This schedule is a guide and will change over the course of the term, check back often.

HW is put on the day it is assigned and due the next class meeting unless otherwise stated. Work should be saved on the VAPA server.

9/3 Intro & Syllabus / Saving Files / Illustrator & Shapes

HW: Ch. 1 (using a pre-existing image as a template, trace over it using the tools introduced in class), Ch. 2


Illustrator vs. Photoshop vs. InDesign

Vector vs Raster 

Illustrator keystrokes

9/6 Illustrator:  Curvature, Pen Tool, Pencil,  Width, Live Trace, Text

HW: Ch. 4, Ch. 6, Ch. 5 

Notes: Image Trace

9/10 Illustrator: repetition, pattern & color 

HW: Create a seamless pattern with three color variations

Your file should have the original shapes used for the pattern and three artboards, one for each color variation.
Each artboard should have:

  1. The tile of the pattern
  2. The pattern as a fill for a rectangle and a curved shape. 
  3. Each color used 

You should have swatches for all of the colors used in the file. Remove all unused colors from swatches. There’s an example file in the Class 3 folder on the server. 


Pattern Maker Tool
Pattern Maker Tool 

Working in pairs, design a cutting pattern for three pieces of 8.5 X 11 black cardstock (supplied) layered on top of each other.

HW:  Finish laser cutting assignment

Notes: LaserCutter_Template

File prep: Stroke to .001, Check colors, outline fonts
Cutter: Turn on filters, focus lens

9/17 Photoshop: Ways to select, color adjustment, Masking Tools

Ways to Select: Quick Selection, Pen Tool, Color Range

Adjustment Layers: Levels, Hue/Saturation, Black & White + Tint, etc.
Masking: Select & Mask, Groups, Drop Shadow, History

HW: Ch. 7, 9

9/20 Photoshop: Retouching, Layer Blending

Class Meeting Cancelled — go march!

Video on the Google Drive
Embedding & Linking Files

HW: Ch. 10, Age of Fake Photos, Fake Image Arms Race, History Is Ours: Protest, revolt, and visual politics (click PDF full text)

Start sourcing images and thinking about next week’s assignment.

Other useful links:

PUPPET WARP to change poses

Blending Modes
Convert Illustrator swatches to Photoshop
Skulgabbar (people)

9/24 Paper type, qualities, printing w/ May

Epson Color Profiles

Professional Printing (from Fireball):

FAQ, Guidelines,Template
Copyright/Image Use/Remix:
Appropriation of other artists
Fair Use

HW: ‘Shop an image (twice) — merge at least 3 images into a single image using the tools we have covered and any additional tools  or techniques you discover. Do this 2 times. You’ll have two final, fake images that should be somehow related. Key Words: counterhistory, alternate history,  #fakenews, fiction &/or fantasy &/or surrealism, scale (e.g. island in a bottle), time (anachronisms).

Look at each other’s work 

Final Project Introduction

File Saving

HW: Think about your final project.

Final Project Proposal (due 10/6)  – Write a min 200 word description of what you’re pursuing, create a (digital) mood board (colors, inspiration images, references, tests, scans).

Make sure all of the assignments thus far are on the server with a PDF of the final. Review any chapters you missed.


  1. Use shapes to recreate an image (Ch. 1)
  2. Seamless Pattern (3 color variations)
  3. Lasercutter Papercut (photos are on server, include Illustrator file)
  4. Photoshopped images

How Books Are Made

10/1 Classes end at 2… but your final project proposal is due 10/6

10/4 InDesign: Workspace / Document set up, Color Swatches, Images & Text , Symbols & Special Characters

1001 fonts


HW:  Ch. 13, Ch. 14 

Due 10/6 Final Project Proposal  – Write a min 300 word description of what you’re pursuing. Create a (digital) mood board (colors, inspiration images, references, tests, scans). What things have inspired you? What do you need to learn technically to complete this (e.g. brushes in Photoshop, large amounts of text in inDesign)

10/8 InDesign layout cont.: Paragraph Styles, Character Styles, Master Pages, Table of Contents, Index

HW: Work on your final


Work on final projects: Printing & Assembling

HW: Finish your final project. Write up your process highlighting which programs you used (min 200 words).


Last Class: Crit/Sharing, Self-Assessment, SEPC