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Final Project–Magazine design!

Create a  cover and 2 page spread for a magazine of your choice.
Cover must include ‘realistic’ headlines, but 2 page spread may use dummy text (lorem ipsum dolor….) Design should incorporate both imagery and text.

If you choose an existing magazine, you must change the layout and style to make it your own.  I don’t want to see the same exact cover design that someone else created with a different image dropped in.  I want to see YOUR design style!

Grading emphasis will be placed on typographic and layout design. For free imagery and cover ideas, visit the following website:

Final due: Tuesday, May 25, 10:30am!



• 8.5″x11″

• cover

• 2 page  magazine spread

• saved with all layers visible on flash drive

• must be completed in Illustrator and/or Photoshop

• use of imagery and text in design



Name the Simile!

From left to right, top to bottom, name the similes.  For each correct simile, receive 2 extra credit points!  Please name them as 1, 2, 3, and so on…

2-Color Brochure Design


You are going to design a three panel brochure for a facility that helps animals.  Choose the facility you want to create for (for example, Denver Dumb Friends League, Longmont Humane Society, The Wild Animal Sanctuary, Big Cat Rescue, etc.)  Most of these facilities are usually non-profit which means that their financial resources are limited.  Therefore, you are restricted to using only 2 colors throughout your design.  Remember, black is considered a color!  Research your facility; who are they, what do they do, where are they located, when were they established, why do they do what they do, etc.  Do they have an exisiting logo that you can use?  What kinds of images will you need to incorporate into your brochure? Determine the two colors (specify CMYK values!!) you want to use and you must include a minimum of 8 images.

The first thing you need to know is the purpose of the brochure or what the client wants that brochure to accomplish. That ties directly into who the target audience is and what the message of the brochure will be. There are three main types of brochures and in each case; the cover is used to accomplish a specific goal. The three types of brochures are those that are used to advertise or market, those that educate or inform, and those that entertain. ( The brochure that you are going to create will be one of the first two types–advertise/market, and educate/inform.  Therefore, you have to determine what your angle for the brochure will be.  You are serving as both the client and the designer.  What information needs to be included in your brochure? What action do you want people to take?  Do you want them to donate money?  Are you advertising a spay/neuter clinic? Do you want people to come and see your facility?


Think about the flow of your brochure.  How does one panel move into the next?  Color, fonts, text, images and design must be consistent throughout the brochure.  Do you have a design element that carries through all panels such as circles or lines?  What about the shape of your images–are they rectangular, circular, or did you cut out the main image and have an organic outline?  How does the text fit with the images?  Does it wrap around the shape?  Do you have pull-out quotes or bits of info?


• tri-fold, 6 panel brochure

• 2 color design

• minimum 8 images, may be scanned, free stock photos, or your own photographs YOU have taken

For some brochure design inspiration, visit the following link.

Poster Critique

1. Which poster design do you like the most?  Why?  
2. How would you describe this poster to a person who could not see it?  
3. What interests you most about this postert?  
4. What do you think is good about this poster design? What is not so good?  
5. Does this design give the necessary information for the viewer to take action? (Who, what, when, where…)  
6. Which poster design needs the most work?  
7. What design elements is it missing? Why are the missing design elements important?  
8. What would you do to refine/clean up this poster? Give specific details.  

Poster Design

You are going to design a poster.  Using your favorite musical artist, design a poster announcing a concert tour or album release.

First step, do a search for concert posters and look at the different styles of design (some examples are posted below.)

Secondly, explore the following website for tutorials on  different poster design styles using Photoshop (and Illustrator):

Work through the tutorial that you like best.  Use images from the free stock photos websites to begin a small 8.5″x11″ practice poster today from the tutorial and save your progress to the hand in folder.

Lastly, you are going to post a reply to this blog answering the following about your final project poster (see the requirements below:)

– which artist you are going to create for

– the style of design you think best fits this artist

– what type of imagery comes to mind that you might use in your poster

– how you are going to find these images for the poster

Final Concert Poster Requirements:

• 16″x20″ size

• Minimum 4 images (cannot use any existing artwork or photos from that musical artist’s CD’s/DVD’s/Video/etc.)

• Information must include who, what, when, where and why (name of tour or latest CD release, is it a fundraising tour/concert?)

Hand in final poster in PSD format with all layers and history intact.

***You must cite your image resources!!! 


Wanted Poster Tutorial

Elements & Principles of Design

It is very important to learn and understand how elements in a work of art fit together to create an aesthetically appealing design.  This is done through the use of elements and principles of design.  The elements and principles of design are extremely important in graphic design so that you create the most ‘bang for your buck.’

