1. Skip to content

Field of Study: Commercial and Advertising Art


Programs in commercial and advertising art teach people how to convey ideas to businesses and consumers using graphic images.



Commercial and advertising art programs includes topics such as:

  • Design principles
  • Text and graphic lay out
  • Engraving, drawing, and cartooning, and computer graphic techniques
  • Advertising principles and marketing
  • Color theory, design, and drawing
  • Integration of art and advertising

People with a degree in commercial arts might work in a variety of settings, including:

  • Design houses
  • Advertising agencies
  • TV and film studios

Students begin to develop their professional portfolio during college. This includes samples of work from team projects and independent projects.

Commercial and advertising art is sometimes a concentration in a graphic design program.

Most community colleges and independent art schools offer certificates or associate degree programs in commercial and advertising art. A certificate program usually takes a year of full-time study. An associate degree program usually takes two years to complete.

Most independent art schools, colleges, and universities offer Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) degree programs in commercial and advertising art. A BFA usually takes about four to five years of full-time study.

Several universities offer Master of Fine Arts (MFA) degrees in commercial and advertising art. A MFA typically requires two years of study beyond a bachelor's degree. Many people who get graduate degrees in commercial and advertising art teach at the college level.