Illustrator

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Botanical Illustrator
Cartoonist
Medical Illustrator
Technical Illustrator

 

Related Jobs or Working with these Jobs

 

 

Creative or ArtisticLevel 1Level 2Level 3

Level 4Level 5

Illustrators create drawings and designs for books and magazines, advertisements, film, television and multimedia. Illustrators work on paper, and two-dimensional (2D) and three-dimensional (3D) Future Growth Strong models. They may use a combination of traditional and computer-based techniques, or work on screen only.

Illustrators are commissioned to produce still drawings for use in advertisements, books, magazines, packaging, greetings cards and newspapers. Illustrators combine art, design and creative skills to develop ideas and produce original visual images for a wide range of products. Most illustrators specialise in a particular style.

Most illustrators are self-employed, running their own studios or working from home. They are normally commissioned directly or via an agent to produce drawings for newspapers, magazines, books, and catalogues.

ANZSCO ID: 232412

Knowledge, skills and attributes

An illustrator needs:

  • high level of drawing skills and IT skills
  • artistic and design flair
  • able to work to the client brief solve problems creatively and adapt their style
  • creativity and imagination
  • to enjoy creative work
  • a feeling for movement and timing
  • aptitude for working with computers.

 

Illustrators combine art, design and creative skills to develop ideas and produce original visual images for a wide range of products. These include:

  • books and book jackets

  • educational, training and reference materials

  • instruction manuals, leaflets and sales brochures

  • greetings cards, giftware and packaging

  • advertising materials, posters and catalogues

  • magazines and newspapers

  • television and film animations and storyboards

  • computer games, websites and mobile phone visuals.

Illustrator at work

Duties and Tasks

Illustrators may perform the following tasks:

 

  • study the project brief (instructions) and select an appropriate style, technique and medium to use
  • research a topic by looking at photographs, artworks, advertisements and books, and by observing people, animals and plants
  • prepare sketches, layouts and storyboards to try out different ideas
  • create illustrations using charcoal, pen, ink, paint, photography and computer graphics software
  • create and model creatures, characters, environments and interiors for 2D and 3D computer animations
  • discuss the project with clients and the production team, making changes as requested.

 

Working Conditions

Illustrators can specialise in illustrations for children's books, scientific work, technical manuals, fashion, websites or product packaging. Many work as freelancers. They may have to work long hours when a deadline has to be met. Whereas graphic designers work on the bigger picture, eg page layout, illustrators do more drawing, though there can be some overlap between the two, particularly when working for a smaller employer.

Self-employed illustrators need to be proactive in finding work. This includes promoting themselves to employers and keeping their portfolio up to date. Some illustrators use agents to do this work. They also need to keep their own records and accounts.

Education and training/entrance requirements

You can work as an illustrator without formal qualifications. Skills are usually developed through practice and experience.

Entry to this occupation may be improved if you have qualifications.

You may like to consider a TAFE qualification in graphic design, information technology, visual arts or a related area. As subjects and prerequisites can vary between institutions, you should contact your chosen institution for further information. You may be able to study through distance education.

You can also become an illustrator by completing a degree in animation, graphic design, digital media, new media design, fine arts, creative arts, visual arts or visual communication. To get into these courses you usually need to gain your HSC/ACT Year 12 with English. Applicants may also be required to attend an interview and/or submit a folio of work. A number of institutions in Australia offer degrees in these areas. Institutions have different prerequisites and some have flexible entry requirements or offer external study.

Cartoonist
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Creative or ArtisticLevel 1Level 2Level 3

Level 4Level 5

A cartoonist conceives and develops ideas for cartoons, using illustrations and words. Cartoonists may also submit designs and rough drawings to editors for approval, prepare notes and Future Growth Strong instructions for finishing and layout, supervise a final layout and suggest improvements and supervise photography of artwork.

