Updated June 6, 2023
Introduction to Illustration
An illustration expresses our ideas in art, text, different graphics in digital media, and many more. We have different types of illustration techniques for making our illustration ideas come true. In this article, you will see the types of Illustration and their use in the working of Illustration. We have different graphics software in digital media for expressing our ideas as illustrations. We will discuss them too in this article for your knowledge.
We have two major techniques of Illustration; both have their different types. The first is Traditional Illustration, and the second one is Modern Illustration. Let us discuss these types.
Types of Illustration
Mentioned below are the two types of Illustration:
1. Traditional Illustration
We use this technique in the early age of Illustration, and this technique has the essence of our cultural and natural beauty. This technique involves traditional tools and materials, which give it glowing features. The methods are Woodcutting Illustration, Pencil Illustration, Charcoal Illustration, Water Color Illustration, Acrylics Illustration, Pen & Ink Illustration, etc. We will discuss some of them here one by one.
- Woodcutting Illustration: You know very well what woodcutting is. In this type, the artist engraves the printed image on the wood with the help of a hammer and chisel. The unprinted area remains as it is without removing any chips of wood from there. After that, the artist uses ink on the engraved area to print it on a plain surface, employing one or more ink colors as printing ink. They used different blocks of Illustration for each ink color. This type originated in China, and later, it spread almost worldwide. It became popular in Europe in the half of the 15th century.
- Pencil Illustration: A pencil is a wooden holder of graphite that produces a black color when used on white paper. The artist used it for sketching with more perfection. Although graphite was discovered during the 16th and 17th centuries, it was not widely utilized in illustration. However, it came into contact with illustration artists in the late 18th century and became the most popular medium among them.
- Charcoal Illustration: Charcoal is mined ground materials processed with or without binders to bind them together and give them the proper structure for illustration work. Charcoal is preferred for creating lines and rough textures, providing a very light effect of black color. It could be easily removed and leaves no stain behind on the paper. To prevent the dust from rubbing off during work, a fixing material was used to fix it in place.
- Water Color Illustration: Watercolor refers to pigments suspended in a water solution. The artist applies watercolor on paper, canvas, or plastic in these types. The most important material on which watercolor gives the best result is paper. Watercolor may be transparent and translucent, allowing you to make your imagination accurate on your canvas.
2. Modern Illustration
In the era of technology, we have the support of technologies in illustration work also, and these technologies take the work of Illustration to the next level of Illustration. Due to the involvement of technology, we find new ways of Illustration with digital media and develop different types of software, which gives us the liberty to apply our idea with accuracy. In Modern Illustration, we have two main types: Freehand Digital Illustration and Vector Graphics. Let us analyze their features.
- Freehand Digital Illustration: This type of Illustration is not different from other types, but it has all the same features as an ancient technique. The difference comes in the process of making an illustration with it. In this type, we have digital media, which allows you to use various tools for making it. We use a pen tool to make our idea accurate, and we also have some presets and shapes in it, making your work easy and saving you time. In Freehand digital illustration, you have command of the tool and good knowledge of them, and then you can explore your idea without any problem.
- Vector Graphics illustration: As you know, vector refers to working on the plan coordinates. So vector graphics works on the principle of different coordinates of a plan and making a path for making graphics. Vector graphics are unique; they will not pixelate when you zoom in and never lose their originality. You can make logos, banners, illustrations, and more with this technique, and it supports SVG, PNG, and other graphics formats.
Use of Digital Media for Illustration
In the age of digitalization, once you start illustration work to make your carrier as an illustrator, you will find digital media helps you a lot. Here I will tell you some digital media software that helps your work. This software is Adobe Illustrator (It is vector graphics software that helps you make illustration work in different ways), Adobe Photoshop (It is a raster image editing software that helps you manipulate your illustration work with the help of unique tools), Corel Painter X3 (An advanced level of illustration software, which offers you unique brushes and texture for making your Illustration unique), Clip Paint Studio Pro (This software allows you to work on the precision making of characters Illustration and provides you brush, which helps you in this type of work), Autodesk Sketchbook Pro (This is best-suited software for polishing your skill in illustration work and provides you with a different type of blending mode) and many other.
Conclusion – Types of Illustration
Now, after this article, you can easily understand ‘What Illustration is?’ and its types very well in different aspects. If you want to become an illustrator, this article will help you better understand basic Illustration and enhance your knowledge, which will help you choose the right illustration technique.
This is a guide to Types of Illustration. Here we discuss the introduction, two types of Illustration, and the use of digital media for Illustration. You may also look at the following articles to learn more –