Soap Package – GD 101 Abby ’18

The students in GD 101 were asked to create a package for a bar of soap. You can read the brief here.

100 Iterations – GD 101 Abby ’18

The students in GD 101 Design Fundamentals were asked to create 100 visual interpretations of a single subject. Read the original brief here.

Chip Kidd

Chip Kidd is not only internationally recognized as a book jacket designer for Knopf publishing, he’s also a novelist whose book Cheese Monkeys is about, ostensibly, going to graphic design school. He’s also a great public speaker as you’ll see in the  video below.

Mood Boards

Mood Boards are displays of visual reference that show multiple images together allowing for the elements to create a synthesis of aesthetics (a.k.a. “Mood”). These can be created in many different ways but usually contain  a variety of image types, from photography, typography, texture photos and colour inspiration. A mood board should help you establish a colour scheme, an image spectrum, and a layout plan. Think of it as a story and your images as narrative elements (characters, setting, dialogue, situations).

Remember, a mood board is not a recipe – it should only inspire the desire to synthesize the elements into something new yet familiar.

Where do you find this inspiring content? The links below are a good start.

Below are some samples of diverse mood boards. Try to imagine what the synthesis of the visual elements might produce for different applications (e.g. logo, brochure, web banner etc.)


The display and arrangement of letterforms (typography) is one of the pillars of graphic design. How it’s used can often spur intense debate. For example, some designers feel that type should be like a window that you can “see through” to discern the meaning of the text. Any attempt at making the type a decorative or image element undermines that. While other designers feel type can be “expressive”, conveying meaning by it’s graphic form, textual meaning be damned.

Whatever your opinions about type may be there are some properties of typography that we must be familiar with if.

When discussing typography, it is necessary to understand the terminology. Here is a wonderful site that has an extensive list of typographic terms. Once you are familiar with some of type’s different properties you can begin to compare typefaces to see how they differ. Here is a fun way to get familiar with the art of letter spacing or kerning.

But typography is more than just dissecting a typeface into its component parts. When used well, type can add meaning to the text. It can also be expressive, although some old school typographers reject the use of type in this way. The History of Typography.

The following clips are from the movie ‘Helvetica’ by director Gary Hurstwit. The movie is ostensibly about the typeface that defined modern graphic design, but it also tackles some of the issues surrounding graphic design in general.

Michael Beirut discusses what Helvetica meant to modern graphic design.

David Carson discusses how breaking the rules of traditional typography leads to creative results.

Conceptual Portrait – IDES 237 ’18

Here are the wonderful portraits created by the students in IDES 237 Digital Illustration. Here is the project brief.

Conceptual Portrait – GD 216 ’18

Here are the digital paintings created by the Illustration GD 216 class. Read the brief here.

Everyday Monster – GD 216 ’18