Thank you for your interest in this offering through Otis College Extension. We are excited to partner with Otis College Extension to expand our offerings to you. Students will enroll, register, and pay all fees for these offerings through the Otis College Extension website. Upon completion of the certificate program, Otis College will provide a certificate of completion. Transcripts are available through the Otis College website.

Program Overview

Develop a well-rounded expertise with broad applications across professional digital art and design production with a certificate in Digital Imaging and Illustration from Otis Extension. Through art and design principles, conceptual thinking, and technical skills, you will develop content that can be applied to a range of industries, including advertising, illustration, animation, editorial, fine arts, motion graphics, and web/digital products. Upon completion of the program, you will be prepared to begin a career or enhance skills in the field of digital imaging and illustration. Learn from experienced professionals and artists, connect with a network of creatives, and receive career support, including career counseling, career assessment, internship advising, and employer networking opportunities. Ultimately, you will create a professional-quality portfolio demonstrating conceptual, design, and technical proficiency for entry-level positions in digital art and illustration fields.
Certificate Application
  • Money in hand icon

    Est. Tuition $9,090

  • Computer and user icon

    Learning Format Online

  • Analog clock icon

    Duration 1.5 - 2 years

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    Total Courses 18 Courses

Program Courses

Course Formats
Course Schedules are Subject to Change
2D Design What is good design? Line, space, balance, value, texture, perspective—these are just a few of the elements and principles that designers engage with to create strong design solutions. This course provides a thorough introduction to visual elements, language, and applications fundamental to 2-dimensional design. Through weekly assignments, students apply design principles using digital or traditional media. This course builds confidence in the design process for beginners and professionals by focusing on perception and thinking, historic and current references, and craftsmanship. Instruction includes design projects, online lectures, online discussion, process, and critique.
Color Theory and Design Color is emotional. A color resonates based on memory, cultural bias, and personal preference. Artists and designers alike communicate effectively through choice of hue, saturation, and value. In this course, knowledge and understanding of color are developed through weekly exercises and homework projects using gouache. Through lecture, demonstration, critique, and practical experience, students investigate color theory; color in the environment, and more.
Digital Design Tools: Media Whether your interest is in producing animated interactive media for the web or you’re all about print production, you need to start with the basics and become familiar with the digital tools of the trade. This hands-on course introduces students to various digital graphics software applications that are the industry standard for design professionals in areas of motion graphics and web design—Adobe Illustrator, Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Animate, and Adobe Dreamweaver.
Digital Drawing I: Illustrator The ability to produce vector graphics is a “must-have” skill for any modern artist or designer. Adobe Illustrator is the world’s leading vector graphics application used for producing professional quality logos, package design, signage and so much more. Students will be introduced to the basics of working with Illustrator to create compelling designs. This hands-on course introduces students to the basics of working with Illustrator to create compelling designs.
Digital Drawing II: Illustrator This course focuses on the exploration of advanced digital drawing techniques with Adobe Illustrator using the Macintosh. Various approaches to utilizing Adobe Illustrator’s tools are explored via lecture, guided hands-on tutorials, and homework projects. The course also offers instruction on effectively combining both vector and raster-based images into large-scale print projects. Students are challenged to combine their imagination with Adobe Illustrator to create real-world, professional, visually engaging, artistic solutions.
Digital Imaging I: Photoshop Photoshop isn’t just for photographers. Its multitude of applications makes it a go-to tool for most creative fields, small businesses, and savvy amateurs alike. In this hands-on course, students learn the Adobe Photoshop techniques used by professionals to create masterful images. Instruction covers all basic functions, including using palettes, various file formats, and more.
Digital Imaging II: Photoshop Take your Photoshop skills to the next level. This course advances the use of Adobe Photoshop for applications including post-production, illustration, graphic design, and digital art. Techniques include retouching and modifying; color correction; photo collage; scanning and importing images, and preparing for output.
Digital Imaging III: Photoshop This course is designed for students who have experience in digital image manipulation. Students have the opportunity to create original art using various programs. Instruction focuses on creating and editing images from input devices such as digital cameras, color scanners, and film scanners. Students learn publishing and layout techniques for various digital and print output options. The course offers real-world solutions for professionals and artists.
Digital Media Arts: Advanced Projects This course focuses on an integrated design approach while using a wide range of digital graphics software on the Macintosh. Students create images and designs for a cross-media marketing campaign including print, television, and the Internet. The primary emphasis is on the use of graphics software belonging to the Adobe Suite. Students gain knowledge of best practices and advanced techniques via lecture, guided hands-on tutorials, and homework assignments. This course is taught in the Otis computer lab and includes additional lab time on a sign-up basis at no additional cost.
Drawing and Composition Want to draw, but the blank page scares you? Then start here. Through demonstration, class exercises, and critiques, students in this beginning course learn the elements of drawing and composition. Elements include the contour line, perspective drawing, and positive versus negative space.
Final Portfolio: Digital Media Arts Curate your body of work and get your talent noticed in the marketplace. In this required course, advanced students enrolled in the Digital Media Arts certificate program create a portfolio from work produced throughout their course of study. The instructor provides individualized critique and guidance in technical and conceptual development. Students work independently and meet with the instructor on an agreed-upon basis, for a minimum of six half-hour sessions throughout the term.
Introduction to Graphic Design How do designers express ideas? Layout, typography, symbols, photography, and illustration are strategically combined to convey a message, tell a story, or distinguish a brand. Through weekly hands-on assignments and in-depth interactive discussions, students are introduced to a wide variety of topics in graphic design. Students explore the fundamentals of visual communication through the exploration of composition, imagery, and typography. Also covered are the creative process, curation, problem-solving, historic context, and career options. Students complete assignments digitally, by hand with traditional materials, or by combining both. This is an excellent course to begin working toward a professional graphic design portfolio.
Life Drawing Why draw from a photograph or magazine when you can draw from life itself? Observing and drawing the live model allows the artist to learn about proportions, foreshortening, light and shadow, and the fundamentals of drawing. This beginning/intermediate course places emphasis on the structure and proportion of the human form. Using a variety of drawing media, students are instructed in a gesture as well as long and short poses.
Media Literacy Don’t just consume media. Deconstruct, analyze, and evaluate what you see online or hear or in print to understand it. In this course, students look at the media through a historical lens and the cultural values presented from Medieval paintings to tomorrow’s deep fakes to understand the past, present, and future. Students explore its impact on daily life, questioning what is in the frame, how it is constructed, and what may have been intentionally or unintentionally left out of view. Through lectures, presentations, online dialogue with classmates and more, students develop an understanding of visual language and the ability to decode the symbols disseminated by media.
Quick Sketch Techniques Learn the tips, techniques, and maybe a trick or two to sketch like an animator or artist. This beginning/intermediate course focuses on quick-sketch methods used for conceptual design, capturing motion, visual documentation, and creative expression. Students try line drawing, scribble lines, gesture drawing, and more to effectively sketch both animate and inanimate objects. Instruction also includes exercises aimed at improving eye-hand coordination such as ambidextrous drawing and blind drawing.
Storyboarding for Film and Animation Storyboards help the designer, art director, producer, director, and client visualize a finished work. This course concentrates on translating a concept, idea, image or story into a sequenced visual format. Students develop knowledge and skills to create storyboards for advertising, feature films, television, animation, and game design. Under the guidance of instructor expertise, they develop all aspects of a concept, including characters, backgrounds, storytelling, and a final storyboard.