Dillon Pringle - Illustration
Rylee Lane - Illustration
Jericho Ashby - Illustration
Sam Weldon - Illustration
Raime Cronkhite - Illustration
Tori Naum - Illustration
Kristina Smith - Illustration
Christian Lianez - Illustration
Sophia Huebel - Illustration
Raime Cronkhite - Illustration
Megan Stout - Illustration
Megan Stout - Illustration
Natalie Marshall - Illustration
Lily Bussineau - Illustration
Bethany Clark - Illustration
Initiated in the early 1960’s, the Illustration program continues to provide its students with a resilient experience in formulating visual information, understanding its traditions, while exploring a wide variety of media and processes. Courses in general education are also studied to broaden the perspective of the contemporary illustrator.
The Illustration program follows a specific core curriculum that introduces the student to the conceptual development of artwork, the media processes, and procedures toward the completion of finished illustrations. This program of study is complemented by courses in drawing, computer aided imagery, art history, and electives. The student has the opportunity to develop a professional and marketable portfolio in preparation for a career.
As a student in the Illustration program, you’ll broadly explore the different ways in which visual information can be formulated, studying the traditions of illustration while branching out into a wide variety of media, techniques, and processes, both traditional and digital. From this firm foundation, you’ll also be immersed in the conceptual development of artwork, learning how to present a concept using different styles.
Your focused study of illustration will be complimented by courses in drawing, digital imagery, art history, and studio electives, helping you broaden both your perspective and your notions of creative possibility.
You’ll also round your education out with a wide range of general education and art history courses that will stimulate your curiosity, broaden your perspective, and inspire new creative expressions. KCAD’s flexible General Education Pathways model empowers you to direct your learning by exploring subjects you find most engaging and relevant.
As you move through the Illustration program, you’ll master multiple illustration techniques in both traditional and emerging media. You’ll become a visual thinker and communicator, equipped with a universal language that bridges cultural, social, and generational gaps. You’ll use the power of visual rhetoric to engage, enlighten, and stimulate critical thinking and visceral responses from an audience. Ultimately, you’ll emerge as an aesthetically grounded and professionally versatile illustrator, able to powerfully convey meaning and message.
The Illustration program has long been one of KCAD’s core strengths. Launched in the early 1960s, the program has a rich history of fostering professional readiness and a strong track record of alumni success. The program’s small class sizes enable our faculty to get to know you as an individual, while you’ll come to see them as not just instructors, but as mentors and professional role models as well.
There’s also the matter of place: located in Grand Rapids, a mid-sized city that values art and design, KCAD acts as an incubator for focused artistic growth and cultural engagement. Location also means you’ll enjoy mid-size city living while being only hours away from the cultural wealth of larger cities like Chicago and Detroit.
Professional versatility is a core strength of the Illustration program. While you’ll be encouraged to explore your own style, you’ll have the creative flexibility to adapt to a wide variety of styles, which opens up a world of professional opportunities.
You’ll be well positioned to succeed as a freelance illustrator serving a broad spectrum of clientele, but you’ll also be prepared to pursue a more specialized career as an editorial illustrator, art director, cartoonist, storyboard illustrator, mural designer, or fashion illustrator.
As an Illustration student, you’ll have the opportunity to plug into the close-knit creative community of the KCAD Illustration Society, a student organization that nurtures collaborative potential and facilitates a powerful exchange of ideas among artists working in a variety of different styles and spheres.
You’ll learn and experiment in spacious classrooms with plentiful natural light and extensive studio equipment, including a program-specific computer lab containing powerful Mac Pro towers.
Elsewhere on campus, you’ll have access to The Dow Center FlexLab, KCAD’s state-of-the-art digital fabrication facility featuring 3D printers and scanners, laser cutting and vinyl cutting machines, wide format printers, and more; KCAD’s Material ConneXion Satellite Library, which offers direct access to more than 1,000 physical samples of advanced, innovative, and sustainable materials as well as online access to over 7,000 more; the KCAD Library, which provides access to millions of books through the MeLCat shared library catalog as well as access to specialized research databases and subscriptions to scholarly journals; KCAD’s Urban Institute for Contemporary Arts (UICA), an innovative cultural institution hosting exhibitions of such contemporary artists and designers as Nick Cave, Kehinde Wiley, Kara Walker, Nari Ward, Carrie Mae Weems, and Judi Werthein; and much more.
KCAD also offers a number of summer travel/study experiences as well as internships during the academic year and the summer. You’ll have the opportunity to pursue work in a variety of settings, such as professional studios, museums, and community arts organizations, to name a few.
View the 2020-2021 KCAD College Catalog for a list of current courses.
Molly Alicki Corriveau M.F.A.
Patricia Constantine M.F.A.
Nancy Hart M.F.A.
As a graduate of the Illustration program, you’ll be well-equipped to find employment with magazines, periodicals, book and software publishers, manufacturers, or working with various types of electronic media.
There are also opportunities in the motion picture, video, and computer game design industries. Or, you may decide to be a self-employed, freelance illustrator, and do work in several of these industries on a contract basis.
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