?

(See Example Above)

1. Open Adobe Illustrator and create a new document sized at 11″ X 17″ in CMYK color mode. We will be both printing and displaying the final work on screen.

Consider, how will you set your guides to equally balance and format the graphics evenly? Will you use a grid? Do you have a preferred method for layout?

2. Create a new series of subjective graphic Icons following the layout and arrangement above. Don’t re-create my example, make your own, but follow the composition.

3. Limit yourself to 6 or 7 values of 1 complimentary color scheme. Consider referring to the color wheel for reference!

4. Limit yourself to creating and composing your graphics with no more than 6 shapes created with the pathfinder or the shape builder tool. Begin without using a stroke around your shapes and then apply a stroke for contrast.

5. Save your work as an Ai. file (adobe illustrator) as well as a .pdf – Print your work in .pdf format.

6. E-mail your final PDF. to me – rseslow@bmcc.cuny.edu  ****If your file pdf file is too large to send via e-mail (and it may – you can easily use a free service like – wetransfer.com to send the large document)

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An Introduction to Typography & Its History – Letterforms / Designing with Type

Examples of Typography in Poster Design 

*** Must See – 1970NYC Subway – MTA – Graphics Standards Manual 


Week #1

Welcome to MMA 100!

Please be sure to bookmark our class website and make sure that you are receiving e-mail notifications properly. You can always refer to our website for the week to week calendar of classwork, class lectures, resources, assignments and deadlines.

**Please review the course syllabus here**

Week 1What is Graphic Design?
Class introductions and learning potentials –  Design Solutions: Strategy, Concept, Design, Execution & Production
Exploring the Design Process: Thumbnails, Roughs & Comps
Assignment #1

Logos by Paul Rand

What is Graphic Design?

“Graphic design, also known as communication design, is the art and practice of planning and projecting ideas and experiences with visual and textual content. The form it takes can be physical or virtual and can include images, words, or graphics. The experience can take place in an instant or over a long period of time. The work can happen at any scale, from the design of a single postage stamp to a national postal signage system. It can be intended for a small number of people, such as a one-off or limited-edition book or exhibition design, or can be seen by millions, as with the interlinked digital and physical content of an international news organization. It can also be for any purpose, whether commercial, educational, cultural, or political.” Via – Juliette Cezzar

Read the full essay here – https://www.aiga.org/guide-whatisgraphicdesign

Great explanation of Graphic Design, but what about the speed of the video??

Poster Design by Milton Glaser

The History of Graphic Design – We will be exploring and referencing Design history in our class. Lets explore these two references below over the course of this week.

Design History.org – http://www.designhistory.org

Key Moments in Graphic Design / Timeline – https://www.thoughtco.com/key-moments-in-graphic-design-history-1697527

Logo rough by Carolyn Davidson

Class Discussion: What is the Design Process? How do designers create strategies? Move from research to sketch, thumbnails to roughs and comps? What do these terms mean?

Thumbnails – Simply put, thumbnails are small sketches. Projects always begin with thumbnail sketches. No matter how tempted you are to get working with the computer and its software right away, thumbnail sketch practice is essential in the design process. Each project will require 6-9 thumbnail sketches. This practice will keep your idea muscles sharp!

Examples of Thumbnail Sketches

Roughs – Roughs are full scale renderings of your selected thumbnails. They are sized to the specific dimensions of your project. Roughs are about making the needed revisions and necessary decisions to meet the many challenges you may discover in the process.

Examples of Roughs & Comps – What is the visual difference between a rough and a comp?  Lets find examples together.

Comps –  (short for comprehensive) or a final comp, is the plan and official map that is ready for production. It is ready for publishing on the web, or print production with a printer or printing company. The comp is ready to  share with your client (or your professor 🙂 as it will fully communicate all aspects of your project and assignment. A final comp will be produced for each project in our class.

Assignment #1 (Part 1) – Post Card Design

We will be designing a standard sized Postcard to promote and communicate one of the following messages below (students must choose one)

1- A cause that you are passionate about

2 – An up and coming event that you would like to promote

Assignment Specifications:

Size: The final design will be 4″ X 6″ in size. (Students should decide on the arrangement of the height and width, will your postcard be a horizontal or vertical image?


R&D – Where will you find visual inspiration and research? Flickr? NYPL Digital Archives?

1 – Thumbnail sketches – Students will generate a series of 6-9 thumbnails sketches using pencil and their sketchbooks to brain storm and illustrate their process.

2 – Roughs – Students will select the 2-3 strongest thumbnail sketches and develop them into 1 rough scaled to the 4″X6″ size in pencil.

3 – Students will produce a final comprehensive pencil rendering scaled to size ready for scanning and application using photoshop. Students will experiment with various image manipulating techniques and styles to develop contrasts and visual interest.


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

Due dates for next week: 

Thumbnail studies, Roughs & Comps Due at the beginning of next weeks class 2/7 @5:30pm