Art & Design

Why study art?


Careers in Fine and Applied Art fields include opportunities to work as entrepreneurs, or to work in for-profit and nonprofit industries.

Our programs prepare you for jobs organizing, managing and promoting, producing, directing, teaching, or using creative and technical skills. Visit the Bureau of Labor Statistics to view the annual average salaries for the visual arts industry. 

Parkland art graduates are employed as art educators in high schools and universities, curators, photographers, art librarians, graphic designers, industrial designers, animators, exhibition managers, and as business owners of their own studios.

At Parkland, you'll have the advantage of small class sizes, taught by master faculty—never teaching assistants. Your success is our priority.

"I always recommend my students take an art class at Parkland. I learned so much from all the art professors during my time at Parkland that helped to shape me into the artist I am today. While I was there, I really felt like my professors were invested in my success.." -  Josh Doniek, High School Art Instructor with Champaign Unit 4 schools. 


Parkland College offers a variety of art classes to prepare you for a transfer degree, to fulfill general education requirements, and to develop your artistic skills.

Foundational Art Classes
Two-Dimensional Design (ART 121): emphasizes basic design fundamentals of form, balance, rhythm, emphasis, unity, proportion, and space. (View Class Video)

Drawing I and II (ART 122–123): explore representational drawing, linear perspective, presentation, observational drawing, design issues, and elements of link, shape, value, and volume. (View Class Video)

Three-Dimensional Design (ART 124): teaches the foundations of three-dimensional design necessary for courses in sculpture and ceramics. (View Class Video)

Figure Drawing (ART 221): uses the human figure as the basis for anatomical study and accurate representational drawing. (View Class Video)

Studio Art Electives
Color (ART 125): explores color theory and application in a variety of media (View Class Video)

Digital Photography and Advanced Digital Photography(ART 128 and 228): introductory and advanced classes covering the equipment, selection, use, function, and art of digital photography. For art and non-art majors.(View Class Video)  

Film Photography and Advanced Film Photography (ART 129 and 229): basic and advanced techniques of the photographic process and practical use of a 35mm camera including exposure, developing, and printing in a darkroom. For art and non-art majors. (View Class Video)

Studio Photography (ART 130): advanced skills in lighting and exposure evaluation with hands-on experience working in a studio environment on still life, portrait, and commercial work.

Ceramics I and II (ART 145 and 245): introductory and advanced ceramic process; hand-built and wheel-thrown forms. Learn forming, decoration, and glazing techniques. For art and non-art majors.  (View Class Video)

Sculpture I and II (ART 181 and 182): introductory and advanced techniques; principles and materials for sculpting three-dimensional forms. For art and non-art majors. (View Class Video)

Metalwork and Jewelry I and II (ART 185 and 186): basic and advanced jewelry and metalworking. Learn forming, filing, soldering, and cold connections. For art and non-art majors. (View Class Video)

Painting I and II (ART 201 and 202): beginning and advanced painting techniques and principles of oil painting. For art and non-art majors. (View Class Video)

Graphic Design I, II (GDS 120, 122): basic and advanced techniques in the creative process and image making with a focus on composition. Students learn to solve real world visual communication problems in a state-of-the-art studio environment. (View Class Video)

Typography (GDS 105): introduction to creative typography for visual communication. 

Portfolio Seminar (ART 283): required for the AFA degree, helps students document their work, show it to best advantage for the artistic media of interest, and write statements in order to transfer to four-year institutions.  (View Class Video)

General Education Art Classes

Art History I and II (ART 161 and 162): survey the origin and development of the visual arts ranging from the prehistoric to the present. 

History of Modern Art (ART 163): studies the history of modernism in art from French Revolution to present with emphasis on contemporary issues. (Also in Study Abroad -  Salzburg Program)

History of Photography (ART 164): studies the history of photography in art and society from its discovery to present. 

Art Appreciation (ART 165): surveys visual arts in relation to human society, with aim of providing wide acquaintance with art forms and an appreciation of factors that have determined their development. Includes museum field trips. (Also in Study Abroad -  Canterbury Program)

Introduction to Non-Western Art (ART 166*): surveys the origins and development of visual arts from Africa, Middle East, Asia, South America, Mesoamerica, and Oceania. Examines artworks as forms of cultural expression. 

*Satisfies non-Western culture requirement

Will my classes transfer?Sculpture student outdoors

ART 161, 162, 163, 164, 165, and 166 will fulfill the humanities and fine arts general education requirement at Illinois public universities. Parkland College classes with an even middle digit (such as ENG 101, MAT 128, and BIO 141) are accepted for transfer as general education classes, major courses, or electives as determined by the transfer institution. For more information about transferring, speak with an Academic Advisor and visit the Parkland course matrix

Contact the Arts, Media, and Social Sciences department to set up an appointment with a faculty advisor. 


The Parkland Associate of Fine Arts (AFA) degree's core classes are the same foundation classes required for a Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Fine Arts degree at a four-year university. the AFA program is designed for ease of transfer.

Learn more about how these courses fit into a transfer degree or the General Education Core Curriculum (GECC).


Art Education

Associate in Fine Arts (A.F.A.)
Course Sequence

Apply Now

Art and Design

Associate in Fine Arts (A.F.A.)
Course Sequence

Apply Now

Associate in Arts, General

Associate in Arts (A.A.)
Course Sequence

Apply Now


Associate in Applied Science (A.A.S.)
Course Sequence

Apply Now