Duration
8 Months (2 trimesters)
Locations
Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane
Fees
Intake Dates

February, June, September

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International

CRICOS 085007A

JMC welcomes from all over the world.
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Technology is moving fast and society is changing with it. If you’re passionate about all things visual and the impact design has on people and culture, this course is for you.

At the Diploma level, explore the fundamentals of graphic design and the technical skills required to create aesthetically appealing messaging. Then delve into the design process, from research, ideation, sketching and prototyping, to implementation and watch your work come to life.

Removed from traditional classroom learning, you’ll enjoy working within a design-studio environment. Tackle creative briefs, sketch ideas on paper and create quick prototypes for testing with a realized digital outcome. Learn the processes involved with creating compelling user experiences, and utilize different tools and tech to help you make it.

Why Study Design at JMC?

Go beyond graphic design into the world of digital and user experience
Be futureproof, with our hands-on and adaptable learning approach
Delve into the design process and become a creative digital ninja

Technology & Facilities

We take design seriously at JMC. Our classes are full of the best tech in the trade, constantly updated with industry-standard tech and the latest software out there. From day one, you’ll attend classes set up in studio-like environments and have access to a range of equipment including Wacom graphics tablets, HTC Vive VR tech, 3D printers and DSLR cameras that will allow you to experiment and design to your heart’s desire. You’ll also receive a complimentary Adobe Creative Cloud license for your personal computer, giving you access to all of Adobe’s apps and software including Photoshop, Illustrator and After Effects.

Duration

When undertaken full-time, the Diploma of Design (Visual Communication) can be completed in 8 months (2 trimesters).

Upon successful completion of the Diploma qualification, students are eligible to continue their studies into the Bachelor Degree with advanced standing of two trimesters.

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Curriculum

This subject underpins many other specialised design subjects by equipping students with the tools of trade used to communicate and turn design ideas into reality. You will learn hands-on digital skills while tackling creative project briefs.

The way a designer chooses to make language visible has a deep impact on audiences’ perception of the information being transmitted. This subject will explore making typography in a variety of mediums including digital applications. Through a mixture of theory and practice, you will come to develop an understanding of visual language.

The aim of this subject is to build an awareness of a reliable and thorough creative process. It aims to instil commitment, individual and group, to that process, and to provide working tools for the origination and development of creative projects.

You will work in small groups, through three distinct stages, towards a Prototype Proposal that deals with the challenge of approaching a creative career. This research exploration will include your backgrounds, interests, aspirations and expectations, then explore the links, similarities and differences between the group members. Creative outcomes will include both individual and group generated content as the result of a design-thinking based structure or information framework that links the research findings. The final outcome of the three stages is a Prototype Proposal that will contain evidence of the creative process applied to the development of a proposed design project. This proposal could be an animated film, a game, a digital interactive work, web site or similar.

You will undertake three creative stages that will introduce and explore you as a young designer today and your pathway into a future career. Each part of this unit will be approached employing a design-thinking methodology. Each phase of the process will be explored employing the following processes and themes: 1. Discover: “What do we like to make?” (sustaining our practice, aspirations and expectations) 2. Ideate: “How do we get our work ‘out there’” (potential strategies, methods for exposure) 3. Prototype: “Strategy, Platforms, Process” (a proposal on how to make it all happen)

The three stages of this project always remains at a development stage and are never taken into actual production, allowing you to focus on the process rather than on the polish of a finished outcome. This also allows them to work with ideas that may not be practical to actually execute, encouraging them to be more ambitious, investigative and inventive.

This unit explores the foundations of good visual design. Students will learn the different elements and principles of visual communication like Gestalt, colour theory, layout, typography, etc... and explore how to bring these components together to create strong visual messages.

This subject underpins many other specialised design subjects by equipping you with the tools of trade used to communicate and turn design ideas into reality. Building on previous subjects you will learn advanced technical skills while tackling industry-based projects.

Designing for experiences is an holistic approach to design that heavily invests in planning and sketching out an entire user interaction with a product or service. You will learn build experience prototypes that investigate the interaction of human senses and emotion with designed interfaces.

All designed artifacts tell stories, some deliberately and others unconsciously. This subject will explore the relationship between design and narrative. You will undertake a creative brief which will be answered using a narrative driven design approach.

Producing perfect pictures is not the main goal of this subject. Drawing, sketching and modelling play an important role at key moments in the design process. You will learn to use design communication both as a persuasive device to sell their concept and as a reflective practice throughout the design process.

