12 best digital illustration courses for beginners in 2023

When it comes to digital illustration courses, there are plenty of options to choose from. If you're just starting out, it can be tough to know which one is the right fit for you.
digital illustration courses


Whether you’re interested in learning basic drawing and composition techniques or mastering more advanced software programs, there’s something here for everyone. So read on to find the perfect course for you.

In this blog post, I’ve picked the 12 best digital illustration courses that will help you create spectacular digital art. From the very basics of digital art to unusual styles, you’ll be creating masterpieces in no time. With limitless tools and styles to explore, from realistic paintings to graphical vector art, your only problem will be deciding which one to try first.


What is the best digital illustration course?

Here is the best digital illustration course for beginners that will help you create awesome illustration projects with ease.


1. Drawing 101: Introduction to Digital Illustration

Best Seller (Editor’s Choice)

Image credits: Domestika

Level: Beginner | Length: 37 Lessons, (4h 6m) | Created by: Jean Fraisse

Jean Fraisse is a professional illustrator who believes that drawing is a skill that can be learned by anyone. In this introduction to digital illustration course, she will teach you the basics of digital drawing, starting with lines, angles, and shapes.

You will then move on to creating illustrations from observation and imagination. By the end of this Drawing 101 course, you will have a better understanding of how to use drawing to create powerful narratives. This course is perfect for those who are new to digital drawing, as well as those who want to improve their skills.


2. Procreate for Beginners: Digital Illustration 101

Best Seller (Editor’s Choice)
Procreate for Beginners - domestika course
Image credits: Domestika.

Level: Beginner | Length: 28 lessons (6h 44m) | Created by: Brad Woodard

Brad Woodard has worked for the likes of Ford and Microsoft, for whom he has worked on commercial illustration and branding design projects using Procreate App. 

Throughout his Procreate 101 course, you’ll set up, customize, and experiment with the Procreate software to create the perfect workflow on your iPad with Apple Pencil.

Learn about layers, selections, and transformations, edit artwork, and export it to share.

By the end of this course, you will have a better understanding of how to use Procreate to create beautiful artwork on your iPad.


3. Creative Portrait Illustration with Procreate

Best for illustrating people, characters, and portraits
Creative Portrait Illustration with Procreate
Image credits: Domestika.

Level: Beginner | Length: 19 lessons (4h 21m) | Created by: Samuel Rodriguez

Samuel Rodriguez is an artist who combines his background in graffiti with his studies in Fine Arts to create unique, digital portraits.

In this portrait illustration course, Rodriguez will teach you how to use Procreate to create your own portrait illustrations with an abstract twist.

You’ll begin by revising your knowledge of facial anatomy and exploring unconventional uses of color, lettering, and shapes.

By the end of the course, you’ll have created a quirky yet harmonious portrait that reflects your own individual style.


4. Digital Fantasy Portraits with Photoshop

Digital Fantasy Portraits with Photoshop
Image credits: Domestika.

Level: Beginner | Length: 25 lessons (5h 38m) | Created by: Karmen Loh

Karmen Loh is an established fantasy illustrator with a strong following on Instagram.

Her intricate and whimsical style has earned her a loyal fan base, and she is frequently commissioned to create character concept art for video games such as Street Fighter.

In her fantasy portrait course, Loh showcases her Photoshop skills and shares her tips for creating ethereal effects.

The course begins with a simple sketch and builds up to a finished piece with dreamlike highlights and glows.

Throughout the process, Loh provides clear instructions and helpful feedback, making the course perfect for those who want to improve their Photoshop skills.

By the end of the course, students will have created their own stunning fantasy portraits.


5. Pop Culture Character Painting in Photoshop

Best Seller (Editor’s Choice)
Pop Culture Character Painting in Photoshop
Image credits: Domestika.

Level: Beginner | Length: 25 lessons (5h 38m) | Created by: Sam Gilbey

Whether you’re a fan of Marvel movies or classic films, there’s no denying that portraiture is a great way to learn about art.

And what better way to practice than by drawing your favorite characters? That’s where Sam Gilbey comes in.

As a professional artist who has worked with clients like Paramount Pictures and Marvel, Sam knows a thing or two about creating cinematic portraits.

And now, he’s sharing his knowledge with the world through this pop culture portrait course.

In this pop culture portrait course, you’ll learn how to block out colors, use airbrushes, and add fine details in Photoshop.

So if you’re ready to take your portraiture skills to the next level, this course is for you.


6. Digital Illustration: Create a Colorful Nature Scene

Digital Illustration Create a Colorful Nature Scene
Image credits: Domestika.

Level: Beginner | Length: 22 lessons (3h 46m) | Created by: Asia Orlando

Asia Orlando is a professional illustrator who specializes in creating vibrant environments for illustrations of images depicting animals.

This artist has produced artwork for international brands and publishing houses, eventually founding Our Planet Week, an illustration movement aimed at spreading environmental awareness.

In this digital illustration course, you will learn how to paint a nature-inspired scene, using some of the best digital tools to illustrate a unique place that is inhabited by an animal character.

You will study the basics of composition, and color and can begin to develop a unique style that is uniquely yours.

This course is perfect for anyone who wants to learn more about digital illustration or who is looking for inspiration for their next project.

With Asia’s help, you will be able to create a beautiful and surely memorable illustration that will capture the imagination of your audience.


7. Fantastical Illustrations with Procreate

Fantastical Illustrations with Procreate
Image credits: Domestika.

Level: Beginner | Length: 16 lessons (2h 50m) | Created by: Michael Relth

Procreate is an incredibly versatile application that allows users to create extraordinary works of art.

