Course Overview

This course is a practical introduction to the field of illustration. The Focus will be placed on process work and professional practices, presented within a contemporary and historical context. The course includes projects and lectures in a variety of illustration genres including product design and advertising, comic, book illustration, and editorial illustration. A variety of materials will be introduced through lectures and demonstrations for use on assignments such as pencil, pen and ink, brush, paint, and collage. In addition, digital tools and techniques will be integrated and discussed.

Critical concepts such as conceptual development, working on assignment, composition, contrast, value, point of view, and color theory will be introduced. 

3 Credits, 4 Hours (1 lecture, 3 lab)  ENG 092R (ESOL 032R) and/or
ENG 092W (ESOL 031W) as required. 

Attendance (College) and Lateness (Department) Policies

A class roster roll will be taken at the beginning of each class. Only two unexcused
absences are allowed.
After two absences, a student may be withdrawn because of unsatisfactory attendance (code WU). Students arriving after the roll is taken will be marked “late.” Students will be notified at the earliest opportunity in class after they have been absent or late. After four latenesses, a student will be asked to withdraw from the class (code W) or may be withdrawn from the class (code WU).

Please email the professor before class if you are unable to attend. 

Academic Integrity Standards

Students and all others who work with information, ideas, texts, images, music, inventions, and other intellectual property owe their audience and sources accuracy and honesty in using, crediting, and citing sources. As a community of intellectual and professional workers, the College recognizes its responsibility for providing instruction in information literacy and academic integrity, offering models of good practice, and responding vigilantly and appropriately to infractions of academic integrity. Accordingly, academic dishonesty is prohibited at The City University of New York and at New York City College of Technology and is punishable by penalties, including failing grades, suspension, and expulsion.

Academic Integrity and Expectations 

You are responsible for reading, understanding, and abiding by the NYC College of
Technology Student Handbook, “Student Rights & Responsibilities,” section “Academic Integrity Standards.” Academic dishonesty of any type, including cheating and plagiarism is unacceptable. “Cheating” is misrepresenting another student’s efforts/work as your own. “Plagiarism” is the representation of another person’s work, words, or concepts as
your own.


• Participation and Attendance 20%

• Sketchbook  20%

• Individual Assignments 30%

• Midterm 15%

• Final Project 15%

• Projects given as Homework Assignments are due to be received digitally before
the beginning of class, otherwise they are considered late. 

• ANY MISSED ASSIGNMENTS WILL EARN A ZERO. Assignments received after the deadline will drop a full letter grade, and will only be accepted within 1 week of the due date.  After that time period, any late assignment will earn a zero. 

• A final PDF portfolio of ALL PROJECTS will be handed in with the final project at the end of the semester. Students have the option to revisit earlier projects and revise them based on critiques. 

• Make-ups: If a student finds they will not be able to present or hand in a project on the scheduled day, it is their responsibility to notify the instructor PRIOR to the due date and request alternate arrangements. Points will be deducted for late assignments and missed critiques.


You are expected to work on sketchbooks and assignments for at least four hours a week outside of class. You will find that assignments will take a lot more than that to be successful.  


Each student will present his/her/their work for critiques using appropriate design vocabulary. The critique is a neutral dialogue. Students will present their work and discuss their strengths and weaknesses, expressing what works and what doesn’t work in relation to the assignment guidelines. Peer responses will be given.No personal likes or dislikes are discussed without elaborating the “why” of it. Design vocabulary should be used at all times.


Communication is at the heart of everything you do as a creative professional. Whether you go on to become a designer, illustrator, art director, game designer,
or any one of the numerous careers that the COMD department is preparing you for, your number one goal is to communicate and to do it visually. To be able to communicate visually you also need to be able to communicate verbally. One of
the most important and overlooked skills in our industry is to be able to express yourself clearly so that other people understand what you are saying.  With that
in mind, you should always try to express yourself as clearly as possible in this
(and all) of your classes. Within this class, you are expected to communicate with

your classmates and with your professor. If you are going to miss a class it is your responsibility to let the professor know. If you are sick and miss a class when an assignment is due you will get a zero unless you contact your professor. If you have a question or are confused about something COMMUNICATE! Ask a question, and send an email. Ignorance is not an excuse.

* suggested brands I prefer, but feel free to try other brands.

• Sketchbook – Moleskin, Handbook, or other brands, 8” x 5” or larger,
   preferably 8”x10”

• Drawing pencils-HB, 2B, 3B, etc.

• Ruler and/or triangle

• Erasers

• Graphite transfer paper or lightbox/lightable

• Brush pens (SAKURA Pigma and PENTEL recommended) buy 1

• Brushes for ink (round Sizes #0 #1, #2 and #3 ) Princeton Select Artiste. 

• Waterproof black ink (I recommend Dr. Martens ink)

• empty water jars or dixie cups for ink

• Felt pens, a few sizes (Pigma Micron or Staedtler Pigment Liner black finel iner pens) 

• Bristol paper  (Strathmore, Canson, or other brands 11”x17” or smaller)

• Drawing paper if you like drawing big (or computer paper) for
  sketching (Strathmore, Canson, or ther brands 11”x17”)

• cloud storage/dropbox 

• scanner or digital camera is helpful, use classroom or lab scanner

• Adobe Photoshop

• Drawing Tablet is helpful but not required

• artist tape preferred, some kind of tape

• Additional color materials, not required but useful  are
  watercolor, color pencils, paper, acrylic, etc.


1. Project 1 – Concept Spot Illustrations  

2. Project 2 – Editorial illustration

3. Project 3- Film Poster Illustration

4. Weekly sketchbook assignments

5. Mid-term

6. Writing Assignments

7. Final Project/Presentation

*Work should be presented neatly. Think of yourself as an artist hanging your work in
a gallery setting. White walls, clean edges, no smudges, etc

*Always label artwork when sending digital files. For example, a project might be labeled as this.

ex: project1_dschoenbrun_sk.psd

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