Illustrations and Types of Illustrations

An illustration is a visualization created by an artist. This is a picture that explains something. Illustrations don’t have to be drawn, anything that can visualize a message can be called an illustration, whether it’s a photo, painting, or engraving. So if your image doesn’t explain something, it’s a work of art, not an illustration.

An illustration can explain an idea even without text nearby. If the person looking at the picture can also see the story being told, the illustrations are excellent.

Telling a story with illustrations means conveying some meaning, explaining a certain context only with the help of pictures. Therefore, it is necessary to be careful in choosing the illustrations to be made. The illustrations made have many types according to the message to be conveyed.

Here are some types of illustrations:

  • Editorial illustration
  • Advertising illustration
  • Fashion illustration
  • Technical illustration (scientific)
  • Infographics
  • Packaging illustration

What is Editorial Illustration?

An editorial illustration is an illustration created to better express an idea from a text, usually used in a book, magazine, newspaper, or web resource.

Although the purpose of making illustrations, in general, is to illustrate a context without having to present words, it is different from editorial illustrations which must be accompanied by text. Editorial illustrations aim to add imagery to the existing text and better express ideas and moods.

The editorial illustrations have different types depending on the text they will describe. The selection of the type must also be suitable and in accordance with the audience and the meaning of the story depicted.

Editorial Illustration Types :

  • Web resources (such as blogs, web magazines, or news portals). Illustrations for Instagram posts will also be editorials
  • Adult books: fiction and nonfiction books
  • Children’s books: encyclopedias, atlases, Wimmelbuch (books with many detailed illustrations used as children’s games), interactive books for tablets
  • Printed newspapers and magazines

What is Advertising Illustration?

As the name suggests, these illustrations are used to promote or advertise a company in order to attract the attention of viewers. This illustration can be used without text at all but must be able to convey a strong message or idea, either by using a play of color or visual elements.

What is Fashion Illustration?

These illustrations are used to visualize clothing designs from fashion designers before they are produced. The images used are also usually a more elongated body and display clothing from the designer brand. Also, fashion houses use the work of fashion illustrators to promote their products and display them in a special style.

What is Technical Illustration?

The purpose of technical (scientific) illustration is to accurately depict an object in order to simplify its understanding. In the technical illustration, it is not the image and beauty that matters, but the clarity of the image and the absence of confusion.

What is an Infographic?

Infographics are a selection of images and diagrams with a minimum of text, allowing you to quickly understand the essence of the topic. Infographics are related to communication and graphic design, but can also be related to illustration. Good infographics make it easier to understand large amounts of information and data.

Infographic illustrations must be precise and easy to understand because they relate to data and information.

What is Packaging Illustration?

Like advertising illustrations, packaging illustrations help companies to sell their products. And it should also be eye-catching and grab the attention of the viewer. But also, packaging illustrations help define the brand, adding a personal touch and a custom feel.

Because this illustration is used for packaging a product, the illustration used must be able to provide the right information about the product, it will even affect the image of the company that produces the product.

Difference Between Graphic Design and Illustration

Graphic designers create a work based on an existing object and their job is to create an appropriate composition from it and create a successful product that will meet the customer’s requirements and the needs of the target audience, however, illustrators have to create their own product and focus on images. In contrast to designers who have a marketing orientation, illustrators focus more on the message of the images they create.

Difference Between Art and Illustration

Illustration art is not art in the true sense of the word. Art is created to express the inner world of the artist, while illustrations are created to explain an idea. The main purpose of a work of art is aesthetics. The main purpose of illustration is to explain. An illustration is created for a specific customer need with a specific purpose, and a work of art can be created without it. Good illustrators always think about the goals of their audience and clients.


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