The Graphic Design Program

Graphic design curricula include the concepts and skills needed to design, layout and produce images to be printed, used on the web, or in video contexts. Typographic development is included in this part of the program.

Both Graphic Design and Illustration programs incorporate digital media in their courses of study. Software applications that are used include Adobe Illustrator, Photoshop and AfterEffects, Corel Painter, Autodesk Maya, and Pixologic ZBrush. Courses in digital arts are meant to supplement, not replace, hand fabrication concepts and skills, and the prerequisites and/or recommended preparations reflect the skills needed to succeed in the variety of digital courses offered in our programs.

ENOUGH TALK. JUST TAKE ME TO THE STUDENT WORK!

Some of what graphic designers do:

  • Create websites
  • Develop and apply brands (identity design, billboards, signs, etc.)
  • Logo design
  • Package design
  • Infographics
  • Pictograms
  • Advertising and marketing
  • Print design (magazines, brochures)
  • Motion graphics and animations (multimedia)
  • Film titles and marketing
  • Signage for architectural projects
  • Television graphics/show openings/closings
  • Environmental design: navigation 
  • Map design
  • System designs (manuals and instruction materials)
  • Exhibit design
  • Graphics for products (on product instruction)
  • Color development
  • Game design, especially peripherals (in game graphics)
  • Product design graphics
  • User interface designs
  • App designs
  • Assistive design

Graphic design is used every single day in the world of advertising, including everything from books and magazines, health and personal care, food products, automobiles, clothing, computers, and just about everything else you could think of in between

COURSES AND SCHEDULING

For the latest class schedule or course/program information, please use the links below:

Current Class Schedule

Current Palomar College Catalog for both class information and program requirements. You need only download the Art section of the catalog for this information.

If you’re looking for open classes (or closed classes, for that matter) please navigate to the main Palomar website and use eservices to search.

COURSE OFFERINGS IN GRAPHIC DESIGN

Click on the link below to open a pdf that describes the sequence of courses you should take to finish your Graphic Design degree in the most timely manner.

Suggested Course Sequence (pdf)

What classes do I need to take to learn Graphic Design?

Intro to Art
Why?
To learn what’s been done, and apply what you learn in other classes to historical examples. In other words, learn how to steal from the best…

  Concept Sketching
 Why?
To learn how to get ideas down on paper fast. Ideas don’t hang around–you need to be able to communicate them quickly, especially to your (future) clients.

 Design and Composition
 Why?
To learn the basics of composition: how to put things together and make them look good.
To grasp proportion, balance, color, line, and other elements of design.

 Color/Light and Theory
 
Why?
To begin to understand the complexities of color, and how you can use color to help communicate your message. 

 Graphic Design I
 Why?
To put the concepts you learned in design and composition (as well as color) to practical use. 
To learn communication and problem solving–practical concepts that will give you design (and job) skills. AND to learn hand skills–how to communicate quickly and effectively without using a computer…oh my god, without a computer.

 Digital Concepts
 
Why?
To learn the software professionals use daily in Graphic Design. Specifically, Illustrator and Photoshop.

 Graphic Design II
 Why?
Even more practical work in design. Magazine layout, packaging, logos, this time using the computer.

 Typography Design
 
Why?
Because typography is the graphic designers swiss army knife. And something a lot of designers don’t understand or use well. You will when you take this class.

 Motion Design
 
Why?
Lots of graphic designers end up working in time-based mediums (animation, motion graphics, stuff like that). Motion Design teaches you how time-based work is done. 

 3D Modeling
 
Why?
3D modeling is becoming something that designers need to know–at least the basics–since it’s use a lot in contemporary design work. This class gets you started in the digital 3rd dimension.

 I already took (fill in the blank) in High School…why do I need to take it again?
 
When you take a college art class, you’re in class 6 hours a week, and you’re expected to do another 6 hours a week out of class. You are learning MUCH more that you ever thought possible about the subject you’re taking. That’s why you need to take it again. High school gets you started. College keeps you going on the path to expertise.

 I want to learn more stuff…
 
There are many other classes you can take to add to your knowledge or to refine your area of specialization. These include:
3D Animation (Maya software)
Digital Sculpture (ZBrush software)
Photography (both film and digital)
Illustration (both traditional and digital)