Class Central is learner-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission.


Illustration by Design: A Guide to Elevating your Drawing Skills

via Skillshare


A good illustration is an amazing thing.

It can illuminate an idea, simplify a complexity and give us the feels all at once. But what makes a good illustration work? Design thinking!

In this class, you'll learn to define your creative goals, develop your symbolism and evoke stronger feelings in your drawings using a few simple principles from the world of design.

Here are the topics we'll be covering:

  • Design Thinking
  • The Power of Connecting Illustration and Design
  • The Origins of the Modern Illustrator
  • Gathering Great References
  • Making Strong Compositions
  • Using Symbolism to Create Stronger Visuals

All you'll need for this class is a pencil and paper but I'm working in Clip Studio Paint for visual clarity.


  • Introduction
  • What is Design Thinking?
  • Connecting Illustration and Design
  • Art Nouveau: The Style of the People
  • The Spirit of the Movement
  • A Utopia for Illustrators
  • Roles for Illustrators
  • Class Project: Planning a Composition
  • Class Project: Lines, Shapes, Space
  • Class Project: Making a Mood Board
  • Class Project: Symbolic Forms
  • Class Project: Sketching an Idea
  • Class Project: Tone Map
  • Class Project: Line Art & Contrast (pt. 1)
  • Class Project: Line Art & Contrast (pt. 2)
  • Class Project: Color & Negative Space
  • Wrap Up

Taught by

Ira Marcks


Start your review of Illustration by Design: A Guide to Elevating your Drawing Skills

Never Stop Learning.

Get personalized course recommendations, track subjects and courses with reminders, and more.