Anna Bhushan BA MA FHEA, Teaching Fellow

t: 02920 415578

Specialist Subject Areas

Narrative, book and editorial Illustration


Cardiff Metropolitan University Teaching Fellow FHEA Art & Design MA (hons) Communication Art and Design, Royal College of Art. BA (hons) Illustration(First), University of Brighton.


After graduating from the Royal College of Art in 2004, Anna moved New York City and began exhibiting her paintings and working as a freelance illustrator for publishers in the UK, U.S.A and India. In 2011 she illustrated The Bhagavad Gita for the Folio Society. This followed an earlier commission to illustrate Midnight’s Children by Salman Rushdie, which led to the original paintings being purchased by the author. Her first children’s book project, Rhymes for Ranga, was commissioned by Random House, Delhi. She has been a regular contributor to The Guardian and The New York Times since 2006. Other clients include The New Yorker, The Independent, The LA Times, Time Out, The Wall Street Journal, John Murray and Levis. After returning to the Uk in 2008 Anna began teaching on Illustration degree courses at the University of Brighton, The University of Westminster, UCA, and Winchester School of Art and MA courses at Central Saint Martins, University College Falmouth and Camberwell College of Arts.

In 2012 Anna took a post at Cardiff School of Art and Design in order to focus on a single course, contribute to its development and to explore research interests. As a postgraduate student, Anna was awarded first prize in both the Quentin Blake Narrative Illustration Awards and the Folio Society Book Illustration Awards. She also received a scholarship from The Worshipful Company of Painters and Stainers. As a tutor, she was awarded a Student Nominated Teaching Fellowship in 2014. Anna has been a keynote speaker at Shadow Play Illustration Research Symposium, Cardiff Metropolitan University, November 2010, a panel speaker at The Untamed Tiger Illustration Open Forum and keynote at the Collaborative Practice in Illustration Open Forum, both at University College Falmouth, March 2005.

This year Anna is co-curating and organizing the first Illustration symposium and exhibition in India, an international research event, ‘The Itinerant Illustrator’, at Srishti School of Art, Design and technology in Bangalore.

Current Research

Development of a practice based PhD proposalIllustration is a diverse discipline in which transformations between word and image are key. In both the East and West, its history is embedded in the visual response to metaphysical subject matter and sacred texts. From the Latin root illustat meaning ‘lit up’ we have the sense of illustration shedding light upon a subject to highlight significance and reveal meaning. Today, it could be argued that Illustration’s potential to tackle themes of a metaphysical nature is overlooked in favour of more commercially compelling subject matter. As a growing area of research, questions arise as to the definition, role and scope of illustration, and its potential to deal with subject matter beyond its current commercial remit. This is the background to the research that foregrounds the complications of visualizing abstract thought, particularly within the specific philosophical context of Theravada Buddhism.

Principal Publications and/or Exhibitions

The Bhagavad Gita The Folio Society, August 2011
Rhymes for Ranga Random House India, August 2010
Midnight’s Children The Folio Society, 2009
The Birthday Book Jonathon Cape, November 2008
Pictures and Words: New Comic Art and Narrative Illustration Laurence King, September 2005
The Perfect Digital Portfolio AVA Publishing, April 2003

‘Then, Now, After…’ Brighton University Gallery, January 2013
Pilgrimage Wiltons Music Hall, November 2012
Cardiff Design Festival The Old Library, September 2011
AOI Images 34 London College of Communication, London, September 2010
A Delicate Point Osilas Gallery, New York, February 2010
L-Machines Gallery OED, Cochin, India, November 2009
Anomolies Rossi and Rossi, London June 2009
Wonder What the Others are Up To Gallery OED, Cochin, India, April 2009
Convulsive Illustration Market Gallery, Glasgow, November 2007
Sultana’s Dream Exit Art, New York, August 2007
Erasing Borders The Queen’s Museum of Art, Flushing, New York, February 2007
The Artist’s Book QBOX Gallery, Athens, Greece, November 2005
Poem as Image The Studio Gallery, New York, September 2005
Pictures and Words Magma gallery, London, September 2005
Sargam New York University, New York, April 2005
Fatal Love The Queen’s Museum of Art, Flushing, New York, February 2005
Enter the Lions Den Circus gallery, London, August 2004
Ambit Chelsea Arts Club, London, August 2004