•      Artist      •      Designer     •     Educator     •



Project One

Project Two


Publication Design: Art 3150

Spring 2014

Mondays and Wednesdays, 6:00 - 9:00 pm

Room 2xxx, Art Building

Instructor: Cynthia Harrison

Phone: 651-690-6642

Email: clharrison@stkate.edu

Off XX, Art Building

Office hours: by appointment



This graphic design course offers hands-on computer experience in the major forms of printed communication: books, newspapers and magazines. Typography and principles of visual communication integrating images and text are explored through exercises and projects. Historical aspects as well as contemporary issues are addressed. Class procedures include demonstrations, slide lectures, field trips and critiques.



• To learn the terminology and design strategies of various types of publications.

• To use typography appropriately and expressively.

• To produce effective page layout designs in book, newspaper and magazine formats.

• To begin to become proficient in page layout software and related electronic imaging procedures.

• To examine the publishing industry from a design perspective, both historically and currently.



• Computer Lab fee: $30.00. ACTC students: Check payable to Art Dept./St. Catherine’s.

• Removable digital storage: some device that you can take files with you for back-up.

   Examples include flash drives (USB drives, etc.), CDs and DVDs.

• Layout graphics pad, 14 x 17 inches.

• Pencils, pens,

• Straightedge ruler with #11 x-acto knife with replaceable blades.

• Illustration board for mounting projects

• Repositionable mounting adhesive paper will be available.

• Other materials as needed for your specific projects: colored markers, paints, hinges, duct tape...



Adobe InDesign CS5 Classroom in a Book:

2010 - Adobe Press - 2010 - Paperback - 402 pages - ISBN 0321701798

BRING TO EVERY CLASS, PLEASE, as you will not be able to work without it the first 6 weeks of the term as we will be concentrating on learning the ins and outs of Adobe Indesign CS5






Time in class will include lectures, computer instruction and demonstrations, lab periods, critiques of assigned projects, and possible field trips. Students will be expected to produce and turn in ungraded exercises and a note book containing notes from lectures and rough "sketches",  and four graded major projects.



Procedures in the Computer Lab are covered on the Lab Basics handout. We will also be using the mat cutting and mounting area in which sharp blades are to be used with caution. Always use proper holding devices for blades, and minimize excessive jewelry, flowing garments, hair in your face, etc.



Since St. Catherine University is committed to the healthy wellbeing of our community, we support The Centers for Disease Control’s following recommendation: students, faculty, or staff with influenza like illnesses (temperature of 100.0 or greater, plus a cough or sore throat) are directed to self isolate (or stay home) for at least 24 hours after their fever is gone without the use of fever-reducing medicine. In the event that students are unable to attend classes due to this self isolation recommendation, they should notify their professors of their absence. Faculty will provide opportunities for these students to participate in alternative delivery of class material due to illness.



Final grades will be determined in this manner:

70% PROJECTS: Four assigned projects each receive a grade with technical, conceptual and aesthetic quality equally important to each project. Projects may be revised and re-submitted with two weeks of their return to the student for a revised grade; the final grade for that project will be the average of the two grades.


30% CLASS PREPARATION AND PARTICIPATION: Ungraded assignments, roughs and comprehensives for each project are required on the date indicated at the beginning of the class period. These will be checked off. Regular attendance, promptness, participation in discussions and critiques are an important aspect of

the class. The grading of artwork cannot be as concrete as, say, the grading of a chemistry exam. However, these are

the criteria that will be used:


CONCEPT: How clearly does the imagery convey the idea or text you are illustrating? Is the typography appropriate? In good art and design, there is a powerful relationship (harmonious or not) between the visual component and its emotional or intellectual content.


DEPTH OF EXPLORATION AND ORIGINALITY: Did you thoroughly explore a number of different solutions before deciding on the final one? Sometimes the first idea is inspired and original, but often it comes to mind because you’ve seen it elsewhere (and so has everyone else: it’s a visual cliché). You are responsible

for working through your ideas to achieve something unique to you, your personal visual expression.


AMBITION AND RISK-TAKING: How ambitious, technically and conceptually, is your piece? Successful art and design may be simple or complex, but it is always interesting to look at and to think about.

