Course in Science illustration

Do you want to use illustrations as an effective communication tool? Learn the essentials of graphic design and visual communication theory, drawing by hand and drawing digitally during this 5-day course with Pina Kingman. All online! To join this course 22-26 March 2021, apply within 5 March. 


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Course description

This course will introduce the theory and method of how to visually represent your scientific research. Being able to translate complex research into information that can be understood by a wide range of audiences is an important skill that will help you throughout your career.

Communicating your work using different methods helps you to think about your work from different perspectives. Not only will this help you understand your own research better, but it will also give you the tools to be able to explain your work to others.

The skills you will learn in this course are highly transferable to any design project you may do in the future.

Through lectures and workshops, we will cover the following:

  • Principles of design and visual communication
  • How to apply these principles to illustration and graphic design, which in turn will inform all visual material you might want to create, including; graphical abstracts, presentation slides, poster presentations, journal articles, graphs, data visualisation, project logos, and outreach material.
  • Best practices for poster and slide presentation design
  • Step by step method on how to draw your own research
  • Introduction to sketching by hand
  • Crash course in digital illustration with Adobe Illustrator or Gravit
  • Support and guidance through peer-to-peer feedback and through personal work reviews by the instructure.

Learning outcome

By the end of the course, you will have practiced the theory and methods discussed in class by creating an illustration of your own research. Taking your ideas from conceptualisation to final digital artwork.

Application process

Apply within 5 March 2021 using our online application form.

Maximum number of participants 20 persons. We strongly recommend you register as soon as possible. 

This course is devoted to PhD students who are members of DEEP as the top priority group, but If there are still some available spots after deadline, other members and staff at the Department of Geosciences, UiO are welcome to apply. We have 20 places in the course and DEEP members will have first priority.

NB! The course is not open to external applicants. 


Students will need access to:

  • Computer
  • Mouse or Pen Tablet
  • Internet access
  • Paper and pencil

Course delivery and software

This course is delivered entirely online via live Zoom meetings and pre-recorded lectures hosted on Teachable. We will also use Slack and InVision in order to collaborate and communicate with each other.

We will use Adobe Illustrator or Gravit Designer as digital illustration tools. If you are familiar with another illustration software, then feel free to use this, but technical support will not be provided.

Links and instructions to download necessary software will be provided via email before the course starts.

Diplomas and ECTS credits

No ECTS credits will be granted for this course. There is no final exam, but you will need to submit several assignments in order to get feedback.

The lecturer                                       

Portrett: Pina Kingman
Lecturer: Pina Kingman. Photo: Private

Pina Kingman is a biomedical illustrator and animator whose work focuses on telling scientific stories in order to disseminate complex research and promote public awareness of science and medicine. She holds a BSc in Cell Biology and Genetics from the University of British Columbia and a MSc in Biomedical Communication from the University of Toronto.

Since 2016, Pina has held science illustration workshops and courses in partnership with various Norwegian Research Schools that focus on helping research scientists use illustration as a way to communicate their research.

Published Feb. 18, 2021 12:57 AM - Last modified Mar. 17, 2021 7:04 PM