Sparking New Imagery

Graphic design classes put everything in alignment.

Photo by Richard Burns

Students take their seats and plug computers into monitors. Pop music plays softly in the background, and the designers open the week’s project in the Adobe Illustrator software as they await further instruction. While traditional art classes are filled with paint splatters and art smocks, graphic design offers a mess-free environment for even the most neatnik of students.

Often stereotyped as “drawing on a computer” or computer art, graphic designs’ true form is that of commercial art which can assist in fields like marketing. Students utilize both their laptops and the Illustrator software to create designs that, so far, have ranged from eccentric sketchbook covers to patterned color wheels. Currently, classes are offered during 1st, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 7th, and 8th hours with approximately 90 students enrolled.

“There are so many graphic design jobs out there,” Graphic Design teacher Andi Morris said. “Pretty much everybody needs someone to create designs, logos, posters, flyers and advertisements.”

There are so many graphic design jobs out there. Pretty much everybody needs someone to create designs, logos, posters, flyers and advertisements.”

— Morris

According to Format Magazine’s article, “A guide to graphic designer salaries—and how to negotiate them,” the entry-level pay for graphic designers averages $50,465. While Graphic Design Ⅰ focuses on learning the tools of the trade, Graphic Design Ⅱ is an internship where previous knowledge can be applied to real projects that students are contracted for. These include t-shirt designs for Ford Motors and planner cover designs for AVID.

“I’m really into marketing, so it’s a good gateway to get me used to that,” senior Hailey Davies said.

While Davies’ knowledge of graphic design assisst her with marketing, senior Isabelle Porter plans to use her knowledge of graphic design after high school to assist her with costume design.

“At the beginning of the year, we designed a logo for ourselves and put that on the cover of our sketchbooks,” senior Kalani Rio said. “That was really neat because we didn’t have any constraints.”

Photo by Richard Burns

Students interested in careers like art director, creative director or marketing specialist could be assisted by taking graphic design because they can become skillful in using the Illustrator software and applying their creativity to projects. Those who are passionate about the arts can find opportunities to practice designing in outside clubs including: FBLA competitions and Kintsugi Literary Magazine social media marketing and layout designs.

Although both of the year-long classes are full for the current school year, students who are interested can register for Graphic Design Ⅰ next semester in order to take it during the 2022-2023 year.