Risk-taking, and the implied failure, often teaches more than safe conformity. Of course, you will

want to ultimately show your mastery of concept and technique.


Technical expertise and craftsmanship: I don’t expect anybody to be able to use InDesign like a pro at the beginning of this course. I do expect care to be taken in the execution and presentation of your work, and to

see improvement in technique. Your choice and control of materials and software should be intentional and purposeful. Presentations, including written work, should be organized and neat.



Course Schedule: 

All Assignments and DUe dates are subject to change at the instructors discretion.

You can find the most up to date/current timeline at:




Course Schedule - Subject to change!


WEEK 1 ~ February 3-5:


Class A:

Course Introduction -InDesign foundations –  File structure best practices

Exercise: 1 – Poster  What is Publication Design?

Intro to InDesign.What to expect.


Class B: 

Exercise: 2 – Minnesota Orchestra Piece

Classroom in a book: Assignment – Chapters 1


WEEK 2 ~ February 10-12:


Class A:

Exercise: Getting to know InDesign (60)

Classroom in a book: Assignment – Chapters 2


Class B:  

Exercise: Setting up a document and working with Pages  (90)

Classroom in a book: Assignment – Chapters 3


Bring 5 samples of killer publications layouts to class. What makes this a good layout?


WEEK 3 ~ February 17-19:


Class A: 

Exercise: Working with objects (90)

Classroom in a book: Assignment – Chapters 4  Presentation from Fashion Design


Class B:

Exercise: Flowing Text (45)

Classroom in a book: Assignment – Chapters 5


25 TN sketches of logo for fashion show. Small group critque: Pick 3


WEEK 4 ~ February 24-26:


Class A:

WORK DAY: Editing Text (60)

Classroom in a book: Assignment – Chapters 6


Class B:

WORK DAY: Working with typography (60)

Classroom in a book: Assignment - Chapters 7


WEEK 5 ~ March 3-5:


Class A: 

Exercise: Working with color (60)

Classroom in a book: Assignment – Chapters 8 Create roughs: 3 versions of each.


Small group critque: Narrow to one.


Class B:

Exercise: Working with Styles (60)

Classroom in a book: Assignment – Chapters 9


WEEK 6 ~ March 10-12:


Class A: 

Exercise: Importing and Modifying Graphics (60)

Classroom in a book: Assignment – Chapters 10

Exercise: Creating Tables (45)

Classroom in a book: Assignment – Chapters 11/EXTRA CREDIT/Due end of term


Refine: Final logo

Fashion show Poster layout concepts


Class B: 

Exercise: Working with Transparancies (45)

Classroom in a book: Assignment – Chapters 12 EXTRA CREDIT/Due end of term


Rough layout


WEEK 7 ~ March 17-19:


Class A: 

Poster Critique

Final Layouts


Class B: 

Mid-Term Practical Exam


March 24-26: Spring Break

Take the final poster design and roll out to postcard and Type specifications and color pallet


WEEK 8 ~ March 31-April 2:


Class A:

Grid, Grid, Grid

Establish your grid Elements of a magazine page


Lecture/discussion: Mossimo VignelliBook

3 Front Cover options and 3 postcard design options


Class B:

Grid structure, 5  options inside spreads


WEEK 9 ~ April 7-9:


Class A:

Work in progress critique


Class B:

Final class critique of all pieces put together


WEEK 10 ~ April 14-16:


Class A:

Present to Fashion Design Team


Class B:

Field trip to Barnes and Noble

Choose Magazine.

Research, concepting


WEEK 11 ~ April 21-23:


Complete strategy sheet.



WEEK 12 ~ April 28-30:


8 MastHead Design Options

Start Front Cover design


WEEK 13 ~ May 5-7:


4 MastHead Design Option

Type specifications and color pallet

Grid structure


WEEK 14 ~ May 12-14:


Class A:

Complete contents page

Two-page editorial;

Spread specification sheet


Class B:

Presentation of Final Magazine Redesign.


WEEK 15 ~ May 21: 


Final magazine design project revisions due: Student presentations. 10:30 am - Attendance is mandatory. 12:30 pm Last day for submission of late projects. None will be accepted after this date.




