Collage – digital (Photoshop) or 2D

Hey students – I’m altering this project for ease.. You have to do two collages – you can choose 2 digital, 2 traditional or one of each! Looking forward to what you create. Be sure to look at all the artist inspiration links in this post!

DUE DATE: April 27 – uploaded to the Google Drive and critique commenting via Critique Hub.

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Mastery of Photoshop selection tools including: Quick Selection Tool, Magic Wand, Healing Brush and Spot Healing Brush, Layers.

Photoshop HELP

Photoshop Layers

Photoshop Effects

Photoshop Tutorials

Fundamental Tools

Assignment : Digital Collages: Using selection tools and magic wand make (2) 8” x 10”collages using sections and pieces of your original images/scans/color alterations from Tuesday.  Use at least 4 different images in each collage – think about how to compose an interesting design with the images that you have. Remember to assess the formal Principles of Design – Balance, Repetition and Rhythm, Scale and Proportion, Contrast and Directional Forces. Be sure to save two versions – a .psd and a .jpg

Think of a way to create a collage with any of the following themes: 1. Memory 2. Documentation 3. Texture (see above links for free texture images) 4. Fantastical Landscape 5. Self Portrait See Maggie Taylor’s work or Jerry Uelsmann’s b/w photo work for inspiration on fantastical digital collages.

Great example of masking

Drawing elements + shapes + photos

General collage links


2D collage artists to reference: 

If you’d like to do a physical collage instead – go for it!

Requirements: (2) 8″x10″ (at least) works on paper – take a photograph and upload to the google drive as a .jpg.

Henri Matisse

Robert Rauschenberghere and Norton exhibit(I hope we can see it together!)

David Hockney as some really interesting photo collages

Deadlines and requirements

Hello students,

Happy to hear from about half of you so far.

Here’s the deal – Please upload your Illustrator Type Self-Portrait  project in .PDF form (not .AI – “export as a PDF”) to the Google Drive:

Monday, April 6 at 4 p.m. 

I will upload all of them to the “Critique Hub”  by the end of that day.

Your job is to make two comments on each student project via this website.

  • One positive.
  • One giving feedback on something that you think could be improved on the project.
  • Obviously, this doesn’t function as a full critique, but at least we will be able to all see what you designed and get a little feedback.

You should also start working on the Photoshop collage project – due April 27. (more info coming)

As discussed – we do not have a final exam for this class (we didnt anyway) and your 4 projects are weighted the same as the original syllabus. You commenting on each others projects via Critique Hub will serve as your participation/critique grade. To be honest, this class is great at critiques, so I don’t have any concerns.


Also – I still have your last projects in my office … they are safe .. and I can return them to you at some point when we can all see each other again!

If you have ANY questions, please email me!

March 23 – hello

Hello favorite Design Fundamentals students –

Hows everyone doing? Do you have access to Illustrator from home?

I need for you to keep working on this Illustrator type self portrait! A couple of you reached out to ask about your files on the student drive. Unfortunately, you cant access this from home – you will have to go into the design lab and get them off the server if you’d like to use the files you started on. Otherwise, you’d have to start over. The lab is being kept open, sanitized, etc. But I understand if you aren’t comfortable.

I haven’t heard from any of you – Ideally, Id like this project to be digital, but if you don’t have access to Illustrator from home, I’m flexible for to you to complete this type self portrait hands on. Which would mean, colored pencils, pens, etc on paper.

Just a headsup.. I’m going to make our next project, collage portrait  an option of doing it on Photoshop or hand on also. We all need flexibility right now!

Please let me know if I can help you!

Best, Prof. Hopkins

Typographic Self Portrait

Our next project will challenge the following skills:

  • Learning basic skills in Illustrator (pen tool, drawing on a path, installing a typeface)
  • Creative expression through Self Portraiture

Two things you need: 

  1. A photo of your face
  2. Text – could be a serious of words, song lyrics, a poem, a combination of all

Student examples: 

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Online examples:

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Once you gather your photo and the text you will be using, we will go over basic Illustrator pen tool skills.

The PEN tool – the pen tool is one of the most important tools to master in Illustrator. Throughout the semester you will get better at the pen tool, but only with lots of practice!

Setting up new document

Selection vs. Direct Selection

Pen tool basics: add, subtract, convert, handlebars, curves, pencil

Good link on drawing basics

Fun interlude: Play this game for a few minutes to practice the pen tool 😉 

More pen tool resources: 

         Pen tool tips

Other general Adobe Illustrator tutorials

Feb 10: Visual Elements + Word Play assignment

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Visual Elements: with fine art reference

LINE: Jackson Pollock, Bridget Riley

SHAPE: Henri Matisse, Alexander Calder

COLOR: Pablo Picasso

MASS: Fernando Botero, Giacometti

TEXTURE: Vincent Van Gogh, Anselm Kiefer, Chuck Close, Jan Van Eyck, Robert Rauschenberg

Loving Vincent: the first feature length painted movie!

Book reference: Alphabet: A Miscellany of Letters; A Catalog of Type by Mike Perry;  

Over and Over: Patterns by Mike Perry.


Graphic Design Basics

Alphabet play


Word play assignment: On separate pieces of paper, explore the Visual Elements through typography. (You can bind another book if you’re excited, or separate sheets are fine too)

  • Choose one visual element + one descriptive word. (5 TOTAL)
  • Create a small (6″ x 6″ – 8x 10″) experiment illustrating your concept through colored pencils, pen, pastels, paint.

Im crazy about these!

descriptive words

Line: curvy, straight, ragged, jagged,

Shapes: round, flat, organic, bulbous, slick,


Mass: considerable, huge, large, substantial

Texture: abrasive, angular, bouncy, bulky, feathery, hatched, icy, layered, piercing, pulpy, ragged, razor sharp, rough, sandy, sleek, swollen, transparent, wavy




Project due: Tentative Feb. 24.

Principles of Design


Image reference and additional reading


Unity and Variety

Repetition and Rhythm

Scale and Proportion





Produce a hand-bound book of pages illustrating each of the principles of design.

Your book should have be anywhere from 5×7″ to 8.5×11″. The cover should be designed as well with a thicker sheet of paper. I will go over a simple binding to bring all of the pages together.

Using a theme of your choice, produce pages that illustrating each of the principles of design. You may use any/all mediums you would like.. be as messy as possible!


Material ideas: 






photography (printed out)

found objects


Simple Bookbinding resources:


pamphlet stitch: Tutorial on 3 hole and 5 hole pamphlet stitch

stab stitch

accordion book


Principles of Design

Unity and Variety: branding, logo examples.

Branding 1

Branding 2

Branding 3

Scale and Proportion: Pattern Design Stamp design

Scale and Proportion + Repetition and Rhythm: Hotel design

Unity and Variety + Balance + Contrast: Packaging

Scale and Proportion + Repetition and Rhythm : Packaging 2

Repetition and Rhythm + Balance: Illustrative Poster Design

Visual Hierarchy + Repetition/Rhythm: Infographic Design:


  • A logo represents a company’s identity and has the difficult task of making a statement while at the same time providing continuity of brand. What makes an effective and powerful logo?

Lets talk about these logos, which Principles of Design can you identify?

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And this link for trends in 2019 logo design

Pop quiz: Can you identify these Principles of Design in iconic logo designs?

branding evolution