 

 

 

Cartoon of dogs and cats

Essential Information

A cartoonist combines writing and drawing to convey humor and tell stories about current events, recent trends, made-up worlds and even everyday life situations. In general, cartoonists do not need formal education, though some postsecondary training may improve their chances of employment.

Cartoonists have a natural talent for drawing that may be further developed in a post-secondary art program. They may create single pane drawings, which comment on an issue or event, or publish a serial cartoon, which follows a character over a period of time. Their work may appear in newspapers or magazines, as well as graphic novels, Internet publications and computer games.

Cartoonists are constantly thinking about the world around them and need to be knowledgeable about local and global events, and stay current on popular culture and trends since these topics provide the inspiration for their work. A routine encounter from their daily life can spark an idea. They're also skillful writers who must convey the irony or humor about their subject in as few words as possible.

Duties and Tasks

Some cartoonists like to draw freehand, using a pencil to sketch their creation. The next step is to go over the drawing in ink, erasing the pencil marks. Others may prefer to use computer drawing software. The final drawing is then scanned or uploaded and attached to an email to the client.


Cartoonist Career Information

Cartoonists are usually self-employed and must devote a significant amount of time to building their following and promoting their work. They may maintain a website where they respond to fan comments and offer cartoon-related merchandise such as t-shirts, mugs or greeting cards, as well as books featuring their most popular characters or comic strips. They also seek out potential new clients either in the media or with advertisers looking for a cartoon character. Conferring with clients to incorporate their ideas into the artwork is essential to maintaining good client relationships and can lead to referrals for additional work.

Education and training/entrance requirements

Cartoonists are not required to have any formal training, although an associate's or bachelor's degree in fine arts may be an asset. To appeal to potential clients, they need a strong body of work assembled in a portfolio that showcases their talents, and courses in drawing and computer-aided design are one way to develop that material.

Did You Know?

Illustrators do not only illustrate children’s books their work can also include -
advertisements,
building/house plans,
brochures,
medical drawings
and much more.

Illustrated heart


Becoming an illustrator can lead to many other occupations such as: an animator, artist, painter, web designer and a graphic designer.



Medical Illustrator
   Information, Media and Telecommunications

Analytic or ScientificCreative or ArtisticLevel 5

Medical illustrators are specialist healthcare scientists who create photographs, videos and images for healthcare uses. Future Growth Strong

ANZSCO ID: 232412

Knowledge, skills and attributes


To become a medical illustrator, you would need:

  • artistic ability

  • teamwork skills

  • a knowledge of design and publishing software

  • a thorough knowledge of human anatomy and biology

  • advanced technical ability

  • an interest in photography

  • attention to detail

  • a sensitive and tactful demeanour

  • a knowledge of diseases and treatments.

  • advanced technical ability and an understanding of anatomy.


Medio-legal illustration

(Source: Association of Medical Illustrators: a medical legal exhibit by Lindsay Coulter)

Duties and Tasks

As a medical illustrator, you might:

  • help doctors and researchers present their work in pictures

  • record and photograph patient's conditions using digital or video cameras

  • process images, films or video

  • create freehand drawn illustrations of human anatomy

  • use 3D modelling and animation to create special effects in teaching materials

  • use specialist equipment to record procedures

  • monitor and record progress and treatments over a period of time

  • work closely with doctors and patients

  • arrange consent from patients who are being drawn, photographed or filmed

  • take forensic photographs

  • take bereavement photographs

  • use software packages to process, compile and manipulate images

  • use 3D modelling and animation to create special effects in teaching materials

  • create teaching and research materials from photographs, films or drawings.

Working Conditions

Medical illustrators are employed by hospitals, medical schools, medical research facilities and specialist publishers. They work as part of a team with a range of other medical professionals. Medical illustrators may face situations which may be difficult or upsetting.

As a medical illustrator you would work a standard number of hours per week. You may need to do on-call duties.

