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Learner Reviews & Feedback for Fundamentals of Graphic Design by California Institute of the Arts

4.8
stars
11,849 ratings
3,027 reviews

About the Course

Graphic Design is all around us! Words and pictures—the building blocks of graphic design—are the elements that carry the majority of the content in both the digital world and the printed world. As graphic design becomes more visible and prevalent in our lives, graphic design as a practice becomes more important in our culture. Through visual examples, this course will teach you the fundamental principles of graphic design: imagemaking, typography, composition, working with color and shape... foundational skills that are common in all areas of graphic design practice. I don't just want you to watch a video of someone talking about design, I want you to MAKE design! If you want to be a designer you have to be a maker and a communicator, so this course will offer you lots of opportunities to get your hands dirty with exercises and with more practical projects. At the end of this course you will have learned how to explore and investigate visual representation through a range of image-making techniques; understand basic principles of working with shape, color and pattern; been exposed to the language and skills of typography; and understand and have applied the principles of composition and visual contrast. If you complete the course, along with its optional (but highly recommended) briefs, you will have a core set of graphic design skills that you can apply to your own projects, or to more deeply investigate a specialized area of graphic design. To succeed in this course you will need access to a computer. You can complete this course without one but it will be tougher. Access to, and a beginner's level knowledge of Adobe Creative Suite programs, such as Illustrator, Photoshop and InDesign will help you, especially if you want to complete the optional briefs....

Top reviews

FS
Jul 13, 2020

Excellent course to learn and refresh about fundamentals of design....It applies to all spheres of MULTIMEDIA..Highly recommended... As a suggestion course and notes should be available in PDF format.

CS
May 9, 2018

An ok course for beginners. A bit too basic for someone who has already had experience in design, but is great anyway cause it breaks things back down to the simplest parts to help you remember roots.

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101 - 125 of 2,986 Reviews for Fundamentals of Graphic Design

By Maria P

Mar 13, 2019

For someone who has always been a little bit afraid of Graphic Design for lack of completely knowing what it was about, this was a great course to tackle those fears while really understanding that to start entering the world of Graphic Design the only thing one needs is taking the time to learn the basic concepts, try thinking about them and then apply them. Thanks for a really great and eye-opening course.

By Vandana c

Jun 21, 2019

The content of this course is really crisp and clear . Good examples are used to explain the concepts. This course has really made me believe that i have a hidden sense of art and creativity. I have learned to use various tools to learn and practice typography, sketching, water color art, logo and pattern making. I would highly recommend this course to people who wants to learn the basic of graphic design.

By Helene C

Oct 12, 2017

This course is a great starter to Graphic Design and its basic principles. The tutorials are clear, well paced and effective. The assignments are an opportunity to manipulate those principles and to create composition with much depth and control. I definitely recommend this course to novice and to intermediate that need to strengthen their skills. Peers reviews are also important so everyone can be active.

By Rhonda C

May 17, 2019

Great instruction with plenty of practice. I got a good start on my very first graphic design portfolio. This course gave me the perfect introduction to graphic design and left me with the desire to continue. I just recently have become more interested in art and design. It might be a little late in life for me but I am a lifelong learner. I want to learn more about this fascinating artistic concept.

By Amanda M J

Oct 31, 2017

Professor Worthington's videos were absolutely fantastic! I took this class seeking refuge from the disorganization and disappointment of a competitor's course. Now I wish I had come here first, like I intended in the first place. This course does such a great job of explaining theory while also giving plenty of opportunity to put that learning into action. It's really got me thinking like a designer now!

By Elizabeth R

Dec 4, 2019

I enjoyed this so much that I'm going to do more courses. It was presented extremely well and the way the content flowed made it easy for me to follow along. At first I didn't bother submitting assignments, but when I got into it more I went back through them all again and decided to submit them because it all became so much FUN. No hard work here - just pure joy in learning and experimenting. Thank you.

By Babita N

Feb 22, 2018

Excellent course for beginners or people who are just experimenting with Graphic Design. The instructor is clear and concise and the assignments are interesting.

In peer-assignments same person might evaluate all of your assignments which kind of defeats the point which, I think, is variety of opinions. That can also get irritating/discouraging if the reviewer does not care to leave useful feedback.

By Akbota N

Aug 22, 2019

This course allows students to 'get in touch' with some of the basic Graphic Design concepts. I liked assignments a lot, especially because they provided guidelines, but did not very limit what you can submit, and also reviews from peers were very helpful.

I am not sure if those with experience will enjoy this course, as it is very basic and minimal, but maybe reviewing a base theory could be useful.

By Trinity C

Apr 1, 2017

Fantastic course, gives a concise yet specific survey of all the basic graphic design skills you will need, presented in such an interesting and fun manner and at the perfect pace for beginners and more skilled designers alike. Thank you to Dr. Worthington and CalArts for creating this course and making it available to students worldwide who aren't able to relocate to Southern California just yet.

