Course Title: Integrate colour theory and design processes

Part B: Course Detail

Teaching Period: Term2 2017

Course Code: GRAP5390C

Course Title: Integrate colour theory and design processes

School: 320T Architecture & Design

Campus: Brunswick Campus

Program: C4382 - Certificate IV in Design

Course Contact: Alistair Briggs

Course Contact Phone: +61 3 9925 9446

Course Contact Email:

Name and Contact Details of All Other Relevant Staff

Phil Roubin


Nominal Hours: 30

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 there will be an introduction to colour theory, and you will explore ways to integrate colour theory and design processes into your two-dimensional or three-dimensional design work.

National Codes, Titles, Elements and Performance Criteria

National Element Code & Title:

CUAACD401 Integrate colour theory and design processes


1 Research information on colour theory and design processes

Performance Criteria:

  • Identify and access relevant sources of information on colour theory and design processes
  • Research historical and contemporary approaches to colour and design in the context of a work project
  • Evaluate information with consideration of how colour and design issues may be integrated into the design process
  • Consider intellectual property and other legislative requirements relevnt to design processes


2 Communicate ideas through the application of colour and design theory

Performance Criteria:

  • Experiment with selected materials, tools and equipment to determine new ways in which colour theory and design processes may be integrated
  • Explore and develop new ideas through a process of experimentation
  • Achieve solutions by working with the elements and principles of design and different aspects of colour



3 Evaluate design work

Performance Criteria:

  • Reflect on own application of design process and success in communicating concepts
  • Identify areas for future improvement, especially in terms of own skill development
  • Discuss completed work with others and respond positively to feedback

Learning Outcomes

Details of Learning Activities

Learning activities will take place in a studio and computer laboratory using industry standard tools and resources. You will complete exercises and industry style projects. You will also be required to undertake independent study.

In class 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 class activities will include:

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

Teaching Schedule

Please note: While your teacher will cover all the material in this schedule, the weekly order is subject to change depending on class needs and availability of speakers and resources.

There will be a number of prescribed tasks and projects (see Assessment Tasks below).

This course will be delivered in the same weekly session as VART6407 - Develop and refine illustrative work - CUAILL401. The following timeline contains activities for both courses.

Week Session Description Assessment

Learning Elements


Learning Elements


1 Introduction to computer use and file management. Overview of course content.   2
2 Intro to InDesign software. Class exercise to initiate use of InDesign in production of layouts and management of folio of work.
Intro to colour theory. Photoshop colour exercise

Project 1 Produce a set of 3 illustrated promotional postcards.
A project 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
Project 1 Task 1
Photo shoot at local site. (eg Brunswick built environment).
Lay out a grid of images in InDesign.


Complete Week 3 activities. Submit to Blackboard.
Project 1 Task 2
Generate 2 drawings using traditional tools from reference generated in photo shoot. Scan.

 Project 1 Task 1 1,2,3
5 Project 1 Task 3 Explore technique for adding colour: Create wet media marks, scan and colourise in Photoshop  

Project 1 Task 4 Digital composition: Use digitally coloured marks (task 3) to enhance scanned drawings (Task 2).
Project 1 first submission.
In-class presentation of postcards for feedback.

 Project 1 presentation of work in progress

Refine postcard designs and respond to feedback.

8 Project 1 Place final postcards designs in InDesign template, complete questionnaire.
Submit: Packaged InDesign folder (compressed) to submission server.
Submit: pdf of completed InDesign template to Blackboard
 Project 1 3,4




9 Colour theory lecture.
Introduction to vector graphics (Illustrator). A look at examples of the medium and discussion of its character and possiilities. Basic instruction in the Pen tool, leading to
Project 2 Tasks 1-3 Vector and Pen tool basics. Task 1 to precisely replicate specific paths using the Pen tool.
10 Task 2: Precisely replicate a given image using the Pen tool with reference to Lynda tutorial
Task 3. More vector basics. Replicate given vector image using vector drawing tools to build up layered composite.
Manage colour fills using swatches.
 11 Project 2 final outcome Vector self portrait. Demonstration of prescribed technique for constructing vector self portrait. Prepare photographic reference suitable for vector self portrait and generate templates.    1,2,3  1

Project 2. Vector self portrait. Continue with construction of layered portrait image, using colour to represent 3D form.

13 Project 2. Vector self portrait. Continue with construction of layered portrait image, using colour to represent 3D form.
Refine colour treatment with reference to design principles.
Optional extra task: experiment with alternative stylised version of portrait in retro airbrush style.
14 Project 2. Complete vector self portrait. Create background for portrait with reference to concept of spatial clarity. Embed template images and submit as directed.  Project 2
15 Project 3. Creating emphasis - Colour collage. Presentation on spatial clarity. Explore colour mixing by producing painted colour samples using gouache and coloured paper.  
16 Gather a set of colour swatches. Assemble low contrast base layer of collage


17 Assemble high contrast top layer of collage. Submit via template for feedback. Submit Project 3, collage. Project 3 

Learning Resources

Prescribed Texts

There are no compulsory prescribed texts in this course. This course has recommended books listed under 'References'.


Resources and References:    

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


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: Colour 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 Projects.  You are required to demonstrate all learning outcomes to a satisfactory standard.

Project 1 Illustrated Postcards 40% of final grade
  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
  Final outcome
  1. Grid of photos
  2. Set of illustrated postcards

Project 2 Vector self portrait 40% of final grade
  Task 1
Pen tool exercise
  Task 2 Pen tool exercise
  Task 3 Vector exercise. Copy given image using vector tools.
  Project 2 final outcome Vector self portrait

 Project 3 Colour Collage 20% of final grade

At the completion of the course, grading will be offered in addition to, and after, competency based assessment.
Grades which apply to courses delivered in accordance with competency-based assessment, but which also use graded assessment are:

HD Competent with High Distinction
CDI Competent with Distinction
CC Competent with Credit
CAG Competency Achieved - Graded
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 studio based 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 be successful in this course.

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:
Pick the following link to access the Student feedback webpage

Student Progress
Monitoring academic progress is an important enabling and proactive strategy to assist you to achieve your learning potential.
Pick the following link to access the Student progress policy webpage

Cover Sheet for Submissions
You must complete a submission cover sheet for every piece of submitted work. This signed sheet acknowledges that you are aware of the plagiarism implications.
Pick the following link for Cover sheet for submission of works For work submitted via Blackboard an e-submission declaration is embedded in the submission process and a hard copy of a submission cover sheet is not required.

Special consideration Policy
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

Late Submission & Extensions
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.
Extension form link - 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 overall grade for each assessment task.

The following adjustments for late submission will be made: Work submitted late will be assessed for competency only. Submissions are only permitted during the period that the competency is scheduled.

 Academic Integrity and Plagiarism

RMIT University has a strict policy on plagiarism and academic integrity.
Pick the following link for more information Academic Integrity

Course Overview: Access Course Overview