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MA Illustration and Visual Media explores the creation and production of images at a time of unparalleled possibilities for skilled visual communicators. Specifically investigating the opportunities for image-makers to work with time-based, sequential, interactive and narrative forms, students on the course will develop an experimental illustration practice that reflects the integrated nature of the design, communication and media industries.
Additional costs: In addition to tuition fees you are very likely to incur additional costs such as travel expenses and the cost of materials. We strongly suggest you read the information on our Additional Costs page.
Find out about the range of funding options available for postgraduate study.
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London College of Communication
|Study Mode||Full time|
|Course Length||1 year 3 months full time (45 weeks across a four-term model)|
2017/18: £8,500 (Full-time)
2017/18: £17,920 (Full-time)
|Start Date||25 September 2017|
Direct to College
|Application Deadline||Applications are accepted, and offers made, throughout the year. Early application is advised.|
This is a practice-led course that explores both the theory and practice of illustration across a broad range of visual media. MA Illustration and Visual Media aims to develop your visual voice with an emphasis on critical engagement with both the discipline and the world at large. This may take the form of investigating abstract concepts from disciplines such as science, technology and philosophy by developing bespoke visual languages to translate these ideas to diverse audiences. Other approaches may also include using critical ideas to produce self-directed visual authorship. Practical projects and technical workshops are run in tandem with theoretical and critical seminars in order to support the relationship between critical and practice based learning.
This approach provides you with a unique platform from which to produce relevant and engaging work within the discipline of illustration that has resonance and value to the world at large. Through the development of a portfolio of work the course places graduates in a position to work across sectors as diverse as visual communication, art direction, information communication, branding, news, current affairs, entertainment, art and design as well as encouraging visual authorship.
The course supports progression to research at MPhil/PhD level as well as to advanced self-directed experimental practice.
Building on LCC's resources, in digital, time-based and interactive media alongside printmaking, graphic design and visual communication, the course encourages experimental and reflective practice that echoes the cross media nature of the design, communication and media industries.
This course is taught within the Design School.
Each course is divided into units, which are credit-rated. The minimum unit size is 20 credits. The MA course structure involves six units, totalling 180 credits.
Term One of the course examines your visual practice and introduces critical theories and research methods to provide a framework for MA study in this discipline. You will produce work that interrogates key critical ideas and be set briefs that require you to extend your practice across time-based, sequential, interactive and narrative situations. You will be introduced to key thinking and making skills in this phase that will be essential for your practice throughout the rest of the course.
Term Two offers you the opportunity to use both the critical and technical skills gained in Term One to produce self-directed projects alongside set briefs that encourage you to develop your visual voice across different mediums. During this phase you will also develop a project proposal for your final major project and thesis in Term Three.
In Term Three and Four you will undertake a final major research project that relates to the expanded field of illustration and visual media. This will involve a self-directed major practical project and the completion of a related thesis, which demonstrates your critical reflection, analysis and original research. With your access to broad theoretical models spanning the discipline, you will apply these models to your own specialist area of interest to produce a critically aware major project that will usually be presented at your postgraduate show after assessment.
If you are unable to continue or decide to exit the course, there are two possible exit awards. A Postgraduate Certificate will be awarded on successful completion of the first 60 credits and a Postgraduate Diploma will be awarded on successful completion of the first 120 credits.
The information outlined is an indicative structure of the course. Whilst we will aim to deliver the course as described on this page, there may be situations where it is desirable or necessary for the University to make changes in course provision, for example because of regulatory requirements or operational efficiencies, before or after enrolment. If this occurs, we will communicate all major changes to all applicants and students who have either applied or enrolled on the course.
Please note that due to staff research agreements or availability, not all of the optional modules listed may be available every year.
In addition, the provision of course options which depend upon the availability of specialist teaching, or on a placement at another institution, cannot be guaranteed. Please check this element of the course with the course team before making a decision to apply.
Course Leader: Lizzie Finn
Tutors: Dr. Charley Peters & Will Edmonds
You will work with highly qualified and experienced educators and practitioners in design who deliver the course and who retain close involvement with the industry, continuing their professional practice and, engaging in scholarly research at an international level. In addition, there will be visiting experts from industry practitioners.
