Advertising & Arts

Medical Illustrator

Medical illustrators are specialist healthcare scientists who create photographs, videos and images for healthcare uses.

  • Entry-level education

    Bachelor’s degree

  • Job outlook

    1 2 3 4 5

What does a Medical Illustrator do?

Medical illustrators are specialist healthcare scientists who create photographs, videos and images for healthcare uses.

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Work activities

As a medical illustrator, you might:

  • help doctors and researchers present their work in pictures
  • record and photograph patient's conditions using digital or video cameras
  • process images, films or video
  • create freehand drawn illustrations of human anatomy
  • use 3D modelling and animation to create special effects in teaching materials
  • use specialist equipment to record procedures
  • monitor and record progress and treatments over a period of time
  • work closely with doctors and patients
  • arrange consent from patients who are being drawn, photographed or filmed
  • take forensic photographs
  • take bereavement photographs
  • use software packages to process, compile and manipulate images
  • use 3D modelling and animation to create special effects in teaching materials
  • create teaching and research materials from photographs, films or drawings.
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Key skills and interests

To become a medical illustrator, you would need:

  • artistic ability
  • teamwork skills
  • a knowledge of design and publishing software
  • a thorough knowledge of human anatomy and biology
  • advanced technical ability
  • an interest in photography
  • attention to detail
  • a sensitive and tactful demeanour
  • a knowledge of diseases and treatments.
  • advanced technical ability and an understanding of anatomy.
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Working hours and conditions

Working Hours

As a medical illustrator you would work a standard number of hours per week. You may need to do on-call duties.

Conditions

Medical illustrators are employed by hospitals, medical schools, medical research facilities and specialist publishers. They work as part of a team with a range of other medical professionals. Medical illustrators may face situations which may be difficult or upsetting.

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How to become an Medical Illustrator?

Entry Level Education

To become a medical illustrator you usually have to complete a degree in medical illustration, art or graphic design at university. To get into these courses you usually need to gain your senior secondary school certificate or equivalent. English, biology, visual arts and design would be appropriate subjects to study prior to university.

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Job outlook

  • 1 2 3 4 5

This is a very specialised occupation, and as such, opportunities are expected to remain neutral.

In 2015, there were only four full time medical illustrators in Australia.

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