Illustrate Your Research

Images and graphics can enhance an audience’s understanding of information being presented, attract attention on a page, and can serve as artwork for magazines, journals and news outlets. To assist researchers’ efforts to communicate their ideas visually, the Office of the Vice President for Research (OVPR) and External Relations (ER) work together to support the creation of illustrations based on specific criteria.


  • The researcher has submitted an application and shared all relevant information with sufficient lead time to create art. The submission must occur at a minimum of 5 full weeks prior to:  submission of a manuscript to a journal (for consideration as cover art) or public release of information.
  • The manuscript will be submitted to a highly prestigious or widely read journal (examples: Nature, Science, The Lancet, PNAS).
  • Mainstream media coverage is likely; i.e. the topic area or discovery is highly influential and/or of interest to a broad audience, and likely to have a large impact on the scientific community or on society.
  • Audiences would greatly benefit from visual representation or graphics that help tell the story.

Priority is given to requests that support highly interdisciplinary projects.


Depending on how well the request matches the program’s criteria, as well as the size and scope of the project, support from OVPR and ER may include:

  • cost-sharing or full reimbursement of design fees;
  • consultation with PI to help translate the message into a visual format and provide initial design direction;
  • project management, including feedback to draft illustrations; and
  • strategic referrals to other university offices and resources (videography, photography, media relations, etc.)


Applications are accepted and reviewed by OVPR and ER on a rolling basis. Qualified submissions are typically approved within one week of receipt. Upon approval, the OVPR/ER team will work closely with the researcher to develop an initial concept, facilitate the interaction with the graphic designer or artist, and coordinate any additional resources as necessary. Artwork will be finalized with approvals from OVPR, ER and the researcher.

Submit a Request for Research Illustration Support






Illustrating Your Research Resources

Illustration Request Form

Project Doesn't Meet Criteria?
We can still facilitate illustration services. Please contact Shane Seger or Lisa Van Pay for more details