Whenever the phrase graphic design is uttered, most people conjure up images of sharp logos, popular ad campaigns or cleverly-styled packaging. However, at its core, graphic design is the practical art of knowing how to communicate through image and type. This is the foundation that students gain when they take part in a graphic design workshop at TUMO. Where these skills take them, or really where the students take these skills, is entirely up to them.

Like all workshops at TUMO, there are three levels: beginner, intermediate and advanced. For those poor souls out there who aren’t in the know, we’ll take a moment to give you a more detailed account:

Level I

The seeds of curiosity related to graphic design are first planted here. In level 1, students learn how to use Illustrator and explore 2D graphics, becoming familiar with the field’s jargon as well as how to interpret reality through graphics.

Level II

The Greeks may have defined love in six categories, but we’re certain they overlooked that special love that’s borne from seeing a perfectly created typeface or minimalist logo design. So it’s only fitting that students in level 2, already armed with this love and a basic understanding of graphic design, are itching to learn more. Here they start to understand what impact the right typeface or image can have on the overall product while learning to use Photoshop to communicate their ideas.

Level III

This is where the whole picture comes together. Students, armed with a command of both Photoshop and Illustrator, are able to use their skills to create their own merchandising products ranging from tote bags to stickers. TUMO students also learn about the visual guidelines used by companies and create their own for an imaginary company.

Skills gained in the permanent graphic design workshops are complemented by TUMO learning labs led by visiting, international professionals. The goal of the workshops and learning labs isn’t to mint new graphic designers, but to give teens an understanding of how the industry works, to gain skills and insight into a new way of thinking that they can take with them in their future. These abilities are useful whether they become a lead graphic designer or simply find the need to think outside the beautifully designed box from time to time. After all, TUMO students are responsible for deciding what to do with the skills they’ve gained; where they go is half the fun.