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Courses

Get inspired . . . try something new or enhance what's familiar

Running as multi-week sessions or as one-day classes in the evenings and on weekends throughout the year, the CCA Extension program takes place on our Oakland and San Francisco campuses.

Register online with TouchNet. You do not need to apply to CCA or create a profile before you register. You can register as a guest!

COVID-19 update

April 27, 2020

CCA has made the difficult decision to cancel all Summer CCA Extension classes due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

We are hoping to resume classes this fall. Please add your name to the notification list here if you would like to be updated when registration opens.

DESIGN

Intro to Graphic Design

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  • San Francisco campus
  • EXGRP-1500-1
  • Instructor: TBA
  • TBA
  • 10 Sessions. $360. Noncredit
  • Prerequisite: Students must be 18 years or older. No other requirements

This course offers a broad introduction to the profession and practice of graphic design. Through in-class exercises and take-home assignments—supplemented by critical readings, lectures, and critiques—students learn visual communication skills and experience a wide range of design contexts.

Topics include (but are not limited to) graphic design history, informational hierarchy, grid systems, typography, color theory, icon and symbol systems, and visual storytelling. Slide presentations accompany many of the lectures. 

Computer skills and software programs will not be covered but are essential to the implementation of assignments and projects. Access to Adobe Illustrator and InDesign is strongly advised.

Bring to first class:  One example of good and one example of bad design—in your opinion. Be prepared to explain your reasoning. A notebook/loose sheets of paper and basic writing/drawing supplies (i.e., black pens/markers, pencil).

Intro to Interior Design

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  • San Francisco campus
  • EXINT-1500-1
  • Instructor: TBA
  • TBA
  • 10 sessions. $360. Noncredit
  • Prerequisites: Students must be 18 years or older. No other requirements

In this studio-based overview of the practice of interior design, you review the history and current applications of the practice. Participants explore the multifaceted technical and aesthetic principles of design.

You also examine concepts of programming, planning, and three-dimensional form. Principals of light and lighting, color, materiality, furniture overview and layouts are covered through hands-on exercises.

You develop one long-term project of your choice from conception through presentation. SketchUp, a free software application, may be used in place of hand drafting.

Bring to first class: a 12” roll of trace paper, an architectural scale, and a rollerball pen.

Ideation Sketching and Visual Notation

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  • San Francisco campus
  • EXGRP-1504-1
  • Instructor: TBA
  • TBA
  • 9 sessions. $330. Noncredit
  • Prerequisite: one previous drawing class or equivalent experience. Students must be 18 years or older.

Whether you are a designer, artist, or filmmaker, what inspires you to create art and design are the pre-visual concepts that arise in your mind. These previsualized concepts may potentially become the foundation of a great painting, product, movie, or advertisement.

In this class, students learn how to form and evolve ideas that arise from their imagination through the use of various drawing techniques. These methods allow students to create accurate images directly from their imagination without the need to have a model or photo for reference. Students then use these images to communicate their ideas with clients, art directors, or in meetings, using sketch techniques. Class time is divided among demos, short lectures, and in-class studio time.

This class instructs students to learn the fundamentals of translating 3D space and objects onto 2D-drawn space. Topics covered include using 1, 2, and 3 point perspective, laying out your ideas, using backgrounds, and finding your style. Various types of notation (arrows, typography) are explored to help clarify your drawn ideas. Weekly homework assignments assist in practicing in class topics.

Bring to first class: A 14" x 17" pad of layout paper and a pad of tracing paper, a variety of drawing pencils (2H, HB, 2B), a ballpoint pen or sharpie.

Fashion Design Workshop

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  • San Francisco campus
  • EXFAS 1505-1
  • Instructor: TBA
  • TBA
  • 8 sessions. $300. Noncredit
  • Prerequisite: basic knowledge of hand sewing, straight sewing machine, and sewing basic seams

This fashion workshop introduces students to free-form draping, fabric manipulations, and simplified garment construction (i.e. minimal in terms of technical method and construction) to explore creative form-finding for designing garments.

Workshop projects allow students to explore these innovative methods while mixing fabrics and other materials to construct tops, pants, and accessories, as well as combining existing garments. Through instructor demonstrations and individual student practices, students enhance their ability to create and build garments.

