Course Syllabus

Superstudio, The Continuous Monument, 1969. Cut-and-pasted printed paper, colored pencil, and oil stick on board


Graphic Architecture Project II: Designing Images

Fall 2016
Instructor: Terri Chiao
Wednesdays, 9 – 11 am
505 Avery Hall



In this class, “Designing Images”, we consider the architectural image as a critical and personal tool of visual persuasion. With an emphasis on individual stylistic and conceptual development, we aim to foster each student’s visual voice through a series of diverse image-making exercises over the course of the full semester.

In the first part of the semester, students will complete weekly exercises focused on diagramming, photography, and collage. We will also work in series, producing image sets and zines or booklets. Assignments are structured to encourage exploration through play, experimentation, rigor, and critical thinking. Discussions and readings will center around abstraction, narrative, and image construction. In the second part of the semester, students will work on one multi-part, 5-week project culminating in the creation of an 8- to 16-page booklet that builds a visual story through images. Combining graphic narrative and physical book prototyping, we will create distinct visual experiences based on each students subject of choice.

In addition to weekly assignments and in-class pin-ups or individual crits, we discuss issues facing contemporary image-making through on-going class dialogue, short lectures, and relevant readings. Students will be evaluated based on quality of work, class participation (including active engagement with the work of fellow students), and attendance.

This is a full-semester class. Students do not need to take GAP I in order to enroll in this course.



Basic knowledge of Adobe Creative Suite.

Access to a printer. Most pin-ups will require students to print out their assignments.

Access to a camera. This can be any type of camera; digital SLR, phone camera, film camera, disposable camera, will all work fine.

Follow format guidelines for each assignment. Follow instructions for posting to tumblr (certain assignments may require posting to tumblr to “submit”.)

Attendance. Final grades will be largely determined by class participation and engagement with other students’ work. You WILL receive a failing grade if you have more than 3 unexcused absences. 3 unexcused tardies = 1 absence; 1 hour late or more is considered an absence.

Absolutely NO phone use in class.



Shooting Space: Architecture in Contemporary Photography
Elias Redstone, Phaidon, 2014

Clip, Stamp, Fold: The Radical Architecture of Little Magazines, 196X to 197X
Beatriz Colomina, Urtzi Grau, Actar, 2006

Envisioning Information
Edward Tufte, 1990

Understanding a Photograph
John Berger, Aperture, 2013

Ways of Seeing
John Berger, 1972

Structure of the Visual Book
Keith A. Smith, 1984

Grid Systems in Graphic Design
Josef Müller-Brockmann, 1981

The Changing of the Avant-Garde:
Visionary Architectural Drawings from the Howard Gilman Collection
The Museum of Modern Art, 2002

The Medium is the Massage: An Inventory of Effects
Marshall McLuhan, Quentin Fiore, 1967

Interaction of Color
Josef Albers, 1963,


Course Schedule

9/7 Introduction + Syllabus
Discussion: Designing Images
Assignment: Influences
Reading: “Ways of Seeing”, John Berger

9/14 In-Class Presentations: Influences
Discussion: Form / Counterform
Assignment: Form / Counterform (collage using colored paper)
Reading: “Two-Way Street: The Photography of Architecture,” Kate Bush
(from Shooting Space)

9/21 Pin-Up: Form / Counterform
Lecture: Construction
Assignment: Constructed Landscapes (set design and photography)
Reading: “Understanding a Photograph”, John Berger

9/28 Pin-Up: Constructed Landscapes
Lecture: Series
Assignment: Photographic Series (photography)
Reading: “Picture Relationships,” Keith A. Smith

10/5 Pin-Up: Photographic Series
Assignment: Typophoto (photography and typography)
Reading: “The Medium is the Massage”, Marshall McLuhan; “Typophoto”, Moholy-Nagy

10/12 Pin-Up: Typophoto
Lecture: Contrast
Assignment: Oppositions (digital or paper collage)
Reading: “Envisioning Flatland”, Edward Tufte

10/19 Pin-Up: Oppositions
Assignment: Oppositions + Invention (digital or paper collage)
Reading: “Layering and Separation,” Edward Tufte

10/26 Pin-Up: Oppositions + Invention
Lecture: Archizines
Assignment: Archizines (printed booklet)
“Clip, Stamp, Fold: The Radical Architecture of Little Magazines 196X to 197X,”
Beatriz Colomina (Introduction only; although do peruse the rest of the book :)

11/2 Individual Crits
Reading: “Grid and Design Philosophy,” Josef Müller-Brockmann (optional)

11/9 Small Group Crits

11/16 Small Group Crits

11/23 Small Group Crits

11/30 Final Review with Guest Critics


Submitting to the Class Tumblr

For certain assignments, you will be required to post your images to the class tumblr. Please follow instructions each time you submit. This is an experiment to test the viability of this system, so please feel free to give any feedback or suggestions to improve the experience.

Logging In

Go to
Login with Email Address:
Password: 505Avery
Username is designingimages
Web Address: or

Making a Post

Once logged in, click on the large blue pencil icon in the upper-right corner of the home screen.
Select the type of media you want to post (in most cases it will be “Photo”).
Follow instructions for posting photos.
Before submitting, be sure to add captions and hashtags to identify / archive the image:

Add Caption:
Artist’s Name/s, Title of Image, Year [with hyperlink to the source where you found it]
Medium (if applicable)

Add Required Hashtags (each individual tag should have no spaces; add’l tags are optional):
#ArtistName #medium #postedbyyourname

Logout when you are done.


Course Summary:

Date Details