Course Title: Develop and refine illustrative work

Part B: Course Detail

Teaching Period: Term2 2020

Course Code: VART6407C

Course Title: Develop and refine illustrative work

School: 375T Vocational Design and Social Context

Campus: Brunswick Campus

Program: C4382 - Certificate IV in Design

Course Contact: Alistair Briggs

Course Contact Phone: +61 3 9925 9988

Course Contact Email:

Name and Contact Details of All Other Relevant Staff


Kathy Holowko


Nominal Hours: 50

Regardless of the mode of delivery, represent a guide to the relative teaching time and student effort required to successfully achieve a particular competency/module. This may include not only scheduled classes or workplace visits but also the amount of effort required to undertake, evaluate and complete all assessment requirements, including any non-classroom activities.

Pre-requisites and Co-requisites

None required.

Course Description

In this course you will research and apply techniques for illustrative work. you will develop manual and digital drawing skills along with the technical skills required to advance your initial concepts into themed illustrations. Your illustrations will be developed in the context of a commercial application.

National Codes, Titles, Elements and Performance Criteria

National Element Code & Title:

CUAILL401 Develop and refine illustrative work


1 Interpret briefs for illustrative work

Performance Criteria:

■■ Interpret the specifications of illustration briefs

■■Discuss and clarify issues about specifications, parameters and constraints with relevant people as required

■■Evaluate client requirements to make decisions about style and content of illustrative work

■■Source and evaluate information pertinent to briefs


2 Organise resources

Performance Criteria:

■■Calculate, select and organise equipment, tools and materials based on the requirements of the work

■■Set up a safe and efficient workspace

■■Prepare, maintain, store and dispose of all resources according to each item’s needs and according to workplace procedures


3 Test design approaches for illustrative work

Performance Criteria:

■■Produce preliminary visual representations that take account of intellectual property requirements

■■ Identify possible illustrative approaches and establish criteria, in line with the brief, form selecting final approach

■■Experiment with different illustrative techniques to test a range of approaches that will best communicate ideas required by the brief

■■Evaluate testing processes against criteria and select approach that best meets requirements of briefs

■■Critique own work for conceptual success and technical execution and seek feedback, as required

■■Refine and accurately document the illustrative approach based on testing processes


4 Produce finished illustrative work

Performance Criteria:

■■Create illustrations using techniques selected from experimentation and testing, considering and applying elements and principles of design

■■Review and refine ideas and approaches based on ongoing experience with production of own work

■■Seek and consider feedback from key people to refine illustrative work as required

■■Present finished work within agreed work parameters

Learning Outcomes

Details of Learning Activities

You will complete exercises and industry style projects. You will also be required to undertake independent study.

In-session activities will include:

• demonstrations and presentations by teacher
• peer teaching and class presentations
• group discussion
• review and revision
• peer learning
• teacher directed group activities/projects
• ‘workshopping’ of student projects including peer/lecturer feedback

Out-of-session activities will include:

• independent project based work
• online tutorials and activities
• independent research
• studio practice
• review and revision

Teaching Schedule

This course will be delivered in the same weekly session as GRAP5390 - Integrate colour theory and design processes - CUAACD401. The following timeline contains activities for both courses.

While all course content will be delivered, the order and mode of delivery may change depending on the availability of specialist facilities and equipment. Please check Canvas regularly as any updates will be communicated by your teacher.

Week Session Description Assessment

Learning Elements


Learning Elements



Introduction to computer use and file management.

Overview of course content.

• Colour theory lecture

Intro to Project 1: Colour collage - Due week 4

Explore colour mixing by producing painted colour samples using gouache and coloured paper. 


Colour theory lecture continued - Creating emphasis

Create a set of colour swatches. 

Assemble low contrast base layer of collage


Intro to InDesign software. 

Class exercise to initiate use of InDesign in production of layouts and management of folio of work.

Assemble high contrast top layer of collage.

