This course is an introduction to key concepts and principles of two dimensional design. The emphasis of this course is the development of critical thinking skills as they apply to two dimensional art forms. In a sequence of hands-on exercises and projects, students are introduced to the concept of the picture plane, figure/ground relationships, scale and proportional transformation, composition, value, and color. Design issues will be explored primarily through making and augmented by readings, in class discussions, and artists’ slideshows. Regular slide lectures and critiques are structured informally to encourage dialog and to provide the student with an opportunity to translate visual evidence into words. Readings and lectures emphasize a critical analysis of the visual field and incorporate topics like artist’s manifestos, data visualization, and poster design. Students are encouraged to develop their own design vocabulary and repertoire of practical techniques.