What is it like to be a Graphic Design Student

What is it like to be a Graphic Design Student?

Over the past month Argon Design has hosted work experience and university student Tim Stoeckel. During his time in the office Tim has been exposed to a number of industry insights including logo design, web banner artwork, flyer creation and most recently the art of blog writing. During the week we asked Tim what it was like to study graphic design in 2015, this was his response.

Tim’s Story

Late one night in the summer of 2012 I was deciding what university degree to commit to with time fast running out to submit my online preferences. After an agonising internal battle I settled on the Bachelor of Information Technology (Digital Media) at Flinders University, with Media (Creative Arts) as my second option. I’d heard, within the IT field, graduates were in high demand, so I went for it. However it didn’t take long until I realised I hated it. Struggling with maths and the nitty-gritty technical computing topics I sought to transfer into Media (Creative Arts). This process wasn’t particularly difficult and miraculously I’d managed to pass all my topics in the IT course, meaning I could use these as electives moving forward.

One term in and I realised I’d made a good decision. I was actually enjoying going to university and I was finally working on projects that interested me.

In 2014, the Media degree discontinued and a new, revised course emerged: Bachelor of Media Arts. This course included proper screen production topics, so I made the decision to change course yet again. Luckily all of my previous topics carried over, so I hadn’t wasted any time and more importantly as a student, money! Now I was shooting videos and doing even more graphic design than before. I learnt my lesson – you’ve got to do what you are passionate about, because if you don’t, you’ll never truly be content about the direction you’re going.

You’ve got to do what you are passionate about, because if you don’t, you’ll never truly be content about the direction you’re going.

Throughout my degree I’ve created posters, a basic web page, mobile games, animation, videos and I’ve even done a little bit of acting in front of a green screen for my current multimedia production topic. The degree is extremely broad, which is handy as I’m still figuring out the exact route I want to take into employment. Another positive is the ability to test the waters in many different fields of production, helping you to find out which elements are the most rewarding. I’ve always known graphic design was something I wanted to do, and now that I have, I’m fairly certain it’s what I want to do when uni is done.

This year, one of my uni assignments was to establish a logo. We had the option of designing this brandmark for personal use, as well as the project going towards my grade. In the end I made a logo for my YouTube channel, Waywitty, using the industry standard ‘Adobe Illustrator’.


My Waywitty channel logo

In my selected screen topics, I’ve learnt a lot about film techniques and camera settings. Recently I’ve made short videos for my Instagram page, so these videos will come in handy when it comes to getting my name out into the industry. Video editing is another direction that is available at Flinders, which can be frustrating, but in the end it’s extremely rewarding to see the final product come to fruition.

Now that I’m approaching the end of my university degree, some advanced topics start becoming available. The placement topic Screen and Media Practicum stood out to me on the course rule as something that would be really worthwhile. Enrolling in it has lead me to Argon Design. It’s only five weeks into my placement and I’ve already learnt and experienced heaps. Experiencing the development aspects of a graphic design studio and their projects has been very beneficial. It also gives me a chance to venture away from campus and spend a decent amount of time in Adelaide. If the possibility to do work experience as an elective ever arises for a student, I definitely recommend they do so.

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