Difference Between Illustration and Designing in Contemporary Illustration Learning

There would be various types of illustration which are being learnt and taught as a subject, course, a series of courses or through general drawing techniques. Various people learn these types in a long course, yet, they actually don’t know they often learn them as a designer. Sometimes, people couldn’t understand that what they learn; designing or illustration. Hence, the learners should have to learn that there is a huge difference between a designer and an illustrator. The learners often get confused themselves between these two, so that, in this article, it is tried to make a clear difference between both:

A designer often designs the things i.e. in contemporary world, s/he often collects the ideas from different sources and make a new idea for himself/herself or for his/her client. Sometimes, the designer creates a new idea by himself/herself, yet, there should be various guidelines are given to him/her before the creation by his/her client. Hence, the work of designer remains delimited to composition of idea organizing the elements i.e. through typography or images utilizing the tools present in his/her software etc.

On the other hand, the images or typography which is utilized in a designer’s work are illustrated by an illustrator. Therefore, an illustrator produces images or imagery by himself/herself with taking instructions from other ideas. So that, we can say that illustration would be a part of a full design yet not a design itself. The work of illustrators would be harder than a designer, for instance, they support designer and give the elements to make a whole design. Sometimes, illustrations work as supportive mediums or helpful explanations of a design. For instance, texts, ideas or imagery are better translated are supportive through better illustrations in books, magazines or newspaper articles etc.

Henceforth, a person would be a designer or illustrator or both on the various situations. In various situations, both of them exchange their roles with each other, or they both learn each other’s skills and become designers cum illustrators or vice versa due to the competitive and contemporary needs as become an active part multidisciplinary world.


In this course, the learner learns about contour drawings, using the foreshortening having various compelling techniques. After Completing this course, the learner will mainly learn the following main things:

  • Drawings of contour with Craft compelling.
  • Illusion is the main thing related to volume which will also be learn having the inner contours and overlapping usage in drawing.
  • The other main thing is topography and description of any subject which will be learnt through cross contour lines learning in a huge volume and interest,
  • Giving a great sense and a depth to drawing, atmospheric perspective should also be learnt in a detail
  • Last but not least foreshortening is a key point which should be included in this learning process to convincingly draw or foreshortened of objects.


The learner should keep the following basic knowledge to start this course:

Although, this is a beginner course, yet it is suggested there should be some drawing experience which should hold a learner at the initial stage of learning.


At this level of course, which would often come 5th or 6th week of od any regular DRAWING or Illustration course series, the learner would learn the basics of contour utilizing describing the three lines which are often complex and in volumetric form.

  • At the first step, the outside contour crafting would be learnt in a comprehensive detail.
  • At the second step, the overlaps and inner contour drawing would be learnt in a great depth describing the subject in a great way.
  • And at the third or final step of this course, cross contour lines would be learnt learning deep space and dramatic volume illusion.
  • And at the end of this course (at the individual level or a part of a series of an illustration course), the learner should learn and understand the contour lines drawing mainly along with the foreshortening at introductory level of drawing skills.

This course is a part of a series of course THE ART & SCIENCE of DRAWING which is offered online by Udemy. Through, video lecturing an 8-part series, this course can be learnt at sixth level. For the beginners, the following order is suggested:

1.      Basic Skills at first level of course series

2.      Dynamic Mark Making at second level of course series

3.      Form & Space at third level of course series

4.      Measuring & Proportion at fourth and fifth levels of course series

5.      Contours at sixth level of course series

6.      Shading Fundamentals and Beyond the Basics at seventh and eight levels course series