Editorial Illustrations


What Editorial Illustrations does Vivid Biology offer?

We design artworks for exhibitions or in public spaces as well as illustrations to promote your science


Who requests Editorial Illustrations?

Especially Universities, Research Institutes, Public engagement projects, as well as museums benefit from short animations.


Why do they see a benefit in Illustrations?

Illustrations help people start conversations about research and science.

Why you might need it

Communicating with other scientists

Engaging with readers and leaving a lasting impression can be difficult. In biomedical science you might be bombarded with hundreds of new research articles every day. You may have spent months or years on your piece of research, but just getting someone to click to your article is half the battle.

Editorial illustration accompanies science feature and news articles in both mainstream media and more specialist publications. It aims to draw in

the reader, concisely summarising the main themes of the article. Not only does it make the article more visually appealing, it also makes it more likely to be selected and shared online via social media.

How we can help with Editorial Illustration

Here at Vivid Biology, we blend together storytelling, composition, and a great understanding of science to create visuals that get to the heart of what your story is about. We understand that it’s not enough just to represent the science being mentioned. Artwork also has to help the reader grasp the tone, angle, and larger context of the science being discussed. We can create large artworks to go on book covers, small spot illustrations to break up text, and series of images that help guide readers through the steps required to understand the story.

We aim to help you stimulate interest and excitement in your science among the public giving it a broader perspective.  

How we design your distinctive Editorial Illustrations

The Brief

For illustrations to accompany a feature piece, we are usually sent through an early draft or brief synopsis of the themes to be covered. We’ll then work on some concept sketches for artwork ideas that we think grasp the key concepts. At this point it’s useful to know whether it’s a main cover illustration that’s required, or multiple smaller illustrations, so that we can adjust the complexity of the concept sketches. Some clients prefer to leave this decision until they see the ideas we present though.

Once the sketches have been agreed upon, we'll work these up into pencil sketches. We'll then forward these on to you to check if there are any edits that need to be made. Edits are much easier to make at the pencil stage than later on so it's best to mention any now.

Pencil Roughs

Inking the Sketches

Once the pencil drafts are approved we’ll start inking up the illustration. We’ll then scan it into Photoshop and do a quick clean-up. At this stage we’ll check with you whether you want the illustration to be an infinitely scalable vector or to remain as a fixed size image. Vectors require the line art to be traced in illustrator, which can result in lines that look overly smoothed.

Adding colour to the final draft

We’ll then do a first round of colouring, and check in with a first draft. At this stage it’s easy to move some of the elements around, and to change the colours, although wholesale redrawing is much harder. Once the colour choices and any further changes are approved, we’ll send over a final version to the specifications that you require.

Final Artwork

We'll provide the artwork to you in any desired format.

Science Art Exhibitions

SciArt projects are generally funded by grant funding. If you’d like us to work on a bid with you then please get in touch.

On the right are the kind of things you should budget for when writing up grants.

The Artists Union England provides guidance about this should you want to find out more.