DAT 101, Introduction to Digital Arts
Naugatuck Valley Community College
Waterbury, CT

Jerry Nevins, Professor
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Class Blog, DAT-101, Spring 2015

Class Blog, DAT 101, Fall 2012

Class Blog Spring 2014


Course Overview:

The computer has become an essential tool for anyone working in the fields of design, photography, videography, illustration, architecture, industrial design, animation, and multimedia and web design. This course will explore many facets of making art using computer hardware and software. This course is an introduction and overview of the digital arts. The basic elements, components and skills required for digital art development and production will be defined and explored. Topics include; applications of digital arts, presentation software, visual design principles, digital media design, Web design, configuring a multimedia system, emerging technologies, multimedia components, and interactive multimedia development.

This is a working studio class and through demonstrations and hands on work you will learn to solve visual problems using Adobe software. This "hands on" experience is the key to success in this class. The primary evidence for progress in this class will be a portfolio of 50+ pieces illustrating concepts learned.

Number of Credits: 3

Course Objectives:  The main goals of this course are to provide the learner with the abilities to:

  1. Be familiar with the varied uses of multimedia
  2. Manipulate the elements of multimedia
  3. Apply fundamental Web design concepts and techniques
  4. Understand the multimedia development process
  5. Use multimedia development tools
  6. Understand the workings of computer hardware/software
  7. Design, develop and complete a multimedia project

Learning Outcomes: Upon successful completion of all required assignments, the learner will be able to:

  1. list and define the current uses of multimedia
  2. recognize and utilize elements of multimedia
  3. design and code basic Web pages
  4. apply the phases of the multimedia development process
  5. choose and utilize the correct development tools for specific tasks
  6. configure computer hardware and software
  7. design, develop and complete a multimedia project

Date                           Topic                Assignment

Class 1 26-Jan     Intro to class, create class blog, post bio and image to blog.                              Demonstrate editing tools in Photoshop. Students Edit their own                              work.

Class 2 2-Feb      Photoshop Edit for focal point and emphasis, Sculpt light...                              feathered selections the levels tool, the curve tool, Color                              correction. View How to Video Here another video to see:                              Watch this video I made on basic editing for light, contrast and                               color balance using a student image.

Class 3 9-Feb      Photoshop Mirrored and Rotational                              Symmetries Intro to composite project. View How to Video

                             Photoshop Surrealism/ the composited reality.

                             Composited images... Surrealism Video How To....

                             Zen Textures Collection

                             Mirrored Face Video How To

              16-Feb    No Class, President's Day

Class 4 25-Feb    Illustrator Tools - examples of various tools, fills strokes,                              objects, clones, the pen tool, bezier curves.
                             How To Video Here

Class 5 4-Mar      Dreamweaver Introduction to design for the web. Layers, tables,                               inks, sizing raster images for the web.

                              Dreamweaver Tutorial, Part 1

                              Dreamweaver Tutorial, Part 2

Class 6 11-Mar       Dreamweaver Tools - Layout 8 page personal artist website.
                               Attention paid to color scheme, tight, simple design, integrated                                 graphic elements.

                                       March 16, Spring Break

Class 7 23-Mar     Mid term Portfolio Review of work to date Finish up                               Dreamweaver website. Mid term grades due 25 Mar

                             April 3rd, Good Friday, College Closed

Class 8  30-Mar     InDesign Tools - Design for print. Design Magazine cover of                               your choosing. Video, Getting Started With InDesign

Class 9   6-Apr     InDesign Finish Magazine cover, create 2 page spread layout                               including text and images. Video, InDesign, Part II

Class 10 13-Apr  In Design

                Mon., April 20, Last Day to Withdraw, initiated by student

Class 11 20-Apr   InDesign Finish Magazine cover, create 2 page spread layout                               including text and images. Video, InDesign, Part II

Class 12 27-Ap    Flash Tools, animate text, shape and motion tweens. Export                               options. Video Here

Class 13 4-May   Flash Scrolling Titles and text object... Explore motion presets,                               3 D effects, bouncing, fading, etc... Adobe After Effects for                               special effects See Flash animation example on PBS Learning                               Media/No Nonsense Grammar, written by my wife, Debbie.

                             Adobe Premier Tools, importing, exporting, movie                              formats,strategies to create footage. Incorporate Flash titles into                              movie.

                              Sculptural Medieval Portraits, Cluny Museum, Paris
                              Create Premiere Pro slide show example video

                               How To Video, Premiere Pro

                               How to export as MP4 for YouTube

                  May 11.... Is there class scheduled? Calendar unclear.   