Bring to first class: 2 yards of plain weave light to medium weight woven fabric, such as cotton, silk, etc.

DIGITAL TOOLS

Adobe Creative Cloud (Oakland)

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  • Oakland Campus
  • EXCOM-1300-2
  • Instructor: TBA
  • TBA
  • 3 sessions. $310. Noncredit
  • Prerequisite: a solid understanding of computer skills, Mac or PC. Students will also need an Adobe ID to access software. Students must be 18 years or older. Create an ID here

Adobe Creative Cloud is the industry standard for digital imaging and publishing. This three-day intensive introduces students to Adobe's InDesign, Illustrator, and Photoshop.

The first day is spent learning to draw and alter vector images in Illustrator; the next day covers learning the basics of photo editing, color correction and manipulation in Photoshop. In the third session, the class puts it all together in InDesign, learning layers and multipage document setup while exploring type styles and basic layout.

Throughout, participants explore the tools, palettes, menus, and essentials of each application through a series of hands-on, in-class exercises designed for beginners. Course topics may change to best suit the individual needs of the class.

Please note, our Adobe Creative Cloud class will cover the same info as our one-day intensives. We do not recommend taking our Illustrator I, Photoshop I, or Indesign I class if you are already registered for the 3-day Adobe Creative Cloud class.

Optional : Participants may bring USB flash drive or use an off-site storage service for copying exercises or class work. One student per Macintosh computer.

Digital Drawing and Painting

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  • Oakland campus
  • EXMED-1200-1
  • Instructor: TBA
  • TBA
  • 4 sessions. $300. Noncredit
  • Prerequisite: Photoshop Basics or equivalent. Students must be 18 years or older. Previous drawing, painting, or illustration experience recommended. Students will also need an Adobe ID to access software. Create an ID here

Discover your digital workflow! Today, many artists prefer the convenience and versatility of digital tablets for illustration, concept art, storyboards and more.

This hands-on workshop introduces the Wacom® tablet as a digital drawing and painting tool using Adobe Photoshop CC.

The first half of the course emphasizes tablet setup, handling and care of the tablet and stylus, and setting up an efficient digital workspace. Students build hand-eye coordination, confidence, and spontaneity with the tablet through mark-making, gesture studies, and methods for building value, texture and form.

Techniques for coloring line art and grayscale images are also covered.

During the second half of the course, students work on assignments using photographic reference and scanned drawings to give a greater context to the skill-building exercises and to explore creative problem-solving.

Bring to first class: USB flash drive, sketchbook, 1-3 digital or printed examples of your artwork (optional), and pen or pencil. One student per Macintosh computer. Students will use CCA's tablets and drawing pens

FINE ARTS

Basic Drawing & Beyond

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  • Oakland campus
  • EXDRW-1500-1
  • Instructor: TBA
  • TBA
  • 9 sessions. $330. Noncredit
  • Prerequisite: Students must be 18 years or older. No other requirements

This introductory studio course, focuses on the fundamentals of drawing while exploring a variety of media, techniques, and subject matter from still life and landscape to the figure.

Using traditional and experimental approaches to drawing, students develop an understanding of proportion, form, line, gesture, and tone.

Through demonstrations, practice, and class discussion, participants also hone the verbal and analytical skills necessary to examine their work critically. This course is appropriate for beginners and those wishing to further develop their drawing skills.

Bring to first class: 20” x 26” drawing board with clips, 18" x 24" Strathmore drawing pad (other brands are fine, but paper must be drawing quality), soft vine charcoal, compressed charcoal (Char-kole brand), white plastic eraser, sketchbook (any unlined notebook), pen/pencil, and a portfolio for transporting drawings.

Intro to Jewelry Design

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  • Oakland campus
  • EXMTL-1500-1
  • Instructor: TBA
  • TBA
  • 9 sessions. $330; $25 lab fee payable at registration; $40 materials fee payable to instructor at first session. Noncredit
  • Prerequisite: Students must be 18 years or older. No other requirements

In this course, students explore basic metalsmithing and jewelry processes. Participants are introduced to various techniques for cutting metal, methods of joinery, soldering, forming, fabrication, and various means of surface treatment.

