This past weekend I wore the black gown and mortar board that signifies graduation. The end of the academic year offers educators a time to reflect on the impact they hope they have had and an opportunity to collect evidence of student successes from the year. The Photocommunications concentration that I coordinate at Cal State Fullerton is small (at least, in relation to our sister concentrations). We are about 70-80 students in size, and I estimate about 25 or so graduated on Saturday. Student interests range from interactive media design to photojournalism to studio and event photography. Here are some of my favorite works created by students in the Photocommunications classes I taught during the academic year 2013-14:
COMM 317 Digital Foundations
Digital Foundations is an introduction to design principles class blended with an “introductory laboratory skills” protocol. Students learn to use Illustrator from Bauhaus-inspired lessons and Photoshop with collage and montage in mind (using the book I authored, of course). I used to follow the basics with a few weeks on multi-page design concepts (a good place to insert some InDesign lessons) but these days I find myself preparing students for screen-related applications (the web, apps, mobile devices, etc.). The projects reflect the class (full of primary lessons) and the many students who tell me this is the first time they’ve ever done anything “artsy.”
I taught this class both face-to-face and online in the fall.
Poster with Type (students created an illustration for this Los Angeles-based article):
COMM 380 Interactive Media Design
This is a basic web design course. I co-authored Visual Communication on the Web with Paul Martin Lester for my students, and we follow the book pretty closely throughout the course. By the end of the semester, it’s hard to believe it but my COMM students all know what a container div is and how to create unity on a web page without relying on a giant JPEG.
Here are some of my favorites—the project was to create a photo gallery based on edits the students made to a curated set of images they found in the Library of Congress.
Gloria Oh: View Her Women Portraits in Color Web Page
Nansir Sok: View His Product Placement in the LOC Project Here
COMM 481 Advanced Interactive Media Design
This course is a projects-based interactive media design class. Students develop projects based on their interests and a series of readings from my edited anthology, Net Works: Case Studies in Web Art and Design, that stimulate discussion and learning about issues central to new media art and design.
Angelica Perez: Dog Breed Personality Quiz
Torie Foley: Alt-J Band Web Page using Parallax Scroll
COMM 444 Capstone for Visual Communication
In the Capstone class, students mainly focus on their individual portfolios. There are group projects and papers, but mostly students develop their own visual identities.
Ebony Avery: I Survived
Montana Ortega: Zodiactive, A Tweet-based View of Your Astrological Sign
Christopher van Doesburg: Aerial Photography
Robert Husky: LED Photography