Study Illustration & Animation Abroad

Back to Programs

A Guide to Studying Animation & Illustration Abroad

Art is a calling, and it’s one heard from all over the world. If you’re looking into a career in the diverse fields of animation or illustration, studying abroad shouldn’t be an optional experience, it should be mandatory. Illustration is a uniquely cultural phenomenon, sparking from various peoples wanting to share their stories and teach their lessons. Today, animation serves many of the same roles, and has taken on widely fluctuating styles, techniques, and production processes. Studying illustration abroad can reveal new ways to master your art and introduce you to a new culture of art appreciation.

Why Study Abroad

Studying animation or illustration in a post-secondary institution requires devotion to your craft and a willingness to develop your talents into a style of your own. Expanding your art education to the international level during your undergraduate studies can be extremely valuable experience, as it will expose you to different methods of illustration, drawing styles, and animation techniques. Participating in animation study abroad programs will have a lasting impression on the way you create art, which can set you apart from your peers and add finesse to your artistic skill.

Animation is a global industry; since the beginning of global trade and commerce, animation styles from all over the world have influenced and shaped the way artists create their work. By choosing to study animation abroad, you will be enriching your education by pushing yourself outside your artistic comfort zone and into new styles of art. 

The benefits of study abroad are life-long, especially for an artist. Experiencing new cultures, languages, foods, and making lasting connections with talented people in your trade, are all bonuses of choosing to study animation abroad, especially in places where art has shaped the modern world.


Luckily, since these fields are worldwide passions, you can find various illustration and animation study abroad programs in almost any country, with focuses from cartoon animation to book illustration.

Many programs at universities in England welcome foreign students to study animation or illustration for a semester or year alongside British students in a fully integrated program. Students who study animation in England will learn anything from the basics of graphic design to more complicated courses in illustration and visual media. Studying art in London will expose you to British techniques, with the advantage of being just a short ride away from countless museums, art houses, and local artist haunts, both in the UK and across the channel.

Animation study abroad programs in Barcelona, Spain and Florence, Italy will provide you with the European student experience as well, and give you an opportunity to expose yourself to a different language while studying art history and modern day animation methods.

There are many illustration study abroad options in Asia, especially if you’re interested in studying anime or other Asian illustration styles that have become worldly popularized over the last few decades. Studying illustration abroad in Japan can open doors to learning the history of Asian illustrations, while experiencing the pride surrounding artwork in this area. 

Some artists study illustration in Turkey, Saudi Arabia, or other Eurasian countries, with a long history of miniaturist illustration style and home to many of the creative geniuses working in the field today. Many modern illustration techniques were born in the Middle East and the surrounding areas.

Courses & Programs

If you are attending a university specialized in animation, illustration, or art in general, then your course options are plenty. Depending on your interests and what illustration courses you have already taken domestically, you can take beginner animation classes, teaching you the basics of taking your illustration skills from paper to the computer screen. 

Graphic design classes, ranging in skill, can help you learn the elements of typography and how to create a visual narrative. Aside from hands-on animation courses abroad, you may also take contextual and theoretical courses, focusing on how your artwork comes across the page, the visual elements that come together in a final work, and the history of animation and illustration.

If you are studying animation abroad later in your school career, universities often have options for fulfilling personal projects, semester-long animation projects of your own choosing that are completed with the guidance of professional university staff. Check with your university to see if completing a project like this, or in collaboration with other students, is an option and how credits are awarded for its completion.

The illustration courses you can take while abroad vary on your specific major, how far along in school you are and your other interests. If you’re interested in a university that doesn’t specialize in animation or illustration, but rather offers minor courses you’re interested in, it’s still possible to take these courses abroad, and fill in your schedule with other compulsory graduation requirements.


  • Studying Animation & Illustration Anywhere is Valuable. With so many different styles and processes, animation and illustration is a difficult subject to master, especially as a student who may be trying to master their own technique. Studying abroad is a vitally important experience for many art students; unlike science or math courses, which are taught in the same manner no matter what country you’re located in, art is a flexible concept that fluctuates from continent to continent.
  • Learn Cross Cultural Teamwork. As most professional illustrators will tell you, teamwork is key on every major animation project. Illustrators have their personal style, but when hired to complete a project they must compromise personal favoritism for what is best for the final project. Studying illustration abroad can teach you how to cooperate with other artists who have vastly different views of what a shared project should look like, and how to effectively communicate and collaborate for the best interest of the artwork.
  • Learn from International Experts. When you study animation abroad you can experience the tutelage of a foreign teacher who has learned differently than you since birth, seeing masterpieces from artists around the world, and allowing art culture of another country to influence and improve your own artwork.
Read More

A Guide To
Studying Animation & Illustration Abroad


 Find Illustration & Animation Study Abroad Programs Now


This listing has been saved 5 times

Semester in Hawaii (USA)

Study in tropical Honolulu at Hawaii Pacific University and immerse yourself in the cultural epicenter that is the island of Oahu. There’s a lot to love about Hawaii, including the languages, ethnicities, culture, music, and food. Oh, and did we mention the beaches, palm trees, and lush landscapes? You’ll divide your studies between the centrally located, seaside campus or a campus on 135 tropi...


