VCE Visual Communication Design

Unit 1 (Terms 1 & 2): Introduction to Visual Communication Design

This unit focuses on using visual language to communicate messages, ideas and concepts. This involves using design thinking skills as well as drawing skills to make messages, ideas visible.

Students practise drawing what they observe and they use visualisation drawing methods to explore their own ideas. Students develop an understanding of the importance of presentation drawings to clearly communicate their final visual communications.

Students develop an understanding of how design elements and principles affect visual messages and the way information and ideas are read and perceived. The broader context of the purpose of design is also investigated along with the three stages of the design process. Design knowledge is applied to folio work and a range of drawing skills are used to develop concepts.

Tasks covered in this Unit include:

  • Development of a visual communication folio that includes freehand and technical drawing tasks.
  • A variety of design elements and principles are explored through set drawing tasks.
  • Using the design process, students develop individual design concepts with resolutions demonstrated in final visual communications.
  • Students analyse current advertising visual communications.

Unit 2 (Terms 3 & 4): Applications of Visual Communication Design

This unit focuses on the application of visual communication design knowledge, design thinking skills and drawing methods to create visual communications to meet specific purposes in designated design fields.

Students use drawing methods that use technical drawing conventions to communicate ideas associated with environmental or industrial fields of design. Typography and imagery and how they are used are also investigated. Students further develop an understanding of the design process which helps to organise their thinking in relation to solving design problems. They present ideas in response to a brief which lead to final visual communications being made.

Tasks covered in this Unit include:

  • The design process is used by students in conjunction with a brief to build on their freehand, technical drawing and ICT skills in developing a visual communication folio with final solutions to set tasks.
  • Students further develop freehand drawing skills through observational drawing, demonstrating their knowledge of the design elements & principles.
  • Students use a variety of materials, methods and media throughout the production of their final visual communications.
  • Students analyse how historical and cultural factors influence visual communications.

Unit 3 (Terms 1 & 2): Design Thinking Practice

Students gain an understanding of the process designers use to structure their thinking and communicate ideas with clients, target audiences, other designers and specialists.

Through practical investigation and analysis of existing visual communications, students gain insight into how the selection of methods, media, materials and the application of design elements and principles can create effective visual communications for specific audiences and purposes.

Students establish a brief and apply design thinking skills through the design process. A client is identified and two distinctly different needs of that client, and the purpose, target audience, context and constraints relevant to each need are investigated.

Design from a variety of historical and contemporary design fields is considered by students to provide directions, themes or starting points for investigation and inspiration for their own work.

Tasks covered in this Unit include:

  • Students apply design thinking skills in preparing a brief, for a client and undertaking research and generate a range of ideas relevant to the brief.
  • Create visual communications for specific contexts, purposes and audiences that are informed by their analysis of existing visual communications.
  • Students describe how visual communications are designed and produced in the design industry and explain factors that influence these practices.

Unit 4 (Terms 3 & 4): Designing to a Brief

The focus of this unit is the development of design concepts and two final presentations of visual communications to meet the requirements of the brief completed in Unit 3.

Students continue the design process by developing and refining concepts for each need stated in the brief. A range of digital and manual two and three dimensional methods, media and materials are used. Students investigate how the application of design elements and principles create different communication messages with their target audience. Ongoing reflection and evaluation of design solutions against the brief assists students with keeping their ideas focused.

Students refine and present two visual communications within the parameters of the brief. They reflect and evaluate their visual communications and devise a pitch to communicate their design thinking and decision making to the client.

Tasks covered in this Unit include:

  • Development of distinctly different design concepts for each need, and select and refine for each need a concept that satisfies each of the requirements of the brief.
  • Students produce final visual communication presentations that satisfy the requirements of the brief.
  • Students devise a pitch to present and explain their visual communications to an audience and evaluate the visual communications against the brief.
  • Development of a range of design ideas using the design process.
  • Two final visual communication presentations which demonstrate creativity and technical competence in a range of materials and communication methods need to be completed.

Career Paths

Some possible career options relevant to Visual Communication Design:

  • Advertising executive
  • Architect
  • Cartoonist
  • Draftsperson
  • Desktop publisher
  • Display artist
  • Fashion designer
  • Film & television lighting operator
  • Graphic artist
  • Graphic designer
  • Illustrator
  • Interior designer
  • Model maker
  • Multimedia developer
  • Set/stage designer
  • Teacher
  • Textile designer
  • Theatrical costume maker & designer
  • Town planner
  • Visual merchandiser
  • Web designer/developer

Please note: This is only a brief listing of possible courses & Universities / TAFE institutions. If you wish to obtain further information about career opportunities in this field please do not hesitate to contact your Visual Communication Design teacher or Careers Advisor.