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Becoming a Graphic and Digital Designer: A Guide to Careers in Design, 5th Edition by Veronique Vienne, Steven Heller

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Chapter 10Illustration Design

In previous editions of this book, illustration was ignored or downplayed as a component of an overall design. Arguably, illustration—the making of images by hand or computer in two and three dimensions—has returned with a vengeance. Or shall we say, many illustrators combine their drawing and vectoring skills with what can only be described as design.

This is not a new phenomenon. Graphic design was an outgrowth of illustration. Posters were large illustrations that incorporated type and lettering. Building on this foundation of the “complete work of art/design,” as we call it, various designers and design firms became popular for the integration of these elements. Styles and methods were often recycled. While a few decades ago typography was its own art form, today the illustrated letter, the drawn image, and the designed message are once again, one again.

Editorial illustration may not be as robust as it was, but illustration for many more media and platforms are pronounced. If you call yourself and illustrator, you can also be a designer. If you call yourself a designer, you can still illustrate. This may be a renaissance—if only for the moment.

Michel Bouvet

The Citizen Designer

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