Creative Tune-up for Designers

Recharge your Creative Skills in One Week!

This fun and intensive workshop was designed to help creatives sharpen their design savvy, learn new and useful skills, and recharge creative juices. This special online workshop combines exercises from Jim Krause’s new book D30: Exercises for Designers) and How Design University course, D30: Exercises for Designers, and is designed to rekindle your enjoyment of design and art, and introduce you to new and highly relevant art skills – in just one week!

Through a series of hands-on, creative design exercises, this online workshop will recharge your creative batteries and give you plenty of career-enhancing ideas.

Watch a short introductory video about this course here!

Jim KrauseJim Krause lives in northwest Washington state and, since the 1980s, has been working as a designer, a photographer, an illustrator and a writer. Krause has worked for a wide range of clients, including Microsoft, Kodak, Cingular Wireless, Seattle Public Schools, Levi Strauss, Washington Apples and more.
Creative Tune-up for Designers

Workshop Length:

1 week

Recommended Reading:

Start Date:

This course is no longer being offered. Please check out the 4 week long version, D30: Exercises for Designers here.


  • To recharge our skills of aesthetic evaluation and visual awareness
  • To reconnect our eyes and head with hands-on tools like pens, pencils, inks and paper
  • To sharpen widely applicable art skills through simple, spontaneous and improvisational creative projects
  • To bring desirable and versatile new skills to our professional work
  • To help establish life-long creative habits
  • To deepen our awareness of resourcefulness as an essential creative component
  • To simply have fun while creating works of art for ourselves
Who Should Take This Course:
  • Designers, Illustrators, Photographers, Crafters
  • Professionals, students and anyone with an interest in the above professions
Basic Art Supplies:

  • The art supplies needed for this course are extremely simple: Pens, pencils, paints, paper, paper mache (flour + water + newspaper), a digital camera (any kind will do) and–if possible–photo editing software like Photoshop or Elements.


Seven projects are included in this week-long course. Students may do the projects in any order and at whatever pace suits their schedule. Each project will take around 2–4 hours to complete. The seven projects included in this course are:

  1. Going For The Goldsworthy: Improvised 3D creations (feel free to bring a friend along for this enjoyable outdoor/indoor activity)
  2. Swirling Swirls: Reconnect hand, eye and brain with this intriguing and fun ink-on-paper project
  3. Wrongs Making Right: Great photos without worrying about doing everything “picture perfectly”
  4. Balloon Bowls: Bring out the paper mache and paints!
  5. Mirror Images: Digital exploration that’s as easy as it is intriguing and eye catching
  6. Playing With Fire: Another great pencil + paper exercise, and not as dangerous as it sounds
  7. Going In Circles: Quality filmmaking using surprisingly simple tools and a budget of almost zero