BA (Hons) Illustration

The Course

This course focuses on applied image making and illustration within the context of a rapidly developing multicultural and technology-influenced society. Working alongside animators, photographers and video makers you will build the key skills of a designer and engage with different types of illustration, including illustration for books, editorial applications and various forms of sequential narrative.
You will also develop drawing skills that can then be applied in projects shared between the animation and graphics courses. This will help you produce work in the fields which are most relevant to your interests and strengths.

Book list

These books and essays give you a flavour of the philosophy of the course:
Braund, S. ed (2012) The Authorial illustrator, Atlantic Books, c2012
Klimowski, A (2007) On Illustration, London: Oberon Books
Petherbridge, D. (2010) The primacy of drawing: histories and theories of practice, New Haven; London: Yale University Press

Career opportunities

Freelance illustrator or part of a co-operative or collective; magazine and book publishing; web design; animation; print maker, public or community arts participation, museum and exhibition work.


Rachel Gannon MA (RCA)

Senior Lecturer BA (Hons) Illustration
Rachel Gannon graduated from Royal College of Art in 2007. She is a founding member of Design and Illustration collective INK Illustration. Rachel works from INK’s London Studio on a variety of commissioned and self-initiated projects including editorial, retail, curating, museum installations, teaching, lecturing, craft and exhibitions. She is represented by Eye Candy Illustration Agency. Rachel’s research is routed in drawing as reportage, the reflective sketch and the role of the sketch within contemporary illustrative practice. She has work on permanent display at the Victoria and Albert museum and the Royal London Hospital. It is within these bodies of work that she has explored her interests in anthropology, fieldwork notebooks and oral histories.

Rachel Lillie MA (RCA)

Lecturer BA (Hons) Illustration
Working within and beyond the boundaries of illustration, Rachel practice is research led and content driven. Taking an almost documentary approach, her recent work has encompassed working within the London Borough of Haringey to explore social history and personal biography, looking at the legacy and impact of real events on the community and on the journey of the individual. Rachel recently won the London Transport Annual Illustration competition.

Technical staff:

Joseph Davies, Joe Cruz, Rose Thomas, Anna Kakovka, Laura Hinksman

Visiting Speakers

Sara Melin, The Poundshop
Patrick Buygone, Creative Review
Nick Defty, YCN
Mireille Fauchon, Illustrator
To watch the talks go to:

Units of study include:

For building your skills:
Essential skill sets
Starting from the basics in areas from printing to photography; pattern cutting to photoshop. You are introduced to a wide range of technical skill workshops.
Developing skill sets
Here you can choose the skills you want to develop to support your main program/practice.
For inspiration:
Key ideas in arts and design
These units run across all three years and help you develop a broad knowledge and understanding of how art and design influences culture, whilst also giving you a clear introduction to art and design from the beginning of Modernism through to current debates on contemporary practice.
For employability and entrepreneurism:
Professional studio practice
Here you learn how to set up, run and maintain a professional studio in preparation for the real world of art and design.
Creative enterprise
Provides Support in creating your own identity as an artist and designer in a competitive marketplace.
Present and promote
From curating exhibitions to learning how to use social media this unit gives you the professional know-how to present yourself to the outside world!
Final major project
This is where the whole three years comes together and you present a professional portfolio of work that acts as a springboard to your future career. Your final major project forms the end of year show for the public and industry.

Further Information

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