In this class, we put aside computers and software as we discuss and explore the fundamentals of design: color, form, composition, balance, texture, and symbolism—as well as how to apply them effectively.
who should take this class?
- Students newer to design, re-entering design, or whose jobs require knowledge of basic layout principles.
- Those interested in expanding their existing skill set with a quick but solid overview of essential design rules and practices.
- Individuals who wish to customize and improve existing templates, but are uncertain where to start, or on what to focus.
- Anyone who wants the inherent confidence from knowing key rules to create fresh, energetic compositions.
- Those who need to learn the fundamentals of specific software tools like InDesign, Photoshop and/or Illustrator should look at our Desktop Publishing Overview class. Those who are ready to tackle more in-depth classes in those tools should look at our "Essentials" classes for InDesign, Photoshop, Illustrator, Acrobat, Dreamweaver, Flash, or Lightroom.
what we cover
(always customized for the students in attendance):
- Positive and Negative Space
How to define and recognize positive and negative space and use them effectively.
- The various ways of relating two squares to each other: tangential, common edge, overlap, alignment/contour continuation.
- Learn how to relate shapes (figure) to each other
- Learn how to see the space around them (ground) as a shape too
- Recognize the different effect of figure dominating ground versus both being active
- Learn how to purposefully use negative space as an active element
- Scale and Proportion
Variations in scale and proportion, and its effect on a design
- Reinforcing use of positive and negative space in a composition with multiple objects.
- Typography as an elementary design element.
- Learn what is meant by balance in a design—it is a dynamic (changing) quality, not a static one.
How variations in contrast may be consciously used to control focal point and spatial planes
- Recognize the role of contrast in creating 3-dimensional space on a flat paper surface.
- Understand how contrast is used to isolate a message and prioritize information.
- Learn to see typography as an area of tonal value on a page.
- Pattern and Texture
Sources of pattern and texture, the difference between the two, using an anomaly as an area of contrast/focal point, making a design.
- Understand the role of texture and pattern in visual design
- Discover how an anomaly in a pattern creates a focal point (principle of contrast reinforced)
- Understand our recognition of pattern (and disturbances in that pattern) as a survival tool
Introduction to color theory.
- Understand the subjective nature of color perception
- Understand the difference between color in printed materials and color on the computer screen
The basics of type, and how it can be used expressively
- Type Terminology: serifs, ascender, descender, cap height, x-height, baseline, etc.
- Making appropriate typographic choices to create personality, and tone, etc.
- Explore how the meaning of a word can be dramatically - and purposefully - changed by the size, font, case and spacing.
- How tracking, leading, and kerning affect the readability and tone of words.
- Type as an Image: Letterforms that can visually add irony or power to a word.
- Basics of Good Layout
Interdependency between words and visuals
- Styles of layout: Verbally oriented vs. visually oriented
- The environment, purpose and context of how the piece will be seen
- Tactics to deliberately guide the viewer's eye
Graphic Design Overview—one day— $275
To register, click on a starting date
At Luminous Works, you get . . .
- Free class refresher within 12 months...
- Take it again! Within 12 months of any class that is still offered in that time, just get in touch and let us know when you want to audit. If there's a seat available, it's yours. Please read the full details
- Bring home your work...
- Bring home your class files so you can practice what you learn with us. These training files often contain valuable tips and procedures, as well as what you may have created during class. Whether you want to show off the images from your photography class, the chapter you built in your InDesign training class, or you want to explore those features we covered in your Illustrator training class, or perhaps you want to post the site you built in your Dreamweaver training class, you'll have the resources to review and cherish your hard work..
- Mac OS or Windows...
- All of our computers can run your operating system of choice.
- Small class sizes—by design...
- We pride ourselves on our ability to tailor training examples and emphases on the fly. Since we strictly limit class size, you will not be just another head to count, but rather a learner with whom we're communicating.
- Carefully crafted curricula...
- Constantly updated and refined, and never canned. Here, you'll never be subjected to a mass-produced workbook that is geared for the lowest common denominator. Instead, each class exercise is evaluated and tweaked to be effective and often fun.
We teach the bulk of the Adobe Creative Suite, but that's not the whole story. We also teach classes in photographic workflows, and several classes on "the basics" to get you started in web or desktop publishing. And since we have intentionally small class sizes, we can adapt a course's curriculum on the fly to accommodate that day's attendees. We teach people, not workstations.
- Convenient & comfortable location...
- From the lighting to the full kitchen for lunch and breaks; from your choice of operating system to the expansive deck for catching your breath, you'll feel right at home while you learn. Students even ask us where they can buy our chairs! We're easily accessible from anywhere in the Seattle region.
- Adobe Certified Expert instruction
- Luminous Works classes focusing on Adobe software are taught by Adobe Certified Experts; those who've both mastered the applications they teach and pass rigorous exams to prove it.
We've all heard of knowledgeable experts who haven't the ability to impart their knowledge. You won't encounter that here.