Student Showcase

Our Lecturers

Alan Chen

Design Lecturer

Alan is the co-founder of Sh8peshifters, and a creative professional with a truly diverse background. Over the past 24 years, he has worked as an illustrator, graphic designer, art director, film director, writer, producer, strategic designer, academic and teacher.

He has won awards for his films and his illustration work has been featured in national exhibitions and publications. He has also spoken and scribed at numerous conferences and events.

Alan Chen

Design Lecturer

Alan is the co-founder of Sh8peshifters, and a creative professional with a truly diverse background. Over the past 24 years, he has worked as an illustrator, graphic designer, art director, film director, writer, producer, strategic designer, academic and teacher.

He has won awards for his films and his illustration work has been featured in national exhibitions and publications. He has also spoken and scribed at numerous conferences and events.

Tim McEwen

Animation, Game + Design Lecturer

Tim McEwen draws on his broad experience in feature film storyboards and concept art (Happy Feet Two, Blinky Bill, Wolf Creek 2), as well as comic books, illustration and cartooning. He's also an art director and graphic designer with 25+ years experience. He’s taught at all levels of education, including preschool, primary and secondary school, privately and in workshops, as well university and tertiary colleges.

Tim's been published professionally since he was 17, and his internationally distributed, award winning comic series ‘Greener Pastures’ has featured in nine exhibitions nationally and internationally. He continues to work in his chosen professions.

Tim McEwen

Animation, Game + Design Lecturer

Tim McEwen draws on his broad experience in feature film storyboards and concept art (Happy Feet Two, Blinky Bill, Wolf Creek 2), as well as comic books, illustration and cartooning. He's also an art director and graphic designer with 25+ years experience. He’s taught at all levels of education, including preschool, primary and secondary school, privately and in workshops, as well university and tertiary colleges.

Tim's been published professionally since he was 17, and his internationally distributed, award winning comic series ‘Greener Pastures’ has featured in nine exhibitions nationally and internationally. He continues to work in his chosen professions.

Tim Joiner

Design Lecturer

Tim has extensive knowledge of motion graphics, graphic design, 3D animation, video production, post-production techniques and sound design. Tim specialises in multi-disciplined installations, he understands the complexity of working in three dimensional spaces requiring multiple projection, projection mapping, mechanical devices and integrated audio.

Tim is also an excellent film and video director, producing corporate and government communication projects. Another major aspect of Tim’s work is to continually experiment, research and investigate new interactive multimedia technologies such as Virtual Reality (VR), Augmented Reality (AR), gesturing and interactive projector mapping

Tim Joiner

Design Lecturer

Tim has extensive knowledge of motion graphics, graphic design, 3D animation, video production, post-production techniques and sound design. Tim specialises in multi-disciplined installations, he understands the complexity of working in three dimensional spaces requiring multiple projection, projection mapping, mechanical devices and integrated audio.

Tim is also an excellent film and video director, producing corporate and government communication projects. Another major aspect of Tim’s work is to continually experiment, research and investigate new interactive multimedia technologies such as Virtual Reality (VR), Augmented Reality (AR), gesturing and interactive projector mapping

Dr Melissa Silk

National Head of Design

With over thirty years of creative practice, Melissa collaborates with many thinkers and makers to design experiences that embed the Arts in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEAM). Melissa is co-director of STEAMpop.zone while also engaged in research contributing to learning ecologies spanning creative intelligence and innovation, transdisciplinary education, and designing for preferred futures. Melissa enjoys being part of a bold community of multipotentialites intent on developing and sharing unique learning experiences for everybody.

Dr Melissa Silk

National Head of Design

With over thirty years of creative practice, Melissa collaborates with many thinkers and makers to design experiences that embed the Arts in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEAM). Melissa is co-director of STEAMpop.zone while also engaged in research contributing to learning ecologies spanning creative intelligence and innovation, transdisciplinary education, and designing for preferred futures. Melissa enjoys being part of a bold community of multipotentialites intent on developing and sharing unique learning experiences for everybody.

Choi Zahir

Senior Lecturer, Design, Animation & Game Design

Choi is an animator, designer and illustrator with over ten years’ experience across many creative disciplines including concept art and games. She graduated from QUT with a Master’s Degree in Animation in 2013.

Choi Zahir

Senior Lecturer, Design, Animation & Game Design

Choi is an animator, designer and illustrator with over ten years’ experience across many creative disciplines including concept art and games. She graduated from QUT with a Master’s Degree in Animation in 2013.

