Students in Graphic Communications class work on department icons


Schmitz works on her icon during her second hour Graphic Communications class. To make her icon she used Adobe Illustrator. “My icon represents the social studies department, so Ms. Leahy, Mr. Marquis, Mr. Sotter and Mr. Marshall,” Schmitz said.

Lily Sonnentag, Reporter

In Joel Johansen’s Graphic Communications class, students have recently been working on an assignment that is new to the course. Each student was assigned a department within the school and is currently working on an icon to represent that department. 

Throughout the class students study the following areas: design principles, fonts and color, publishing, prepress options, printing methods and printing practices as stated in the course handbook. According to Johansen, this assignment fit right into the course criteria. 

“Our assignment is to make an icon of a certain department that represents their classes and what they plan to teach their students,” senior Josie Bartol said. “We also have to include on the icon what each teacher’s favorite class is to teach in their department.”

Bartol’s finished icon represents the math department.

Before the students even started making their icons, first they had to get an understanding of what an icon is.

“They started by researching icon and icon design theory. Then they applied their research by creating some sketches of icons for some current companies that underwent trendy changes,”  Johansen said. “Next they had to research a select customer base, in this case a department of teachers at BHS.”

To create the icon, there is a balance of both simple tasks and ones a little more difficult. Overall, making sure the icon represents the department is the most important task at hand.

“The most difficult thing is trying to keep the design very simple while accurately representing the department,” sophomore Ann Schmitz said. 

Throughout the assignment, students both have been learning new skills as well as applying old skills to make the icon as representative as it can be.

“To create the icon we are using Adobe Illustrator, and we reference back to intro assignments that we learned in the beginning of the trimester,” Bartol said. 

Being a new assignment, Johansen has made sure that the process of this assignment is more important than the project itself because the students will be able to use these techniques in the future.

“Students can now portray information in different ways to account for different audiences,” Johansen said. “Students can create media products to communicate a given message to different audiences.”

When each student is finished with their icon, they plan of doing more than just turning it into Johansen.

“I plan on presenting it to the teachers in my department after I turn it in,” Schmitz said.