Why is illustration important

Illustration - what is it actually?

The illustrator is not one of the professions that immediately comes to mind when it comes to job descriptions. In fact, the job description is so unknown that even drawing enthusiasts come into contact with the profession of illustrator relatively late. This is what the Illustrators Organization recently wrote in an article.

It is similar with illustration. The term is rarely used in everyday working life. Therefore, everyone will surely associate their own image with the term.

What is the meaning of the word illustration?

Attempt at a definition

The etymological origin of the illustration is the word illustrare "illuminate, explain." The task of an illustration is therefore to illustrate facts and texts in a pictorial form.

With the help of an illustration, the viewer is given further access to better understand a text and perhaps see it from a different perspective.

There is no particular genre or work that an illustration represents. The illustration can be influenced by graphic design, communication design or art.

What defines an illustration is the fact that it is explanatory. It was made for a specific purpose that it seeks to fulfill.

The important thing is: an illustration works with and without text.

Variety of illustrations

In practical terms, this means: basically every graphic that is drawn, painted in analog or digitally created that fulfills a special purpose is an illustration.

It is therefore not just a colored pencil or watercolor drawing for children's or school books, nor is it just a simple visualization with icons and stick figures.

An orchid painted with acrylic paint or a collage that deals with tree houses, for example, are also illustrations if they were created for the "underpainting" of content. Sketchnotes and infographics are illustrations, just like the images of bodies in anatomy books.

An illustration is all of that and much more. The only requirement for an illustration is that it is linked to some form of use. There are no limits to your creativity when it comes to the display.

An order comes about

In most cases, illustrators are commissioned by a client to visually represent a situation. After a briefing in which the illustrator and the client exchange information on the essential points, an offer from the illustrator follows.

The offer includes the effort for the creation as well as the calculated usage rights. The illustrator remains the author of the drawn image and transfers the rights of use to the client.

The usage rights allow the client to later use the graphic for himself.

Usage rights are a very complex issue that is handled differently in practice. A distinction must be made between the simple and the exclusive right of use. The purpose, scope and regional usage area as well as the duration of use also influence the calculation of the right of use.

The illustrators organization provides further information on this topic.

The search for ideas and the creative process lead to individual illustration.

When the framework conditions have been discussed and clarified, the illustrator goes on a search for ideas. This is followed by the creative creation process, which is continued in coordination with the employer until the final implementation and completion of the illustration.

Although the illustrators' area of ​​work is often not exactly known and defined, the results of their work are more often present than one might think.

Illustrations are strokes of genius in creativity that often do not have to adhere to strict guidelines. That is also what makes it so attractive.

An illustration depicts the handwriting of its author, the intention of the client and the purposes of use individually, multi-faceted and with an undreamt-of variety.

See for yourself. In future, consciously go through everyday life with open eyes and consciously discover all the different illustrations on products, in magazines and of course on the web.