By Viktoria H

Jun 21, 2020

Loved the course - informative and thoughtful. It was quite evident that a lot of effort was put into making this course accessible and understandable by everyone, regardless of previous experience. However, I would have wished for more hands-on assignments to be compulsory/required - I believe every graphic designer-to-be should have more practical activities and get encouraged to complete them.

By Charmayne J B

May 25, 2020

This class is amazing! It's very easy to follow for people like me who have absolutely no experience with Graphic Design. I like how they break it down into small segments and then go through it until it makes sense and comes together. I plan on taking the entire Specialization because i'm so excited to learn all there is to learn about Graphic Design and really use this for a career change.

By Rehema K

Oct 5, 2016

I am a Communications professional based in Nairobi, Kenya and have repeatedly seen the importance of the role of graphic design within my department at work. This, coupled with an interest in design, led me to sign up for the course. Getting an introduction to some of the theoretical aspects in this course was extremely worthwhile. I look forward to completing the specialisation. Thank you!

By Ann O

Jul 29, 2017

I really appreciated the hands-on nature of this course, I think it helped me to learn the material better. The assignments in this course were very challenging, and great opportunities for putting everything we learned in the lectures into practice. The lectures had a lot of concrete examples to clearly demonstrate the ideas being presented, and ideas for how to complete the assignments.

By Swati S

Mar 28, 2016

The lessons are very well planned, small and compact yet informational. The design of the videos is superb. It encourages you to focus on the narrative and never distracts from it. I enjoyed taking it and plan to follow up with the other courses in this specialization. I do wish I could do the last project as well, even if I couldn't submit it for grading as I have taken the free course.

By Jhanan

Nov 10, 2015

The class It's really clear and simple.

Every week you can put the information to work on the assignments, that in my case made me put my creativity out there, have fun, discover my abilities and create really cool stuff.

I learned with the recommendations of my classmates and I also learned by review them. I feel I learned a lot on a few weeks.

I really loved this class, very, very much!

By Ellen C

Jun 29, 2020

Great basic overview for anyone new to the field and keen to learn. Perhaps a bit easy if you have prior design experience - this course was fantastic for beginners. The marked and optional assignments gave a good practical experience to learn how to use design programs, while the informative videos explained the history and background theory of what works. Really enjoyed this course!

By Alice C

Jan 11, 2016

This class takes you through all the basics of graphic design (type, shapes, colour, composition), perfect for beginners! All the assignments help you to understand the concepts as "you can get better at graphic design only by making graphic design" :) I hope there will be a specialization with advanced levels as well as I would very much like to learn more! Thank you for this class!

By Mohd. U Y

Jun 24, 2018

Consider me a person without any knowledge of designing. In the midway of this course, I started observing with multiple perspectives. I started visualizing things in a way i can use them in designs. I really love this course as it has changed my ability of processing images in my brain. I feel confident of making simple designs but with precision. Highly recommend it to everyone.

By Valentina D

Mar 13, 2018

Very helpful and inspiring! For a deeper and joyful experience, I recommend to do both graduated and optional assignments. I was very pleased with one idea that seems to me very important - do not be afraid and experiment, because the fear of failure fetters and prevents us from learning and creating! Thank you Michael Worthington and all the course's creators from all my heart!

By connor c

Sep 24, 2020

Great introduction into the topic. Makes you start to conceptualize and develop and create right away to get used to the habit of being creative as well as teaching the foundation.

The only negative side is there isn't any instructor feedback on assignments, which I know is to be expected but guidance on some of the briefs from an authority in the field would be very beneficial.

By Dominik S

May 8, 2019

This course is a pretty good starting point to get in touch with many aspects of the creation and reception of graphic design. Very good mixture of theorical and practical elements.

Dieser Kurs ist ein wirklich guter Ausgangspunkt für eine Annäherung an zahlreiche Aspekte der Erschaffung und Wahrnehmung von Grafikdesign. Sehr gute Mischung theoretischer und praktischer Elemente.

By Asier

Nov 24, 2015

Based only on the preview, I believe this course approach to design is excellent. Starts from the very basic building blocks that apply to many visual branches. The originality and variety of the included examples perfectly support the explained subject. I can also appreciate the connection from this view/approach to arts.

I miss the possible motivations behind design and arts.

By Lý M T

Sep 10, 2020

The course has helped me learn and improve the knowledge that I still do not know much, such as week 2 about Typography, I have never known how to choose a typeface to match the nature I want to describe. This is such a wonderful experience I have. Many thank the teacher of the California Institute of the Arts and so do classmates who help me through review my assignments.

By Diogo M

Apr 3, 2018

The lessons are very well done and build the content in a nice sequential way. The peer reviewed work are excellent for they encourage communication and constructive criticism between students.

It may seem too simple at first but the fundamental insights you gain in this course become very noticeable when you start looking at simple design pieces around you with new eyes.

By Giselle D P

Apr 25, 2016

The learning process is a complete experience, full of knowledge, good videos and excellent teachers. I think is a 5 stars quality course, because of the amount of tools teachers give. Each one special and necessary.

Graphic Design is about making our soul, heart and brain work together. I believe this course is a great way to get this team to complete our expectations.