Drawing School and Degree Programs

Drawing degree programs are available at the associate's through master's degree levels and are sometimes offered as combined drawing and painting programs. Continue reading for details about coursework and skills you can learn through a degree program, information about important qualities at schools with drawing programs and career information. Schools offering Children`s Book Illustration degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What You Need to Know

Drawing programs are available at multiple levels and concentrations. Prospective professionals should choose a school based on their career ambitions.

Degree Options Certificate, associate's, bachelor's, and master's degrees are available.
Schools Look for good on-site facilities for drawing projects, like a studio; pick a school that allows students to focus on a variety of artistic subjects, such as live modeling for drawing.
Future Career Options Illustrator, art director, multimedia artist, and painter; self-employment possibilities exist.

What Drawing Degrees Are Available?

Drawing is the base of all the other artistic disciplines, so dedicated drawing programs may be difficult to find because degree programs tend to focus on additional subjects like painting or printmaking. You may also find useful instruction in programs that focus on illustration. Programs are offered at multiple levels and may include:

  • Certificate in Illustration
  • Associate of Occupational Studies in Illustration
  • Bachelor of Fine Arts in Drawing and Illustration
  • Bachelor of Fine Arts in Art with a Concentration in Painting, Drawing and Printmaking
  • Master of Fine Arts in Illustration

What Courses Will I Take?

Your drawing degree coursework may strengthen your artistic planning skills using sketches and rough drafts. You can expect to learn how to draw figures, facial expressions, gestures, animals and abstract illustrations. Courses may include the following topics:

  • 2D fundamentals
  • Art history
  • Landscapes
  • Graphic design
  • Color and light
  • Art media exploration
  • Portraits
  • Printmaking
  • Sketching
  • Shading

What Should I Look For In A School?

Schools that offer drawing degree programs typically have room for drawing equipment like easels, light boxes and specialized tilting tables. Drawing coursework also demands excellent lighting that includes spotlights and portable lighting to use as a backlight. Your school should offer a large area for cleaning up your paint and drawing supplies to keep your equipment ready for the next assignment. The drawing studio should also include enough space for all students to view the figure model. Since drawing provides the groundwork for a variety of artistic skills, you may find it useful to focus on schools that allow you to explore a wide range of artistic subjects.

You may be unable to find online drawing degree programs due to the difficult nature of grading artistic assignments online. You will complete most of your coursework in a studio setting with your instructor nearby for guidance. Additionally, learning to draw the human body, facial expressions and gestures require a live model in the studio for reference. These schools offer drawing degree programs:

  • University of Nevada, Las Vegas
  • Indiana University (Bloomington)
  • Savannah College of Art and Design (GA)
  • Pratt Institute (Manhattan/Brooklyn, NY)
  • Tufts University (Boston, MA)

What Careers Will a Degree Prepare Me For?

Strong drawing skills lay the groundwork for diverse media-rich masterpieces later. Drawing skills can also be used separately to create amazing works for the fine art, commercial or digital industries. Job titles for drawing degree graduates include illustrator, art director, multimedia artist and painter. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median salary for art directors in 2017 was approximately $92,500 a year, while the median annual salary for fine artists was about $49,520 (www.bls.gov). Many drawing degree graduates are self-employed and may need to purchase their own medical, dental and vision benefits.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

  • 1. Degree Options:
The schools in the listing below are not free and may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users. Tuition and costs will vary across programs and locations. Be sure to always request tuition information before starting a program.

Popular Schools