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Welcome to Mr. van der Walt’s  Visual Communication  class website!

This website is designed to support the Grade 10, 11 and 12 courses in the
program at the Swan Valley Regional Secondary School, Swan River, Manitoba, Canada.
The curriculum is created and delivered by George van der Walt. 
SVRSS Tigers RUGBY info is also shared on this website.


Visual Communications is the business that communicates any idea visually. The idea may be to sell a product, announce a new movie, and make people laugh, or warn the public of a harmful chemical. There is no limit to what the idea or message may be. The idea is then translated into an image, word, movie or animation that can be seen by many people.
“To design is much more than simply to assemble, to order, or even to edit; it is to add value and meaning, to illuminate, to simplify, to clarify, to modify, to dignify, to dramatize, to persuade, and perhaps even to amuse.” – Paul Rand

The person who creates these images, or “graphics” is called a graphic designer. Once known as a “commercial artist,” the name is now too narrow to accurately describe today’s creative person who creates-or designs-graphics such as video presentations, computer images, and web photographs, instead of “art.” The task is still creative but expands the common notion of art.

The Visual Communications ( Graphic Design) program consists of 9  credit courses designed to develop the knowledge, skills and standard of performance necessary for direct job entry  acceptance into one of the many Art and Design colleges in Manitoba and across Canada.
The student earns a Technology High school Diploma with proficiency in Visual Communications. The student may follow the regular High School Diploma and earns a Regular Program High School Diploma allowing the student to pursue a university education.


A complete kit of supplies is provided to each student containing all the professional materials and equipment needed for the practical exercises in class. Professional computer hardware and the latest programs are available to create dynamic graphics. Video and animation equipment is available to produce images for film and television. Information in each course is selected for its direct application and job relevance to students. Real-world assignments reinforce the necessary job skills.


Visual Communications is a multi-million dollar industry employing thousands of creative people to produce a wide range of visual images. This includes web, fashion, cartooning, package design, animation, television ads, computer graphics, book publishing-the scope is enormous. Job opportunities are available with virtually any business that requires advertising or any visual material. Visual Communications is ranked as Canada’s seventh largest profession and is growing steadily. The graduate can earn a good living while enjoying an exciting career in this fast changing field.


Curriculum Description

Graphic Design: Manitoba Curriculum Framework of Outcomes.

Graphic design is the creative practice of conveying an idea, or communicating a message aesthetically with images, graphics and type. Graphic design often refers to both the process (designing) by which the communication is created and the products (designs) which are generated. Graphic designers work in a variety of areas; producing visual identity (logos and branding), publications (magazines, newspapers and books), print media (posters, billboards, signs, product packaging), illustration and interactive design (animation, websites, apps, games, and emerging technologies).

The graphic design program gives students the opportunity to learn the skills and knowledge required to function within the graphic design industry. Students use industry standard software and traditional media to visually express their ideas. By the end of the program, they will be able to produce graphic design and layout, illustration, and interactive graphic design to gain entry-level industry employment. Students also have the opportunity to work as self-employed graphic designers, or to continue their studies in graphic design at the post-secondary level.


Interactive Digital Media : Manitoba Curriculum Framework of Outcomes

The high school interactive digital media program provides students with the opportunity to learn the knowledge, skills and attitudes to develop and produce interactive digital media projects, such as apps, games, websites, virtual worlds, and cross-platform media. Students will gain knowledge and skills in digital design, asset creation, coding, and project management. Using a project-based approach, they will combine technology and artistic skills to create authentic interactive digital media applications. Students will be exposed to the professional aspects of making a living in interactive digital media, learning all aspects of the profession, including the entrepreneurial skills to pursue self-employment. Graduates of the program will be equipped with the knowledge, skills and attitudes to find entry-level employment in the industry.

Careers include:

• customer support

• quality assurance manager

• web designer

• web developer

• web manager

• social media manager

• advertising and marketing specialist

• app developer

• game developer

• asset developer

• animator

• beta / alpha tester

• computer programmer

• digital artist

• cinematographer


Graduates will also have the opportunity to continue their education in post secondary institutions.