Graduates of the course will be equipped to work in an increasingly technologically informed and interdisciplinary design world with indepth skills in the following areas: visual communication, animation, narrative and sequential image making, typography, illustration and time-based design, authorial practice and publishing. A significant proportion of graduates from this course practice as commercial illustrators.
One of your key attributes will be an ability to translate narrative images across media. You will have the facility to deploy narrative illustrative content in books, online, animation and interactive and environmental settings. This will be coupled with an agile critical perspective ensuring you have the creative drive to sustain a career in the creative industries.
We know what it takes to be successful in your chosen field. Your tutors are professionals in their own right and understand what you need to help you establish your career.
Careers and Employability is dedicated to helping students build up work-relevant skills, knowledge, experience and networks throughout your time here.
Creative Opportunities is the UAL job and work placement website for students and graduates, advertising hundreds of creative opportunities each month. This includes ArtsTemps in-house recruitment agency, placing students and graduates in paid temping roles within the University.
UAL houses a number of organisations which promote aspects of career development in the arts and media, and which hold regular workshops and careers fairs. These include:
Applicants are expected to have an honours degree in either illustration, visual communication or graphic design or closely related subject, however, we do accept candidates who have graduated from other less strongly aligned disciplines.
The course has a particular aim to appeal to image-led Art & Design graduates that are interested in exploring these new and emerging areas of illustration practice.
If you do not have the required qualifications, but do have professional experience, you may be eligible to gain credit for previous learning and experience through the Accreditation of Prior and Experiential Learning (APeL) i.e. professional experience or a combination of courses and work experience.
All classes are conducted in English. If English is not your first language, we strongly recommend you send us an English language test score together with your application to prove your level of proficiency. If you have booked a test or are awaiting your results, please clearly indicate this on your application form. When you have received your test score, please send it to us immediately.
For further details regarding international admissions and advice please visit the Study at UAL International pages.
All applications will be considered by the course team who will consider key elements when making a decision on your suitability to join the course:
Academic or professional reference are not required for this course.
Offers will be made based on the following selection criteria, which applicants are expected to demonstrate:
Please say why you are applying for this course, outlining relevant prior experience and your current knowledge of contemporary illustration practice and discussion.
All applicants must submit their portfolio by providing a web link to a downloadable PDF in their application form. The portfolio should contain a minimum of 5 projects comprising examples of image-led work. This work can be from academic, self-initiated or professional practice. For each project please include concise written reflection and edited visual documentation of your working process.
Candidates must provide a statement outlining an idea for their major project. This should describe the area of interest, field of study and the particular focus of their intended project. This includes an overview of how you intend to go about producing the project and the methodology. This idea will inevitably develop and change across the year of study on the course and only serve to inform your application at this stage.
Applicants are usually interviewed by the course team before a place can be offered. Interviews will take place at LCC, or via Skype/telephone.
Funding opportunities available for this course:
You can begin your application for this course using our online application form – the link to this is below. Before you apply, we recommend you take some time to read the course Entry Requirements section to learn about the application process, including detailed guidance on the extra information we will ask you to provide later in the process.
You will need to enter the following information in the online application form:
Before you can submit the form, you’ll also need to agree to the terms and conditions for how we process your data – these are explained in the form.
Please note, if you’re an international applicant we will need to contact you separately to ask for copies of certain documents (for example, English language qualification/certificate and copies of any previous UK study visas).
Once you have submitted the online application form, we will send you a confirmation email.
From January 2017 you will be emailed a link to our online application tool, where you should submit the extra information we require for the selection process:
Personal statement (200 words)
Project proposal (400 - 800 words)
The course leader will then review your work, may invite you to interview, and will then make a decision on your application, from January 2017.
The admissions team will be in touch after that to let you know the outcome and to guide you through the next steps.
Applications are accepted, and offers made, throughout the year. Early application is advised.
The application form can be saved as you fill it out, so you don’t need to complete it all at once. You will also have the chance to review all the information and make any necessary amendments before you submit the application form.
We will send you emails as you progress through the application process, so do check your inbox (and junk folder, just in case). These emails will contain important information about your application, and links to the online forms you should use to submit the extra information required.
If you haven’t found the information you’re looking for or want to ask us a question about this course, please fill out our enquiry form.