Preamble

  • Course Title: The Business of Web and Multimedia Design
  • Professor: Roy Vanegas
  • Location: 27 W 23rd St, Rm 336
  • Dates: 2 Feb 2017 – 11 May 2017
  • Days: Thursdays
  • Time: 6:15 PM – 9:15 PM
  • Email Address: roy period vanegas at touro period edu

Description

The goal of this course is to prepare graduate students for a career in design, whether for print or web. This course’s emphasis is on clarifying, articulating, and identifying each student’s career goals through exercises, research, and discussion. These concepts will be elucidated through student activities, such as creating a business and audience profile, producing an identity, developing marketing materials, and planning your résumé and/or portfolio. You will acquire a basic understanding of the requirements for building a small design business, possibly including the completion of an application for registering your business name and/or registering a web domain.

You will participate in discussions and act as members of a design team, contributing to and learning from critiques of your work and the work of your peers. You will learn to articulate your interests, personal style, and design and technical skills. Basic job-hunting techniques will be covered — with an emphasis on locating design jobs — including interviewing, networking, approaching and working with clients, estimating projects, insurance, copyright protection and more.

Topics Covered

  • Overview of the Industry
    • Trends
    • Companies at the Forefront
  • The Business
    • Copyright
      • Traditional
      • Creative Commons
    • Tax Basics
    • Insurance
    • Marketing
  • Marketing
    • Your Business
    • Yourself
      • Generalist
      • Specialist
  • Networking
    • Web Communities
      • Meetups
      • Listservs/Groups
    • Design Organization Chapters
  • Freelancing
    • Starting a Freelance Design Business
    • Feast or Famine: Preparing for Unemployment
  • Managing Clients, Employers, and Yourself
  • Setting Up and Starting Your Own Studio
  • Business and Client Profiles
  • Résumés and Portfolios for Designers and Portfolios for Designers
  • Generating Portfolio Projects
  • Informational Interviews (group projects)
  • Finding Work
  • Showing Your Work
  • In-House Design Departments
  • Design Studios
  • Project Management
  • Branding
    • Your Business Name and Identity
    • Logo
    • Invoice Creation
    • Website Design to Showcase Your Work
  • Portfolio
    • Boosting it with Internships
    • Boosting it with Volunteering

Prerequisite

The only prerequisite for this course is Web and Applications Technology I (WMMN 602), formerly Introduction to Web and Mobile Application Technologies, and Multimedia Tools before that.

Objectives

  • Understand the web and interactive design industry
  • Understand the role of the designer within the community and the responsibility that lies therein
  • Utilize the findings of the class to support and guide career goals, skills, strengths and weaknesses
  • Develop an online portfolio
  • Demonstrate excellence in presentation of a finished portfolio for use in obtaining a job
  • Learn the art of creating a personal brand and online identity
  • Understand how to present yourself to the industry and market your skills

Schedule

  • Where: 27 W 23rd St, Rm 336
  • Day: Thursday
  • Dates: 2 February 2017 – 11 May 2017
  • Time: 6:15 PM – 9:15 PM

Note: There is no class on 13 April and 20 April.

