Graphic design group offers collective learning opportunities

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The new Graphic Design Group on campus held its debut meeting last Wednesday after receiving an enthusiastic virtual response from the campus community. The group was founded as a collaboration center for students interested in learning the basics of graphic design software, a skill set not explicitly addressed in any course offered at Swarthmore.

Sola Park ’14, founder of the new group, said she received many e-mails both expressing interest and offering technical support following her post on the Reserved Students Digest a couple weeks ago. As an informal club, the group has no official tutor or advisor, and so students rely on the background work of the four organizers who commit themselves to learning aspects of a given program before instructional meetings are held. Additionally, Justin Crowell of the ITS department has agreed to provide help and guidance as needed. Meeting times and places are determined on a weekly basis.

Park, who started the group with a desire to learn the basics of graphic design software, admits that she is one of the least knowledgeable members thus far. “We are dealing with people coming from very different levels,” Park said. However, the structure of the group seems to promise successful accommodation of students with all different skill sets. Each meeting will begin with a video tutorial, followed by working through examples of different software functions as a group. Students will be set loose on their own projects after having a grasp on the lesson of the day, and will work with a weekly theme to help unify and inspire their creative efforts. Those with more experience will be encouraged to proceed directly to their projects.

Members are starting with the basics – layering on Photoshop is this week’s lesson – and progressing from there. Park hopes to eventually cover Photoshop, Illustrator and InDesign. Once the group becomes more advanced in its collective skill level, it may look for formal funding from the college to purchase more high-tech software.

For more information on the group, email Sola at or swing by the computer lab on the third floor of McCabe at 8:00 p.m. this Saturday.

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