An understanding of the relationship among the illustrator and the art director, editor, author, and production personnel is an essential element in the cultivation of the complete illustrator.
The illustration student concentrates upon drawing, painting, and design. A high degree of facility in these skills must be achieved before moving on to the consideration of specific illustration problems, and it is encouraged throughout the program. The specialized courses deal with various aspects of the field: general illustration, editorial illustration, book illustration, typography, reproduction, graphics, perspective, with specialties in these categories such as the writing, designing, illustration, and production of children' s books. Job opportunities in illustration are varied and substantial. Large greeting card firms, for example, employ illustrators in staff positions and maintain entry-level training programs for the inexperienced graduate with a major in illustration. Other staff positions exist in publishing houses creating books, magazines, and newspapers. Beyond the salaried staff illustrator is the freelancer who markets skills on an individual, contractual-assignment basis creating paperback book covers; institutional advertisements; book jackets; postage stamps and a myriad of philatelic materials; textual illustrations for periodicals, books, and newspapers; corporate reports; TV commercials; and publications of every description including retail catalogs, advertising brochures, and "how-to-do-it" manuals.