Students may work with copper, brass, or sterling silver as they create jewelry or other small forms.

This class does not provide outside of class access to the studios

Toolkit deposit: Each student is required to submit a check in the amount of $140, payable to CCA, at the first session. Checks will be returned to students on the last day of class upon the return of tool kits.

Bring to first class: Materials fee covers some copper, silver, and additional supplies. Download the materials list here

Intro to Painting

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  • San Francisco Campus
  • EXPNT-1500-1
  • Instructor: TBA
  • TBA
  • 10 sessions. $360. Noncredit
  • Prerequisite: Students must be 18 years or older. No other requirements

This course is designed for beginners and those who have minimal painting experience. Students learn a variety of techniques and skills, including color mixing, creating texture, painting alla prima, glazing, impasto, etc. while exploring a wide range of subject matter, including still life, portraiture, abstraction, and the model.

Individual critiques, slideshows, and group discussions supplement the studio experience. The course emphasizes learning different techniques to assist in developing a personal painting style.

This class does not provide outside of class access to the studios

Bring to first class: two pre-primed canvas boards 16" x 20" or larger, acrylic or oil paint: titanium white, cadmium yellow light, ultramarine blue, alizarin crimson,burnt umber and yellow ochre.

Some preferred brands include Golden, Winsor & Newton, Liquitex, and Gamblin. Palette knife, disposable gloves, painting smock/old shirt, palette paper or plastic tray, a couple of brushes (flat, round, filbert btwn sizes 4-10), a few jars with lids, rags; if working in oils, bring odorless mineral spirits: Gamsol prefered.

NO Turpentine or Turpenoid, which is quite toxic, as is Turpenoid "natural".

Explorations of Color

Explorations of Color

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  • Oakland campus
  • EXPNT-1403-1
  • Instructor: TBA
  • TBA
  • 4 sessions. $200. Noncredit
  • Prerequisite: Intro to Painting or equivalent experience. Students must be 18 years or older.

In this course, participants apply mixing colors to various painting subjects, to gain a deeper understanding of color and it's properties.

Emphasis is given to developing a personal vision, through explorations of still life and the use of warm and cool shadows, landscape and the tonal palette, as well as abstraction and the psychology of color. Individual feedback and group critiques will be an integral part of this course.

Bring to first class: several brushes, a few jars, rags, a preprimed canvas (at least 16" x 20"), palette paper, palette knife, acrylic or oil paints (titanium white, mars black, cadmium yellow light hue or lemon yellow, hansa yellow medium or cadmium yellow medium hue, cadmium red medium hue or napthol red, quinacridone violet, ultramarine blue, phthalo blue).

Please note, pure Cadmium colors are not suitable. Please bring only cadmium HUES which are substitutes.

If working in oils, bring odorless mineral spirits, Galkyd, linseed oil, Gamblin Gamsol (solvent) and Gamblin Linseed Oil, or Walnut Oil (any brand).

Gamblin is an art supply brand that focuses on safety. Students must use Gamblin gamsol and linseed oil, no exceptions. NO Turpentine or Turpenoid, which is quite toxic, as is Turpenoid "natural"

If painting in acrylic, also bring Golden Acrylic Glazing Liquid in either satin, matte or gloss finish.

Painting: Abstraction

Painting Abstraction

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  • San Francisco campus
  • EXPNT-1516-1
  • Instructor: TBA
  • TBA
  • 10 sessions. $360. Noncredit
  • Prerequisite: Students must be 18 years or older. No other requirements

Abstract painting has been with us for over a century. Where do we go from here?

In this course, you explore the challenge of creating truly original abstract work as it relates to current times. The development of a unique approach is emphasized while the creation of a process for experimentation is intensified.

Both source material and internal inspirations are used.Practical information for presentation is provided as well as strategies about how to navigate through the art world. Confidence building and critical analysis are included.

