Module 6

Graphic Space and Choice

Whitespace-2In previous modules, you’ve laid a solid foundation for creating graphics with Adobe Photoshop. Knowing how to manipulate colors, shapes, layers, texts, and photos are one thing. Knowing how to integrate all these visual elements into a cohesive and effective design is another. Starting this module (and for the rest of the course), we will be learning how to put all these visual components together by studying the visual design principles. These principles can be very complicated and sometimes contradict each other. The author of our text, Connie Malamed, did a good job in categorizing the design principles into 13 domains. In each module, we will be looking at one or two domains. In this module, we will look at the graphic space and graphic choice. Are you ready to explore these principles? Let’s get started.

Graphic Space

Graphic space is more than the container that holds your design. It is the area where you organize and manipulate images and text to communicate visually. Although you may think of this area as “just a background” to hold visual elements, graphics space is a design element in its own right. Space communicates information when you use it intentionally. In this module, we will learn how graphic space informs a design. We will see how you can shift your perspective so that the background becomes as important as the foreground. Most important, we will see how becoming aware of space will help you to become a better designer.

Graphic Choice

In this course, visuals refer to the photography, illustrations, graphs, diagrams, icons, and shapes in your design. The right visuals used in the right way are essential to many aspects of learning. As a designer, think broadly at first and explore all of your options. Do you need a representational image or a conceptual depiction to improve comprehension? Consider the nuances of each image you use in terms of what it communicates and how it will be perceived and interpreted by the audience. In this module, we will also explore ways to expand the repertoire of visuals you select. We’ll discover techniques for adding interest and emotional appeal to your visuals. We will learn how to select or create images with visual qualities that align with your intent.

Goals and Outcomes

Goals

During this module, students will:

  • gain knowledge about graphic space and graphic choice
  • understand how to organize text and images
  • understand how to make informed decisions for selecting appropriate graphics.

Outcomes

After completing this module, students will be able to:

  • identify what is graphic space
  • utilize white space to optimize your design
  • understand where to put the text and images
  • create a professional-looking layout
  • identify what types of images to use
  • identify what graphics are best for learning
  • make an informed choice between realistic or abstract graphics
  • modify stock images.

Selected Readings

Required

  • Chapters 2, 4, and 5 from the following book:
    Malamed, C. (2015). Visual design solutions: Principles and creative inspiration for learning professionals. Hoboken, New Jersey: John Wiley & Sons.

Recommended

  • None

“To Do” List

Before and After #1: Graphic Space

Please read the Before and After Assignment description page for further details about this assignment.

Outcomes

After completing this assignment, you will be able to:

  • identify what is graphic space
  • utilize white space to optimize your design
  • understand where to put the text and images
  • create a professional-looking layout.
Instructions
  1. Choose an image from the pool (or find one of your own) that violates visual design principles regarding Graphic Space introduced in Chapter 4. This will be your before image. Save your before onto your computer.
  2. Create a new file (1200 x 1800 pixels, 72 Pixel/Inch) with Adobe Photoshop.
  3. In the new file (after image), recreate the same information in the before image, but make each visual element comply with visual design principles introduced in previous modules and Chapter 4.
  4. Upload both before and after images, including JPG and PSD files,, including JPG and PSD files, onto a Weebly page.
  5. In a paragraph (between 200 – 400 words), describe explicitly why the before image fails to comply with the visual principles and how you corrected it with your new design.
Submitting and Posting
    1. To submit your work, post URL of your Weebly page to the corresponding link under Submissions inside Moodle before 11:59 p.m. U.S. EST/EDT on the following Monday.

on the following Monday.

Grading

Your work will be graded based on the following requirements:

  • Both images are uploaded (1 pt).
  • The after image contains the same information presented in the before image (1 pt).
  • The after image complies with visual design principles introduced in previous modules and Chapter 4 (2 pts).
  • The narrative description is provided and it explicitly examines both images using visual design principles introduced in Chapter 4 (2 pts).

Before and After #2: Graphics Choice

Please read the Before and After Assignment description page for further details about this assignment.

Outcomes

After completing this assignment, you will be able to:

  • identify what types of images to use
  • identify what graphics are best for learning
  • make an informed choice between realistic or abstract graphics
  • modify stock images.
Instructions
  1. Choose an image from the pool (or find one of your own) that violates visual design principles regarding Graphic Choice introduced in Chapter 5. This will be your before image. Save your before onto your computer.
  2. Create a new file (1200 x 1800 pixels, 72 Pixel/Inch) with Adobe Photoshop.
  3. In the new file (after image), recreate the same information in the before image, but make each visual element comply with visual design principles introduced in previous modules and Chapter 5.
  4. Upload both before and after images, including JPG and PSD files, onto a Weebly page.
  5. In a paragraph (between 200 – 400 words), describe explicitly why the before image fails to comply with the visual principles and how you corrected it with your new design.
  6. Examples:
Submitting and Posting
    1. To submit your work, post URL of your Weebly page to the corresponding link under Submissions inside Moodle before 11:59 p.m. U.S. EST/EDT on the following Monday.

on the following Monday.

Grading

Your work will be graded based on the following requirements:

  • Both images are uploaded (1 pt).
  • The after image contains the same information presented in the before image (1 pt).
  • The after image complies with visual design principles introduced in previous modules and Chapter 5 (2 pts).
  • The narrative description is provided and it explicitly examines both images using visual design principles introduced in Chapter 5 (2 pts).