What’s Behind Door Four?

We’ve wrapped up our week on visual storytelling and photography, and this week we’re diving into design. You’ll spend some time at camp this week thinking about the way the world around you is designed, as well as creating some of your own design projects. In addition, we’re going to ask you to learn more about copyright and the Creative Commons movement, in part so that you can make a wise choice about how to share your own #ds106 work!

(If you haven’t been watching these entire videos, we highly recommend you do — especially UMW students. Think of this as the only required “lecture” you have to attend each week. It is full of important information!)

Creative Commons

Start the week off by learning a bit about (or a bit more about) the Creative Commons (CC) movement and how it relates to our notion of copyright and intellectual property. It’s up to you this week to do the research on this topic! Use the power of the Web to learn more about CC and copyright — don’t worry there are TONS of materials online about this topic. We’d like to see what you find and come up with on your own.

When you’re done, write up a blog post in which you share your research findings — what exactly is Creative Commons? In addition, let us know what Creative Commons resources you found most useful and informative. Finally, share your thoughts about how you’ll be licensing your work for this class from here on out — and let us know why you made this choice. Tag this post ds106CC.


Concept Review and “Design Safari”

Review this assignment document and spend some time reviewing the design concepts and the linked resources. The goal here is for you to develop a deeper, more nuanced understanding of the basic elements of design. For our purposes, we’ve identified the following major design elements for further investigation this week:

  • color
  • typography
  • metaphors/symbols
  • minimalism & use of space
  • form/function/message
  • balance
  • rhythm
  • proportion
  • dominance
  • unity

After reading and reviewing the assignment document, you should be able to provide a basic explanation of each of these concepts.

To reinforce your understanding, we want you to understake a “Design Safari”: Carry your camera with you this week and take photos of objects, ads, signs, etc. that illustrate one of these concepts. At a minimum, provide examples of four of the concepts. Share all your photos on Flickr and tag them designblitz.  In addition, add a link to your Flickr photos in the assignment document within the proper concept areas, under the heading “Found Examples.”

When you have completed your Safari, write a blog post that includes (THAT MEANS EMBED!) the photos and your analysis of the design elements and what makes them effective or not. (You can do this in one single post if you like, or in several.)

(PRO TIP: Sometimes we can learn just as much from badly designed things as we can from well-designed things!)

Design Assignments (from the Assignment Repository)

This week, you’ll be completing 10 stars worth of design assignments from the Assignment Repository. However, four points of your total must be used on two the following required assignments (you can pick which two you want to do from this list of three):

Complete the remaining six stars of your work with any assignments of your choice from the Design section in the Repository.

As with last week, each assignment must be blogged! Don’t forget to review  Alan’s tips of how to write-up assignments like a pro.

Tutorials and Assignment Ideas — REMINDER!

A reminder for all UMW students (and anyone else who is interested) that you have two requirements for this course that you can complete at any point between now and the end of the summer session:

  • Create Assignments (10% of your grade): You must create and complete two new assignments for the Assignment Repository. That means YOU come up with the assignment idea and submit it. Then you must actually DO your assignment and tag it appropriately (based on the tags that are assigned as soon as you submit your idea).
  • Create Tutorials (10% of your grade): You must complete two tutorials for assignments in the Assignment Repository. Write an extended blog post in which you give us detailed instructions about how to complete an assignment. Include screenshots, videos, etc. to explain your process! Make sure you tag your tutorial with the appropriate tutorial tag (these are listed on the right-hand side on each assignment page).

While these are not required this week, they are required by the end of the semester, and it is up to you to remember to get them done. Consider yourself reminded!


Campfire this week will be at a BRAND-NEW time and location. We’ll be meeting on Wednesday, 6/11, at 7:00 EST in Minecraft, using TeamSpeak. That means, you need to get up and running with both, ASAP in order to participate. We strongly encourage you to try and join us, if you haven’t already!

Daily Create

This week Daily Create is OPTIONAL. Consider the Design Safari the substitute this week for Daily Create — of course you’re still welcome to complete creative prompts whenever you like!

UPDATE: Campers of the Week!

Oops! We forgot list our campers of the week for Week Three. Here they are:

[bc_member name=”chanda0703″ fields=”blog,twitter”]

[bc_member name=”lisamlane” fields=”blog,twitter”]

[bc_member name=”johnjohnston” fields=”blog,twitter”]

And for these folks, a very special Slide Guy! Edition of the COTW Badge!

2 Responses to “What’s Behind Door Four?”

  1. […] I’ve been all day peeking at the different design magic of Stephen Wildish’s site, I think we linked last year to one of his film alphabets, but all of his work has powerful elements of graphic design we are introducing this week to ds106 / Camp Magic Macguffin. […]

  2. Mike Berta says:

    I feel like I’m missing time here. It was Week 2 then like an X-Files re-run, it was the middle of Week 4 and I woke up back in my office.