Education and training/entrance requirements

To become a medical illustrator you usually have to complete a degree in medical illustration, art or graphic design at university. To get into these courses you usually need to gain your senior secondary school certificate or equivalent. English, biology, visual arts and design would be appropriate subjects to study prior to university.

 

Technical Illustrator
   Information, Media and Telecommunications

Analytic or ScientificCreative or ArtisticLevel 4Level 5

A technical illustrator designs and creates visual representations for the products and services offered by their employer. They work to render illustrations for use in technical publications and Future Growth Strong manuals. They often use advanced design computer programs to create illustrations. These professionals typically hold a bachelor's degree in illustration or have previous experience in this field.

Technical illustrators work in conjunction with design teams and technical writers to create a variety of technical graphics. A technical illustrator takes information from text or data and creates illustrations that communicate this information concisely and accurately. This information could be research content, installation instructions or diagrams for a service guide.

ANZSCO ID: 232412

 

St George's Chapel

Ninian Carter posted 100+ screenshots showing his process for illustrating St George’s Chapel on the grounds of Windsor Castle in Adobe Illustrator in Technical Illustrators.org



Duties and Tasks

Responsibilities of a technical illustrator revolve around the preservation of graphical material released by the illustrator's company. This involves following regulatory standards, and effectively communicating the message the employer intends to deliver. Technical  illustrators must have an understanding of their employer's products and goals.

Education and training/entrance requirements

Job requirements for a technical illustrator involve a combination of education and relevant experience. Typically, employers require either a bachelor's degree or equivalent illustration experience. Technical illustrators should be familiar with a variety of software programs, including AutoCAD, Photoshop, MS Office, Adobe Flash Builder and both Windows and Macintosh systems. Strong communication skills are desired by employers of a technical illustrators.

Associate of Fine Arts and Bachelor of Fine Arts degree programs in illustration and design are available to students interested in becoming technical illustrators. These programs help students to advance their design and illustration skills. Students in illustration and design degree programs develop technical proficiency in computer programs that model and design images. They also study art history and a variety of artistic theories and fundamentals. Some programs also include courses on business topics that help students prepare for the possibility of working as a freelance designer after graduation. In addition to undergraduate level programs, there are some graduate-level programs that may help illustration professionals to further their careers.

Illustrator

Journalist

Applications Programmer

Film Producer

Photographer

Web Designer

Cinematographer

Publisher

Graphic Designer

Multimedia Specialist

Newspaper Editor

Games Developer

IT Analyst

Radio Producer Presenter

Writer

Director

Broadcasting Technician

3D Animator

Archivist

Librarian

Social Media Manager

Journalist

Applications Programmer

Film Producer

Photographer

Web Designer

Cinematographer

Publisher

Graphic Designer

Multimedia Specialist

Newspaper Editor

Games Developer

IT Analyst

Radio Producer Presenter

Writer

Illustrator

Director

Broadcasting Technician

3D Animator

Archivist

Librarian

Social Media Manager

Journalist

Applications Programmer

Film Producer

Photographer

Web Designer

Cinematographer

Publisher

Graphic Designer

Multimedia Specialist

Newspaper Editor

Games Developer

IT Analyst

Radio Producer Presenter

Writer

Illustrator

Director

Broadcasting Technician

3D Animator

Archivist

Librarian

Social Media Manager

Journalist

Applications Programmer

Film Producer

Photographer

Web Designer

Cinematographer

Publisher

Graphic Designer

Multimedia Specialist

Newspaper Editor

Games Developer

IT Analyst

Radio Producer Presenter

Writer

Illustrator

Director

Broadcasting Technician

3D Animator

Archivist

Librarian

Social Media Manager

Journalist

Applications Programmer

Film Producer

Photographer

Web Designer

Cinematographer

Publisher

Graphic Designer

Multimedia Specialist

Newspaper Editor

Games Developer

IT Analyst

Radio Producer Presenter

Writer

Illustrator

Director

Broadcasting Technician

3D Animator

Archivist

Librarian

Social Media Manager