Graphic Design

Pathway Overview

In addition to an understanding of current workplace practice, this career pathway requires the development of knowledge and skills in both visual art concepts as well as new and emerging digital processes by which individuals are able to create and communicate complex concepts in a broad range of occupations and professions.

Throughout the pathway, students will learn to use a variety of technical software and hardware including digital cameras, studio lighting equipment, Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Illustrator, vinyl cutters, heat presses, and more to gain experience in the fields of commercial photography, photo editing, graphic design, and product design among others. Students will complete the program with a digital portfolio of their work and creative process which can be helpful for internships, college applications, resumes and careers.

NOTE: Art and design are reflections of humanity and ourselves. In order to achieve a well rounded global perspective and sense of personal creative voice, we’ll explore our individual, group, and cultural identities along with a variety of historical and contemporary artists and designers from around the world, their lives and cultural backgrounds, as well as the societal and historical contexts that influence artists and their work. Students will be encouraged to incorporate their unique perspectives and experiences into their work.

Concentration: Digital Art & Design

Course Description: In Digital Art and Design, students will explore (both collaboratively and independently) various art and design styles, tools, techniques, equipment, and software to build an industry-relevant visual art foundation using digital tools. This will include digital cameras, lighting equipment, Adobe Photoshop, and more.

General computer experience is recommended, but no prior knowledge of the particular software programs used in the class is required. This is a project based course in which students will be able to develop their skills and succeed by pushing themselves at every step of the design process.

CAPSTONE: Advanced Digital Art & Design

Course Description: Advanced Digital Art and Design should be taken after Digital Art and Design. This course focuses on building an industry-ready skillset and is an excellent fit for students considering college or a career in the creative industry. Students will build on the foundation developed in Digital Art and Design while adding additional software, equipment, and skills used in commercial photography, graphic design, vector drawing, animation, and more. Students will be encouraged to work both collaboratively and independently with the campus and community to solve design problems and engage in professional practices. This is a project-based class and success is determined by the effort each student is willing to commit to the creative process. Advanced Digital Art students will be expected to demonstrate a high level of personal motivation, creative curiosity, initiative, maturity, independence, focus, and drive.

ENRICHMENT: Design Studio

Course Description: Only to be taken after Digital Art & Design followed by Advanced Digital Art & Design, this course is designed to continue an in depth, intensive study of commercial art and graphic design and mastery of professional design concepts, tools, and techniques. Building on the foundation and skills developed in Digital Art & Design and Advanced Digital Art & Design, the focus at this level is on employing professional practices and skills in a work-based learning environment to design and produce purposeful commercial artwork for clients on campus and throughout the community. Through client-based work, students will further hone their design skills as well as soft skills, including clear and professional communication, setting and working within design parameters and project timelines, identifying design objectives, continuing to test and revise products according to client feedback, and developing working relationships with local professionals and businesses. In addition to these facets of the course, students will learn about major movements and influential designers throughout history as well as discuss current industry issues, developments, and trends to provide historical and cultural context for their work. Students will be expected to demonstrate an in depth understanding of the elements and principles of design, mastery of essential tools and design software, a willingness to independently learn (with teacher and mentor support) any new software, skills, or techniques relevant to their clients’ needs, as well as professionalism and exceptional work ethic as they move through the design cycle with each project and client. It will also incorporate industry partners and advisers through guest speakers, collaborations, portfolio reviews, mock interviews, and site visits where possible, resulting in real and lasting network connections for students entering college design programs and the design field after high school.



Advanced Digital Art & Design articulates with MiraCosta College's MAT110 Digital Imaging 1: Adobe Photoshop course. Students must earn an A or B in the course at LCCHS, then submit a portfolio of their work to MiraCosta instructors for review and final determination of early college credit.

Work-Based Learning Opportunities:

Students will have a variety of opportunities throughout the pathway to collaborate with other classes and develop work for real-world projects like photoshoots, advertising campaigns, social media content creation, logo design, environmental design, and more.

Leadership or certifications:

Students in Design Studio are able to mentor and assist students in earlier levels of the pathway, as well as lead campus projects, initiatives, art shows, and exhibitions depending on the level of student interest and motivation.


Instructor: Haley MacKenzie

Contact Information:

Qualifications: Professional experience as a Media Designer, Illustrator, and freelance designer for local and national companies

SDSU, San Diego, CA

Bachelor of Arts in Fine Art, emphasis on Graphic Design

Magna Cum Laude

Grossmont College, El Cajon, CA

Associate in Arts in Digital Media


Banner photo credit: Sam Warner, Advanced Digital Art & Design 2021