The online Digital Arts Certificate programs help you build creativity and technique in traditional drawing and digital illustration. Digital imaging software, color theory, traditional drawing, and digital illustration techniques are all explored at the Professional Certificate level. When you complete a Digital Arts online college certificate program, you will have a portfolio of creative work.
The Professional Certificate program features basic and advanced training in Adobe Illustrator that addresses Illustrator's learning curve and helps you create sophisticated vector graphics and vector drawings. Students also take traditional drawing classes and digital illustration classes that refine their illustration skills in a range of styles and media. Advanced Certificate students take these skills a step further with concentrations in digital photography, fine arts, or other visual arts disciplines.
The goal of the Digital Arts Certificate program is to develop your fundamental technical and creative skills in drawing, composition, and digital illustration. In the program, you will build the technical, creative/visual/expressive and critical foundation that is required of entry-level professional work and beyond.
- Digital Imaging
- Your work will demonstrate entry-level professional Photoshop skills and effective decisions in selecting and editing images. You will be able to improve images for professional publication by retouching and correction, and create realistic or imaginative images by compositing or collage.
- You will develop distinctive color palettes based on the principles of color harmony. Your work will exhibit a sophisticated use of color and contrast, the ability to research colors and make choices that are appropriate for each client and project
- Vector Art
- You will develop entry-level professional skills in creating vector art illustrations in Illustrator, using shape drawing and freehand drawing/tracing tools, Pen tool, type tools, and basic effects. You will be able to create simple, stylized logos, icons, and illustrations for effective visual communication.
- Basic Drawing
- You will be able to create basic line drawings using pencil and paper following the principles of perspective and proportion. You will be able to identify and draw positive and negative space in a drawing subject.
- Advanced Vector Art
- You will develop an expanded range of skills in Illustrator for creating photo-realistic illustrations, complex patterns, and richly illustrated designs. You will be able to use color sampling, meshes, blends, masks, 3D tools, and tiles to create both realistic and stylized artwork.
- Intermediate Drawing
- You will develop drawing skills that show the ability to analyze a subject, represent realistic form and perspective, manipulate value and color, and reflect contemporary stylistic approaches. Your work will be informed by subject, lighting, color, and media choices.
- Vector Illustration
- You will be able to create straightforward, clear, balanced, and stylized icons, sequential illustrations, logos, and editorial illustrations using Illustrator’s shape tools, freehand drawing tools, and classic illustration techniques. Your work will show an ability to communicate complex graphic and editorial concepts in digital form.
- OUTLINELevel 1
- Photoshop Basics
- Color Theory
- Illustrator Basics
- Intro to Drawing
- Illustrator Advanced
- Drawing I
- Digital Illustration Advanced
This program consists of seven required modules. Module descriptions are as follows:
- Adobe Photoshop is the premiere image manipulation tool for print design, Web design, and photography. It’s a must-know if you’re planning to work with photos or design projects at any level.
- This six-lesson course starts you off with the basics of the Photoshop interface and quickly gets you working on hands-on projects based on real-world design scenarios. You’ll learn to choose and use the best techniques for common Photoshop jobs including selecting and isolating objects, creating image composites, masking and vignetting images, setting typography, and improving images with retouching and effects.
- You can learn to tame this creative powerhouse of a program. Working with course developer Andrew Shalat’s stunning images and your own photos, you’ll discover how to create sophisticated graphics with surprisingly simple techniques and an efficient imaging workflow. Master the technical fundamentals to unleash your creativity as an artist or designer.
- Color is probably the most relative medium in art. Each color has a specific property, whether it’s the particular wavelength in optical perception, the molecular construction of pigments or an RGB value for a monitor. Though each of those properties may be fixed, the expression and perception of a color may change within different contexts.
- Understanding color requires that you understand its systems, interaction—even a bit of physics and psychology! This course deals with the abstract language of color. We’ll discuss basic color principles, terminology, and applications, with an emphasis on manipulating color. This course also deals with practical application of color, from applying color legibly to typography to using color effectively on-screen.