Class 14  18-May Final Exam/Last Class Premier work...complete movies in                       class

Right Brain/ Left Brain Quiz
The higher of these two numbers below indicates which side of your brain has dominance in your life. Realising your right brain/left brain tendancy will help you interact with and to understand others. Here's the result when I took the quiz...
Left Brain Dominance: 6(6)
Right Brain Dominance: 14(14)
Right Brain/ Left Brain Quiz

                                                 Portfolio Due
Finish up your portfolio, add images to it, revisit a past project to improve it, etc.

Grading System
For the purpose of computing numerical credit point averages, grades are evaluated as follows for each semester hour of credit. Grades on exams, papers, and quizzes, will be based on this grading system.


Numeric Grade

Acceptable Letter Grade Range to be used by the Instructor




A- to A



B-, B, B+

Above Average


C-, C, C+



D-, D, D+

Below Average

Below 60



Evaluative Criteria:
80% Participation/attendance
20% Portfolio

Absences and Attendance

  • The Faculty expects that each student will exercise personal responsibility regarding class attendance.
  • All students are expected to attend every class session of each course for which they are registered.
  • Students are responsible for all that transpires in class whether or not they are in attendance, even if absences are the result of late registration or add/drop activity at the beginning of a term as permitted by college policy.
  • The Faculty defines excessive absence or lateness as more than the equivalent of one week of class meetings during the semester. Distance Learning courses will use criteria established by the Instructor.
  • Excessive absence or lateness may, at the discretion of the instructor, lower a student’s course grade.
  • At the beginning of each semester, instructors will submit, to the Academic Dean’s office, the names of students who have not attended any classes during the first two weeks of classes.
  • In the Digital Arts Program a majority of learning is done in the classroom. Since all classes in this program meet once a week, one absence is equivalent to missing two classes worth of information. One absence, while not encouraged, may not affect your learning experience or grade significantly, but two or more will make it difficult to impossible to successfully complete the class. After a second absence, please set up a time with the DAT advisor to discuss options for the class. After three absences or more, it is best to withdraw from the class (by April 24, 2013) in order to avoid receiving a failing grade.

Class Cancellation: If class is cancelled or delayed because of weather, local radio and television stations will broadcast an announcement. If the instructor is unable to attend class, the Arts & Humanities Division office will advise students of alternate learning activities.

Make-up Policy: It is the responsibility of the learner to submit all missed work during scheduled office hours or by arranging a mutual suitable meeting with the instructor. Information from the missed class will be accessible through the class site on Blackboard.

Academic Honesty Statement: At NVCC we expect the highest standards of academic honesty. Academic dishonesty is prohibited in accordance with the Board of Trustee’s Proscribed Conduct Policy in Section 5.2.1 of the BOT Policy Manual. This policy prohibits cheating on examinations, unauthorized collaboration on assignments, unauthorized access to examinations or course materials, plagiarism, and other proscribed activities. Plagiarism is defined as the use of another’s idea(s) or phrase(s) and representing that/those idea(s) as your own, either intentionally or unintentionally. Anyone who violates the Board policy may fail the course at the discretion of the instructor.

Tradition of Respect: In our class: 1) Everyone is allowed to feel they can work and learn in a safe and caring environment; 2) Everyone learns about, understands, appreciates, and respects varied races, classes, genders, physical and mental abilities, and sexualities; 3) Everyone matters; 4) All individuals are to be respected and treated with dignity and civility; and 5) Everyone shares the responsibility for making our class, and the College, a positive and better place to live, work, and learn.

Children on Campus: For the purpose of this policy, children are defined as minors under the age of 18 who are not enrolled in a Naugatuck Valley Community College course or program. Children must be attended at all times by a responsible adult. Children may accompany an adult to class on an occasional basis and only with the prior permission of the class instructor.  In an emergency situation that is not repetitive, a request may be made to the instructor of the course or supervisor of the activity for permission to bring a child to class or on campus.  The student must notify the instructor or supervisor prior to the beginning of the class or activity that a child is present. Pre-k, elementary and high schools that are not in session are not emergency situations. Arrangements must be made for child care outside of NVCC.

It is expected that this accommodation will be made only when there is no disruption to the teaching and learning process.  Instructors and/or supervisors are authorized to ask the student or program participant to leave should the presence of the child be disruptive.

Children are never permitted in any test, exam or final exam session.