Submit via Indesign template for feedback. Review Project 1



Present work in progress for feedback

Project 1


Project 1: Colour Collage - Due

Intro Project 2 Task 1- Promotional postcards

- bring camera next week

Project 1 Due 1,2,3

Project 2 Task 1:  Produce a set of 3 illustrated promotional postcards 

Project 2 comprised of 4 separate tasks involving figurative drawing and mark making in a variety of media, using both manual and digital processes, leading to the production of the final set of illustrations

Photo shoot at local site. (eg Brunswick built environment). 

Task 1 - Lay out a grid of images in InDesign.


Project 2 Task 2: Generate 2 drawings using traditional tools from reference generated in photo shoot. Scan.

Project 2 Task 1 Due

Photoshop colour exercise

Project 2 Task 3: Explore technique for adding colour: Create wet media marks, scan and colourise in Photoshop 

Refine postcard designs and respond to feedback.


Project 2 Task 2 Due
8 Project 2 Task 4: Digital composition: Use digitally coloured marks (Task 3) to enhance scanned drawings (Task 2). Project 2 Task 3 Due 3,4


Project 2: Completion 

Place final postcards designs in InDesign template, complete questionnaire.

In-class presentation of postcards for feedback.

Refine postcard designs and respond to feedback.

Submit: pdf of completed InDesign template to Canvas


Present work

for feedback

Project 2 Task 4


Finalise Project 2: Postcards for assessment

 Preparation for Project 3: Vector self portrait 

Introduction to vector graphics (Illustrator)

Tasks 1-3: Vector and Pen tool basics.

A look at examples of the medium and discussion of its character and possibilities. 

Basic instruction on the Pen tool

• Take a some self portraits over the break, practice the pen tool


Assessment of

Project 2


Project 3 Task 1: Produce photograph for Vector self portrait 

RMIT gallery - look at identity for self portrait, take photos


Vector exercise - Digital pizza

Preparation for Project 3: Vector self portrait

Project 3 Task 1 due  1,2,3  1
13 Project 3 Task 2: Prepare photographic reference suitable for vector self portrait and generate photoshop templates
Project 3 Task 2 due

Project 3 Task 3:  Produce layered Illustrator file

Demonstration of prescribed technique for constructing vector self portrait: precisely replicating specific paths using the Pen tool in Illustrator. More vector basics. Reference Lynda tutorial

 Project 3 Task 3 due

Project 3 Task 4: Precisely replicate a given image using the Pen tool

Replicate given vector image using vector drawing tools to build up layered composite.

Manage colour fills using swatches.

16 Project 3 Task 4: Continue with construction of layered portrait image, using colour to represent 3D form.  

Project 3: Complete Vector self portrait

Create background for portrait with reference to concept of spatial clarity. 

Embed template images and submit as directed.

Optional extra task: experiment with alternative stylised version of portrait in retro airbrush style.

18 Project 3 - Final session before submission Project 3 
19 Coursework Review Week + Resubmissions      
20 Assessment Week      

Learning Resources

Prescribed Texts


Other Resources


Josef Albers, Interaction of Colour.

(Swanston Library Restricted collection. RARE 752A332.iJ)

Johannes Itten The art of color : the subjective experience and objective rationale of color

David Hornung. Colour: A workshop for Artists and Designers

Ludwig Wittgenstein. Remarks on Colour

Munsell’s Colour Tree (Reserved in Brunswick Library)

Colour wheels available from staff room.

Other resources

You are advised to look at the Learning Hub at myRMIT site for ongoing updated information. A range of learning resources and references are provided throughout the year. You will require a personal storage device and tools as outlined in tool kit list.

RMIT will provide you with resources and tools for learning in this course through our online systems and access to specialised facilities and relevant software. You will also have access to the library resources.

Amongst the library’s electronic resources is the ability to access for online tutorials and lessons. You may be given these tutorials (and other resources) to supplement your classroom learning. The University Library has extensive resources for Design students. The Library has produced a subject guide that includes quality online and print resources for your studies

The Library provides guides on academic referencing and subject specialist help via your Liaison Librarian


Overview of Assessment

Assessment is on-going throughout the course. Assessment tasks will require you demonstrate the application of knowledge and skills through practical projects and/or exercises.
The assessment tasks are: Illustration exercises and Projects.
An assessment charter summarises your responsibilities as an RMIT student as well as those of your teachers.

