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Graphic design is a discipline whose aim is to create and convey messages through images. For this reason it shares some fundamental elements with many other artistic and communications disciplines. 

  • Edition: 8th
  • Teaching period: From October 2019, 15 th to May 2020. Final master's project presentation: June 2020.
  • Schedule: Mondays to Thursdays from 15:45 to 18:45 h
  • Modality: On-site
  • Language: Spanish
  • Price: 7.800 €
  • Qualification: Master's Degree in Graphic Design awarded by the UVic-UCC.
  • Credits: 60 ECTS

Presentation

Due to the increase in channels of communication and information exchange, the demand for graphic designers has increased exponentially. Graphic design is a discipline whose aim is to create and convey messages through images. For this reason it shares some fundamental elements with many other artistic and communications disciplines. Nonetheless, it requires specific training which encompasses the use of specialized graphic design tools and the transformation of a message into a concept and a graphic composition which responds to a request.

This master's offers training on the essentials to be a graphic designer. With a multidisciplinary rather than specialized focus, it provides an overview of the different areas of design: corporate image, advertising, editorial design, packaging and web design. In conjunction with these areas are the tools and resources used by designers: typography, photography, illustration, and the history of art and infographics.

Objectives

To provide a solid base in idea conceptualization and project development of different subjects as well as training in the necessary tools to carry out these projects.

With a practical focus based on technical principles and case analysis, the final objective of this master's is to offer all the tools and knowledge necessary to manage a graphic design project.

Syllabus

This course is divided into 7 modules that are delivered simultaneously throughout the academic year and work in combination with one another. They conclude with the submission of a Final Project. Modules VI and VII include several subjects.

Module I – Introduction to Design Projects

Module II – Ilustration

Module III – History of graphic design

Module IV – Typography

Module V – Photography

Module VI – Projects

Module VII – Technologies

Programme

Module I – Introduction to Design Projects

The contents of this module are divided into Theory and Practice. Both sections use analysis as a means to explain the projects.

This course provides the theoretical foundations that will allow a conscious approach to the project through the appropriation of various methodologies. Intuition will be developed to stimulate creativity, as well as a reasoned basis for acquiring critical and self-criticism skills in order to debate their own work and the work of others. Proper graphical formalisation will be implemented and students will be trained to coordinate solutions that effectively resolve the underlying message of a brief. Students will also learn to apply the appropriate technical procedures and necessary manual skills for the proper planning and presentation of exercises and projects.

Theory:
  • Definition of graphic design.
  • Fields and types of graphic design.
  • Visual perception.
  • Gestalt theory.
  • The meaning of the sign.
  • Formal synthesis and chromatic synthesis.
Practice:
  • Transport ticket.
  • Invitations to an exhibition.
  • Ex libris.
  • Print for a T-shirt.

Module II – Illustration

A brief introductory overview of various techniques for manual illustration that will provide students with a range of graphical, stylistic, drawing and painting tools to complement and extend their knowledge of illustration. This module allows students to experiment with materials and styles and also introduces a comprehensive overview of the best contemporary illustration.

  • Graffiti 1. Projection and analysis of graffiti and the drawing of the sketches.
  • Graffiti 2. Preparation of stencils and use of spray paint.
  • Graffiti 3. Graffiti from a drawing. Projection, analysis, and the drawing of sketches.
  • Graffiti 4. Using stencils and spray paint with the drawing as a reference.
  • Children’s illustration. Analysis and execution.
  • Illustration of opinions based on the news or an article. Analysis and execution.
  • Collage. Analysis and execution.
  • Fashion illustration. Analysis and execution. 

Module III – History of graphic design

This is a theoretical module in which the key movements in the history of graphic design are explained. It concludes with the submission of a student project that explores the content deeply and provides a methodology for analytical work. Furthermore, this module provides an overview of the history of graphic design and its major themes alongside the key issues that define the history of graphic design, from antiquity to the digital age. These key issues will be presented in thematic units that correspond to each historical period.

  • Introduction to the history of graphic design. From the origins of writing to the golden age of typography.
  •  Early years of the 20th century. The artistic avant-gardes: the origins of the Modern Movement.
  • Bauhaus (Germany 1919-1933). Consolidation of the Modern Movement and the pedagogy of design.
  •  USA. The pioneers of North American graphic design.
  • Europe, the 50s: rational/functional design. The International Typographic School (The Swiss school).
  • USA, the 60s: graphic expression, the School of New York.
  • Europe, beyond functional graphics. The school of the Polish poster.
  • From post-modernity to present-day graphics. 

Module IV – Tipography

From a theoretical basis, students are taught to work practically on one of the basic components of graphic design, which will allow them to resolve the various assignments from modules I and VI.

The student is introduced to the study and implementation of letters, their history (from the beginnings of Roman capital script, right through to the present day), concepts (formal and functional) and their different solutions and applications with regard to graphic design. After completing the course, the student will be able to judge and develop a typographical work by applying the criteria of readability, use of space, hierarchies, organisation and sensitivity when selecting an alphabet.

Tipography I:
  • Introduction to the history of typography.
  • Typographical distinction.
  • Typographic language.
  • Spacing and alignment.
  • Typographic design based on calligraphy itself.
  • Legibility and readability.
Tipography II:
  • Some notes on Typography and History.
  • Letters: construction.
  • Lines: conduction.
  • Blocks: narration.
  • Columns: reading.
  • Advertisements: impact.
  • Headlines: attention. 

Module V – Photography

This Module helps students to master the technical principles of photography and make use of it as a basic tool, while also providing guidance on the creation and criticism of images. The various possibilities of the narrative language applied to the photographic medium to develop a working methodology between photography and graphic design will be presented.

