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MFA Illustration Practice Courses

View titles & descriptions for the Illustration Practice (MFA) program's courses offered.

Click a Course's Title to read its description .

Course # Course Title Credits
ILP5500 Critical Seminar I 3.00 credits
The Critical Seminars will gather first-year MFA students together each week to discuss theoretical and historical readings on and related to illustration within social, political, technological and cultural contexts, and the dearth critical theory concerning illustration practice. Course requirements include but are not limited to writing on critical, historic or theoretical issues, extensive research, analysis, curation, with occasional field trips and presentations by each student.

Graduate and Post-Baccalaureate students only (All programs)

ILP5550 Critical Seminar II 3.00 credits
The Critical Seminars will gather first-year MFA students together each week to discuss theoretical and historical readings on and related to illustration within social, political, technological and cultural contexts, and the dearth critical theory concerning illustration practice. Course requirements include but are not limited to writing on critical, historic or theoretical issues, extensive research, analysis, curation, with occasional field trips and presentations by each student.

Prerequisite: ILP 5500

ILP5600 MFA Studio I 9.00 credits
Students will work on assigned and independent projects in consultation with Program faculty. In Studio I, students address assigned problems dealing with concepts and communication, materials and production. Students will also engage with the marketplace in several venues during both MFA Studio I and II. These marketplace experience will require students to conceive, fabricate and sell unique artist products, learning about branding, writing creative briefs, and the reaction of the public to their original concepts and products. Marketplaces include but are not limited to ArtMarket, SPX [Small Press Expo], MOCCA, Etsy.com and other venues and festivals. Faculty and students will use this period to identify shared and individual vocabularies and interests. In Studio II, students will begin to articulate their individual thesis project through a series of smaller-scale projects and exercises. Guest artists will participate in critiques and serve as independent mentors throughout both semesters.

Illustration Practice (MFA) students Only

ILP5650 MFA Studio II 9.00 credits
Students will work on assigned and independent projects in consultation with Program faculty. In Studio I, students address assigned problems dealing with concepts and communication, materials and production. Students will also engage with the marketplace in several venues during both MFA Studio I and II. These marketplace experience will require students to conceive, fabricate and sell unique artist products, learning about branding, writing creative briefs, and the reaction of the public to their original concepts and products. Marketplaces include but are not limited to ArtMarket, SPX [Small Press Expo], MOCCA, Etsy.com and other venues and festivals. Faculty and students will use this period to identify shared and individual vocabularies and interests. In Studio II, students will begin to articulate their individual thesis project through a series of smaller-scale projects and exercises. Guest artists will participate in critiques and serve as independent mentors throughout both semesters.

Prerequisite: ILP 5600

ILP5715 The Illustrated Poster 3.00 credits
Though hundreds of years old, the poster remains a potent and accessible method for artists to share their work with the public. This course will explore the development of illustrating images and typography for various kinds of posters: advertising, cultural, educational and political. Students will be expected to develop concepts and an individual visual language appropriate for each assignment and intended audience. A variety of techniques for mass printing production will be explored as well as the techniques used by significant poster designers.

Graduate students only (All programs of study)

ILP5727 Grad Remix: /creating/the.gif 3.00 credits
Since it's introduction in 1987, the GIF has received widespread support and portability. At times misused to enhance logos and other graphics, often weighing down the page-load of a website, GIFs now are an integral part of commercial, individual and social media sites including markets for music, book and film promotion, editorials and advertising with practitioners employing both overt and subtle application of movement to images, graphics, abstractions and letterforms. In this course, students will gain an historic background on GIFs, and their use, as a platform for developing original GIFs that explore the limits of palette, image resolution and animation; humor and juxtaposition within a number of market-based uses including self-generated markets. Projects will be a combination of assigned and self-directed pieces, as well as a collaborative project outside of class.

Graduate and Post-Baccalaureate students only (All programs)

ILP5728 Grad Remix:Kinetic IL Automata 3.00 credits
This course is designed for students whose illustrations and imagery are longing to join the tangible world. It is a two-in-one makerspace studio and a seminar journey through history’s most significant automata. Artists will have the chance of getting familiar with the basic principles of mechanical movements through gears and rubber bands, with cranks and wind-ups, as well as learn the making processes of 3d scanning, 3d printing and laser cutting. This course is a good choice for anyone who wants to enter the world of automata, puppets, or moving sculptures and installations. A short essay on a selected historic or contemporary practitioner will be required toward the end of the semester. Students will have a large portion of the overall class time available to do research and fabrication and are required to be in the classroom for discussions and lectures.

Graduate and Post-Baccalaureate students only (All programs)

ILP5800 MFA Thesis I 9.00 credits
During the second year, the major focus of student work will be on the production of a Thesis Project. Students will have articulated the goals of their research at the close of the first year. Students will work independently, meeting with faculty and outside mentors at regular intervals, and participating in group and individual critiques with visiting artists. Their Thesis will be in the form of a body of work and be formalized through a case study document that articulates their core thesis idea with words and images, and document their process.

Prerequisite: ILP 5650

ILP5850 MFA Thesis II 9.00 credits
During the second year, the major focus of student work will be on the production of a Thesis Project. Students will have articulated the goals of their research at the close of the first year. Students will work independently, meeting with faculty and outside mentors at regular intervals, and participating in group and individual critiques with visiting artists. Their Thesis will be in the form of a body of work and be formalized through a case study document that articulates their core thesis idea with words and images, and document their process.

Prerequisite: ILP 5800