BA Hons (Illustration)

Description of programme

Illustration in contemporary visual culture is one of the most versatile art forms. Crossing boundaries between fine art, drawing, the graphic arts and design, illustration is the exemplary hybrid art form. Often partnered with the publishing industry, political satire, information design and the advertising sector, illustration utilises a wide range of techniques and media formats. As a discipline, illustration is also undergoing a major shift in both its vocational positioning and intellectual relevance. The development of digital technologies and new media continues to blur the boundaries of this genre, extending possibilities towards an eclectic range of illustration practices.

The BA Honours programme in Visual Arts (Illustration) at Stellenbosch University seeks to explore expanded notions of illustration practices that acknowledge contemporary visual culture, academic contexts and current industry. Students following this one-year course programme are encouraged to challenge the position of the illustrator within commercial, social, political and cultural contexts while maintaining and developing the core values that underpin these illustration practices. Constantly revisiting, expanding and disrupting the tools, intent, context and role of illustration, this course takes an innovative, experimental and critical approach to the broad practices of illustration.

Structure of the programme

Based on illustration’s long history in relation to science, culture and society, the programme correspondingly supports an inter- and cross-disciplinary approach through the following modules:

  • Drawing for illustration
  • Theory of illustration
  • Narrative illustration
  • Conceptual illustration
  • Research project (Practice and Theory)
  • Scientific illustration

For more information

Prof Kathryn Smith | Coordinator: Honours in Illustration | +27 21 808 2082