This class does not provide outside of class access to the studios

Bring to first class: two preprimed canvas boards 18" x 24", acrylic or oil paints (black, white, yellow, ultramarine blue, phthalo blue, alizarin crimson and cadmium red), palette knife, palette paper, several brush sizes, a few jars, rags; if working in oils, bring linseed oil and odorless mineral spirits, Gamsol preferred.

No Turpenoid (or Turpenoid "natural") due to toxicity.

Illustration Techniques:Keeping up a creative practice

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  • Oakland Campus
  • EXIll-1512-1
  • Instructor: TBA
  • TBA
  • 10 sessions. $330. Noncredit
  • Prerequisite: Students must be 18 years or older. No other requirements

Each week students learn and execute a new illustration technique starting with rendering and layout and exploring different applications methods of gouache. We begin with simple objects and move through landscapes, still-lifes, portraits, patterns, and lettering. Drawing assignments correlate to discussion topics exploring three aspects: materials and technique, creative process, and artistic outlook. As a group we critique each other’s artistic goals and discuss strategies for maintaining an art practice in the midst of a busy life. The instructor covers concepts from her book "The Opposite Is Also True: A Journal Of Creative Wisdom For Artists.”

We work in an oversized, mixed-media journal. Participants have the opportunity to experiment in class with a variety of different brands of gouache and other materials to gain familiarity with how each medium and brand responds.

Bring to class: bring pencil, eraser, paint brushes and gouache. REQUIRED: Strathmore 500 Series Mixed Media Art Journal - 14'' x 11'', 48 pages, Hardbound. Can be purchased online here or here. Students may also buy one from the instructor on the first night for $25.

There is a $10 materials fee payable to the instructor to cover miscellaneous supplies the instructor will provide Please see syllabus for specific details

Graphic Novels and Sequential Art

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  • San Francisco
  • EXILL-1301-01
  • Instructor: TBA
  • TBA
  • 4 sessions. $300. Noncredit
  • Prerequisite: No prior comics experience is required, just the desire to tell stories visually. Students must be 18 years or older.

Graphic novels and comics are among the most popular and growing mediums in publishing. This class will give students the theoretical and practical tools to create their own comics and graphic novels.


Students will learn theoretical principles of sequential storytelling, as well as practical techniques to create their own graphic novel. Each student will go through the entire process of creating a comic from writing, thumbnailing, penciling, inking to printing. At the completion of this course, students will have a complete comic. Students can use any medium to create their comic.

Selected readings and guest speakers will provide additional opportunities for students to learn more about this engaging art form.

Bring to first class: a sketchbook, pencil, pen, and method for note-taking.

Wheel Throwing

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  • Oakland Campus
  • EXCER-1500-01
  • Instructor:Instructor: TBA
  • TBA
  • 13 sessions. $500. Lab fee $30. Noncredit
  • Prerequisite: None

Suitable for beginning students as well as those with prior experience, this studio is designed to promote individual expression and ideas, while providing a fundamental understanding of the nature of clay and the ceramic process.

Responding to the particular needs and interests of class participants, the instructor widens the focus from basic techniques to more complex forms and concepts, helping individual ceramicists to further develop their own approach to working on the wheel.We will go over everything from basic techniques to more complex forms and concepts while responding to needs and interests of the members of the class.

Lab fee covers materials for making ceramic glazes.

Bring to the first class: Beginning students should purchase a basic wheel throwing tool kit. Experienced students should come prepared with their preferred tools. Clay can be purchased from CCA's Ceramics department at $12.50/bag. Students must pay with a personal check for clay. Cash/Credit can not be accepted

No class meetings on March 24 and 26 (CCA Spring Break)

Outside of class access is open daily from Monday thru Friday: 7 PM -12 AM and Saturday/Sunday 8 AM- 8 PM.

Students are permitted to attend 3 visits / week outside of class 1 visit = 4 hours maximum

Contact Us

Questions?

Feel free to email us at specialprograms@cca.edu

510-594-3710 (main line)

Office of Special Programs
Oakland campus, Irwin Student Center

Please note, our office hours are Monday-Friday 8:30a-5p and we are closed on the weekends. For any questions regarding class locations call Public Safety at 510-385-1821

Audrey Jones
CCA Extension, Program Manager
audreyjones@cca.edu
510.594.3680