University of Gloucestershire Illustration

university of gloucestershire logo

University of Gloucestershire Illustration

University of Gloucestershire Illustration

Illustration (BA Hons)

Illustration by student Alex Small

Draw your story. Learn from award-winning illustrators and graphic novelists. Publish, exhibit and sell your work

Get your work published

The Illustration course is all about drawing stories. Learn how to use visual narrative to communicate. Refine your creative and professional skills with support from our award-winning illustrators. Gain experience through events such as East London Comic & Arts Festival (ELCAF), BD Angouleme (France) and Cheltenham Illustration Awards. Undertake essential work experience and direct your own projects. Visual storytelling connects many aspects of illustration production, from the graphic novel to children’s books, storyboards and animation. You’ll focus on drawn ideas, a gateway to areas such as concept art and digital visualisation – and a key employment area in the wider creative industries.

In your first year you’ll develop skills in life and location drawing, printmaking, specialist techniques and animation. In your second and third years you’ll take your work to a professional level through modules such as Sequential Illustration which focuses on using  drawn images to create visual narratives such as comics and graphic novels.  You’ll also begin preparing for industry, developing your expertise in self-publishing and promotion. You’ll be equipped with the creative, technical and enterprise skills you need to progress into the creative industries on graduation.

You’ll have opportunities to showcase your work alongside world-famous illustrators at major events such as Cheltenham Illustration Awards, the London Book Fair, ELCAF (the UK’s leading independent comics festival) and the Bande Dessinee d’Angouleme festival in France (Europe’s most famous comic festival). You can also self-publish and sell your work under the university’s own ‘imprint’, Pittville Press, and in our illustration publications Unseen, Techne, and Olio. Our modern design facilities include printmaking studios, an Apple Mac suite, Risograph stencil printer, letterpress workshop and book-binding equipment.

Antique printing equipment

Study style

You’ll explore a range of print and production options through practical learning and creative assignments. These include publishing, exhibiting, selling products and attending book fairs.

Illustration of holidaymakers

Entry requirements

Tariff information for 2017 entry*

112 tariff points

Typical offers

BBC at A levels, DMM at BTEC or use a combination of your qualifications to achieve the required tariff total.

2017 UCAS tariff table

Mature Applicants: We welcome applications from mature students (aged 21 and over) and do not necessarily require the same academic qualifications as school leaving applicants. To find out more, please email our enquiries team.

International Students: Please see the full details of entry requirements in your country. If you do not meet the academic and English language requirements, you should consider a preparation course at INTO University of Gloucestershire, which will help to prepare you for study on this degree. INTO University of Gloucestershire is based at our Park campus and offers a range of courses including International Foundation Art, Design and Media and Integrated Programme.

Grade C in GCSE English and Mathematics (or equivalent) are normally required. If you don’t meet your tariff points total we may still consider your application. Please email our admissions team for further information.

* Selection by portfolio and interview

Illustration depicting large creature and child in the snow

Check your UCAS tariff points

If you are unsure whether your predicted grades will carry enough points to study the course, we can help. Whether you’re taking A levels or BTECs, Access courses or anything else the tariff calculator will let you know whether you currently have the grades and advise on what to do next.

Please let us know what qualifications you’ve already got, what you’re studying right now and how you think your grades will turn out.


See the further details of fees and potential extra costs when studying a course at the University of Gloucestershire.

UCAS codes

UCAS codes available for this subject
Single Honours – 3 years full-time W220

Published student work on a stand


  • Self-published illustrator
  • Animator
  • Game artist animation
  • Graphic designer
  • Advertising

Illustration (MA)

An example of students work.

Study at the cutting-edge of illustration

The Illustration MA offers a unique opportunity to develop a creative illustration practice and a mature, insightful authorial voice. A central element of the course and fundamental to the development of your specialism is the application and testing of communicative drawing with purpose and intent.

The course follows an intense and productive process of enquiry and investigation, focusing on the acquisition of fluency, clarity and coherence in expressing visual narrative.

The process of communicating through illustrations will be critiqued and re-evaluated via research methodologies, and by developing a wide range of knowledge and skills. Drawing will form a methodology for research and investigation, supported by lectures and workshops, and delivered by staff who have a wide range of industry and publishing experience.

You will actively explore printmaking, digital painting, creative software and all forms of natural media and have opportunities to print, publish and disseminate your work in collaborative publications for our imprint ‘The Pittville Press’. Students also have the opportunities to publish work through our Cheltenham Illustration Awards.

The final Masters stage offers the option of a practice-based research project in line with the faculty’s commitment to practice. Alternatively, you may choose to undertake a traditional-written dissertation.

The programme encourages enterprise and promotion alongside personal development and our series of intensive tutorials will direct you towards a creative portfolio strategy relevant to your personal and professional aims.

  • Narrative Drawing
  • Research and Context
  • Professional Development
  • Mechanisms and Methodology
  • Major Illustration Project

Example comic panel

Entry requirements

    • you will need at least a 2:2 honours degree or equivalent in a relevant subject
    • you may be required to attend an interview
    • a portfolio of work is essential
    • EU and international students need IELTS 6.5 overall (no less than 6.0 in writing and 5.5 in any other band) or equivalent

A black and white sketch of a tyre fitting centre


Fees – 2017/18 Academic Year
Home and EU Students
Masters £6000
Non-EU Students
Masters £13500

The fee displayed is the total course fee for full or part-time study. Fees can be paid in instalments over the duration of study with further details available in our tuition fee policy.