Illustration Program

Develop the practical skills and build a head-turning portfolio from start-to-finish in as little as 12 months.

About the Program

These 4 progressively challenging courses place you on a custom-tailored track towards professional development. Starting with the first course, you will progress through the curriculum until all four courses are completed. You can sign up for each course individually as you make your way through the classes. Each course pairs you with groundbreaking professional artists to build your skills over 10 weeks.

Enrollment Opens

Aug. 23
Course 1.

Process: Skill & Craft

Mentor: Katherine Lam

Alongside your mentor, you’ll explore the complexities of working with different media, applying color, drawing with shape, and controlling light. You’ll be joined by guest speakers with decades of combined experience drawing for the biggest names in the industry.

Course 2.

Ideation & Visual Storytelling

Photo portrait of artist and illustrator Audrey Benjaminsen

Mentor: Audrey Benjaminsen

This course explores the art of developing a compelling and engaging story, a critical component of visual narrative. This skill can be applied to all corners of the creative industry. Each class includes lectures, demonstrations, critiques, or projects.

Course 3.

Portfolio Development

Portrait of illustrator and painter, Dale Stephanos

Mentor: Dale Stephanos

Portfolio Development will give you the guidance and feedback to complete three to five head-turning illustrations. Led by industry award-winners who have worked for and with every big name under the sun—Newsweek, Time, Esquire—you’ll get close mentorship geared to help you succeed.

Course 4.
Portrait of illustrator and fine artist, Sterling Hundley

Career Development

Mentor: Sterling Hundley

During this course, students continue to hone skills, enhance their portfolio, and outline career strategies. Every step of this process is guided by an illustration mentor, a highly vetted professional in the illustration industry.

This course focuses on developing design problem solving skills as well as their application while working with a client brief.

Illustration Mentors

The mentoring artists at the helm of the Illustration Program are some of the top-performing artists in the industry. As you progress through the program, these artists act as your professional compass, helping you develop creative abilities, techniques, and entrepreneurial skills. Each course features different mentors.

Katherine Lam

Process: Skill & Craft

Photo portrait of artist and illustrator Audrey Benjaminsen

Audrey Benjaminsen

Ideation & Visual Storytelling

Edward Kinsella III

Ideation & Visual Storytelling

Portrait of illustrator and painter, Dale Stephanos

Dale Stephanos

Portfolio Development

Illustrator and painter John English

John English

Portfolio Development

Portrait of illustrator and fine artist, Sterling Hundley

Sterling Hundley

Career Development

Award-winning Guest Speakers

Every semester, Visual Arts Passage invites 6 guest speakers to connect and share wisdom with all students. These industry leaders answer student questions, complete in-depth demonstrations, review work, and more.

Featured this semester

Book a Free Consultation

Need help determining if this is the right path for your professional and artistic development? Book a free Zoom call with our Program Director to discuss your goals and the resources offered at Visual Arts Passage.

Enrollment Closes

July 14

Frequently Asked Questions

No. Students only commit to one mentorship course per semester. Once you complete a course, you can register for the next course, to continue your progress in the mentorship program.

The Mentorship Program can be complete within a 12 month period. It is not unusual for students to repeat the final course in the program, Career Development, if they choose to have continued coaching from Visual Arts Passage mentors.

The Mentorship program is a "get out of it, what you put in" experience. That being said, our courses are structured to accommodate individuals with a busy schedule. We recommend setting aside a minimum of 3 hours for your live course and 2 hours to complete assignments and course work. We highly encourage students to commit more time if their schedule allows.

Mentorship courses enroll 4 times per year, during the winter, spring, summer, and fall semester. You can view the program calendar here.

We recommend that most students start with the first course in the Illustration Program, Process: Skill & Craft. Highly experienced students may qualify to attend the second course in the program, Ideation & Visual Storytelling. If you are not sure, feel free to send your work to and a team member will get back to you with a recommendation shortly.

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