Learning in the Classroom






Nyhavn, Copenhagen.

It’s now been about a week and a half of my program in Graphic Design. So far we have started a little slow — I think that is because of the weird timing of our one-week study tour to Sweden and Finland. The first assignment we were asked to complete was research and visual presentation on two places we will visit on our study tour. We were assigned to different groups with two places, my group looked into Artipelag and the Baltic Sea. It was a good way to get to know my classmates and collaborate to make a visual presentation.

As we researched, I got more and more excited about our study trip (as a matter of fact, I leave tomorrow morning for it!) Artipelag is an art museum that emphasizes how nature and art interact. My group was able to work well together, and it was pretty cool that we were all thinking the same thing for how the visuals would look when we started to talk about it!

The next and final project for the rest of the program will be creating a visual identity for the Copenhagen Jazz Festival. We had one of the organizers come to speak to us in class about the festival and the business. My professor had us focus on creating a symbol (or logo per se) for the festival this past week. For me, I went through lots of different ideas (over 70+), before settling on this for the festival logo:

But, to get here, my professor had us create a list of words that were associated with a topic or theme, such as the Copenhagen Jazz Festival or the Zoo or Kindergarten classroom. With these words, we were instructed to combine two that didn’t go together and create a visual that combined the two. For example, we had to draw what dancing germs looked like, or unique + jail.

This was to get us to find some interesting visuals that we would never think to use. I found this difficult to connect to create a jazz festival logo but I liked how it was “out of the box thinking” and a very different approach. I am more interested in creating things that are bold and different than what has already been done, so this method is definitely a way to get there. I don’t think that this activity directly helped me create the logo above, but I hope to use that method in the future or when I am stuck.

Frederiksborg Castle.


J.F. Willumsen Museum — one of his pieces.

In addition to my Graphic Design course, we are also required to take a “shorter course” called Visual Journal. For Visual Journal, we have two field study days where we visit a specific place or museum and have some tasks to analyze and sketch what we see. The first day we went to the Louisiana Museum (it’s not in the US…) which had works outside and inside.

That day felt rushed because we had many drawing tasks with such little time. I felt like I didn’t get to see a lot of the museum or take in the things I saw (unless it was what I was drawing). Towards the end, for the last drawing task, I just looked for the simplest artwork to draw so I could finish in time. I wish we didn’t have as many drawing tasks so we could spend time enjoying the museum. On the second field day, we visited another art museum (J.F. Willumsen Museum) and a castle (Frederiksberg Castle).

That day was even worse than the first — I felt even more rushed and stressed by the time constraint, and again, I felt like I missed so much of what we visited. But, silver lining, we got the most amazing ice cream/gelato. The sign said gelato but the consistency was little more like soft-serve ice cream. I got mango and strawberry flavor and it was so full of the fruit flavors — I was so in love.

Too bad it is about an hour bus ride away :( So for our visual journals, in addition to the sketches from the two field days, we are also supposed to use them for our project (the jazz festival) and fill the pages with other things (non-assigned). At the end of the program, we will hand them in to see how we have analyzed the world around us.

Now for some non-academic content, every day each week I go explore Copenhagen. Whether it is a restaurant I try, a tourist location, or a museum, I go exploring by myself or with some friends. One day a week I let myself be a house potato though, to let myself rejuvenate (today is one of those days). Here are some of the cool places I’ve visited this week.

This coming week is my study tour and we will go to Stockholm, Sweden and Helsinki, Finland. We have a jam-packed schedule and will visit museums, graphic design studios, and other art/design related places. I am so excited! I will let you know how it goes and what I learn!

Talk to you in a week!