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Illustration Schools

You might have discovered you had a love of creating visual art as early as when you first put crayon to paper as a child. The most fundamental skills of a visual artist are imagination and the ability to draw -- to communicate in pictures through the use of various media such as pencil, ink or paints. Illustration uses these fundamental skills. Art school can build on them and provide training for a career as an illustrator.

Vocational art school can help you develop the basic skills you need to establish a portfolio of your artwork, which is as important as a resume when pursuing a career in any of the art and design fields. In addition to illustrating all different types of publications from children's books to medical texts, the skills you learn can open the door for you to explore a number of other interesting career paths open to illustrators, including animation and graphic novel illustration.

Career specializations in illustration

Many illustrators choose to work as freelance artists so that they can broaden their skills by working on many different types of illustration projects. Others work for companies large and small, in industries that include advertising, motion pictures and video production, retail stores, publishing and design services. Typical occupations for trained illustrators include the following:

  • Advertising or marketing artist -- designing illustrations for ads, promotions, websites and corporate branding
  • Animator -- creating characters and settings or 3D models for animated movies, videos and even video games
  • Comic book artist/graphic novelist -- writing and illustrating comics and graphic novels
  • Fashion illustrator -- working with fashion designers, fashion magazines, or retail clothing stores
  • Storyboard illustrator -- drawing storyboards for film, animation and television projects

Certifications and degrees for illustrators

Many independent art schools and colleges offer everything from certificates and associate degrees to bachelor's and master's degrees in fine art for illustrators. A prerequisite for any program includes basic drawing skills. Curricula include drawing, painting, and color and composition in a number of different media, with each degree level providing the opportunity to deepen your artistic experience and skills. Each type of program may offer courses which include the following:

  • Certificate: non-credit program for adults includes graphic design, intro to illustration, studio, business of illustration
  • Associate (AA): typically two years of full-time study includes form, figure drawing, digital media, art history and painting
  • Bachelor's (BFA): program includes core liberal arts studies, illustration, intro to anatomy, figure drawing, digital media, painting, collaborative project
  • Master's degree: three-year program of studio work in the major, directed study and liberal arts graduate level courses

Salary and job projections for illustrators

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS.com) does not break out salaries or employment growth projections for illustrators. Their data are grouped with that of other artists such as painters under the category of fine artists. The national average salary for all fine artists as of May 2013 was $50,900. The majority of fine artists, including illustrators, are independently employed.

Job growth for all fine artists nationwide is expected to be less than the average for all occupations, 3 percent from 2012 through 2022, according to the BLS. However, they report that these 5 states employ the largest number of fine artists, including illustrators, while Projections Central shows those state projections and annual number of job openings as follows:

  1. California: 10.1 percent growth; 240 jobs
  2. New York: 4.4 percent growth; 90 jobs
  3. Florida: 11.9 percent growth; 60 jobs
  4. Washington: 15.4 percent growth; 70 jobs
  5. Texas: 18.5 percent growth; 50 jobs

Talent, diligence and hard work are required to make it as an illustrator. By doing everything you can to hone your skills and learn the business side of making a living as an artist, you are giving yourself better odds to succeed. Taking advantage of an art school program if you want a career in illustration can be the first step in the right direction.

Sources:

Art and Illustration Major, Great Careers, John Brown University, http://www.jbu.edu/majors/art_and_illustration/careers/

Craft and Fine Artists, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2013, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/arts-and-design/craft-and-fine-artists.htm

Fine Artists, including Painters, Sculptors and Illustrators, Bureau of Labor Statistics, May 2013, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes271013.htm

Fine Artists, including Painters, Sculptors and Illustrators, Long Term Occupational Projections, 2012-2022, Projections Central, http://www.projectionscentral.com/Projections/LongTerm

Illustration, Ringling College of Art and Design, http://www.ringling.edu/learn/majors/illustration/

Illustration, Academy of Art, https://www.academyart.edu/academics/illustration

Illustration Schools
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With an education from an Art Institutes school, imagine what you could create. Please Call 855-816-4001 to speak to a customer representative.

Programs : Illustration & Design (BFA), Illustration (BS), Design Research (BFA), and more..

