What makes an image work, in graphic design or photography? Composition, the assembly or construction of elements, is the artful arrangement that guides the viewer’s eye and unifies a designer’s work. In the Design and Composition course, students will develop compositional skills by analyzing everything from Grand Masters to Madison Avenue ads to tubes of toothpaste. Through a series of hands-on projects, students will learn the principles of effective composition.
Design and Composition
In this course, students will develop compositional skills by analyzing everything from Grand Masters to Madison Avenue ads to tubes of toothpaste.
- Shape and form
- Explore the concept of a two-dimensional shape
- Using positive and negative space
- Creating intriguing effects through open, closed, and divided space
- Elements of design
- Using unified compositions
- Balance and rhythm
- Energy and movement
- Creating a strong focal point
- Using overlapping planes
Photoshop Basics, Illustrator Basics, Color Theory, or equivalent experience.
Module 1: Shape and Form
Through composition, a design can be playful, serious, humorous, or moving. In Module 1, students will explore the concept of two-dimensional shape, a foundation principle in graphic design. They will look at the way leading artists and designers use positive and negative space, creating intriguing effects through open, closed, and divided space.
Module 2: The Elements of Design
Too big, too small, or just right? Module 2 explores elements of design, looking at how unified compositions are created through proximity, repetition, continuation, and color. Balance and rhythm are explored as creative compositional strategies and students will learn how to use the “Golden Section,” discovered in 5th Century Greece, in contemporary compositions.
Module 3: Energy and Movement
How do designers attract the eye? By creating compositions with energy and movement. In this module, students will learn how to create a strong focal point and move the viewer’s eye along a chosen route in their work. Students will also look at how overlapping planes energize a layout through push and pull.
Evaluation is based solely on an Academy of Learning Career College final exam. Prior to taking the final exam, students must successfully complete all the components of the online course material. Participants who receive 75% or higher on their exam will receive a certificate.