Illustration & Animation

Bring your art to life

Picture: Character created in '3D Modelling' module

Who will you become?


A career in illustration or animation involves bringing ideas, stories and concepts to life through engaging visual interpretation. It suits people who can combine artistic ability and patience with strong communication and technical skills.

Illustrators often specialise in a particular medium, such as painting, digital illustration or collage, and are familiar with industry standard software. Employment can be freelance or within an agency, working on advertisements, books, editorial articles, prints, merchandise, or corporate projects. Animation creates a 2D and 3D illusion of movement, using computer-generated or stop-motion techniques to create sequences for films, advertisements, titles, games or promotions. Some animators specialise in an area such as modelmaking, rigging, or lighting within a production team, while others develop general skills. A day as an animator or illustrator might involve pitching to prospective clients, refining work, designing characters and environments, or submitting your own work to a gallery or film festival.

The Bachelor of Media Arts (Visual Arts) offers opportunities for specialising in illustration through the Graphic and Digital Design or Painting and Sculpture pathway. Animation can be pursued through the Graphic and Digital Design or Moving Image pathways. Software used includes Maya, Cinema 4D, Adobe software (Illustrator, Photoshop, After-Effects), Zbrush and Dragonframe.

Your tutors are active researchers and experienced creative practitioners. They regularly exhibit, present work at film festivals and often have a background in the industry.

If you don’t meet the entry criteria for the degree, the Certificate in Media Arts is a 20-week introductory programme that delivers the basic knowledge and skills to prepare for a creative career. Illustration and animation enthusiasts still at school might be interested in our one day STAR taster courses in Stop-Motion Animation, Photoshop or Illustrator. You can also come in as a ‘student-for-a-day’, which offers the opportunity to sample the Media Arts environment and teaching style before enrolling, or a book a tour to see our facilities. We also offer short courses in Photoshop and Illustrator. These are often run over 4 evening classes, and are ideal for professional development.