Date of Award

May 2020

Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Fine Arts (MFA)




Robert Dacey

Subject Categories

Arts and Humanities


The aim of this thesis is to explain the current situation of Chinese international students and combine it with the creation of an editorial illustration series titled 'Abroad’.

The first part of the thesis introduces the artist's family environment and the family’s influence on her. It also describes the artist's early educational experience and the status quo of Chinese art education, which explains why some Chinese students choose to study abroad. The thesis then shows the daily life of international students, and describes the learning process in the United States as an MFA student. This part of the thesis also addresses the difficulties encountered by Chinese students. After that the thesis presents the reflections on the MFA journey. The thesis describes the different creative techniques of illustration and the creative process of the final thesis artwork from concept to completion.

In conclusion, the thesis argues that narrative and emotional expression are very common in editorial illustrations. Illustrators should not be expected to create illustrations with sincere emotions and great story telling without the investigation of facts. This thesis hopes to help people who don’t understand Chinese international students know their real life experiences, and provide a reference for students who are studying abroad or plan to. The learning and creative process mentioned in the thesis can also provide effective creative methods for illustrators.


Open Access



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