This listing has been saved 34 times

IES Abroad Sydney Direct Enrollment - Semester/Year Program

Take advantage of the chance to live and learn in Sydney, one of the most beautiful and livable cities in the world! Students can immerse themselves in the academic and student culture of Macquarie University, the University of New South Wales, or the University of Sydney. All offer an array of disciplines covering the spectrum from engineering to art history. Sydney will be your classroom....


This listing has been saved 28 times

Athena Study and Intern Abroad in Florence, Italy

Athena's partner school in Florence, Italy, Lorenzo de' Medici (LdM), is a private institution located among several buildings in the center of this charming Renaissance city. The campus' main building dates back to the 13th century and, before being renovated, was originally a convent and church. Florence was the heart of the Renaissance, and its artistic flair is still tangible. With that ...


This listing has been saved 10 times

USAC AUSTRALIA: Gold Coast & Brisbane - Full Curriculum

Spend one or two semesters in the “Sunshine State” of Australia, where a year has an average of 300 sunny days! The Gold Coast and Brisbane program is an ideal study abroad experience if you love the outdoors. Based along the country’s east coast, this program lest you explore beaches, coral reef system, rainforest, and scenic highways. The host institution is Griffith University, where you...


This listing has been saved 27 times

API at LdM in Florence, Italy

Be inspired by immaculate Renaissance architecture, passionate art pieces, as well as a vibrant and historical culture! Florence is arguably one of the most desirable cities in the world and offers a great learning environment as well as opportunities for internships, service learning, and volunteering. Ideal for someone who doesnt mind the hustle and bustle of a touristy city and for those w...


This listing has been saved 21 times

ISA Study Abroad in Auckland, New Zealand

Auckland is the largest city in New Zealand, home to one in three New Zealanders. The "Super City," as it is often referred to, touches the Pacific Ocean on the eastern side and the Tasman Sea on the western side. The city is a fast-paced urban environment of international businesses, restaurants, entertainment venues, sporting events, and shopping centers, all bordered by Auckland's three harb...


This listing has been saved 1 time

Study Graphic Design at LdM Florence

The LdM Graphic Design & Visual Communication Certificate offers students the opportunity to develop their individual creativity, artistic talent and technical and professional skills in the Graphic Design field. Students will become familiar with the basic skills of graphic design, learning the technical, theoretical and conceptual aspects of the subject. Graphic design, illustration, visu...


This listing has been saved 1 time

TEAN: Townsville - James Cook University (JCU)

At James Cook University (JCU) students can enjoy a unique natural environment while taking classes to earn credit toward their degree at their home institution. JCU's main campuses are located in tropical North Queensland, where millions of visitors come each year to experience the Great Barrier Reef as well as the islands and rainforests of the Wet Tropics. The Townsville campus is located in...


This listing has been saved 4 times

Illustration for Comic Books and Graphic Novels

Learn all about Illustration for Comic Books and Graphic Novels at The Aegean Center for the Fine Arts in Paros, Greece. By combining the expressiveness of visual art and the clarity of the written word, Sequential Art, or comics, is a unique and powerful medium for telling stories and exploring ideas. From fantastical science fiction to autobiography, to hard-hitting journalism, comics can tel...


This listing has been saved 6 times

Marbella Design Academy - Sunny Spain Summer Courses

Take a holiday and study in one go! Get smarter with a Summer course at Marbella Design Academy in southern Spain. Students come from all over the world to Marbella Design Academy. Summer courses are ideal for both the professional or individual person looking to add extra skills to their portfolio. Summer courses include Illustrator, Photoshop, 3D Printing, AutoCAD, 3D Max, Photography, InD...


This listing has been saved 13 times

SAI Progams: Study Abroad in Florence

Florence University of the Arts (FUA) presents a contemporary and thorough approach to a Liberal Arts education, along with an extensive curriculum in Studio Arts. With small classes taught by a highly qualified international faculty, every course aims to enhance the social, intercultural and professional experience of each student. Programs are offered in English during the spring and fall ...


This listing has been saved 1 time

Summer Course in Creative Illustration - IED Barcelona

What has not changed over the years is that personal struggle each illustrator endures in trying to express content in his or her work. Developing a personal style is based on two demanding processes: being able to take creative risks and learning a fundamental ability - drawing. Illustration has been around for a long time and since the appearance of digital programs, this art form (if we c...


This listing has been saved 1 time

German Studies Research Grant

DAAD offers doctoral degree students the opportunity to compete for the prestigious DAAD fellowships for research or the pursuit of a doctoral degree in Germany. DAAD is a self-governing, public-funded, or private organisation of higher education institutions in Germany. They aim to promote international cooperation and academic relations by providing mobility programs for students, faculty, a...


This listing has been saved 13 times

Mente Argentina: Semester & Academic Year at Top Universities in Argentina

Study abroad for a semester or an academic year in Argentina through Mente Argentina's flexible, exciting Academic Semester and Academic Year Programs. Study in an Argentine university and obtain academic credit at their home university. Mente Argentina has made agreements with the most prestigious universities in Argentina. We offer individualized pre-departure consulting for each student t...


This listing has been saved 2 times

Graphic Design Summer Intensive course

Further your skills in Graphic Design in Italy! Several courses are offered that are specifically designed to help students pursue a career with design studios or advertising agencies. Students will be able to gain experience designing corporate symbols, advertisements, books, magazines, typography, and much more. At the end of the course, each student creates a career-oriented portfolio desi...