Quick Answer: Do you need to go to school to be an illustrator ?



Most illustrators have at least an Associate or Bachelor’s Degree in Illustration, though it is possible to qualify for some entry level positions with only a high school diploma and exceptional drawing skills.

Subsequently, can I be an illustrator without a degree? The simple answer is: yes! You can become a freelance illustrator without an illustration degree. A lot of artists in the industry aren’t illustration graduates, and most clients will judge you by the quality of the work in your portfolio — not by the degree or diploma that you might or might not have on paper.

People ask also, what are the requirements to be an illustrator?

  1. Bachelor’s degree in fine arts.
  2. Portfolio of completed illustrations.
  3. Prior work experience as an Illustrator, graphic designer, or similar.
  4. Work experience using computer-aided design (CAD) software.
  5. Drawing, painting and digital drawing skills.

Additionally, how do I get a job as a freelance illustrator?



  1. Job sites – Behance jobs / If you could / Creative Opportunities / Creative Hotlist / Design Week / Arts Thread / Hubstaff Talent.
  2. Reddit – r/Forhire / r/Designjobs.
  3. Upwork.
  4. Social media – Twitter search / Facebook / Instagram.
  5. Word of mouth – think of contacts.

Moreover, how much does an illustrator make per book? Bestselling author Joanna Penn estimates that the average pay for a 32-page picture book is $3,000 – $12,000, meaning a 32 page book with 20 illustrations equates anywhere from $150 to $600 per illustration. Publishing expert Anthony Puttee estimates a slightly lower standard rate of about $120 per illustration.Illustrators earned an average annual salary of $63,030 in May 2019, according to the BLS. Their salaries are highly contingent upon the size of their employers, experience and where they reside. Fifty percent of these fine artists’ salaries fell in the $32,400 to $74,110 per year range.

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Is it hard to become an illustrator?

But, working as an illustrator is never easy. Just like a graphic designer should never stop learning and work hard to keep up with new trends, an illustrator is always “required” to keep working hard and advancing their skills.



Can a graphic designer become an illustrator?

Illustrators sometimes work closely with graphic designers in creative projects that need an artistic angle. It’s possible for one person to be both a graphic designer and an illustrator. This usually happens when a person has a strong artistic background.




Do illustrators need an agent?

An agent is only necessary when you start doing big jobs, for instance ad work, which needs someone to help negotiate and organize. One of the best ways to begin as an illustrator is to do editorial and book jobs, which allow you to experiment and produce a lot of work quickly.

What kind of illustrations sell best?

  1. Prints usually sell better than original works, because they are less expensive.
  2. Limited-edition prints are the most popular.

Is hire an illustrator worth it?

“Hire an Illustrator is a great place to have a portfolio. It’s good value for money and seems to be evolving quickly with lots of new features. It provides a place to release news and gain exposure and is the sole reason I landed one of my biggest jobs to date.

How much does it cost to hire a children’s book illustrator?

How Much Does A Children’s Book Illustrator Cost? You can expect to spend at least $500 for a book illustrator if you know where to look and how to find a good illustrator. Sometimes that $500 has included the formatting and cover design as well. This often surprises people, and it should.

How are children’s book illustrators paid?

As a beginning book illustrator, you might charge a lower rate to get work until you gain experience to add to your portfolio. PayScale.com reported a total pay range (including bonuses and commission) of $14,732 to $99,912 for book illustrators in April 2018.

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How much do childrens books make?

Children’s authors who choose the traditional route can expect an advance of between $1,000 and $10,000 for their book, plus royalties for every copy that sells. Royalties vary between publishers, but you can expect somewhere around 5 to 7 cents on the dollar for printed books and up to 25 cents on e-book sales.

How do I start an illustration career?

  1. Think about what kind of work you’d like to do. Most people I know start off in editorial illustration.
  2. Get drawing.
  3. Create a portfolio website.
  4. Set your business up.
  5. Share your work on social media.
  6. Start hustling.
  7. Make friends with other illustrators.
  8. Get organised.

What’s a freelance illustrator?

Freelance illustration is drawings and designs that a client commissions an artist to create. Many industries rely on illustrators for designing marketing content and product packaging. Freelance illustrators are often self-employed, but some work with advertising agencies or publishing companies as contractors.

Is an illustrator a good career?

It is a good career if you love what you do, that is, creating. Illustrator is a competitive career but there is also a high need for it. Another good thing about being an illustrator is you can work freelance easily. For those of you who love freedom, it’s a perfect job for you.

Can you make a living as an illustrator?

According to a slightly dated survey done by the 3×3 magazine, there are illustrators in the US that earn as much as $948,000 per year. But, $530,000 of that amount came from other sources such as selling prints and commissioned work. The average income of the best illustrators in New York is around $100,000 per year.

Are illustrators in demand?

BLS projected that jobs for craft and fine artists, including illustrators, would grow by 1% from 2018-2028, which is much slower than average. Competition for jobs among artists is expected to be high because there are typically more qualified and interested candidates than openings.

Do I need a graphic designer or illustrator?

The illustrator doesn’t have the advanced knowledge of a graphic designer. If you like to draw and illustrate concepts, illustration would be a good fit. If you prefer to code, make websites, and do detail-type work, then graphic design might suit you better.

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Should I do graphic design or illustration?

The main difference between graphic design and illustration is how and where you use them. Typically, graphic design leans more commercial, while illustration is related to fine art. As more and more commercial projects often require emotive and distinct visuals, those differences are becoming less obvious over time.

Is graphic design same as illustrator?

illustrator. The primary difference between graphic designers and illustrators is the intention of their work. Graphic designers communicate on a client’s behalf.

How much should I charge for an illustration?

Hourly rates for illustrators range from $25 to $100, and can be higher depending on the area of specialty and artist reputation. Nationwide, the average costs for an illustration project can range from $90 to $465, but larger projects will command higher rates, and every project is different.

How do I submit to an illustration agency?

Introduce yourself: Write a couple of sentences about you and your work and why you are seeking representation. While illustration is an informal industry, your email should be professional, personalised, to the point and spelt correctly. Feel free to send a short client list, but don’t send a CV.

What do illustration agencies do?

Illustration agents work on behalf of illustrators to promote their work and undertake some of the more tedious administrative tasks.

What is it like to work as an illustrator?

Although a career as an illustrator can be incredibly rewarding, it can often feel a bit like chasing your own tail. Don’t confuse the feeling you get drawing in your sketchbook with the feeling of running a business. Unlike a career in design, there is less repeat work for illustrators because it is often more niche.




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