In this course, all students like you can learn how to use Procreate to create magical worlds.

The instructor who will take you through the course, Michael Relth, has worked at motion graphics studios for clients such as Netflix and Riot Games and has worked directly for clients such as Warner Animation.

During this fantastical illustrations course on Domestika’s platform, the essentials of storytelling and how to use thumbnails to edit your work to bring out the best light and colors, using Procreate, iPad, and Apple Pencil as the main tools.

This course is therefore perfect for anyone who wants to learn how to create stunning artwork with their iPad.


8. Digital Illustration with Geometric Shapes for Beginners

Digital Illustration with Geometric Shapes for Beginners
Image credits: Domestika.

Level: Beginner | Length: 28 lessons (6h 44m) | Created by: Brad Woodard

Best among Digital Illustration Courses to learn different digital illustration styles.

Vector illustration is a digital art form that uses lines and shapes to create images.

Argentine graphic designer and illustrator Pablo Lobato specializes in this field, and he’s created a course to teach beginners the specific tools and techniques they need to get started.

All you need is Adobe Illustrator and a laptop – no tablet is required.

In this digital illustration course, you’ll discover how to use geometric shapes and vibrant colors to create eye-catching illustrations.

With Pablo’s guidance, you’ll quickly develop the skills you need to confidently produce your own stunning vector illustrations.


9. Art Deco Style for Digital Illustration

Art Deco Style for Digital Illustration
Image credits: Domestika.

Level: Beginner | Length: 16 lessons (2h 23m) | Created by: Mads Berg

Art Deco is characterized by simplified shapes combined with ornate details, for an overall grand and retro-futuristic effect.

Mads Berg is a renowned illustrator for this style.

In this course, he shows his entire illustration process to create a commercial poster in Art Deco style.

You will explore the brief process, project management, and research tips as an illustrator, before moving on to creating your poster.

Berg’s courses are always insightful, and you will be able to take away plenty of new techniques to apply to your own work. This certainly course will not disappoint!


10. Retro Futuristic Illustration with Procreate

Best Seller (Editor’s Choice)
Retro Futuristic Illustration with Procreate
Image credits: Domestika.

Level: Beginner | Length: 14 lessons (1h 58m) | Created by: Ada Zielińska

In this course, Ada Zielińska shares how to make contemporary art inspired by the past.

You’ll design, compose, and color a retro-futuristic illustration with Procreate, from mood board to manual textures to final export.

Ada has worked with brands including Adobe and Netflix, and her retro-futuristic style is all about bold colors and nostalgia, the ‘60s and ‘70s vibes.

By the end of this retro-futuristic digital illustration course, you’ll have created a unique illustration that combines retro aesthetics with a modern sensibility.


11. Cinematic Digital Illustration with Photoshop

Best Seller (Editor’s Choice)
Cinematic Digital Illustration with Photoshop
Image credits: Domestika.

Level: Beginner | Length: 28 lessons (6h 39m) | Created by: Izzy Burton

Izzy Burton is a filmmaker, artist, and author who tells stories through character illustrations.

Izzy has worked from film directing to illustrating children’s books for clients such as Cartoon Network and the BBC.

In this cinematic digital illustration course, you will learn digital illustration techniques for creating concept art in Photoshop.

A course that will take you to explore the importance of the world of color, lighting, and texture to create unique art.

By the end of the course, you will have learned how to bring your characters and worlds to life through truly professional-level digital illustrations as a true artist.

So whether you are an aspiring illustrator, or just want to add stunning artwork to your portfolio, this course is for you.

Enroll now and let Izzy Burton, a filmmaker, artist, and author who has worked in major motion pictures and as a children’s book illustrator (with the likes of Cartoon Network and BBC clients), show you how to bring your stories to life through digital illustrations.


12. Professional Children’s Book Illustration with Procreate

Best Seller (Editor’s Choice)
Professional Children’s Book Illustration with Procreate
Image credits: Domestika.

Level: Beginner | Length: 20 lessons (3h 56m) | Created by: Meike Schneider

Meet Meike Schneider, an award-winning illustrator, and author of children’s books.

Her work is characterized by a rich and unique visual style, which she has developed over years of experience working with children’s literature.

In this children’s book illustration course, Meike shares how to conceptualize and create professional children’s book illustrations in Procreate.

Under her expert guidance, you’ll illustrate a two-page spread for a fairy tale, outlining the story’s mood and its characters.

By the end of this course, you’ll have created your own beautiful illustrated spreads that capture the magic of childhood stories.


Free Resources

We looked at the best courses for digital illustrators, which are available on Domestika’s platform!

All you need to do is create a free account, and you will have access to a truly comprehensive selection of digital illustration courses that will open the door to the world of art and illustration.

But it doesn’t end there, as we also thought to offer you other free resources, which can be really very useful for you to advance your career and improve your skills as a digital illustration professional, which I list below:


Wrap Up

With so many different digital illustration courses available, it can be tough to know where to start.

However, by keeping your level of experience and desired learning outcomes in mind, you should be able to find a course that’s perfect for you.

And if you’re still not sure which one is right for you, we’ve highlighted twelve of the best options out there.

So what are you waiting for? Get started on your journey to becoming a master illustrator today!

Are you fascinated by the world of illustration? Check out our tools archive, where you can find lots of tools for illustrators, both beginners and more experienced.

Also, with Desircle, you have the opportunity to have a free account on major online course platforms: create your account, and also get 4 weeks free of Skillshare Premium, thanks to our partnership!

At Desircle, transparency is paramount. Our content may include affiliate links, meaning we earn a commission if you make a purchase through these links, at no additional cost to you. Learn More.

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