Design education of 20 years ago offered three-credit courses in production skills – using a razor knife, spray mounting art work and generally creating physical pieces in the most analogue ways. Unfortunately, there isn’t an easy spot in our day-to-day curriculum for those skills at this point, but the display case project helps fill the gap.
The display case project is a marathon – starting with planning, moving through design and into production. The project starts with the beginning of the fall semester and pushes through to the beginning of finals week.
The project is meant to teach a bunch of pieces – selling your concept to a group, getting behind an idea even if it isn’t yours and massive amounts of production skills.
The designs in the two cases below will be up for the next calendar year.
Former students will probably recognize the class day countdown on the board of room 330 in the Career Academy. It tracks the number of class day left until finals week – today the clock is hanging at one day left. The semester has flown by!
The sophomore Graphic Design and Communications students have been designing new displays for the area outside of the classrooms for several years. A lot of time goes into researching topics, designing the pieces and producing the elements.
The goal is to have students complete the display case project at the end of the first semester. Each year, the three instructors feel like the deadline is going to be missed and every year the students have pulled through. Once again, this year, the teachers are worried about making the deadline.
With only two production Fridays remaining, the students will have to work hard to complete the cases outside of class.
Cutting and gluing – with a saw and a razor knife.
Working hard creating a display case design.
Tearing down the screen printing display.
Sophomore Megan Davidson prepares ingredients for her food photo. The production room table looked like a potluck buffet as she created the scene that would be moved to the studio.
It’s food photography time. That means beautiful photos, lots of offers of free food that has been handled too much and stressed out students.
Food photography is all about preparation – the students invest more time in the planning, shopping and setup than taking the photos. Editing is also important, getting color perfect and cloning out crumbs is a must.
Among the many basic production skills covered in the first semester, digital illustration students are currently busy working with vectors in Adobe Illustrator. In a recent assignment they were to create Halloween-inspired two-color illustrations using symmetry and transformation tools to simplify construction. They’re constantly applying the creative process to implement and refine their productions while adding to their mastery of the application. Below are just a few of this years’ creations. Happy Halloween from all of us in GDC!
©Marcus Taken Alive
It’s time for the annual Halloween Stop Motion Graphic Design and Communications at Bismarck State College Film Festival, also know as the HSMGDCBSCFF. Everyone knows about it, everyone waits for it.
Graphic Design freshmen get about an hour to create a stop motion animation using white board markers and their creativity. The three instructors give them very little input, just new markers and a lot of prodding to draw faster. Here are the results:
Group 1 video
Group 2 video
Group 3 video
Group 4 video
The first year Digital Illustration students recently completed an analog assignment where they were pushed to illustrate an object using different illustration styles and traditional mediums. For many it was an experimental voyage into trying something new. For others it was continued practice in an area they already excel. Below are just a few of the images captured from this assignment.
‘Moth’ by Alysha Yasenchack
‘Key’ by Marcus Taken Alive
‘Flower’ by Kylie Susag
‘Cactus’ by Emily Schumacher
‘Coffee’ by Bethany Reiten
‘Pup’ by Taylor Lemer
‘TV’ by Jamaika Lee
‘Cactus’ by Carlee Gifford
‘Lighter’ by Tyler Betts
‘Cap’ by Michaela Ahrendt
For many of our students, sitting in the Graphic Design and Communications classroom is the first time they have had to work collaboratively with other creative folks. It can be tough, everyone has an idea, but students need to rally around the best idea. GDC classes start with collaborative creative exercises very early.
At this point, some of the students have limited skills with design software, but they all know how to use a pencil.
This exercise focused on something bizarre – growing people to fill different roles. Small groups were formed and each member had to illustrate a seed packet centered around a particular industry. Those industries were transportation, the medical field, the entertainment industry, military and also science.
Check out the seed packets and see if you can find which occupations go together to for a set of four or five. Here’s a hint – watch for similar elements on seed packets design by a group.
I appreciate the fact that my education in the Commercial Arts involved a fair amount of analog. In fact, my college class was one of the first to straddle the growing void between the old analog ways and the dawning digital age of the Macintosh.
Every once in a while we stumble upon these reminders from yesteryear in our storage room that clearly show the evolution of the iconic present. If you have ever wondered why Photoshop’s crop tool looks the way it does… I present to you the Brandt Scaleograph. I didn’t read the lengthy instructions on how to properly use it, but I can tell you the modern equivalent is much, much better.