WeekTopicsHomework
1
  • Cover syllabus
  • About Freelancing
  • Your freelance/business identity
  • Using the Google Group for this course
  1. Purchase the books listed under the Textbooks section below.
  2. Watch Randy Pausch’s Time Management lecture on YouTube.
  3. Listen to NPR’s Stand Up, Walk Around, Even Just For ‘20 Minutes’ broadcast.
  4. Write down a list of your personal pros and cons relating to a professional career as a freelancer.
  5. Write down five qualities that make you/your design service special. Be prepared to explain how you might communicate those qualities through your logo.
2
  • Time management
  • Branding
  • Using grids in your digital designs
  • Using grids in your web designs
  • Domain name search and acquisition
  1. Begin designing your brand: logo, stationery (including business cards), and web site.
  2. Write a business/freelance profile in one paragraph. Think elevator pitch. What qualities are unique to the way you work, design, come up with ideas, interact with people?
  3. Write an audience profile in one paragraph. Who will your clients be? Be prepared to discuss.
3
  • Branding and design Q&A
  • Setting yourself up as a freelancer
  • Discuss presentations for next week
  1. Read Chapter 1, Professional Relationships, in Graphics Artists Guild Handbook: Pricing & Ethical Guidelines, 14th Edition, pages 1 – 16.
  2. Read Chapter 2, Legal Rights & Issues, in Graphics Artists Guild Handbook: Pricing & Ethical Guidelines, 14th Edition, pages 18 – 45.
  3. Begin preparing your presentation for next week.
4
  • Midterm presentations
  1. Read Chapter 3, Professional Issues, in Graphics Artists Guild Handbook: Pricing & Ethical Guidelines, 14th Edition, pages 46 – 61.
  2. Read Chapter 4, Technology Issues, in Graphics Artists Guild Handbook: Pricing & Ethical Guidelines, 14th Edition, pages 63 – 78.
5
  • Discuss readings
  • Discuss thesis protocol
  • Discuss your hourly worth
  1. Read Chapter 5, Essential Business Practices, in Graphics Artists Guild Handbook: Pricing & Ethical Guidelines, 14th Edition, pages 80 – 117.
  2. Read Chapter 6, Standard Contracts & Business Tools, in Graphics Artists Guild Handbook: Pricing & Ethical Guidelines, 14th Edition, pages 118 – 131.
  3. Be aware of your thesis duties by asking the following questions, answers to which we’ll discuss in class:
    • Who will be your thesis advisor?
    • Can you choose a thesis advisor?
    • What is expected of the student?
    • Does someone need to sign off on your final thesis project?
    • Are there any restrictions?
    • Will the final thesis project be archived on the web or elsewhere?
    • Will your work be shown in a public or semi-public forum?
6
  • Calculate your worth using real figures for both fixed price contracts (per project) and time and materials (per hour). Remember to price in ad hoc loading. Refer to chapter 3 in Burke.
  • Working efficiently.
    • UNIX shell
    • Keyboard shortcuts
  • Backing up your data.
    • RAID
    • Scripts
    • Software (Backblaze, Time Machines, etc)
  1. Read Chapter 7, Salaries & Trade Customs, in Graphics Artists Guild Handbook: Pricing & Ethical Guidelines, 14th Edition, pages 132 – 140.
  2. Read Chapter 8, Graphic Design Prices & Trade Customs, in Graphics Artists Guild Handbook: Pricing & Ethical Guidelines, 14th Edition, pages 142 – 186.
  3. Web site must be up in beta status by next class, and ready by the last class for your presentations.
  4. Prove that you’ve adopted a back up scheme. A screen shot from your computer running your backup software or a receipt from a product you’re using will suffice.
7
  • Course summary thus far
  • Watch Helvetica (2007)
  1. Read Chapter 9, Web/Interactive Design & Other Digital Graphic Arts, in Graphics Artists Guild Handbook: Pricing & Ethical Guidelines, 14th Edition, pages 188 – 211.
  2. Read Chapter 10, Illustration Prices & Trade Customs, in Graphics Artists Guild Handbook: Pricing & Ethical Guidelines, 14th Edition, pages 212 – 257.
  3. Some designers use only a handful of type faces for the duration of their careers, while others embrace myriad fonts in their work. Take a stance. Prepare to discuss it in class.
  4. With respect to type, the designer Wim Crouwel says, “The meaning is in the content of the text, not the type face.” Do you agree?
  5. At which point in the 20th century does design and typography in media change?
  6. The movie suggests that Helvetica represented social change? How, specifically?
  7. Politically speaking, what does Helvetica represent to designers after 1957?
  8. Why was Helvetica so important to type face design in the 50s?
8
  • Quiz 1
  • Discuss typography
  • Discuss copyright law
  1. Watch lectures 1 and 2 from MIT’s Introduction to Copyright Law
9
  • Web site review
  1. Read Chapter 1, Considering Freelancing?, in Burke’s The Principles of Successful Freelancing, pages 1 – 16.
  2. Read Chapter 2, Prepare for the Transition, in Burke’s The Principles of Successful Freelancing, pages 17 – 40.
  3. Read Chapter 3, Manage Your Money, in Burke’s The Principles of Successful Freelancing, pages 41 – 66.
10
  • Quiz 2
  • Discuss readings.
  1. Read Chapter 4, Set Yourself Up, in Burke’s The Principles of Successful Freelancing, pages 67 – 88.
  2. Read Chapter 5, Win the Work, in Burke’s The Principles of Successful Freelancing, pages 89 – 116.
  3. Read Chapter 6, Give Great Service, in Burke’s The Principles of Successful Freelancing, pages 117 – 136.
11
  • Watch Objectified (2009)
  1. Read Chapter 7, Achieve Work-Life Balance, in Burke’s The Principles of Successful Freelancing, pages 137 – 156.
  2. Read Chapter 8, Where to from Here?, in Burke’s The Principles of Successful Freelancing, pages 157 – 178.
12
  • Course review
  • Possible museum visit
  1. Prepare your final presentations for next week.
13
  • Final presentations
  1. None, of course.

Textbooks

The Principles of Successful Freelancing

[Cover image of The Principles of Successful Freelancing.]
Edition: 1
Author: Miles Burke
ISBN 13: 9780980455243

The first graphical web browser was released in 1993. Miles Burke began web-based freelancing a year later. He discusses his first hand experience in the freelance world with tips and advice on how to survive as a freelancer.

Download the templates from The Principles of Successful Freelancing.


Graphic Artist’s Guild Handbook of Pricing and Ethical Guidelines

[Cover image of Graphic Artist’s Guild Handbook of Pricing and Ethical Guidelines.]
Edition: 14
Author: Graphic Artists Guild
ISBN 10: 0932102166

In its fourteenth edition, Graphic Artist’s Guild Handbook of Pricing and Ethical Guidelines is the bible when it comes to work and decorum in the design field.