Assessment Tasks

This course has 3 x Assessment Tasks (projects). You are required to demonstrate all learning outcomes to a satisfactory standard.

Project 1 Colour Collage - Due week 4

Project 2 Illustrated Postcards
  Task 1 Produce a layout of reference photos in InDesign
  Task 2 Generate drawings of subjects from photo shoot.
  Task 3 Create and digitally colourise wet media marks
  Task 4 Combine line and colour elements to compose illustration

Project 2 Final outcome  - Due week 10
  1. Grid of photos
  2. Set of illustrated postcards

Project 3 Vector self portrait 
  Task 1 
Pen tool exercise
  Task 2 Pen tool exercise
  Task 3 Vector exercise. Copy given image using vector tools.
  Project 3 final outcome Vector self portrait - Due week 18

Due dates for assessment tasks dependent on access to specialist facilities and equipment may change. Please check Canvas regularly as any updates will be communicated by your teacher.

You are required to demonstrate all learning outcomes to a satisfactory standard.
You will receive feedback with verbal and/or written evaluation of your progress within class time. 
The submitted projects will be assessed with written feedback as well as a checklist that relates to separate components of the project and the overall outcome.

This course is assessed for competency. At the completion of the course, you will be deemed competent or not yet competent.

CA Competency Achieved 
NYC Not Yet Competent
DNS Did Not Submit for Assessment


Assessment Matrix

The assessment matrix demonstrates alignment of assessment tasks with the relevant Unit of Competency. These are available through the course contact in Program administration

Other Information

The major learning experience involves scheduled exercises, demonstration and production. It is strongly advised that you attend all sessions in order to engage in the required learning activities, ensuring the maximum opportunity to gain the competency.

Feedback - You will receive verbal and written feedback by teacher on your work. This feedback also includes suggestions on how you can proceed to the next stage of developing your projects.
Student feedback at RMIT

Student Progress 
Monitoring academic progress is an important enabling and proactive strategy to assist you to achieve your learning potential. Student progress policy

Special Consideration Policy, Late Submission & Extensions
All assessment tasks are required to be completed to a satisfactory level.
If you are unable to complete any piece of assessment by the due date, you will need to apply for an extension.
Pick the following link for details on applying for Special consideration 
Any student seeking an extension, should aim at doing so a minimum of 2 days before the deadline. Work submitted late and without an extension at any point will incur late penalties in accordance with university policy.
If you require an extension you must complete an extension form with evidence supporting your application and hand this to your instructor. Further links - Application for extension of time

On Time Submission and Impact of Late Submission 
On time submission is an important factor in your assessment. Employability skills are embedded in all courses and these include Planning & Organising and Self-management. For this reason, late work impacts on your competency assessment. 
Submissions that are assessed as Not Satisfactory can be re-submitted once and this is only permitted during the period that the competency is scheduled.

When submitting work for assessment you are required to complete a declaration of authorship. This must be done for every summative assessment task. This statement acknowledges that you are aware of the plagiarism implications. For non-­digital submission use the printed form provided. For digital online submission please use e­ Submission process.

Academic Integrity and Plagiarism - RMIT University has a strict policy on plagiarism and academic integrity. Please refer to the website for more information on this policy go to Academic Integrity

Credit Transfers and Recognition of Prior Learning
Credit transfer is the recognition of previously completed formal learning (an officially accredited qualification).  Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) is an assessment process
that allows you to demonstrate competence using the skills you have gained through experience in the workplace, voluntary work, informal or formal training or other life experiences.

Recognition of Current Competency (RCC).
RCC applies only if you have previously demonstrated competence in a unit of competency, and now require to be reassessed to ensure that the competence is being maintained.
Please speak to your teacher if you wish to discuss applying for Credit Transfer, RPL or RCC for the unit(s) of competency addressed in this course

Course Overview: Access Course Overview