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Digital Design II Feedback Blog Post

May 29, 2013 in Uncategorized

We’re nearing the end of the year (finally for some you), and since you are the second class to officially complete this relatively new program, I’m curious to hear your thoughts on this class format. I asked the same thing of my first class last year, and I was able to take their feedback and apply it this year with the hope of bettering the class for everyone. I’m a firm believer in listening to the students who experience the curriculum day in, day out. You know what you liked, what you didn’t. You also know what you would like to see done differently, or what COULD have been done differently to make your experience better.

Your final assignment is to create a course evaluation blog post detailing your thoughts on the course. Include the good and the BAD. What you earn will be reflected on the quality of your suggestions. Telling me things you didn’t like about the course will not negatively impact your grade. This is the type of feedback that can make the course better. It can make me better. Below you will find a talking points list of the items I want you to address in your final post:

-What were your overall thoughts on the course?

-Did you experience what you anticipated entering the course at the beginning of the year? Why or why not?

-Which format did you enjoy more? The more directed format during the 1st semester, or the self-guided format during the 2nd semester? Why or why not?

-How would you rate me as an instructor (feel free to use your own scale, but EXPLAIN why you rated as you did.

-What things do you think could be changed with regard to the course to make it better?

-Knowing what you know now, would you take the course again? Why or why not?

Again, being honest is the best for everyone with this. I want to hear the good and the bad. It’s the only way we as educators, and you as students, can improve.

I hope everyone had an enjoyable year. Have a great summer!

Creating a customizable menu using CSS and the unordered list tag.

March 15, 2013 in Uncategorized

As we progress away from our digital wire frames, the next stage involves adding functional navigation into our sites. The goal of navigation within a site is twofold. For one, the navigation should be functional and organized. Placement of the menu and the wording your choose to label your links play a major role in the usability and organization of your site. You want the navigation to be easy to use, and in place that is noticeable by your users. The second goal revolves around aesthetics, or general appearance. You want the menu to look clean, well spaced, and using a color scheme that matches the colors within the site, but while still maintaining an easy to read appearance (AVOID BRIGHT/NEON COLORS).

To accomplish these goals, we are going to be using the unordered list tag. We will be covering this in class, but for additional resources on the subject (highly recommend reading these while you design and lay yours out), I’ve included a series of links that further expand on customizing an unordered list:


-Basic unordered list tag explained

-Unordered List vs. Ordered List Explained (also includes a completely setup unordered list in html format

)-List Tutorial (Step by step tutorials on creating vertical lists, horizontal lists, and rollover effects).

-Advanced menus created using CSS and the unordered list (Creating rollover effects, stylizing the list, etc.).


DDII-Illustrations…Part 2

November 9, 2012 in News/Updates, Uncategorized

It’s round 2 for Illustrations. Your self portraits turned out pretty well for your first attempts (for the most part). It’s now time to take these to the next level. You have several options for this project including redoing your original self portrait. You may also create a new illustration not based on your portrait. This illustration can be traced and enhanced, or created from scratch. Regardless of which option you choose, you will be graded heavily on IMPROVEMENT over your previous design. For instance, if you choose to redo your self portrait, include a vectored background to supplement the illustration, or spend more time on including details within the face, include the shirt you’re wearing, etc.

You will also have the OPTION to include brushes into the project in various forms (both the BLOB and the regular brush), so consider including those into your work whether it’s an accent piece, or a major part of your design.

First, look at these for ideas!

2011 Student Work


Mac Lab Student Examples: Pg.1 | Pg.2 | Pg.3 | Pg.4 | Pg.5 | Pg.6


UPDATE** – Excellent video detailing the blob brush features and it’s uses. Consider using this tool for detail/shadow work in your illustration.


Grading…Click Here for Assignment Sheet

Infographics…Data and Statistics That Aren’t…Boring.

October 19, 2012 in Uncategorized

Now that you have a basic understanding of creating an interactive survey/response poll to gather data specific to a particular topic, it’s time to examine options afterthe data is collected and aggregated. One of the most recent and very popular trends in displaying statistical data is through the use of an infographic. Infographics are a visual display of statistics and facts using logos, symbols, charts, etc. These charts allow people to digest lots of information in a short period of time, while almost telling a story. There are essentially two key considerations that need to be met for an infographic to be effective. One, it must be visually appealing. Two, it must present facts in an easy to read manner.

Image Courtesy of

Your assignment is to take the data you collected through your election survey, and create an infographic that presents that information in graphical form. Since this is your first true attempt at creating an infographic, we will be using an online builder found here. Be sure to consider not only the visual layout of the design, but HOW you will present the information (bar graph, pie chart, icons, webs, etc.), and in what order.


Once the survey is completed, it is to be launched via your blog (embedded), and distributed to your peers through your social networking tools (post to Facebook as well if you wish).

Read These Before Beginning:

-5 Tips to Creating an Infographic People Want to Read

-10 Steps to Designing an Amazing Infographic

-How to Create a Story for your Infographic

A Change In Direction…Slightly.

April 16, 2012 in Uncategorized

We’re officially 6 weeks from finals, and as such, it’s time for some minor redirection. I’ve been pretty happy with the open ended format our classroom has taken up to this point in the semester. Many of you have turned in work that really shows a marked improvement and progression from where you were throughout the first semester. A select few of you have gone even further and ventured into new territory (infographics, type art, client work, etc.). With that being said, as a class, I feel we’re in a bit of a standstill in terms of topic choices. I’m seeing a lot of minimalist movie posters coming in from many of you. While this can be a very creative avenue to develop work, too many people are taking this approach (I believe partially because of the ease in which one can be created with minimal effort), and as such, for the remainder of the year, there will be no more minimalist posters on the list of optional/potential projects.

As we end the year, this is your time to step out of the box, and develop something unique. Something that is truly yours, and not something merely modified from a tutorial.

This week’s example image (thanks Dan) is exactly what I’m talking about in terms of a creative and unique application of the skills and techniques we’ve been learning.

Good luck.