Grading Guidelines

Your grade for this course will be computed on the basis of two quizzes and two presentations. Each quiz is worth 20 points of your grade (20 × 2 = 40) and each presentation will be worth 30 points (30 × 2 = 60). Grades will not be curved. Your final letter grade is converted from a numerical grade based on the following table.

Numerical RangeGrade
97 – 100A+
93 – 96A
90 – 92A-
87 – 89B+
83 – 86B
80 – 82B-
77 – 79C+
73 – 76C
70 – 72C-
68 – 69D+
66 – 67D
65D-
Below 65F

The following is quoted verbatim from the college’s policy on grading.

Grades will be based primarily on exams, exercises and assignments, review of independent projects, attendance and class participation.

Completed projects will be graded using the following criteria: comprehension of the material, technical proficiency in using tools and techniques, project planning, design concept, executions, quality control, and a demonstration of aeasthetic development. Each project deadline must be respected.

All projects will be turned in through Blackboard unless otherwise notified by the instructor. At the end of the course, all assignments will be assembled and turned into the instructor on a CD.

Attendance Policy

Students are expected to maintain good attendance throughout the course. Three absences will automatically lower the student grade by one point and each additional absence will lower the grade by an additional point. Lack of attendance may result in a failing grade. The professor will contact students who miss more than two classes. (Special arrangements must be requested in writing and signed by the professor.)

Make-Up Policy

Projects and homework must be turned in through Blackboard on time, otherwise the grade will be lowered or no credit will be given for the assignments. Class exercises must be done during class.

Missed Classes

You are responsible for the acitvities of each class period. If you anticipate a scheduling conflict, feel free to submit projects early. If you cannot take an exam on the scheduled day, contact the professor ahead of time to schedule a makeup exam. Students who miss classes must get necessary material from the instructor.

Academic Dishonesy

Plagiarism and cheating are serious offenses and may be punished by failure on exam, paper, or project; or failure in the course. For more information, refer to the “Academic Dishonesty” policy in the university handout.

Resources

School-related Links

Current Students
http://legacy.touro.edu/gst/wmm/CurrentStudents.asp
RSS Feed of WMM-related Events
http://legacy.touro.edu/gst/wmm/rss/events.xml
The Master of Arts in Web & Multimedia Design Program
http://legacy.touro.edu/gst/wmm/ourprogram.asp

Trade Organizations

Graphics Artists Guild
http://www.graphicartistsguild.org/
American Institute of Graphic Arts (AIGA)
http://www.aiga.org
Special Interest Group on Computer Graphics (SIGGRAPH) and Interactive Techniques
http://www.siggraph.org/
Society of Illustrators
http://www.societyillustrators.org/
Leonardo: Art, Science, and Technology
http://www.leonardo.info/
International Association of Printing House Craftsmen (IAPHC)
http://www.iaphc.org/
The Society of Publication Designers
http://www.spd.org/
International Institute for Information Design
http://www.iiid.net

Small Business Resources

Department of State, New York, Filing for a Certificate of Assumed Name
http://www.dos.ny.gov/corps/buscorp.html#assume
Empire State Development’s Division for Small Business
http://www.esd.ny.gov/SmallBusiness.html
LegalZoom: Online Legal Document Services
http://www.legalzoom.com/

Printers

Modern Postcard
http://www.modernpostcard.com/
Overnight Prints
http://www.overnightprints.com/
On Demand Printing
http://www.ondemandprinting.com/
Bargain Printing
http://www.bargainprinting.com/
48 Hour Print
www.48hourprint.com/

Jobs

Aquent (worldwide freelance and permanent employment agency)
http://www.aquent.com
Printjobs.com (placement and recruiting firm)
http://www.printjobs.com
Simply Hired
http://www.simplyhired.com/

Reference

Design Observer (writings about design and culture)
http://designobserver.com/archives/

Sellers of Portfolios and Presentation Cases

AI Friedman
http://www.aifriedman.com/
Dick Blick Art Materials (in NOHO)
http://www.dickblick.com/stores/newyork/newyork/
Get Smart Products
http://www.pfile.com
Lee’s Art Shop
http://www.leesartshop.com/
Master Graphics
http://www.mastergraphics.com/
Pearl Paint
http://www.pearlpaint.com/shop-Portfolios_0_3999.html
Portfolios and Art Cases
http://www.portfolios-and-art-cases.com
Sam FLAX New York
http://www.samflaxny.com/
Utrecht Art & Drafting Supply
http://www.utrechtart.com/

Contact

I’ve almost entirely abandoned email. If you have questions, see me in person. My office hours are by appointment only, but I can always meet with you before class. If you must do email, and have patience waiting for a response, I may be contacted on roy period vanegas at touro period edu.