Vector - Graphic Design
Learn how to create beautiful graphics and develop your eye for design.
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1) Course Overview
Discover what you'll learn in Vector. Learn more ↓
2) Meet Your Instructor
Get to know your new design guide. Learn more ↓
3) Extra Perks
Explore Forge student perks. Learn more ↓
4) All the Details
Learn about dates, deadlines, & tuition. Learn more ↓
Course Overview
Learn the fundamental skills all designers need through real projects
Gain an understanding of design principles and the design process. In this course you'll learn both hard skills within the Adobe Creative Suite, as well as soft skills such as branding, critiquing others' work, and presenting to clients. As a creative course that encourages exploration and taking risks, you'll gain the skills and confidence to pursue your interest in design.

In Vector you'll create everything from logos to social media graphics to company branding guides. You'll make most of these projects in Adobe Illustrator, though we also provide a quick introduction to Adobe InDesign and Photoshop.

Skills You'll Learn
Visual Design Principles
Color theory and typography, finding your own personal aesthetic.
Company Branding
Conveying messages through design, creating cohesion and consistency.
Adobe Software Skills
Learning the basics in Adobe Illustrator, Photoshop, InDesign, and Figma
Get a look inside the world of design
We'll also introduce you to the sorts of jobs and internships that are possible in graphic design. Our team can help you get started on developing a portfolio and learning what employers look for in great designers.

Not only do you have fun doing the projects, you also get to learn how to properly use programs that actual professionals use in the workplace.
Sharon Bryant
Vector is such a cool program and I feel like UVA doesn't have anything like it to offer. It's very unique and well done!
Taylor Kamhong
Projects You'll Complete
Project 1: Magazine Spread
Students begin work on this project after learning about layout, type, and diving deep into InDesign in one of our first workshops. They get to use their newfound software skills to create a magazine spread and explore the importance of text and image hierarchy.

Project 2: Logo and Brand Development
Midway through the semester, students learn about logo creation, branding, and work to redesign an established brand's logo or create their own. They'll go on to develop these brands over the course of the semester by creating deliverables like social media content.

Project 3: Cumulative Brand Package
As a final project to build on the skills students have been learning all semester, they'll work to create a final brand package which includes their logos, brand guidelines, and product mockups in one cohesive presentation.

Note: Because there are so many different fields within graphic design, we work on several unique projects throughout the semester that give you a taste of all the possibilities. Listed above are three of the eight total projects that students will complete during the course.

Meet Your Instructor
Charlotte Carr
Charlotte will be your guide in learning graphic design this fall. Charlotte has taken Vector herself was a Program Coordinator for the course. Now she's leading Vector and bringing all of her real world experience with her.

Our student teaching model means our courses are constantly changing and improving, enabling you to learn skills that are more up-to-date than what you might learn in a typical classroom.

It also means we can be better mentors and guides for you. We know where you might get stuck and how to guide you through those challenges because we've been in your shoes before. And we know what makes a lesson fun (or extremely boring), so we always design programs that we'd want to participate in ourselves.
Joining the Forge Community
At Forge, we give our people the skills they need to realize their big ideas and a community they can call home. Our courses are a great place to get to know our community, make new friends, and prepare for your future. All of our students get access to exclusive perks and opportunities beyond whatever course they're taking:
Free access to all of our member events
Exclusive networking opportunities with our alumni community
Opportunities for (sometimes paid!) projects to practice your new skills
Priority applications for Launch summer internship program
Explore more about the Forge community experience.
Dates, Deadlines, and Tuition
Fall 2021 Workshop Schedule
Vector meets from our clubhouse in Charlottesville, VA on Sunday's 1-3pm EST.

This course starts the week of September 12th and continue for 10 weeks.
Time Commitment
Courses expect a 4-6 hour/week commitment. Outside of the 2 hours in workshop, you can expect to meet with your instructor weekly to get additional support (at flexible times) and to spend some time working with your classmates on projects.
Application Process and Deadlines
Fall 2021 applications have closed. Applicants will be notified of their status by September 9th.

Get notified when Spring 2022 applications open.
$135 Course Fee
This is less than a twelfth of the average cost of a college course*. We also offer reduced payment options on a needs-basis, no questions asked. See below for more information on our financial aid.

Do you offer financial aid?
We are committed to making our courses accessible to all. We reduce or eliminate the program fee to all students who need it, no questions asked. Our aim is to enable everyone who wants to learn and join the Forge community. This is made possible by $20,000 in generous donations from our alumni network each year.

15% of students receive financial aid from Forge. 54% of aid goes to first-generation college students, and 80% of aid goes to people of color.
What's your refund policy?
We think you'll love Forge, but if you decide you need to drop, you may request a refund within 10 days of your course's first workshop meeting time. You'll receive a full refund, less a $20 operations fee. Beyond this date, no refunds will be given.
What are your online courses like?
We know how to do online teaching right. Teaching online is not new for us - we know how to make our courses fun, engaging, and interactive. Our Skills Courses went fully online in March of 2020 to protect the health of our students and instructors. In Fall 2021, our clubhouse will reopen to the public, but we will continue to offer programming for our online community. It is important that Forge remains open and accessible to students everywhere.

Since we've moved our courses online, our student satisfaction ratings haven't changed -- 95% of students would still recommend their course to a friend.
Do I need to have any background experience to apply?
No, you don't! This course is designed for people with little-to-no background experience.
What's your climate impact?
We donate 1% of all course tuition to carbon removal initiatives around the world. We also power our clubhouse with 100% clean wind and solar power. Learn more.
I have a question that wasn't answered here.
No problem! Reach out to, and/or come to our online Open House to talk to our team and learn more.
"It's electric being at Forge. Surrounded by my people and given all the tools I need for success, I feel like I can do absolutely anything. The relentless creative energy of our students is what makes Forge unlike anything I've ever been a part of.

There is something so fundamentally special about our members that just working and learning beside them has helped me grow enormously as a leader and a learner."

- Rachel, Forge alumna
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