ArtCenter College of Design | Pasadena, California | Learn to Create. Influence Change.


Advertising majors should demonstrate innovative thinking with words and images to promote products or ideas through ads. Work should demonstrate a fresh, original way of looking at things, possibly incorporating humor or other means by which the public's attention is drawn to the ad. Your advertising portfolio work should be clean, clear and well presented, but spend the majority of your time coming up with interesting, sharp, original, I-never-would-have-thought-of-that ads. The quality of your thinking is more important than the finish.

If you have previous experience in advertising, submit 8 to 10 print advertising concepts. These should demonstrate your facility with both copy (words) and visuals. Include preliminary sketches demonstrating your idea-generation process. If you've worked in video or other media, include those as well.

If you have no previous experience in advertising, submit at least five pieces that demonstrate your ability to represent your ideas visually. In addition, we've created some assignments to help you demonstrate your potential for advertising. Select three or four assignments from suggestions below or submit assignments of your own devising. Create these through drawings, photography, photo-collage, digital images or any combination of these.

  1. Select one or more existing print ads and recreate them. Make them better.
  2. Create a print campaign that sells you to Art Center.
  3. Design a campaign to teach teens the importance of staying in school.
  4. Go to a hardware store and pick up 10 paint color chips. Cross out the names, and rename the colors. All the names must relate to sleep.

For instructions on submitting your work, follow the submission options in How to Submit Your Work.

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