- Adobe Illustrator is a powerful and versatile tool for creating illustrations, logos, and graphics for print and the Web. By tapping the power of vector software, you can produce detailed and scalable art for almost any application.
- In this 6-lesson course, you’ll build a solid foundation in Adobe Illustrator, learning from a master teacher. You’ll start with a tour of important menus, tools, and panels, then explore selection tools, drawing tools, layers, the Pen tool (a lesson unto itself) as well as transformations/distortions, type tools, and modifying paths and shapes.
- Hands-on class projects will include a robot, a CD cover, photo tracing, a postcard, a bus ad, and a visual identity. You’ll be surprised how quickly you begin to master this challenging but rewarding software application.
Intro to Drawing
- Think drawing is a gift that has to come naturally? You might be surprised to see learn that drawing is a skill that can be developed with practice.
- This 3-lesson course provides a thorough and engaging introduction to drawing. Students learn how to draw with proper techniques, learning how to represent what they see through studies in contour drawing, perspective, positive/negative space, and value. By the end of the course, students will capture a complex still life.
- Drawing gives you a deeper understanding of any subject you are trying to capture as an artist or designer. As you progress through the exercises in this class, you will develop a better understanding of the forms you are observing and become more skillful in representing those forms.
- Adobe Illustrator puts any conceivable vector art objective at your fingertips. But most digital designers only scratch the surface of Illustrator. To make a splash, one must delve deeper.
- If you’ve mastered the basics in Illustrator and you’re ready for the next level, this course is for you. Move beyond the prickly Pen tool to explore gradient meshes, symbols, graphic styles, effects, and exciting features like 3D, Recolor Artwork, and Image Trace. An industry-leading professional will guide you through projects you never knew Illustrator was capable of.
- In this challenging hands-on course, you’ll create photo-realistic illustrations, complex patterns, rich designs, and learn how to speed your efforts with helpful workflow features. You’ll build on your existing Illustrator skills to tackle high-end projects with depth, dimension, and wow-power.
- Many people are afraid to draw, but the truth is that drawing is not as hard as it seems. If you can relax, get your mind around the task, and begin to understand what you see, you can draw.
- In this 6-lesson course, you’ll learn how to analyze what you see in the world around you and communicate it on paper. Through hands-on projects, and guided by a professional artist, you will explore the critical concepts of line, mass, form, perspective, value, and composition, building a solid foundation for all your art and design work. You will also delve into complex drawing techniques involving value, color, and contemporary stylistic approaches.
- And most importantly, you’ll also discover that drawing can be fun. Did you know that spheres have inner edges? Or why artists measure with their thumbs? Grab your charcoal and chalk pastels… this course is your first step to developing your craft as an artist.
Digital Illustration Advanced
- Digital illustration is a challenging and expressive area of graphic design. Working in Illustrator, you can develop your unique personal style as an artist.
- In this 6-lesson course, you’ll learn advanced illustration and Adobe Illustrator techniques for communicating your creative concepts.
- Through detailed, step-by-step lectures, you’ll learn how a professional illustrator approaches creating editorial illustrations, icons, retro poster designs, 3D illustrations, and restaurant identity designs.
- Open-ended projects will help you develop portfolio-quality illustrations. You’ll develop your own style and artistic flair, making your work more powerful and distinctive.
- Operating System: PC (Windows XP/Vista/7) or Mac (OS X or later)
- Internet connection (high-speed recommended) and email capabilities
- Adobe Photoshop CS6 or CC and Adobe Illustrator CS6 or CC
- Digital camera for photographing drawing work
- Basic drawing supplies including pencils and sketch paper. The Intro to Drawing and Drawing I courses within this program will provide specifics and a discount code for an online art supply site.
- Program Concentrations may involve additional requirements.
*SOFTWARE IS NOT INCLUDED IN THE COST OF THIS PROGRAM.*
*Upon registering, you’re given an initial 24 weeks to complete this program. Should you need more time beyond the 24 weeks, extensions of $25 per month are available. Students using VA benefits should refer to the Military page of our site to review the differences between online program access and VA rates of pursuit.