• Home
  • Illustration and Animation

Illustration and Animation

back to Careers and KU Majors

The Illustration & Animation program prepares students to develop and refine methodologies in image making while acquiring an effective use of visual language, and problem solving skills. These qualities prepare them for a variety of existing and emerging professional practices.

Technical skills and techniques, as well as a refined understanding of composition, color and value are developed through the introduction and exploration of traditional and contemporary media. Conceptual problem solving methodologies address theoretical and formal visual challenges that allow students to develop their own visual voice.

Illustration & Animation Department website

Sample of Related Skills

  • Develop and refine methodologies in image making while acquiring an effective use of visual language, and problem solving skills
  • Understand technologies utilized in the creation, dissemination, documentation, and preservation of works of art 
  • Understand composition, color and value are developed through the introduction and exploration of traditional and contemporary media 
  • Apply knowledge of the principles of visual organization to conduct formal analysis of artworks 
  • Integrate skills in studio practice, theory, analysis, media and technology to address a variety of art problems, independently and in collaboration with others 
  • Demonstrate through public exhibition the capability to produce work that embodies a coherent set of artistic and intellectual goals 

Popular Career Paths

Fashion Design: Involves creating apparel and accessories for a company or as an independent designer

Film/Computer Animation: The ability to design visually pleasing animations for a range of mediums

Freelance: Entails utilizing one’s network and resources to contract with individuals, companies, or organizations to complete project-based assignments

Marketing: The ability to analyze behavior and market trends to develop strategies to increase consumer sales and awareness of a brand

Medical and Technical Illustration: Involves the visual translation of complex technical information to support education, medical and life science research, patient care, and more

Jobs to Consider

Advertising Illustrator

Art gallery manager

Book illustrator

Comic Illustrator

Concept Artist

Court Room Illustrator

Editorial Illustrator

Fashion Designer

Film and Video Editor

Fine Artist

Graphic Designer

Illustration Agent or Representative

Medical or Technical Illustrator

Motion Graphic Designer

Multimedia Animator

Multimedia Artist

Surface Designer

Toy/Game Designer

Places to Seek Employment

Art Museums

Design Firms

Fashion Companies

Film Companies

Large Corporations

Law Enforcement

Magazine and Newspaper Companies


Publishing Companies

Universities and Colleges

Marketing Departments


Employment Strategies

  1. Consider starting your own business, doing freelance work, or working several part-time positions at once.
  2. Gain direct experience within the areas that interest you most through research projects, independent study, internships, part-time jobs, student organization involvement (KU Animation Club), or volunteering.
  3. Register for HireJayhawks.com and subscribe to the Internship Newsletter to receive automated weekly emails with specific internship information.
  4. Consider joining a professional organization related to your area of interest in visual arts/design, and if possible, attend local and or regional conferences to network with professionals working in your field.
  5. Earn a minor or take additional coursework outside your major when relevant.
  6. Conduct informational discussions with individuals from industry.
  7. Attend the University Career Fair each spring.
  8. Engage in personal networking to enhance employment prospects.
  9. Start early on developing your professional portfolio.
  10. Develop skills including: customer focus, problem solving, self-direction, team orientation, analysis, communication skills, critical thinking, and high ethical standards.

Job and Internship Search Resources

  • American Association of Museums - national job listings board for those interested in working in museums from a professional organization
  • Americans for the ARTS - job bank with careers in the arts
  • Apparel Executives - job listings for both internships and full-time positions in the apparel and fashion industries
  • ArtistsRegister.com - list of excellent opportunities for competitions, internships, exhibitions, festivals and fairs, film, and public art
  • ArtSchools - online resource for portfolio preparation for college and employment opportunities
  • Creative Hotlist - online search engine geared towards career development in the art fields
  • Coroflot - online resource for the "creative world at work" featuring job listings board, portfolio advice, groups, and general career advice 
  • Design Addict - resource featuring over 5000 links in all fields regarding visual arts/design such as museums, collectors, associations, and artists
  • Incredible @rt Department - national job listings board arranged by state which offers a variety of art related jobs
  • National Art Education Association - premier electronic recruitment resource for the profession, includes job listings
  • theCreativeloft - job listings for individuals in creative industries
  • Upwork - resource to connect freelancers with job opportunities

The quick link for this page is career.ku.edu/illustration_animation.

Go back to Careers & KU Majors homepage.

Job & Internship Listings
University Career Center
Over 10,000 jobs and internships are posted on HireJayhawks.com annually.
Over 1,800 employers post jobs and internships on HireJayhawks.com each year.
Have you found your community? Over 4,200 students are exploring career pathways through KU career communities.
The P.H.O.G. offers free professional clothing for any KU student preparing for a career event, interview, or workplace.
More than 600 employers visit campus each year to recruit Jayhawks.
More than 1,000 students enroll in career classes annually.
HawkQuest was a runner-up for NACE’s Technology Award in 2018.
One of 34 U.S. public institutions in the prestigious Association of American Universities
44 nationally ranked graduate programs.
—U.S. News & World Report
Top 50 nationwide for size of library collection.