Tell us how you got interested in design and what brought you to the DCA program.
I enjoyed doodling and tracing some of the Disney animations on paper when I was young. I was one of the kids who was fascinated by Bob Ross’s magical drawing skills and flipped through the thick book of 100 Great Paintings. However, as I grew up, I realized that I would not be able to make a living doing fine art. Thus, after finishing my BA degree in Art from CSU Fullerton, I started working as a junior graphic designer in a small design studio.
While working, since graphic design is different from art, I felt the need to build a solid foundation on design principles and learn the design process. So I started searching for a graphic design certificate program and came across UCLA Extension’s DCA program. I wanted to get some credible and legitimate education which would help me land a job in the design industry. The DCA program offered courses that were very suitable for my needs and the curriculum seemed to be well structured with classes I was interested in taking.
What were your favorite courses and why?
Absolutely Design II: Collateral Communication with Mr. John Beach. It was exactly what I needed to get a comprehensive idea and understanding of how a whole design process is done from branding to brand application. The weekly guidance helped me figure out design planning and how to apply it in the actual designing. The feedback from the instructor and the discussions among the classmates guided me to further develop my understanding on design. It is no coincidence that I happened to create two of my favorite projects in my portfolio from this class.
I also really enjoyed Design History and Context. I was surprised how little I knew about the definition of graphic design and graphic design history. It introduced me to some of the greatest graphic designers of all time and I got inspiration from various graphic design movements. One major lesson I have learned in the class is the importance of designing something that is timeless, and I have been trying to practice it when designing.
Where do you see yourself professionally in 5 years?
Since now I have completed my certification and have the most updated portfolio, I am ready to dive in to the job search. I wish to work in an innovative team environment where we can share and exchange ideas and learn from each other. I hope to be a key member who can make a positive contribution to some meaningful work and have the opportunity to be part of a successful team, achieving more than expected. I will continue to master my skills and learn new things, constantly keeping myself active in the creative world. Later down the road, I would love to learn more about interaction design and get more involved in a fast-changing design industry.
Congratulations So Young!