By: Jayme Fisher
According to my.eastern’s course description, Computer Graphics (FAPA-160) is “designed to provide the basic skills necessary for the successful use of an industry standard graphics program, Adobe Photoshop and is specifically intended for the inexperienced student.”
Computer Graphics is one of my favorite classes at Eastern University. The sole purpose of the class is to teach you how to use Adobe Photoshop. Thus, this is not like most classes held on campus.
I took it during the spring semester of my freshman year, and I am so glad I did. As someone who is pursuing a communication degree and will hopefully work in this field, knowing how to use Photoshop well is an incredible skill to have in my toolbox.
When I took the class, it was taught by Vicky Huang, however, now it is taught by Rebecca Quinn. The class focuses on the basics of computer-based image sourcing and creation, manipulation and use of special effects. The goal is to create familiarity with resources and skills needed for designing, drafting and editing projects within Adobe Photoshop.
The class focuses on basic design concepts like unity, balance, rhythm and color and how they can be integrated into projects. The course’s design is to increase skills for those who have some experience with Photoshop and offer a solid introduction to those who are inexperienced.
The class material starts off very simple and easy to grasp. This is because Adobe Photoshop is a complex and overwhelming software to someone who knows nothing about it. My professor started by teaching us the basics and assigned simple projects that would enforce each of these concepts.
Beginner concepts in the class were things like creating shadows, manipulating lighting or changing the color of someone’s shirt. I remember specifically when there was an assignment where we had an image of a man looking at a giraffe. Our assignment was to change the color of the man’s coat and change the color of the giraffe. Looking at it now, that is a very simple task, but at the time, I was struggling to get it done.
The projects would progress into things like combining images together. For example, I needed to have two images: one where I liked the sky and another where I liked the land portion of the photograph. Huang taught us how to combine two images, so I was able to make the beach in Florida look like it had the Northern Lights.
Another project we did was one that focused on manipulating one image. We took an image of a purple and pink sneaker and split the image apart and made it look like it blended into paint. This project was really challenging because we had to break apart an image and then blend each part into what looked like paint.
I absolutely loved this course and I would recommend it to a friend. It taught me how to use complex software and add a valuable skill to my resume. Computer graphics will be offered for the upcoming spring semester with two different sections. Section one is Thursdays 4:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. while section two is Thursdays 7:15 p.m. to 9:45 p.m. You should definitely take this class!