Campus Locations :

Fort Lauderdale: 1799 S.E. 17th Street Fort Lauderdale, FL 33316

Atlanta: 6600 Peach Tree Dunwoody Road, NE 100 Embassy Row Atlanta, GA 30328

Schaumburg: 1000 N. Plaza Drive, Suite 100 Schaumburg, IL 60173

Portland: 1122 N.W. Davis Street Portland, OR 97209

Minneapolis: 15 South 9th Street Minneapolis, MN 55402

Miami: 1501 Biscayne Boulevard, Suite 100 Miami, FL 33132

Denver: 1200 Lincoln Street Denver, CO 80203

Cincinnati: 8845 Governors Hill Drive Suite 100 Cincinnati, OH 45249

Phoenix: 2233 West Dunlap Avenue Phoenix, AZ 85021

Henderson: 2350 Corporate Circle Henderson, NV 89074

Pittsburgh: 420 Boulevard of the Allies Pittsburgh, PA 15219

Charlotte: Three LakePointe Plaza 2110 Water Ridge Parkway Charlotte, NC 28217

San Antonio: 1000 IH - 10 West Suite 106 San Antonio, TX 78230

San Diego: 7650 Mission Valley Rd San Diego, CA 92108

San Francisco: 1170 Market Street San Francisco, CA 94102

Santa Ana: 3601 West Sunflower Avenue Santa Ana, CA 92704

Novi: 28125 Cabot Drive Suite 120 Novi, MI 48377

Philadelphia: 1622 Chestnut Street Philadelphia, PA 19103

Decatur: One West Court Square Suite 110 Decatur, GA 30030

Santa Monica: 2900 31st Street Santa Monica, CA 90405

Overland Park: 8208 Melrose Drive Overland Park, KS 66214

Houston: River Oaks Plaza 4140 Southwest Freeway Houston, TX 77027

Sunnyvale: 1120 Kifer Road Sunnyvale, CA 94086

Seattle: 2323 Elliott Avenue Seattle, WA 98121

Jacksonville: 8775 Baypine Road Jacksonville, FL 32256

Sacramento: 2850 Gateway Oaks Drive Suite 100 Sacramento, CA 95833

York: Formerly Bradley Academy for the Visual Arts 1409 Williams Road York, PA 17402

Indianapolis: 3500 Depauw Blvd., Suite 1010 Indianapolis, IN 46268

Durham: 410 Blackwell St. Suite 200 Durham, NC 27701

Tampa: Parkside at Tampa Bay Park 4401 North Himes Avenue, Suite 150 Tampa, FL 33614

San Bernardino: 674 East Brier Drive San Bernardino, CA 92408

North Hollywood: 5250 Lankershim Boulevard North Hollywood, CA 91601

Austin: 101 W. Louis Henna Blvd. Suite 100 Austin, TX 78728

Draper: 121 West Election Road Suite 100 Draper, UT 84020

Nashville: 100 Centerview Dr. Suite 250 Nashville, TN 37214

Troy: 1414 East Maple Road, Suite 150 Troy, MI 48083

Brookline: 10 Brookline Place West Brookline, MA 02445

Milwaukee: 320 East Buffalo Street Suite 100 Milwaukee, WI 53202

Tinley Park: 18670 Graphic Drive Tinley Park, IL 60477

Chicago: 350 N. Orleans Street Chicago, IL 60654

Tucson: 5099 E. Grant Rd. Suite 100 Tucson, AZ 85712

Dallas: Two North Park East Dallas, TX 75231

New York: 218-232 West 40th Street New York, NY 10018

Arlington: 1820 North Fort Myer Drive Arlington, VA 22209

Sterling: 21000 Atlantic Blvd. Suite 100 Sterling, VA 20166

Virginia Beach: 4500 Main Street Suite 100 Virginia Beach, VA 23462

Fort Worth: 7000 Calmont Avenue Suite 150 Fort Worth, TX 76116

Are you interested in pursuing a high-tech career? Getting an education from ITT Tech is a great place to start!

Programs : AS - Visual Communications, AS - Graphic Communications and Design, AS - Computer Drafting and Design, and more..