Fashion Show Poster



Objective:  The Apparel Design Spring Fashion Show Committee has asked our class to help them design their posters, postcard and programs for their annual Spring Fashion Show that features designs from graduating Seniors, along with other apparel design student work.


 All of these pieces need to be congruent but by nature are different.


 You are encouraged to use illustrations you create on your own, free royalty-free illustrations you find on the internet (please varify usage before using) in order to open up design possibilities. If photography is essential, you can consider taking your own photos or using stock images. It will be up to you to find and download your own comping images or purchase images yourself if you choose to use stock photos

(If your design is chosen by the design committee you may be reimbursed for a small amount).



Stage one: Logo creation (in progress)


Stage two:  Poster Design and layout



Stage three:  Postcard and program design


Covers of both of these should look simlar to Poster or look as if it is a part of a design series of elements.


 Grid structure of the Program



Stage Four: Final execution and Presentation.


Evaluation: Each element is worth 50 points Which breaks down to:

 A: Portfolio 50 45

 B: Above average  44 40

 C: Average student work 39 35

 D: Below average  34 30

 F: Unacceptable, redo



Project TWO: Magazine ReDesign



Your Second project will be a magazine design including front cover and new masthead, contents page, two page editorial spread and spread spec sheet.  All of these pieces need to be congruent but by nature are different.  For the editorial spread you are encouraged to  use illustration rather than photography in order to open up design possibilities. If photography is essential, you must take your own rather than use staged stock photos.




Stage ONE

Choose Magazine. Complete strategy sheet. Design Masthead.   40 pts


Stage TWO

Front Cover 40 pts

Type specifications and color pallet



Grid structure

Complete contents page  40 pts


Stage FOUR

Two-page editorial; 40pts



Spread specification sheet 40 pts




Week 11

Choose Magazine. Complete strategy sheet.

Research, concepting


Week 12

8 Masthead Design Options

Start Front Cover design


Week 13

4 Masthead Design Option

Type specifications and color pallet

Grid structure


Week 14

Complete contents page

Two-page editorial;

Spread specification sheet




Week 15

Final Presentation



Publications can be created for any number of reasons, we can however. break this down into four different categories; a publication can exist to:


 1. Inform

 2. Persuade

 3. Sell

 4. Entertain



A textbook created as an instructional aid in teaching students about a given subject. Other examples may be instruction manuals, newspapers, encyclopedias and dictionaries.



Publications aimed at persuading us into an action or response. Examples of which could be campaign literature, travel brochures and other promotional literature that encourage us to invest into a product or service



Sales literature differs from persuasive publications in that they are designed to work as a sales vehicle, they show the merchandise, give information on it then provide the opportunity to select and buy merchandise. Catalogs would be a perfect example of such publications.



A publication that sole reason for existing is to entertain its readers. This could include comics, novels and magazines.



Before getting to the design phase of any publication you should develop a strategy, this gives you a guideline to follow and helps in making informed and educated decisions on the overall look and feel, as well as content of the publication.


Consider the above information-which category does you publication fall under. Some publications have more than one goal, some magazines for example contain useful information-INFORM--provide entertainment- ENTERTAIN-and include advertising that attempt to persuade us to buy products/SELL.


Your aim will be to identify the primary goal of the publication. Understanding what category your publication falls within will help you conceive an effective design that communicates well with its intended audience.



To help you with your strategy consider the following points.


What’s the purpose of the publication?

 1. Name it and describe it

 2. 2. List key features


Who’s the competition?

 1. What other publications are there in this field

 2. How are your competitors trying to persuade your audience?


What’s the creative objective?

 1. What’s the job for the publication other than financial?


Who’s the target audience?

 1. Sex, age, income level, lifestyle ( VALS)

 2. What do we want them to think, feel and do?


What’s the personality of the publication?

 1. What tone of voice and attitude will be most effective with our customer, and is appropriate to our publications content and field?


You will be required to write a strategy for all of your projects. This written statement will help you to define your goals and give your design choices a clearer direction. It will also serve to inform and give me an understanding of your intentions