Norfolk is Virginia's second largest city, featuring nearly a quarter million local residents and more than 20,000 prospering companies. Talented visual artists living in Norfolk frequently find work in the field of graphic design. Local employers especially seek artists with a gift for commercial illustration.
Norfolk Schools and Training Programs for Illustrators
Norfolk, Virginia features several name brand colleges and numerous independent fine arts studios providing classes and workshops in commercial illustration. Aspiring Norfolk illustration professionals often attend local schools of graphic design like Norfolk State University or Tidewater Community College.
Similarly, a great number of Norfolk artists acquire visual technical skills and professional degrees online. Successful accredited online fine arts colleges include The Art Institutes, Full Sail University, Stratford Career Institute, DeVry, Strayer University, National University, ITT Tech and University of Phoenix. Many online colleges also provide local campuses and training facilities. ITT Tech maintains a campus in Norfolk.
Working as an Illustrator in Norfolk, Virginia
Many illustrators residing in Norfolk, Virginia work for local graphic design firms like Mike Crowe, GE-Richards Graphics, Thala Graphics, Dallavilla Design and Metro Express, for example. Other Norfolk illustrators might work for neighborhood tattoo peddlers like Fuzion Ink, Altered Bodies, All Out Tattoo or Blue Horseshoe. Precise local illustrators sometimes draft technical artwork for Norfolk engineering firms such as Leavitt Associates, Fraioli-Blum-Yesselman, Alpha Corporation, Clark Nexsen and Bowman-Foster, among others. Some local artists create anatomical designs for Norfolk-based medical illustration services like Dennis Auth, Eaves Design and Linda Draper.
Professional illustrators employed full time in the city of Norfolk, Virginia report an average yearly income of about $46,680, with a reported mean hourly wage of around $22.45. These figures, calculated by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, do not reflect the incomes of part time illustration artists or local freelancers.
Skills of a Professional Illustrator
Professional illustrators are versatile visual artists who offer fresh graphic design solutions that are tailor made to fit the needs of every client. Illustration artists specialize in detailed imagery from a broad variety of perspectives. Their other technical skills include calligraphy, typography, photography, 3D modeling and web design. Most illustrators know all the features of at least a few digital illustration design software programs. Currently popular varieties include Freeverse-Lineform, Serif Draw, Sketsa SVG, Adobe InDesign and Ulead Photo Impact. Interpersonal qualifications most desirable for professional illustration work include fast, clear, no-nonsense communication and unquestionable creative talent.