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Marlton: 2 Greentree Center 9000 Lincoln Dr. E, Suite 100 Marlton, NJ 08053

Liverpool: 235 Greenfield Parkway Liverpool, NY 13088

Tarentum: 100 Pittsburgh Mills Circle Suite 100 Tarentum, PA 15084

Getzville: 2295 Millersport Highway, P.O. Box 327 Getzville, NY 14068

Old Forge: 1000 Meade Street Old Forge, PA 18518

Pittsburgh: 10 Parkway Center Pittsburgh, PA 15220

Harrisburg: 449 Eisenhower Blvd., Suite 100 Harrisburg, PA 17111

Albany: 13 Airline Drive Albany, NY 12205

Plymouth Meeting: 220 W. Germantown Pike, Suite 100 Plymouth Meeting, PA 19462

Norfolk: 863 Glenrock Road Norfolk, VA 23502

Earth City: 3640 Corporate Trail Drive Earth City, MO 63045

Duluth: 10700 Abbotts Bridge Road Duluth, GA 30097

Little Rock: 4520 S. University Avenue Little Rock, AR 72204

Columbia: 720 Gracern Road, Suite 120 Columbia, SC 29210

Kennesaw: 1000 Cobb Place Boulevard NW Kennesaw, GA 30144

Cordova: 7260 Goodlett Farms Parkway Cordova, TN 38016

Indianapolis: 2525 N. Shadeland Ave., Ste 103 Indianapolis, IN 46219

Greenfield: 6300 W. Layton Avenue Greenfield, WI 53220

Maumee: 1656 Henthorne Blvd. Suite B Maumee, OH 43537

Salem: 2159 Apperson Drive Salem, VA 24153

Canton: 1905 S Haggerty Rd Canton, MI 48188

Knoxville: 10208 Technology Drive Knoxville, TN 37932

Atlanta: Two Crown Center 1745 Phoenix Blvd., Suite 100 Atlanta, GA 30349

Arnold: 1930 Meyer Drury Drive Arnold, MO 63010

Troy: 1522 E. Big Beaver Road Troy, MI 48083

High Point: 4050 Piedmont Parkway, Suite 110 High Point, NC 27265

Saint Rose: 140 James Drive East Saint Rose, LA 70087

Lathrop: 16916 South Harlan Road Lathrop, CA 95330

Portland: 9500 NE Cascades Parkway Portland, OR 97220

Las Vegas: 2445 Fire Mesa Street - Suite 200 Las Vegas, NV 89128

Hilliard: 3781 Park Mill Run Drive Hilliard, OH 43026

Webster: 1001 Magnolia Ave. Webster, TX 77598

Clovis: 362 N. Clovis Avenue Clovis, CA 93612

Hanover: 7030 Dorsey Road, Suite 100 Hanover, MD 21076

Dearborn: 19855 W. Outer Drive, Suite L10W Dearborn, MI 48124

Kansas City: 9150 East 41st Terrace Kansas City, MO 64133

Corona: 4160 Temescal Canyon Road, Suite 100 Corona, CA 92883

Murray: 920 West LeVoy Drive Murray, UT 84123

Swartz Creek: 6359 Miller Road Swartz Creek, MI 48473

Dayton: 3325 Stop 8 Road Dayton, OH 45414

Baton Rouge: 14141 Airline Highway, Bldg 3 - Suite K Baton Rouge, LA 70817

Woburn: 10 Forbes Road Woburn, MA 01801

Huntington: 5183 US Route 60, Building 1, Suite 40 Huntington, WV 25705

Bessemer: 6270 Park South Drive Bessemer, AL 35022

Rancho Cordova: 10863 Gold Center Drive Rancho Cordova, CA 95670

Albuquerque: 5100 Masthead Street NE Albuquerque, NM 87109

Seattle: 12720 Gateway Drive Seattle, WA 98168

Youngstown: 1030 North Meridian Road Youngstown, OH 44509

Spokane: North 1050 Argonne Road Spokane, WA 99212

Everett: 1615 75th Street SW Everett, WA 98203

Nashville: 2845 Elm Hill Pike Nashville, TN 37214

Owings Mills: 11301 Red Run Boulevard Owings Mills, MD 21117

Tucson: 1455 West River Road Tucson, AZ 85704

Arlington Heights: 3800 N. Wilke Road, Suite 100 Arlington Heights, IL 60004

Omaha: 9814 M Street Omaha, NE 68127

Henderson: 168 N Gibson Road Henderson, NV 89014

