Course Descriptions

The classes listed below are not necessarily offered every term. For current class schedules, or to register, select Register Now .

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  • ACN-446W

    Designing Pop-Up Books Wksp

    In this 10-week workshop, you will explore 3D paper engineering mechanisms used in the publishing world - from children's pop-up books, pull tabs and novelty board books to pop-up greeting cards and fine art installation environments. Learn techniques and mechanisms to create movement with paper from 2D to 3D, and animate your ideas using paper as your surface and tool. Develop a concept proposal or dummy book ready for submission to your specific genre. Pre-press production and publishing submission requirements will also be covered. Skills learned can be applied to a range of disciplines including entertainment, illustration, graphic design, fine art, product, and environmental design.


    Class regularly offered in Fall and Summer

  • ACN-038

    Intro to Communication Sketch.

    Learn how to put ideas to paper quickly and convincingly in this intensive class. Drawing techniques covered in this course will enable you to handle a variety of subjects and everyday objects, including products, appliances, office equipment, furniture and materials such as wood, metals, plastics and glass. Emphasis is on mastering basic forms - such as cubes, spheres and cylinders - to produce attractive drawings. Mediums used will include pencil, pen, felt marker and pastel. Acquired skills are appropriate for students interested in industrial design.

    2 units

    Class regularly offered in Fall, Spring and Summer

  • ACN-060

    Intro to Environmental Design

    This foundation course introduces the broad range of possibilities within environmental design through a series of projects. Environmental design focuses on a holistic and experiential approach to designing experiences, spaces, objects and images. Projects will range in scope from the design of overall immersive spaces to the detailed elements that define them, focusing on the design and integration of furniture, lighting, materials and graphics. The development of basic skills in concept development and visual communication (including drawings, models and other media) will be covered. Weekly presentations and lectures on significant artists, designers and architects will also take place. Visiting design professionals will provide tangible insight into career paths within environmental design.

    2 units

    Class regularly offered in Fall, Spring and Summer

  • ACN-450

    Intro to Rhino 3D

    As the most versatile 3D modeling tool, Rhinoceros 3D can do it all. This software's flexible and easy-to-adapt tool set makes the learning process fun and extremely intuitive. Unlike surface modelers, Rhino uses NURBS to create fast and accurate geometry which allows you to focus on design and not worry about surface inconsistencies. Course will provide enough information to start modeling in Rhino and utilize its Grasshopper visual programming language for extensive parametric capabilities.

    Prerequisite: Digital Design 1 or by permission of an ArtCenter advisor.

    2 units

    Class regularly offered in Fall and Spring

  • ACN-457W

    Model Making Basics

    This 7-week course will introduce you to the fundamentals of architectural model making as it relates to the field of Environmental Design. Emphasis will be on manual and analog techniques using modeling supplies such as Foam-Core, balsa wood, cardboard, styrene, etc.) Designed for those who have little or no background in model making, this course will cover basics and proceed to an intermediate level. Through assignments and work in class, you will complete two simple study maquettes: one small white study model and one detailed color model.

    1 unit

    Class regularly offered in Fall and Summer

  • ACN-106


    Increase your understanding of 3D perception and linear perspective systems. Through a series of exercises, develop your technical skills and improve your ability to simulate 3D space on a 2D plane. Theories explored in class apply to traditional and digitally generated images. Primary applications are to illustration and to industrial and environmental design. A foundation course for many majors.

    Transferable for Illustration majors (see REGISTRATION INFO-COURSE CREDIT for details).

    3 units

    Class regularly offered in Fall, Spring and Summer

  • ACN-386

    Product Design 1

    Product Design 1 will focus on the main elements and processes in compressed form that make up a product design experience from start to finish. This will include basic sketching, composition, personal branding and presentation. Focus will also be put on brainstorming techniques (open your mind in attitude and exploration), iconography, infographics, storyboards and methods to protect IP. Emphasis will be placed on research and integrating study models into the final project. All work will also be presented in a process book at the end of the term.

    Prerequisite: Product Design: Basics and Product Design: Process. Concurrent enrollment in ACN-076 Intro to ID Modeling is recommended but not required.

    Transferable for prospective Product Design majors with grade of B or better.*

    3 units

    Class regularly offered in Fall and Spring

  • ACN-561W

    Protect/Sell/License Your Work

    The Legal Side of What to Do and How
    This intensive seminar covers a full range of intellectual property issues, including the language used in contracts that affects the license, sale and creation of designs and other original works. This course will cover: the basics of copyright law; fair use and copyright defenses; trademark law and registration; maintaining trademark rights and avoiding infringements; and patent law. Other topics include: privacy and publicity; legal clearance issues that affect your work; and a variety of contracts and contract clauses necessary to make the most of your business opportunities. Learn the best avenues of protection for the type of work you have produced. Bring in a sample of your work, and we will practice filing a copyright application, searching the availability of a trademark and filing a trademark application.


    Class regularly offered in Spring and Summer