Full Time 1yr
This exciting new MA in Illustration offers you the opportunity to question, develop and reflect upon you own practice by exploring both traditional and innovative techniques. Through a negotiated project you will be encouraged to define your role as a creative practitioner in a broad social, political and historical context. This MA would suit graduates from arts based courses but also professionals returning to education to complete ‘unfinished creative business’.
The staff team has a wealth of experience with internationally renowned practitioners in the field of artist’s books and zines, practice-based PhDs and printmaking. The course benefits from an extensive dedicated collection of artists’ books and zines located within the illustration studios. You will consider the question “what is illustration?” and seek to redefine and cross boundaries. A strong social awareness ethos underpins the course enabling you to develop a unique voice within the creative industries.
On this course you can:
The course will provide you with the practical skills necessary to compete in a commercial arena and rhetorical skills to enable you to promote your work.
Our graduates could pursue careers such as:
This course will help you learn independently through practice-based study, culminating in a self-defined project, with a reflective report. You will also position your work in relation to what is happening at the forefront of the subject area, with particular focus on social, political and social issues.
Here are the units you will study:
View examples of current students' work.
We use the best and most current research and professional practice, alongside feedback from our students, to make sure course content is relevant to your future career or further studies.
Therefore, some course content may change over time to reflect changes in the discipline or industry and some optional units may not run every year. If a unit doesn’t run, we’ll let you know as soon as possible and help you choose an alternative unit.
You will receive guidance and supervision throughout the programme that encourages independent learning. There will be regular contact teaching time including group tutorials, 1-1 tutorials and workshops but we also aim for you to engage in the wider studio culture that develops within the subject area along side the undergraduate students in illustration.
During the final stage of the course in the summer term the learning becomes more independent and self-managed, making your timetable more flexible.
You will be assessed after the submission of your work for each unit. We also present structured feedback to ensure your project development on the right track.
Dr Jackie Batey
We will support you to extend your illustration practice and find your own personal voice. You'll research and reflect on how your artwork fits into the world we all share. We'd love to work with visually creative people with something to say.
Back to top
We offer a dynamic and creative studio space with access to the Eldon campus facilities. It's a friendly and welcoming environment where you can interact with both tutors and your peers. Equipment includes: dedicated computers, small press, bookbinding press and materials, and two extensive archive collections of artists’ books (The Ministry of Books) and zines (Zineopolis).
We have plenty of gallery and exhibition spaces and regularly host the work of our students, alumni and visiting local artists.
We invite a lively and diverse line-up of visiting speakers, including artists, curators and arts administrators to lecture on their work.
Guest speakers are a great way to bring you into contact with professional life, while encouraging a vibrant culture of debate and interaction.
Take advantage of our many workshops with facilities for screen printing, letterpress, relief, laser cutting, dye sublimation printing, 3D printing and digital fabric printing.
We also have a variety of digital studios with Macs and PCs running industry-standard software with a range of digital printing facilities including large format, photographic and sheet fed printers.
Modern, comfortable and a great learning environment, our library offers a wealth of information including 400,000 books, DVDs, maps and thousands of online ejournals and newspapers.
Many electronic resources are available anywhere, 24/7 and our friendly staff are always on hand to help.
There may be extra costs arising from your studies which you will need to consider when planning your expenditure.
Some are common costs to all courses of study. These may include the cost of study texts, reference books, photocopying and computer supplies. Others relate to specific courses and may include field trips, materials and specialist equipment.
There are costs relating to the purchase of materials and / or reprographic requirements for work. This may be in the region of £100 - £1000. These costs will depend on the nature of the work and the media used.
For optional study trips, you will be expected to pay full costs. Optional study trips will cost in the region of £200 - £800. UK trips, where offered, will be in the region of £50 - £150.
We anticipate that once you have completed this degree the scope of your opportunities within the creative industries will have widened giving you the rhetorical skills to enable you to effectively promote your work. You will have consolidated or repositioned your practice as a creative individual giving you a competitive edge in the commercial arena as an illustrator/artist. Alternatively, for those who wish to continue studying, there is always the option of progressing to doctoral level in your specialised area of illustration.
Our graduates could pursue careers such as:
One of the benefits of studying at Portsmouth is the support that we provide to our Master's and Research Degree students in career planning. Our careers and recruitment service can assist you in career research and finding employment opportunities. Help is also available if you wish to find a part-time job while studying your degree.
We offer our postgraduate students and alumni one-to-one appointments with a careers adviser, or an online service for those not able to travel back to the University. Our alumni can call on our career services for five years after graduation.
In addition, regular employability events offer you the chance to meet employers, find out about different career sectors and improve your applications or CV. The Graduate Summer Programme provides a range of guidance and employability seminars and workshops.
Regardless of whether you are seeking to build on your studies, further your career or pursue a career change, a postgraduate qualification adds to your achievement record.
Discover the benefits of studying a postgraduate course in the Faculty of Creative and Cultural Industries. This CCi TV video features lecturers from the faculty and a current Masters student.
Back to top
Apply direct using our online form
Your application will be received by the University Admissions Centre for consideration.
Visit us on one of our Postgraduate Information Days on Wednesday 14 March or Wednesday 25 April 2018 from 4-7pm to meet subject specialists and admissions teams, who'll provide information and guidance on our taught Master's courses and research degrees.
Download our free walking tour PDF for a self-guided tour of the University.
We have an open-door policy so you will be able to take a look in our buildings, speak to some of our support services and get a feel for the campus.
If you are unable to visit us, contact the admissions team – see the 'Key Facts' section above for contact details.
Staff from our international Office regularly attend overseas exhibitions. To find out more about these and our visits to your region see our International Office exhibitions page.
Find out more about fees and funding available to you at Portsmouth.