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Illustration

As an Illustration major at one of the best art colleges in the country, you will enhance your figurative and observational drawing and design skills. You will learn to creatively translate concepts and emotions into imagery that best communicates a story.

Original thinking, the ability to formulate and express clear, relevant thoughts, problem solving and engaging story telling are core skills we teach in our Illustration program. You will experiment with a broad array of traditional materials and techniques, including pencils, acrylics, oils, inks and collage, while mastering contemporary digital processes using Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator.

You will research, visually develop and execute finished Illustrations at the highest level relevant to all current and emerging markets, including entertainment, gaming, licensing, advertising, social expression and publishing fields. As a graduate of our Illustration department, you will be prepared to enter the industry as a staff artists, freelance illustrators or creative entrepreneurs.

See our most recent graduates work!

Draw inspiration for your work from field trips to professional art studios and advertising agencies as well as from interactions with our talented visiting artists. Share your portfolio with employers, illustrators, and designers, who are invited each year to the College.

Real-world experience for real-world careers
What may best set CIA apart from other colleges of art and design is our commitment to preparing students for a career path through real-world experiences. You'll learn by working on real-world projects with external partners or clients, or in the public sphere—all before graduation.

These opportunities allow you to put your classroom and studio knowledge to work in a professional setting while still being guided by faculty. You’ll learn what it takes to meet clients’ expectations, and you will emerge with confidence that will serve you as you launch your career.

What can I do with a degree in Illustration?

  • Illustrator + Artist
  • Animator
  • Concept artist
  • Artist + Educator
  • Web Designer
  • Graphic Novelist

Facilities

As an Illustration major, you will work in your own studio space complete with a professional drafting table. While much of your work will be done by hand, your major also requires extensive technology use. So you'll have access to the Integrated Media Environment facilities, which include much more than just our state-of-the-art computer labs. You can check out the latest equipment for digital video, lighting, and sound. And your projects will look professionally produced with the help of a motion capture system, a green-screen Chroma Key studio area, two separate lighting and shooting spaces, and a sound recording studio.

CIA also houses the fabrication studios, a shared space, staffed and supervised by highly qualified technical specialists. Students from all courses of study are encouraged to use this space and do hands-on material studies. This communal environment gives students optimal means of making for their individual exploration and group projects.