Alumna Delves Deeper into Medical Illustration

Illustration by Mandy Root-Thompson

Illustration by Mandy Root-Thompson

For Illustration alumna Mandy Root-Thompson (CCAD 1991), medical illustration satisfies an intense curiosity.

"I had a great illustration instructor at CCAD, Walter King, who said, 'Illustration doesn't have to be real, it just has to be believable.' Though I always keep that in mind while drawing, I think the thing I like about medical illustration is that it has to be both real and believable," Root-Thompson said.

Root-Thompson first became interested in medical illustration as a student at CCAD and has since moved on to graduate school at the University of Illinois at Chicago, where she observes operating rooms and cadaver labs, conducts research, and does independent studies in medical legal exhibits.

Root-Thompson said much of her work takes advantage of her teaching experience. Her current research project has her designing an illustrated/animated application that teaches low-literacy heart failure patients to care for themselves after being discharged from the hospital.

Illustrations by Mandy Root-Thompson.

Illustrations by Mandy Root-Thompson

Root-Thompson said she's looking into an internship at a medical law firm after graduation in December 2014 and dreams of returning to CCAD to teach.

"I was on campus a few years ago and saw some of the medical illustration that the advanced illustration students were doing," she said. "I would like to return to CCAD to teach and be a part of a school that gave me such a firm foundation to build upon."