Course Title: Create and manipulate graphics

Part B: Course Detail

Teaching Period: Term1 2014

Course Code: GRAP9453C

Course Title: Create and manipulate graphics

School: 320T Architecture & Design

Campus: Brunswick Campus

Program: C5316 - Diploma of Graphic Design

Course Contact : Al Briggs

Course Contact Phone: +61 3 9925 9152

Course Contact

Name and Contact Details of All Other Relevant Staff

Nominal Hours: 60

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


Course Description

In this course, you will create original graphics to visually communicate ideas. You will develop ideas with a mixture of hand-generated and computer-assisted techniques. Created graphics will then be applied and integrated with other elements. An emphasis is placed on technical specifications in the creation of graphics.

National Codes, Titles, Elements and Performance Criteria

National Element Code & Title:

CUVGRD504A Create and manipulate graphics


1. Analyse design needs

Performance Criteria:

1.1 Confirm communication objectives for the graphics work based on the design brief and consultation with relevant people as required
1.2 Evaluate design brief specifications
1.3 Source and evaluate other information pertinent to the project


2. Develop and refine ideas for graphics

Performance Criteria:

2.1 Identify relevant sources and conduct research to inform ideas for graphics
2.2 Consider the opportunities and constraints offered by different techniques and technologies.
2.3 Assess the relationship of the graphic objects to the other elements of the design
2.4 Create and refine ideas and options by working with the fundamental elements and principles of design
2.5 Refine ideas through use of ongoing technical experimentation
2.6 Evaluate and select approaches based on their potential to meet the communication need
2.7 Produce and present visual representations of design ideas and communicate with others to confirm as required


3. Manipulate graphic objects

Performance Criteria:

3.1 Create graphic objects based on selected ideas
3.2 Manipulate, edit and enhance objects through use of an extended range of tools and features
3.3 Integrate graphics with other visual design elements
3.4 Identify and resolve technical problems based on developing expertise
3.5 Achieve desired outcomes through application of design skills and technical expertise
3.6 Establish and follow safe work practices in the work process


4. Finalise technical aspects of graphics work

Performance Criteria:

4.1 Edit and refine graphics to meet technical requirements
4.2 Follow correct protocols for saving, exporting and storing files
4.3 Establish appropriate file formats for output


5. Evaluate graphics work

Performance Criteria:

5.1 Critique graphics from both a technical and aesthetic perspective in the context of the design objectives
5.2 Seek feedback from others as required, and make appropriate adjustments

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this course, you will have developed and applied the skills and knowledge required to demonstrate your competency in the above elements.

Details of Learning Activities

 Learning activities will take place in a computer lab 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 may include:
-class exercises
-practical demonstrations
-group discussion
-review and revision
-peer learning
-peer teaching and class presentations
-teacher directed group activities/projects
-workshopping of student projects including peer/lecturer feedback

Out of class activities may include:

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

Teaching Schedule

<thead> <th scope="col">Session Week</th> <th scope="col">Session Description</th> <th scope="col">Due Dates</th> </thead>
01Course Introduction 

Course overview.
Project 1: Illustrator folio

Introduction to Illustrator.
What are vectors? How are they different to raster images?
Basic terminology – anchors, paths and handles.
Understanding the relationship between handles, paths and anchors .


Task 1: Basic shapes. Combining objects.
"In class discussion: What is a high quality object (vector) graphic?

Illustrator – navigation, basic shapes and pathfinder. The purpose of submitting this task is to gauge your understanding of the topic. You will submit this task as part of your folio. If the task submission is determined to be below standard, it can be resubmitted as part of the Project 1: Illustrator folio.

Task 1: Shapes exercises
Basic shapes, fill, strokes, arrange and align, select and transform exercises.

 Exercise 1 due

Task 2: The Pen tool.

Introduction to the Pen tool. The purpose of submitting this task is to gauge your understanding of the topic. You will submit this task as part of your folio for Project 1. If the task submission is determined to be below standard, it can be resubmitted as part of the Project 1: Illustrator folio.

 Exercise 2 due

Task 3: Logo recreation
Task 4: Raster image to object trace

Applying your knowledge of basic shapes and the pen tool and combining them with the Pathfinder panel and the Shape Builder tool. Students will recreate logos of varying complexity.

Students will take one of their skull illustrations and redraw it using the pen tool

Class exercise: The Width tool.

 Exercise 3 due

Task 4: Raster image to object trace

Students will trace a pencil drawing into a vector graphic.

Class discussion: Project 2 topic.

Class activity: Gradients

 Exercise 4 due

Project 2: Colouring book technical illustration

Students illustrate a complex, inorganic object in Adobe Illustrator. Illustrations of sufficient quality will be compiled into a colouring book. Each image must be part of a coherent theme.

Class activity: Pathfinder, shape builder and paint bucket tools.
Class activity: Pattern fills

Project 1: Illustrator Folio due this week before the start of class.

 Project 1 due

Project 2: Colouring book technical illustration – Look Upstairs week & Social Content Curation and Creation

You will use social media tools to create research materials on the topic of illustrators and illustration practice. Students going to Look Upstairs (aka AGIdeas) will record and research a topic-related speakers at the conference engaged in any kind of contemporary digital illustration. They will then gather associated social media content and support resources. Students not at the conference will find an event associated with Design Week and illustration (or just illustration) and record it in a similar fashion.