Define the following terms by posting a comment to this blog and then find an example in a magazine (yes, cut or tear it out and label it) that illustrates the definition.  Label specifically which part of the image you choose illustrates which element/principle.  Be sure that YOU UNDERSTAND what the term means!

1. Emphasis

2. Contrast

3. Repetition

4. Movement (Flow)

5. Unity (Gestalt)

6. Alignment

7. Space

8. Balance

Logo Design

What is a logo?  Define the term.

There are three ‘types’ of logos–typographic, image, or a combination of the two.

The following are image based logos. All of these company logos have evolved over time.  They all started with their name included in the original logo.  Name the company that goes with each logo.  What does it take for a company to become recognizable by an image only logo?

image logos

The following are type-based and combination image and type logos.   Why would it be important to include type in a logo?  Look at the FedEx logo carefully–what symbol is hiding within the letters?  Was that intentional design?  (Look it up!)

type-image logos

Pick a logo that you know has been around a while (meaning at least 10+ years.)  Research the design history of that logo.  How has it changed over the years?  Be sure to include a link to the website you looked at in your blog post.  Good websites to reference:

You are going to design your own logo.  Choose from:
Java Joe’s Coffee Shop
Rosemary and Thyme Catering
Board Meetings Surf Shop
UltraSwag Clothing Co.

Create a profile/background for the company.  Answer the who, what, where, when and why questions about the company.  Brainstorm images, fonts, layouts, shapes, colors, etc.  that would help to visually illustrate the answers to these questions.

Think about which type of logo  you are going to use. (hint–when designing for a brand new company, it’s pretty important to include the name for immediate company recognition!)

Sketch a minimum of 12 logo ideas for your choice of company.

We must learn about critiques!

In the art world, critiques are extremely important.  They are a way to learn about how others view, judge, look at and understand your work.  In graphic design, you cannot create without critiques.  The job of a designer is to create artwork for a client.  If the client doesn’t like your work, you must change it and adapt it to their desires.  They have the final say as they are paying you to create for them.  Therefore, you must present rough drafts several times over to the client so that they may see your progress as you work towards a final design.  We will critique our rough and final drafts in here often.

Your first step in learning to critique is to answer the following questions about the design shown below.  Do the best you can and answer everything that you know.

1. Describe what you see.

2.  What is the purpose of the ad?

3. How are the elements and principles of design (specifically emphasis, pattern/repetition and contrast) used to convey this meaning?

4. Describe the designer’s concept?  What was their idea behind the design of this ad?

5. Who do you think the target audience is?  Why?

6. Is this a successful (good) design/ad?  Explain your thoughts.


Design Concept

A design concept can be defined as the creative solution to a design problem. Conceiving a concept is the hardest part of the creative process, the part that separates the creative designer from the mediocre one.

Essentially, it means you have a reason for doing what you are doing, for the imagery and colors you select, for cropping something or using a particular font. It’s the framework for all your design decisions. This reason and the elements you use to convey it should accurately communicate the established objectives. (Landa, Robin. “Create A Concept, 18.” Thinking Creatively. Cincinnati: North Light Books, 1998.)

One of my all time favorite ad campaigns is by Nike. They coined the phrase Just Do It in 1988. Since then, they have become a world leader in the sales of athletic shoes and apparel. The concept for these ads was to show professional athletes who were able to compete in multiple sports because of their Nike gear. One of my favorite ads was of Bo Jackson, at the time a running back for the Oakland Raiders and a left fielder for several major league baseball teams. The ads were all about ‘Bo knows…’ all of the various sports. One of them showed Bo working out, and while on an exercise bike, asking, “When is that Tour de France thing?” Although it was a joke, the idea that Bo was a multisport professional athlete and he could compete in whatever sport he put his mind to helped Nike to make the average person think that they, too, could Just Do It with Nike products. For the past 20 years, Nike has continued to lead the athletic market with their Just Do It ad campaign.


Think about one of your favorite ad campaigns. Tell me about the ad (is there a website I can reference?)

What is the concept?

What is it selling?

Who is it selling to (target audience?)

What is going on in the ad?

Who is it targeting? Why do you think that?

What is it about this campaign that stands out to you?

Why do you remember it?

Why do you think it’s a good campaign?

Now, I want you to think about the ad  you are going to create.  Answer the following questions for your ad design.

What is the concept for your ad?

How are you communicating that concept?

How do your fonts fit that concept? (please list the fonts used)

How do your images fit that concept?