Illustration styles are as varied as the hands and minds that draw them. This fall Watkins College offers you an opportunity to develop your skills and nourish your unique style. Students majoring in Graphic Design may choose to concentrate in Illustration, enjoy courses such as Drawing I & II, Figure Study, Printmaking and Painting and graduate with a professional quality, entry-level portfolio.

Here are a few of the Illustration specific courses offered to those interested in concentrating in Illustration:

Illustration I
The class is an introductory course that provides an understanding of the illustration process and its role as an art form that reflects,serves, and advances contemporary culture. Class assignments parallel professional practice.
Required for graphic design majors. (ART 162, ART 161 or GRD 110)

Illustration II
The class will explore character development, sequential imagery, and visual storytelling as related to storyboards, picture books, game design, and animation. The class will include guest professionals and possible field trips. Graphic Design Elective; required for Illustration concentration. (GRD 321)

Illustration III – Visiting Illustrators
Students will work with visiting professionals -illustrators, designers, and animators – to benefit from distinctly different and valuable perspectives. Graphic Design Elective; required for Illustration concentration. (GRD 421)

In addition, students will be given the opportunity to take special topic classes with in the Illustration genre such as Illustration / Printmaking Camp and The Picture BookProxy-Connection.

Complete course lists can be found here. And course descriptions may be read here.

If you have questions please feel free to call (866.887.6395) or email ([email protected]) the Admissions Office


Nashville native, and chair of the Watkins Graphic Design Program, Dan Brawner, creates idea-based art that reaches a wide audience through its appearance in books, magazines, and advertising campaigns. Commissioned by respected agencies, including Saatchi & Saatchi, Hal Riney & Partners, McCann-Erickson, Porter Novelli, and The Richards Group, Dan has created imagery for Children’s TV Workshop, Coca-Cola, Kellogg’s, KFC, Saturn, Simon & Schuster, Sonic, Texaco, U.S. Postal Service, WGBH/Boston, Yoo-Hoo, and Zanie’s Comedy Showplace. His character designs for BASF’s FreshStart’s campaign appeared on NBC’s The Today Show and marched in Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. Among his book projects is The Prayer of Jabez for Kids, named by Publisher’s Weekly as the best-selling children’s book of 2002. Published work has garnered awards from Advertising Age, American Ad Federation, American Illustration, Association of Alternative Newsweeklies, Illustration West, Print, 3×3, Society of Illustrators, and SILA: Society of Illustrators of Los Angeles. In 2009, he received a gold medal from 3×3’s Illustration Annual 5, and was published in Illustrators 50.

Dan has exhibited his work internationally, and in 2005 received Best of Show from Huntsville Museum of Art’s Red Clay Survey. Recent work has been juried into group exhibitions at Billy Shire’s Fine Art Gallery and Gallery Nucleus in Los Angeles, Nashville’s Main Library, and the Society of Illustrators, NYC.
Visit Dan’s site and be sure to check out our news page to see some of the work his students have been creating!

The Watkins Graphic Design department is excited to announce a new Web Design Concentration in conjunction with our current BFA In Graphic Design. Web design and development is an integral part of our curriculum and a keen understanding of current technology, along with the skills to reach people through a variety of media formats, has always been essential to the success of graphic designers. The web is not the future…it’s now. It’s exciting, challenging, constantly evolving and exceptionally rewarding. Like all aspects of graphic design (package design, logo development, corporate identity, illustration, editorial design, etc.) web design requires creative/critical thinking, excellent design, typographic craft, compelling imagery and great concepts.

Our new Web Design Concentration provides students with the knowledge, experience, skills and tools that will prepare them for successful entry into the workplace upon graduation. Students who elect to participate in the new Web Design Concentration will complete the current core Web Development courses as well as additional advanced, in-depth classes such as HTML5 & CSS3, WordPress, PHP & MySql, Flash and jQuery.