(Full policy can be found in the NVCC Student Handbook)

Cell Phone/Pager Use Policy: “Students are hereby notified that cellular phones and beepers are allowed in class only if they are turned off or turned to a silent mode. Under no circumstances are telephones to be answered in class. Students who ignore this policy may be asked to leave class. When there are extenuating circumstances that require that a student be available by phone or beeper, the student should speak to the instructor prior to class, so that together they can arrive at an agreement concerning the device.”

Students with Special Needs-ADA: Students who may require accommodations on the basis of a learning disability are encouraged to contact the Counselor of Learning Disabilities (Terri Latella, K519, 203-575-8608).  Students who may require accommodations on the basis of all other disabilities should contact the Coordinator of Disability Services (Laurie Novi, K519, 203-575-8035).  After providing documentation and completing the disability disclosure process, students are then encouraged to meet with their instructor(s) to discuss the accommodations approved by the appropriate disabilities contact and to complete the Accommodations Agreement form.  Accommodations are not retroactive; students are therefore encouraged to meet with their instructor(s) at the beginning of each semester.  Instructors, in conjunction with appropriate college personnel, will provide assistance and/or accommodations only to those students who have completed the disability disclosure and accommodations process.

Continuing Notice of Non Discrimination:
Naugatuck Valley Community College does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religious creed, age, gender, gender identity or expression, national origin, marital status, ancestry, present or past history of mental disorder, learning disability or physical disability, political belief, veteran status, sexual orientation, genetic information or criminal record.  The following individuals have been designated to handle inquiries regarding the non discrimination policies.  Jacquie Swanson, Associate Director of Human Resources/Title IX Coordinator, Room K704, Naugatuck Valley Community College, 750 Chase Parkway, Waterbury, CT 06708, 203-575-8043.  Robert Divjak, Director of Facilities/Section 504/ADA Coordinator, Room C216, Naugatuck Valley Community College, 750 Chase Parkway, Waterbury, CT 06708, 203-575-8235.

Internet Related Sites

Tutoring Resources: The ACE center located in Ekstrom Hall has tutoring available in a variety of subjects which include, writing, math, and study skills.

Important Web Resources

The Museum of Computer Art

SFMOMA e-space

Gallery 9 : Walker Art Center

MIT Media Lab

International Museum of Collage

Digital Art Museum

The American Sign Museum

Institute for New Media Studies

Institute of International Visual Arts x-space

The Alternative Museum

Austin Museum of Digital Art

Whitney Museum Art Port

Net Art Web Sites:


BBC / Digital Artists



New York Digital Salon

The low-fi Net Art Locator

DIAN (Digital Interactive Artists Network)


The Ars Electronica Festival

Banff New Media Institute (BNMI)

Magazines + Online Journals:

Born Magazine

Net Art Review

CTHEORY multimedia

Poems That Go

frAme: Online Journal of Culture and Technology:

New Media Encyclopedia!26m


SIGGRAPH Conference


Ars Electronica Center

Digital Storytelling

trAce Online Writing Centre

RunMe Software Art Repository


Electronic Literature Organization

: Museum of Computer Art
Virtual Training Co's Adobe training movies's free online training Movies
Computer Arts in the UK
Artpromote... Links to Computer generated art, fractals and more

Spring 2015 - Academic Calendar

Thursday, January 1New Year’s Day - College Closed

Monday, January 19Martin Luther King Day Observed - College Closed

Wednesday, January 21Credit Classes begin

Wednesday, January 28 Last Day for Add/Swap

Tuesday, February 3 Last Day 50% Refund

Wednesday, February 4 First Day Student-initiated Withdrawal

Thursday, February 12 Lincoln’s Birthday - Credit Classes in Session - College Open

Monday, February 16 Washington’s Birthday Observed - No Classes - College Closed

Wednesday, February 18“Late Start” - Classes Begin

Monday - Sunday, March 16 - 22 Spring Break - No Credit Classes - College Open

Monday, March 23 Classes Resume

Monday, March 23 Mid-term grades due

Friday, April 3 College Closed (Good Friday)

Saturday April 4 No Classes 

Sunday April 5 College Closed (Easter)

Monday, April 20 Last Day Student Initiated Withdrawal

Wednesday - Thursday, May 6 - 7 Reading and/or Make-up Day (Instructor Discretion)

Tuesday, May 12 Reading and/or Make-up Day (Instructor Discretion)

Wednesday - Tuesday, May 13 - 19 Final Examination Period

Thursday, May 21 Final Grades due

Thursday, May 21 Leadership Banquet

Monday, May 25 Memorial Day - College Closed

Tuesday, May 26 Honors Night

Thursday, May 28 Commencement

Back to Syllabi


Photoshop Composite
Surrealism project
Week 3, DAT 101, NVCC