Illustration at FIT is about visual communication — using art to tell stories that express ideas and emotions. Our students are inspired artists who, from their very first class, begin to integrate drawing, painting, and conceptual abilities with the power of cutting-edge technology to create images.

In this program, you’ll learn how to generate ideas, build knowledge through research, and develop problem-solving skills that can be applied in any area. You’ll develop advanced skills and establish your unique illustrative style while producing professional-quality work that is in demand. Every year, a high-profile outdoor mural project, ChalkFIT, enables students to showcase their work to the public.


student in illustration class

Illustration AAS

Reflecting the full spectrum of today’s rapidly changing illustration field, our hybrid classrooms blend traditional drawing and painting with digital media. You’ll gain a strong and comprehensive illustration foundation while learning to create effective visual solutions that express your own voice. Once you earn your AAS, you are eligible to apply for a BFA program in Illustration; Animation, Interactive Media, and Game Design; Textile/Surface Design; or Toy Design.

Degree Details
Pride student illustration

Illustration BFA

At the BFA level, you’ll explore specialized and industry-oriented topics, including sequential and concept art, character design, storyboarding, book and editorial illustration, and advanced drawing and painting applications, while working to create a personal vision and develop a professional portfolio. Real-world classes connect you with working illustrators and art directors, and our nine-course selection of computer classes will help you build the tech skills you need for today’s illustration careers.

Degree Details


Your drawing. Your message … Our graduates communicate powerful ideas through an array of media to show the world in a new light.

Outside the Classroom

In lieu of internships, students complete mentorships, working with professional illustrators on class projects. Graduates find full-time and freelance employment with film companies, television and animation studios, magazines, newspapers, design studios, advertising agencies, toy design companies, record labels, publishing companies, and video game companies. These include Ogilvy & Mather, Revlon, Bloomingdale’s, Vogue, Walt Disney, and many more.

Beyond Graduation
Illustration by Alejandro Bonilla
Chalk FIT 2021

Students & Alumni Create Murals to Celebrate the Reopening of Broadway

FIT's Illustration Department students and alumni designed and painted chalk murals  featuring six Broadway shows, including Dear Evan Hansen and The Lion King.

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Learn From the Best

Our faculty of dedicated teachers and mentors are practicing professionals who work in diverse styles. Their artwork can be found in museums and galleries around the world. Meet more Illustration faculty.
Kam Mak
Mak is a painter and illustrator who has illustrated more than 200 paintings for book covers and magazines. He recently completed a series of United States Postal Service stamps celebrating the Lunar New Year. He has received gold and silver medals from the Society of Illustrators.
Leslie Cober-Gentry
Cober-Gentry is an illustrator and designer whose work has been commissioned by numerous publications, including The New York Times, National Geographic, and Better Homes and Gardens as well as by corporations such as Nike, Ford, and Bergdorf Goodman. She is a member of the Society of Illustrators, College Art Association, and Illustration Partnership of America.
Eric Velasquez
Velasquez is the illustrator and author of the books Grandma’s Records and Grandma’s Gift, for which he won the Pura Belpre Award. He has illustrated books for publishers such as Bloomsbury, Simon and Schuster, and Houghton Mifflin, and his work has received the Coretta Scott/John Steptoe Award and Carter G. Woodson Award.

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Pomerantz Center, Room D332
(212) 217-5800

Dan Shefelman


Kam Mak

Assistant Chair

Hadija Aljuwani

Administrative Coordinator

Art and Design Gallery

The Art and Design Gallery is open from 9 am until 5 pm, seven days per week. The gallery is located at the northwest corner of Seventh Avenue and 27th Street. 

Let's Make It Happen