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My Graphic Design Journey: Jules Giancola

By: Jules Giancola

Alumni, Jules Giancola, describes her experience in the Graphic Design for Print and Web program at Humber College.

"We are storytellers - Tell us your story!"

jules giancola

Why graphic design? Share your story from your transition of teaching high school to a visual artist and designer.

I have always been an artist, and creating is an intrinsic part of who I am. After graduating from York University with a Bachelor of Fine Arts and concurrent Bachelor of Education, it was time to start applying for jobs. I am a qualified intermediate/senior art and social science teacher, so I logically assumed that my next step would be to apply to school boards for a teaching position.  While scouring the job postings, I came to the realization that the only positions that resonated with me were in graphic art & design, branding, advertising, and artistic directing. This was the turning point on my path to a teaching career. I realized that I did not want to teach, I wanted to create.

As I carefully analyzed the requirements for the creative positions, I noticed that they all required an extensive knowledge of Adobe Creative Suite. With my comprehensive arts background, I easily met the creativity requirements, but I lacked the essential digital skills. Though I had some knowledge of image editing in Photoshop, I realized that I needed additional technical qualifications to pursue a creative career. I needed to learn how to create digitally, but I did not want to invest the time and funds needed for a third degree. As I researched various post secondary options, I identified the Graphic Design for Print & Web program at Humber College as the prefect program to meet my needs. Fast-forward, and this program has met all my expectations, teaching me the technical skills I need to create digitally.

Why did you choose to study at Humber?

 I chose Humber because it offers Graphic Design for Print & Web, a unique graphic design program, specifically for continuing education students. This one-year program combines both print and web design. It focuses on teaching skills rather than theory. I was well versed in theory and wanted an intensive digital skills program, which is exactly what this program provides. 

personal brand mockup

Personal brand mockup By: Jules Giancola

What was your first day of class like?

My first day of class was intimidating. I had little knowledge of Adobe Creative Suite and my initial perception was that many of my peers had lots of digital experience. Gradually, I realized that my classmates each had a specialty in a specific program or skill, but they too had gaps. My peers in this program are from diverse educational and career backgrounds creating a great opportunity for the whole group to learn from each other’s strengths.

What was your favourite topic to learn in class?

My favorite topic was typography and the different rules and guidelines surrounding type. Typography is the foundation of most designs, and essential for a successful product. “Good type should be unnoticeable”, is what my instructors reiterated, referring to good typesetting flowing within the components of a design. I also enjoyed making wordmarks, creating and manipulating my own typefaces.

What will you miss about the program?

I will miss the creative challenges that were given to me through the variety of unique assignments. I will also miss the great people I have met throughout this program, from the amazing instructors to the good friends I have made in class.

monarch vans

Monarch Vans By: Jules Giancola

What are you most excited for in the future/ where do you see yourself career-wise?

I am most excited to combine my art and design skills to create work that reaches a world-wide audience. I see myself being a graphic artist for apparel companies and later working as an art director of my own creative agency.

Do you have any advice for students interested in taking the program?

My advice is to start all your assignments as soon as you get them, whether that is simply setting up your document or jotting down notes or sketches. The second piece of advice I have is to practice using the Adobe programs outside of class assignments. When it comes to navigating new programs, the more you practice and explore, the more you learn. 

Learn more aboout Jule’s work as a graphic artist here:

LEARN MORE: Navigate a career in graphic design by enrolling in our part-time intensive Graphic Design for Print and Web Certificate program offered at our North campus.

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