Thumbnail image from a Wes Anderson film

Colors by Anderson

July 23, 2015

Wes Anderson, the designer's filmmaker, does consistently stunning work with composition and detail. But he also knows his way around color. From

Thumbnail image of the pencil lead

When "sketchy" is good

June 23, 2015

While the digital tools we all routinely use are incredibly powerful, they can also be unneccessarily restrictive - especially when one is in search of freewheeling creativity. Introducing the latest, best-kept secret in technology: the sketchpad. From

Thumbnail image of the copyright symbol

Branded; why no assignment is singular... mostly

June 17, 2015

There are a number of reasons why developing a "personal" brand is helpful. And leveraging individual assignments in support of one's own brand can be a very smart thing to do. A brief look at how we might help students do more memorable work more efficiently. By Dave Underwood

Thumbnailed detail from an intentionally bad poster design

Big failure, bigger success

May 27, 2015

You've no doubt heard the failures-make-for-the-best-teachers bromide dozens of times. This piece from Print Online takes it up a notch: what if we actively pursue failure? A learning experience? Maybe! From Print Magazine Online.

Thumbnail from ad for Commercial Art school

We're looking for people who like to draw

May 20, 2015

You may have seen an old ad that featured a hand-drawn lumberjack and a title that said "We're Looking for People Who Like to Draw." The spot was placed by a commercial art school and it insinuated that a natural artist could, naturally, be a natural designer. Not entirely true. By Michael Stout, from

Thumb-nailed detail from anti-littering poster

Building a theme and establishing continuity in a campaign

May 5, 2015

We often ask students to develop a series of designs and ideas that can be built upon to mount a full-on campaign. These anti-littering posters show how it's done. From

Thumb-nailed detail of tiger's eye from poster

Mood boards, morgues, and Pinterest

April 29, 2015

For anyone working in the realm of visual communication, Pinterest just may be the coolest tool on the Internet. By Dave Underwood

Detail from a photo-illustrated document

A photo-illustrated project list

April 28, 2015

Ever considered using thumbnailed images in a project portfolio? How about on a resume? Read more.

thumbnail image of urban colors

The urban palette

April 28, 2015

Designing with color from the real world is a great way to achieve sophistication and harmony in our work. See how the urban landscape looks through a designer's eye. From Slate's 'The Eye' design blog.

Thumbnail detail from student-designed poster

The story's the thing

March 17, 2015

We all know that good storytelling is the key to successfully grabbing and holding your audience's attention. But, academically-speaking, how broadly can storytelling be used? And what separates a well-spun yarn from a dull account? By Dave Underwood