Illustration - BA (Hons) Degree (full-time course)
Why this course?
This course provides an intensively creative experience that develops your individual styles through a wide range of workshops, seminars and illustration briefs. You are encouraged to work in traditional, digital and innovative forms and techniques, preparing you for careers in the contemporary world of illustration.
We also offer a part-time Illustration BA (Hons) degree programme. This is taught over 5 years.
- Students are taught by award winning professional illustrators
- Illustration is an art career with a lucrative and commercial market
- Students win illustration prizes from global book publishers and agencies such as Macmillan and Plum Pudding
- Alumni include Jamie Hewlett, creator of the virtual band Gorillaz
Validated by University of the Arts London (UAL)
This programme is validated by University of the Arts London (UAL). UAL are a leading education provider in the creative arts, ranked second in the world for art and design (QS World University Rankings by Subject 2020). They oversee the standards and quality of our curriculum, which enriches your overall learning experience.
Each application will be assessed individually, including a review of your grades, interview, portfolio/audition and any experience.
Typical entry requirements are below but offers may vary:
- a relevant A-Level or Level 3 Extended Diploma
In exceptional circumstances, if you do not meet our entry requirements, your application may still be considered if you demonstrate additional strengths and alternative evidence. This might, for example, be demonstrated by:
- related academic or work experience
- the quality of the personal statement
Portfolio and interview
You will also be required to provide a portfolio and interview for this course. Please bring a portfolio of your work to interview, which should include samples of work in a wide range of media plus sketchbooks.
Entry guide for more information about the range of qualifications we accept (including English language requirements for international students).
Year 1 - The first year engages students with gaining skills in a range of techniques alongside generating concepts and ideas, and understanding the creative process through a number of projects.
Year 2 - The focus of the second year moves, through the application of skills, to developing market awareness and preparing for freelance work. A range of briefs provide students with the context to develop their work to professional standards. These cover areas such as children’s books, editorial, advertising, packaging and posters and make up the central content of your portfolio, alongside various workshops and a web presence.
Year 3 - The third year is designed to develop creative thinking and encourage experimental, collaborative and conceptual work. The focus will be on the development of the student as an individual, capable of working both independently and collaboratively. Students will work on competition briefs set by industry and work will be sent for judging.
The course aims to give the student the opportunity to study across a wide variety of media, processes and disciplines, including graphic design, illustration and animation. Our students are creative, talented and dynamic, with an eye for good design and a willingness to experiment with a variety of media.
The course also includes a programme of visiting speakers.
Students will exhibit their work at the end of the course.
- Develop and apply a detailed knowledge and critical understanding of illustrators’ working practices in publishing, advertising, editorial and design industries
- Demonstrate an understanding of relevant principles and concepts and make connections, which inform their own practice and style
- Develop new skills and competencies relevant to the professional working environment or further study
- Demonstrate awareness, creativity and innovation in a professional context
- Work in collaborative and interdisciplinary work related to environment in line with the industry led demands and trends
- Conceive ideas for assignments to develop into final pieces ready for production
- Apply knowledge of how to develop an idea or brief into a body of appropriate creative and innovative illustration work
Video tour of our campus
See students from different courses using the facilities at our creative arts specialist campus
- Freelance illustrator
- Children’s book illustrator
- Editorial illustrator
- Advertising and packaging designer
- Graphic novel artist
Some of our alumni careers stories
Graduate Stephanie Lidbetter was approached by Oxford University Press to illustrate Danny Dread, a children's book by Ben Davis.
Alumna Phoebe Kirk worked with author Alice Reeves to create a series of children's books called Truth & Tails, which aim to eliminate prejudice, encourage acceptance and aid understanding by addressing life’s hardest-to-explain concepts – such as gender, disability, and self-esteem. The four books were published by Jessica Kingsley Publishers and re-launched at Waterstones in Brighton in 2018.
Graduates Lee Miller and Joe McKelvey created artwork for 'Brighton's Graphic War' published by Queenspark Books.
Alumna Kate Beavis's designs were put on sale in the British Museum shop.
Fees, student loans and bursaries
Additional costs for this course
Some materials are supplied but students are also expected to provide some of their own. This may total approximately £50 per year.