Wow, I can't believe it's been nearly a month since my last post. I guess things have been busy around here since the new school year started for my son, and for me.
This semester I'm taking two courses toward the completion of my Certificate in Advanced Print & Graphic Communication: Advanced Typography and Advertising Design. So far, I am happy to report that both classes are exceptional.
My last class (Publication Design ) was kind of a mixed bag. Since I work in publishing, much of the material was familiar. In addition, this particular course was taught online, and lacked the creative interaction and collaborative energy that has been so stimulating for me since I started taking these courses. I've heard many complaints from other students about the online classes at UCLA Extension. They really need to work on making the experience more interactive. By coincidence, I am currently building an online class for the Academy of Art University in San Francisco. They appear to have a much better grasp on how to replicate the classroom environment online. In some ways, my UCLA class was a valuable lesson on what not to do in that regard!
That said, the best part of Publication Design was working on the homework assignments. I enjoyed stretching my creative legs, working on the kinds of projects that don't normally cross my desk as freelance assignments. I'm really getting into the whole graphic design "thing," and would like to do more of it on the future.
In my last post, I showed off a book cover design I was working on. Since then, I received some feedback from my instructor, and I tweaked it a bit. She admonished me for stretching the type on the logo (rightly so!), and felt the gun was an unnecessary element. Below is my new version. I'm not entirely sold on it, but admit that it is easier to look at than my first attempt...
My two new courses have been very interesting, and I'm happy to be back in the physical classroom, interacting with other humans! I may have said it before, but I think I've been freelance too long! Both classes are very conceptual, and we're digging deeply into the creative processes of typography and the world of advertising. For the past two weeks in Advanced Typography, we have been playing with letter forms to give different meanings to old adages. This was a lot of fun, actually. For the first week, we had to physically cut & paste pieces of type onto paper (like making a ransom note), experimenting with shapes, sizes and space. Later, we scanned the letters and continued the process digitally, creating many versions with different meanings. Here are a couple of mine that I like...
Fun stuff. The instructor is great. He gets so excited about type that he is exactly the guy you want to teach you this class. He's really trying to push us all out of our comfort zones, encouraging us to go "out there" with our designs. I'm already learning a lot.
Tonight I have my advertising class--also great fun. We've been doing research as we build a whole campaign for an art museum. Very interesting work, I'll have to tell you all more about it later. In fact, I need to buckle down and finish my homework assignment right now, so it's time to sign off. Excuse me while I get my Donald Draper on!