Philadelphia: 105 South 7th Street, Ste 100 Philadelphia, PA 19106

Jacksonville: 7011 A.C. Skinner Parkway, Suite 140 Jacksonville, FL 32256

Norwood: 333 Providence Highway Norwood, MA 02062

South Bend: 17390 Dugdale Drive, Suite 100 South Bend, IN 46635

Richmond: 300 Gateway Centre Parkway Richmond, VA 23235

At University of Phoenix, we believe everyone deserves access to higher education.

Programs : BS in Communication/Journalism, and more..

Campus Locations :

Ontario: 3110 E. Guasti Road Ontario, CA 91761

Pasadena: 299 N. Euclid Avenue Pasadena, CA 91101

Phoenix: 9520 West Palm Lane Phoenix, AZ 85037

Lancaster: 1220 W. Avenue J Lancaster, CA 93534

Los Angeles: 14320 Firestone Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90038

Costa Mesa: 3150 Bristol Street, Suite 100, Costa Mesa, CA 92626

Diamond Bar: 1370 S. Valley Vista Dr. Diamond Bar, CA 91765

Murrieta: 25240 Hancock Avenue Murrieta, CA 92562

Palm Desert: 75153 Merle Dr. Palm Desert, CA 92211

Colorado Springs: 2 North Cascade Avenue Suite 100 Colorado Springs, CO 80903

San Diego: 1230 Columbia Street San Diego, CA 92101

El Centro: 3095 N. Imperial Avenue Suite 101 El Centro, CA 92243

Woodland Hills: 5955 DeSoto Ave Woodland Hills, CA 91367

San Bernardino: 451 E. Vanderbilt Way Suite 100 San Bernardino, CA 92408

San Marcos: 277 Rancheros Drive San Marcos, CA 92069

Gardena: 1515 W. 190th Gardena, CA 90248

Set your career in motion at Virginia College.

Programs : BAC-3D Imaging & Animation, and more..

Campus Locations :

Huntsville: 2021 Drake Ave. SW Huntsville, AL 35801

At Fortis Institute, you may get the skills and training you need to prepare for a career. * Programs vary by location * Please contact each individual campus for accreditation information

Programs : Digital Graphics & Multimedia Design, and more..

Campus Locations :

Erie: 5757 West 26th Street Erie, PA 16506

Get hands-on training with Remington College.

Programs : AAA in Digital Graphic Arts, and more..

Campus Locations :

Fort Worth: 300 East Loop 820 Fort Worth, TX 76112

Learning at Full Sail University has always centered around interaction and the exchange of ideas. Our online curriculum fully embraces this philosophy.

Programs : Graphic Design, Bachelor of Science (Online), Computer Animation, Bachelor of Science (Online), and more..

Campus Locations :

: , AL

Turn your talents into a career at nationally recognized and accredited Platt College.

Programs : Visual Communication Interactive/Web Specialization, Visual Communications 2D Print, Visual Communication 3D Animation/Video Specialization, and more..

Campus Locations :

Alhambra: 1000 South Freemont Avenue Suite A9W Alhambra, CA 91803

Ontario: 3700 Inland Empire Blvd. Suite 400 Ontario, CA 91764

Riverside: 6465 Sycamore Canyon Blvd Riverside, CA 92507

Helping creative minds bring their ideas to life.

Programs : Graphic Design (BS), Graphic Design (AS), 3D Animation (C), and more..

Campus Locations :

Pittsburgh: 420 Boulevard of the Allies Pittsburgh, PA 15219

Design your future at Harrington College of Design.

Programs : Graphic Design, and more..

Campus Locations :

Chicago: 200 West Madison, 2nd Floor Chicago, IL 60606

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