Block I:
  • The device. Translator of visual imagery.
  • The camera, the process and the light.
Block II:
  • Attention. Exercising observation.

Module VI – Projects

The Projects module takes a specific assignment as its starting point. Through the different subjects, the tutors will guide the students as they learn about the different disciplines of design. This module is especially relevant since the exercises carried out will be the ones included in the Final Project of the Master’s degree.

Students will implement and solve an assignment that involves the main areas of design. Thus, the core principles of each of the different areas will be learned through the practical implementation of a project.

Corporate image
  • Brand theory.
  • Creation of a brand.
  • Market research.
  • Naming.
  • Design of the logo / symbol / typography.
  • Brand book.
Advertising
  • Introduction to briefing.
  • Positioning and Benchmarking.
  • Creative briefing and insight.
  • Moodboard.
  • The idea. Brand concept and campaignability.
  • Brand story.
  • Creativity.
  • Advertising and the advertising agency.
  • New communication media. 
Editorial Design

We shall see, from a theoretical perspective, all the essential aspects that are involved in the field of editorial design – from the most pragmatic ones (such as the construction and development of grids and their patterns or the role of print publications throughout history), to the most evocative ones (such as the visual connotations of each type of project or the key role of magazines as a cultural element in today’s society). 

Packaging

Die. Information hierarchies. Text distribution. The use of photography and illustration. Brand analysis. Knowing how to understand your competitors. Promotional flashes. Colour codes by category. Volume.

Web design
  • Website intro, HTTP protocol, HTML language...
  • HTML: Semantic structure of the document, paragraphs, headers, links and images. Lists and charts. Forms. The HEAD tag: metatags, DOCTYPE and the codification of characters.
  • CSS: Selection of tags, ids and types; DIV and SPAN tags. Basic attributes: typography and blocks of text. Layout on boxes. Positioning, multiple and descendent selectors and media-queries.
  • Structure of the information and architecture of a website.
  • Usability: the website tree. The user’s experience, planning through wireframes.
  • Graphic design: formats and resolution: responsive design. Typography.
  • Brief introduction to JavaScript and the JQuery framework. 

Module VII – Technologies 

This is a theoretical / practical section where students learn to use tools to work on design, layout and photographic editing. The objective of this module is to teach students how to use three of the most popular graphic design software programs, which will allow them to develop the disciplines that are dealt with in this master’s degree course. 

Illustrator
  • Bit map versus vector system, work space, co-ordinates and transformations on artboards, smart guides.
  • Creation of basic shapes, object attributes, geometry, colour fillings and automatic alignment.
  • Creation of complex elements with outlines and joints for advanced figures.
  • Control of the illustration with the layer palette, element tracing, groupings and crop layers, working with the pen tool.
  • Typography: text frames, columns and seams, font management, kerning and tracking, vectorisation of texts.
  • Gradients, colour modes: RGB, CMYK, working with two ink colours, global colour, plain shades, managing PDFs.
  • Placing images, size and resolution, colour mode, scale of greys, CMYK, crop marks, pens and transparent backgrounds. 
Photoshop
  • Resolution and image size, scanner, digital camera, good quality image reproduction, file formats.
  • Colour palettes, working with brushes and selection tools, saving layer masks and retrieving them.
  • Basic photo-montage with layers, blend modes, viewing, basic composition.
  • Creation of layer groups, layer styles, using shadows and textures.
  • Canvas size, copying backgrounds, cloning and restoring tools.
  • Typographic management, text layers, transformations and blendings, perfecting selections, saving paths.
  • Bridge analysis, advanced composition with layers, cropping images, analysis of the Historical palette.
In-Design
  • Introduction to the interface of the software. Diagrams. Graphic architecture (presentation of the grid structure). Application of the combination guidelines (presenting tools and menus). Page preparation.
  • Conceptualization of the task to be carried out / Master pages / Layers / Constructing the grid / Basic grid / Headers and constants, automatic numbering.
  • Importing and exporting text and graphics / Cropping graphics and graphic effects / Browsing the file / Usefulness of the software as a text processor / Spelling dictionary / Syllable separation / Search and replace / Tabs / Style of paragraph, character, objects, cells and tables. Creation and editing / Indexing, notes and content tables / Crossed references / Drop Caps and nested styles.
  • Colour samples in the files / making mixed ink colours / preparation of samples and their application.
  • Importing master pages, styles of paragraph, character and objects / creating templates.
  • Placing and manipulating images / graphic text element / possibilities of vectors in the software.
  • Commercial pre-printing / Creation of interactive PDFs / Creation of PDFs (model).
  • Printing, error correction / Preparing the document for filming. 

Career opportunities

  • Design Studios.
  • Independent graphic designer (freelance).
  • Design departments in the publishing sector
  • Advertising agencies.
  • Communication agencies.
  • Communication and design departments in Companies of any sector.

Payment methods

Total cost of the course: 7.800 €

Payment methods

BAU, Design College of Barcelona offers different terms of payment:

  • Single payment: attracts a 3% discount
  • Part payment, in three installments:
    • 1st payment consisting of 40 % of the fees on enrollment
    • 2nd payment consisting of 30% of the fees before November 5th
    • 3rd payment consisting of 30 % of the fees before January 5th

Former students of BAU benefit from 10% discount on any of the courses. A former student of BAU is a student who, not being registered in the current academic year, has exceeded 50% of the credits for a Degree, Higher Degree in Design or the BAU Nit (BAU Evening); or 100% of the credits for any of the Master’s or Postgraduate degrees.

More information about scholarships and grants.

Information about the registration process.

Academic regulations for Master's Degrees and Postgraduate Diplomas of BAU.

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