A simple framework for success

Awesome Design Academy is a learning program based on a simple, but mighty curriculum:
Learn, Do and Discuss.

This three-part framework packs power in its repetition to build experience and fosters a variety of design topics, tactics and principles for meaningful growth.


Get access to The Ultimate Beginner’s Course, Portfolio Builder live classes and more…


Partake in candid conversations with other learners and get insights from industry professionals.


Put what you learn into action through weekly practice prompts and focused projects.


Repetition is required to gain real experience. With each iteration of learning, doing and discussing—you grow. 

Our Mission

To guide learners in their design journey to create with purpose
and to grow with intention.

Learning Values

There’s a formula to learn and retain your design skills.

Determination to complete a creative task, project or goal.

Willingness to try over and over to gain competence and confidence

Understanding that creating multiple versions of a design can lead to discovery, deeper thinking and diversity of solutions.

Attempting to reconstruct a successful existing design, not to copy someone else’s work, but to understand how elements work together to create good design

Creative cues all around us can incite ideas, excitement and the desire to create.

4 Pilars of the Academy

A successful and sought after graphic designer must be well-rounded and multi-dimensional. Awesome Design Academy is dedicated to building curriculum around these four pillars to foster a comprehensive skillset for its learners.

Core Communications

Master core visual principles while growing written and verbal communication skills

Brand and Creative Business

Solve bigger problems and create larger impact through understanding brand and business

Process and Project Management

Tackle complex challenges and manage larger scopes of work

Technology and Tools

Remain competent and adaptable to use applicable software, hardware and techniques

About the Founder

Shannel Wheeler, PMP is a left-brain creative, graphic designer, instructor, 2-time author, and creative entrepreneur. She is the founder of Awesome Design Academy, a guide for beginners to empower themselves with practical design learning to generate more creative and financial opportunities. She is an alum of The Ohio State University and SCAD Atlanta, studying both visual communication design and interactive design. With 20 years of professional experience, Shannel has a breadth of knowledge, creating branding and design solutions for Fortune 500 clients, corporate brands, nonprofits, small businesses, tech startups, and her own entrepreneurial pursuits. She has built her experience teaching graphic design as a University professor and through building curriculum and teaching classes through Awesome Design Academy.

Shannel believes that learning design should be fun, engaging, and practical for today’s world. She uses online content, creative products, books, workshops, and classes to teach and inspire learners to apply what they’ve learned to their personal, professional, or business goals. She continues to remain a lifelong learner and practitioner of what she teaches through brand and design implementation for her clients. Above all, her primary goal is to create with purpose and help others do the same.


Now let's work!

You can learn anything. But you also need to use these six “P’s of Learning”


Practice makes progress! You didn't think you wouldn't need practice, did you?


Add a strategy for how you work through a repeatable process​


Design is visual problem-solving. Combine your creativity with critical thinking


Understand the requirements of your design and plan accordingly to set the project up for success


This is essential! Have patience with the process, but more importantly, with yourself when learning and implementing new concepts


Design isn't always easy—but staying the course will help you work through challenges and level-up in your understanding