Relevant website:

The aim of this part of project is to maximise the abilities of mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets to publish content for research and to market your own work. This will then be combined with other platforms to curate relevant content.


Project 2: Colouring book technical illustration draft submission

Class feedback of progress. The progress and management of this project up until this point will effect your grade. Submit at least two nouns for feedback – presentation counts.

Students must complete the recording and presentation of their work and submit it by this week. The photography and presentation of your work will also be used for your folio in the Imaging course.

Class activity: Pattern brushes

Project 2 Draft submission

 Project 2: Colouring book technical illustration feedback

Collate and respond to feedback. During this workshop, students will respond to the feedback and improve their work accordingly. It is expected that the class will be spent finalising work and finishing off the presentation for the following week.


Project 2: Colouring book technical illustration presentation and submission
Project 3: Complex illustration intro

Students will make a 3 minute public presentation of their work process for Project 2, showing the work in progress, a design challenge they overcame and feed back they received and how they responded. Students who are exceptionally nervous with public presentations or anticipate an absence can submit a video presentation without penalty, but the quality of the video will effect the graded outcome.

Project 3: Complex illustration will be distributed this week

Class activity (time permitting): Gradients, Gradient tool and the Gradient panel.

 Project 2 due

 Project 3: Complex illustration
In this class, students will either begin the process of creating a complex illustration.
Class activity: Clipping masks. Creating a colour palette by controlling swatches.

13 Project 3: Complex illustration
Open workshop. After some Class instruction, students will use the class as a studio to complete the work. Students are encouraged to bring enquiries of a technical nature to this class.

 Project 3: Complex illustration: Draft 1 pin up

This part of the project will be assessed for resource and time management. Students will independently gather feedback, record it and incorporate it into their presentation in Week 15.

The presentation quality counts toward your grade. Students who are absent this week (i.e. not physically present) must still submit work for feedback. It is suggested that you present it in an online format with the capacity for comments and email the link to your tutor. Work not submitted without a valid extension will incur academic penalties.

It is anticipated that your design will be completed by the following week, with the remainder of the project being spent on refining details rather than anything substantial.

 Project 3 draft due

 Project 3: Complex illustration. Feedback

Any students wanting additional feedback can do so this week. The class will be run as an open workshop with the aim to get work ready for submission in Week 16.
This class will be spent preparing presentations and readying your files for submission. There is also the capacity for students to submit their work early and present in this class.


 Project 3: Complex illustration submission

Students will make a 3 minute public presentation of their work process for Project 3, explaining  the work in progress, a design challenge they overcame and how they responded to feedback. Students who are exceptionally nervous with public presentations or anticipate an absence can submit a video presentation without penalty, but the quality of the video will effect the graded outcome.

Project 3 due

Learning Resources

Prescribed Texts

There are no compulsory prescribed text in this course – This course has recommended books listed under ‘References’


Title: A Guide to Graphic Print Production – 3rd edition / [Kaj Johansson, Peter Lundberg, Robert Ryberg].
Author: Johansson, K. (Kaj)
Other Author(s): Lundberg, Peter. and Ryberg, Robert.
Publisher: Hoboken, N.J. : Wiley, 2011.


Title: Graphic Design : Australian style manual
Author: Andrew Townley Barnum ... [et al.].
Other Author(s):Barnum, Andrew Townley.
Publisher: North Ryde, N.S.W. : McGraw-Hill, 2011.


Title: Adobe&reg; Illustrator&reg; CC Classroom in a Book&reg;
Author: Adobe Creative Team
Publisher: Adobe Press, 2013


Other Resources

You are advised to look at the course myRMIT site (Blackboard) and also for Google Docs and Google Groups via your student Google Account for ongoing updated information. A range of learning resources and references are provided throughout the year. Additional information relating to this will be provided on an ongoing basis. A digital resource folder resides on network server. Further information regarding access to this is available in the ‘Computer Survival Kit’ provided during orientation.
You will require a personal storage device and tools as outlined in tool kit list.
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.
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 of the library resources.

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 written tasks.  Assessment tasks are:

  • Design Project 1 (20% of final grade)
  • Design Project 2 (30% of final grade)
  • Design Project 3 (50% of final grade)

An assessment charter summarises your responsibilities as an RMIT student as well as those of your teachers.

Assessment Tasks

Tasks in this course are either formative or summative. Feedback throughout the course may be written, verbal or a combination of both.
Formative tasks and exercises provide the basis for ongoing feedback and can be considered essential building blocks for the more substantial summative assessment tasks and you should engage in all formative activities.
This course has 3 tasks, all of which must be completed to a satisfactory level. The formative tasks are ungraded but provide you with feedback for improvement and count toward evidence of your competency in the unit. The summative task determines the grade.

Formative Task 1
Project 1 illustrator folio
Collect exercises 3 and 4 for submission. These can be refined before submitting.
Due week 07

Formative Task 2

Colouring Book illustration
Due week 10 (start of class)

Summative task 1
Complex illustration
Due week 16

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:

CHD - Competent with High Distinction.
CDI - Competent with Distinction
CC - Competent with Credit
CAG - Competency Achieved - Graded
DNS - Did Not Submit for Assessment
NYC - Not Yet Competent

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 gain the competency
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)
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. Special consideration, appeals and discipline
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. Information regarding the e-Submission process can be located e-submission
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

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