Andrew Barnum

Design Lecturer

Andrew Barnum is a Designer, Educator and Artist and continues to work on projects and in contexts that synthesise his experience and inspiration as a creative practitioner. In Design he is the chief creative officer of Social Design Action consultancy Peopleness, which is human-centered design focused. In education he is a PhD candidate at UTS researching the potential dislocation between Australian song, cultural identity and place in the digital age, and is course author and lecturer in the Bachelor of Design (Digital Design) at JMC Academy in Sydney.

As an artist his passion is songwriting and painting with independent releases on iTunes and Spotify as Andrew Barnum and Vitabeats, with a new project under the moniker of Memory Collective. His most recent paintings are a series of colour field investigations in Australian ‘colours in common.’

Andrew Barnum

Design Lecturer

Andrew Barnum is a Designer, Educator and Artist and continues to work on projects and in contexts that synthesise his experience and inspiration as a creative practitioner. In Design he is the chief creative officer of Social Design Action consultancy Peopleness, which is human-centered design focused. In education he is a PhD candidate at UTS researching the potential dislocation between Australian song, cultural identity and place in the digital age, and is course author and lecturer in the Bachelor of Design (Digital Design) at JMC Academy in Sydney.

As an artist his passion is songwriting and painting with independent releases on iTunes and Spotify as Andrew Barnum and Vitabeats, with a new project under the moniker of Memory Collective. His most recent paintings are a series of colour field investigations in Australian ‘colours in common.’

I love the fact that we were not constrained and can show what we are really capable of. It made me want to push my own boundaries to learn new styles and techniques to incorporate into my work.
Anthony Abade - Graphic Designer, Accent Group Ltd.
Design Alumni
You end up becoming quite close with your lecturer because you work with them all the time as opposed to a distant authoritative figure. There’s still authority, but they are like your friend as well.
Darren Ho - Strategic Designer, Tobias Australia
Design Alumni
JMC provided me the chance to explore my inner creativity and develop problem-solving skills through ‘real world’ situations, leaving me well prepared to enter the industry.
Cody Waters - Digital Designer, Elastic Studios
Design Alumni

Are you ready to take the next step toward your career in Design?

FAQs

You will need to bring the following to your course:

  • Laptop: Macbook Pro or similarly powered or Windows laptop, running latest OS
  • Device: Smartphone or Tablet
  • Journal: A5 size Blank pages
  • Pen: Felt-tip 0.3-0.5
  • Pencils: HB-2B, rulers and eraser

JMC will supply you with your Adobe Creative Cloud subscription.

At application, we are most keen to learn about your passion and reasons for wanting to study design. In addition to that, we ask that you answer the following two questions prior to coming in for the interview:

1. Show us your best piece of work

What’s something you’ve created that you’re really proud of? It can be any of the following:

  • An image (a photography piece, an illustration or a painting)
  • A project (an idea, a story, a film critique, a blog, etc…)
  • A product (a website, an animation, a poster, presentation, etc…)

Write a small paragraph explaining your choices and rationale behind it. Show us your rigor and initiative. Give us an insight into your creative approach, your creativity and the resulting output.

2. Tell us your thoughts

  • Choose a brand that you like and think is successful; write a short paragraph reflecting on why you like it and the reasons behind its success.
  • Choose a brand that you dislike or has not been doing well; write a short paragraph reflecting on what the issues are and how they might improve.

Show us the way you see the world around you, your standard of what makes a design good or bad and insight into your thought process.

No. We equip you with digital tools that allow you to create high-functioning prototypes without coding. 

This course is very hands on and you will tackle real world creative projects. However, having a foundational understanding of design theory is still vitally important. There is approximately a 25% (theory) to 75% (practice) balance.

No. We assess your work as would happen in the workplace via proposal documents and reports, presentations and demonstrations.

As with any design you will need to communicate ideas via drawing and sketching. We believe anyone can learn how to think visually, and we teach sketching techniques right from the beginning. So, if you are open to making marks and learning how to do it well, that’s all you need to start!

We are committed to strengthening our Design Industry connections by fostering both internships and industry based projects. You will also be mentored by industry practitioners on some of the projects throughout your course of study. In addition, we have industry guests come and talk on a range of topics in each trimester, so you get to build your network even before you graduate.

Yes. The JMC Academy is registered and regulated by the Tertiary Education Quality and Standards Agency (TEQSA) which is Australia’s independent national regulator of the higher education sector, both public and private.

No, our courses are hands on and practical. Students are required to attend classes to receive ongoing mentorship, learn new skills and work with the equipment provided. We do encourage our students to use online study resources, however our courses would not be as immersive as they are without the practical component.