Susan Doyle holds a BFA in illustration and a dual MFA in painting and printmaking from RISD. Having spent a good deal of her professional life involved in both design and fine art, she is particularly interested in the tension between how something is conceived versus how it is perceived.
Currently Doyle is working on a series of prints and paintings exploring the confluence of abstract and denotative constructs in work that involves graphing, optical illusion and pictorial imagery derived from the stuff and nonsense of myth, fine art and contemporary culture. She is editor of the landmark publication History of Illustration (Fairchild Books-Bloomsbury, 2018), the only textbook to date on the subject.
Fall 2023 Courses
Illustration is visual communication: meaning made visible. Visual thinking, the creative process by which all successful illustration is developed, constitutes the development of an articulate images through thorough, iterative exploration of ideas. This class emphasizes process over finish, idea over application and significance over style-exploring both ways of seeing and ways of showing. Coursework will encourage conceptual invention and application fundamental to an understanding of what the practice of illustration is and can be. The object of the course is to strengthen the students' inventive talents and interpretive skills - and thereby to augment their ability to articulate complex ideas with clarity, eloquence and power.
Majors are pre-registered for this course by the department. Preference is given to Sophomore Illustration Students.
Major Requirement | BFA Illustration
DIGITAL + ANALOG
With the wave of new technology, it's easy to forget what we can do with our hands, putting pencil to paper and utilizing traditional materials. There is no question that digital tools are integral to the illustrator, but in addition to mastering the technical functions of a program and using it directly to create images, they can open up new possibilities in what we already do with traditional materials. This course will create a dialogue between the handmade and the digital through in class exercises combining age old techniques, including linocut, collage, drawing/painting, with modern tools such as the risograph and photoshop. We will explore different ways digital methods can help with workflow and use the computer to facilitate the steps involved in creating an illustration. This course will challenge students to think beyond the realm of digital brushes and filters, with projects touching on the ways image making can be applied in the real world of design, advertising and publishing.
This course fulfills the Illustration Computer Literacy requirement for Illustration majors.
Open to Junior, Senior or Graduate Illustration Students.
GRADUATE ILLUSTRATION STUDIO I: PERCEPTION AND THE ART OF COMMUNICATION
The first core studio in the program is centered on an investigation of the mechanics of articulating meaning in an image. Through a variety of projects, students will investigate the efficacy of various strategies in traditional and new media, and engage in perceptual experiments in order to study the intersection of art and visual psychology.
Estimated Cost of Materials: $25.00 - $150.00
Open to Graduate Illustration Students.
Major Requirement | MFA Illustration
Wintersession 2024 Courses
*S.AFRICA: ART AND SCIENCE OF CONSERVATION
This immersive interdisciplinary Wintersession course offered by RISD Global is for art and design students interested in exploring past and current efforts to conserve biodiversity in Southern Africa while also developing their communication and documentation skills.
On location for two weeks in South Africa and one in Namibia, this course is co-taught by longtime RISD faculty members, artist Susan Doyle (Professor, Illustration), and scientist Dr. Lucy Spelman (Senior Lecturer/HPSS.) Students will study the local biodiversity, how local people and visitors interact with nature, and how art, science, and traditional ecological knowledge influence and inform conservation decisions. Once back on campus, students spend two weeks on a final art/design project that explores the concept of conservation based on their African experience. In addition to a completed work of art or design, the final project will include
- an artist statement that describes the student’s artistic aim/inspiration/process
- an annotated essay/summary of the scientific references and literary influences that informed their art
Registration is not available in Workday. Students must complete an application through RISD Global. A minimum GPA of 2.5 is required and permission of instructor. Failure to remain in good academic standing can lead to removal from the course, either before or during the course. Most courses are open to first year students with approval from the Dean of Experimental and Foundation Studies.
Spring 2024 Courses
THE SILKSCREENED POSTER
For half a millennium, posters (or broadsides as they were called) have attracted the attention and sparked the imagination of viewers through much of the world. The best posters are both visually striking and communicative. Designs usually incorporate image and text; but are often effective with either text or image alone. In this class we will learn the essentials of silkscreen printing in the context of studying a bit of the history of serigraph poster design: from historic fine artists such as Toulouse-Lautrec and Alphonse Mucha, to more contemporary illustrators like Seymour Chwast and Shephard Fairey. Students will be designing and printing several editions, experimenting with hand- drawn and digitally produced art and typography. The nature of the silk-screened image allows for investigation of various color palettes or structures for a single image. No printmaking or digital experience required.
Open to Junior or Senior Illustration Students.