BFA: Illustration

Since the making of images is an intellectual process, the education of the artist should go considerably beyond instruction of technique and media. The artistic process, at its best, is creative intuitive, analytical and highly sophisticated. It requires all the knowledge, discipline, sensitivity and awareness of liberally educated intelligence. Students in the program will gain the technical and intellectual preparation necessary for the development of their own personal creative solutions and the means to make better-informed career decisions.

This program will prepare graduates to demonstrate mastery of these technical skills:

  • Demonstrate proficiency in the use of various mediums particularly, but not limited to: graphite, charcoal, watercolor, acrylic paint, oil paint.
  • Demonstrate competence using a wide range of mixed media applications involving, but not limited to: digital, printmaking, collage and photography.
  • Demonstrate proficiency in figure drawing and anatomy.
  • Demonstrate advanced understanding of two-dimensional composition and theory.
  • Master the ability to produce the illusion of three-dimensional images on a two-dimensional surface, using tonal, and perspective image-making techniques.
  • Master and employ the use of visual narrative in their imagery.
Apply conceptual skills
  • Develop a conceptually mature illustration to accompany any media application through preliminary sketches to presentation roughs to print-ready finished art.
  • Demonstrate proficiency in the preparation of imagery for publication in any print or digital media.
  • Articulately discuss the conceptual and technical properties of imagery with any persons, either within the visual communications field or not.
  • Illustrate ability to clearly distinguish between the different fields of illustration; commercial/advertising, editorial, graphic novel/comics, political cartoon/satire etc.
Demonstrate promotional and professional skills
  • Produce a professional portfolio that demonstrates technical mastery and individual ‘voice’.
  • Demonstrate ability to utilize both photographic and digital media to build both traditionally printed and/or digital portfolios.
  • Prepare a promotional plan that will facilitate the acquisition of freelance and/or permanent employment utilizing, but not limited to: postcards and other mail related promotional endeavors, website development, portfolio drop-offs and interviews, participation and/or membership in various illustration/graphic arts guilds, organizations and networking venues.
  • Prepare a record keeping system that chronicles work confirmation forms, invoices, contracts and tax related issues.
  • Demonstrate the knowledge necessary to aid in the understanding and negotiation of contracts.
Apply values and ethics in illustration practices
  • Demonstrate ethical responsibility in the use of their talents.
  • Demonstrate ability to critically examine individual situations, act ethically, and reflect upon the consequences of images in society at large.
  • Recognize talents as a gift and fulfill social responsibility to use talent in service to humankind to bring about global development and peace.
Develop interdisciplinary skills
  • Demonstrate knowledge and advanced comprehension of typography and graphic design using graphic arts software to develop enhance and archive graphic imagery.
  • Demonstrate advanced knowledge of Art History, both in general and specifically within illustration and visual communications.
  • Analyze and expand mixed media and conceptual horizons, indicating exposure to the many venues of visual expression existing outside the illustration field.
Demonstrate Design/Visual Communications literacy
  • Demonstrate ability to function in a design field understanding printing procedures and protocol for any media outlet.
  • Demonstrate advanced knowledge of how to develop and/or acquire reference materials both photographically based and digital.
  • Demonstrate basic knowledge of multi-media approaches to both representational and non-representational visual expressions.
  • Demonstrate critical thinking and writing skills, recognizing and articulating both the role illustration plays within the arts as a whole and those qualities unique to itself.
  • Analyze, discuss and critique any visual image considering its technical, aesthetic and conceptual properties.
Demonstrate interdisciplinary literacy
  • Demonstrate critical thinking and writing skills to articulate the connection the field has with other disciplines.
  • Analyze and demonstrate the crucial role other seemingly unrelated fields of study have in the development of the student’s unique, personal visual voice; for example, the sciences.
Demonstrate effective communication skills:
  • Effectively communicate, articulate and positively react both within the visual communications industry and in the interdisciplinary nature of our global community.
  • Demonstrate information and technology literacy by effective use of the library and communication sciences.
Address issues of personal /socio-cultural and international awareness
  • Demonstrate the development of critical insights into the student’s and others’ personalities and behaviors and apply effective strategies for self-management and self-improvement.
  • Demonstrate understanding of personal accountability in relation to the common good.
  • Demonstrate recognition, understanding, and respect for the complexity of socio-cultural and international diversity.
Demonstrate effective career planning and development:
  • Demonstrate ability to realistically plan how to implement their illustrative talents and values into productive, socially conscious and personally fulfilling careers.