Fundamentals of Graphic Design
list 4 sequences
assignment Level : Introductive
chat_bubble_outline Language : English
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Users' reviews
4.7
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302 reviews

Key information

credit_card Free access
verified_user Fee-based Certificate
timer 20 hours in total

About the content

Graphic Design is all around us! Words and pictures—the building blocks of graphic design—are the elements that carry the majority of the content in both the digital world and the printed world. As graphic design becomes more visible and prevalent in our lives, graphic design as a practice becomes more important in our culture. Through visual examples, this course will teach you the fundamental principles of graphic design: imagemaking, typography, composition, working with color and shape... foundational skills that are common in all areas of graphic design practice. I don't just want you to watch a video of someone talking about design, I want you to MAKE design! If you want to be a designer you have to be a maker and a communicator, so this course will offer you lots of opportunities to get your hands dirty with exercises and with more practical projects. At the end of this course you will have learned how to explore and investigate visual representation through a range of image-making techniques; understand basic principles of working with shape, color and pattern; been exposed to the language and skills of typography; and understand and have applied the principles of composition and visual contrast. If you complete the course, along with its optional (but highly recommended) briefs, you will have a core set of graphic design skills that you can apply to your own projects, or to more deeply investigate a specialized area of graphic design. To succeed in this course you will need access to a computer. You can complete this course without one but it will be tougher. Access to, and a beginner's level knowledge of Adobe Creative Suite programs, such as Illustrator, Photoshop and InDesign will help you, especially if you want to complete the optional briefs.

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Syllabus

  • Week 1 - Week 1: Fundamentals of Imagemaking
    This week we are going to look at how images function in terms of conveying denotative and connotative messages, I'll show you a range of analog and digital imagemaking techniques and discuss how they work. In the first peer review assignment you'll create you...
  • Week 2 - Week 2: Fundamentals of Typography
    This week we are going to look at typographic terminology and the basic rules for creating typography. I'll show you a range of tips and techniques for working with type, in both a functional and expressive manner, and you'll find out about the process involve...
  • Week 3 - Week 3: Fundamentals of Shape and Color
    This week we are going to look at how designers work with shape and color as their fundamental building blocks. You'll learn about visual contrast, color, rhythm and pattern in design. I'll be showing you the process involved in making an abstract design from ...
  • Week 4 - Week 4: Fundamentals of Composition
    This week we are going to look at how designers work with visual contrasts, cropping, hierarchy and direction in single images and complex compositions. You'll find out how to control and use scale, weight, direction, texture, and space in a composition, and h...
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Instructors

Michael Worthington
Faculty, Program in Graphic Design
School of Art

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Content designer

California Institute of the Arts
CalArts has earned an international reputation as the leading college of the visual and performing arts in the United States. Offering rigorous undergraduate and graduate degree programs through six schools—Art, Critical Studies, Dance, Film/Video, Music, and Theater—CalArts has championed creative excellence, critical reflection, and the development of new forms and expressions.
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Platform

Coursera

Coursera is a digital company offering massive open online course founded by computer teachers Andrew Ng and Daphne Koller Stanford University, located in Mountain View, California. 

Coursera works with top universities and organizations to make some of their courses available online, and offers courses in many subjects, including: physics, engineering, humanities, medicine, biology, social sciences, mathematics, business, computer science, digital marketing, data science, and other subjects.

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Best review

Excellent course for beginners or people who are just experimenting with Graphic Design. The instructor is clear and concise and the assignments are interesting. In peer-assignments same person might evaluate all of your assignments which kind of defeats the point which, I think, is variety of opinions. That can also get irritating/discouraging if the reviewer does not care to leave useful feedback.

Published on February 22, 2018
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on the March 5, 2018
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Good information, wish there were more assignments and perhaps multiple presenters. This class is part of a specialization, so you can not get the certificate for completion unless you join the specialization.

on the March 5, 2018
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Engaging, well structured course content. Appropriate/accurate work load estimates. Instructive assignments which isolate and combine concepts in ways that really help them stick. (Peer assessment is a bit hit and miss but that is just the nature of things and not the fault of the course)

on the February 22, 2018
starstarstarstarstar

Excellent course for beginners or people who are just experimenting with Graphic Design. The instructor is clear and concise and the assignments are interesting. In peer-assignments same person might evaluate all of your assignments which kind of defeats the point which, I think, is variety of opinions. That can also get irritating/discouraging if the reviewer does not care to leave useful feedback.

on the February 21, 2018
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I have learned do much in this course. Thank you very much! Now doing my 2nd course. Thank you CalArts and Coursera for making this possible.

on the February 19, 2018
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A really amazing course which teaches you the basics of Design in general with a graphic design flavor. Really enjoyed the lectures and assignments.