Ginnie Hsu

School of Art

Assistant Professor, Illustration

Ginnie Hsu

Shaffer Art Building
Syracuse, NY 13244-1210

Ginnie Hsu is an illustrator, designer, educator, and maker.

Hsu's journey to becoming a tenure-track assistant professor in the illustration program at Syracuse University's College of Visual and Performing Arts reflects a dynamic interplay between professional achievements and scholarly exploration. Before her academic tenure, she established herself in the creative industries as an art director and educator in graphic design and interactive design. This rich professional background has endowed her with a nuanced understanding of visual communication and adeptness in creative problem solving. These competencies have been instrumental in developing her innovative teaching methodologies and shaping her research interests, enabling her to adeptly integrate practical design principles with the expansive creative potential of illustration. Hsu's role within the college community is marked by her pioneering spirit and commitment to advancing the discipline of illustration through education and exploration.

Since transitioning to academia in 2020, Hsu has illustrated 11 books for prestigious publishers such as HarperCollins, Penguin Random House, Macmillan, and Scholastic, making significant contributions to children's literature. Her editorial work, featured in renowned outlets like the Washington Post, alongside eagerly awaited titles, "The City Sings Green & Other Poems About Welcoming Wildlife," with Clarion Books, an imprint of HarperCollins, and "The Chinese New Year's Helper," with Rocky Pond Books, an imprint of Penguin Random House, showcases her profound impact on storytelling and the visual arts. This extensive portfolio not only highlights her talent but also her dedication to storytelling that enriches the imaginations of young readers, blending artistic flair with narratives that engage and inspire.

Central to Hsu's academic pursuits is her research interest in the future of illustration. She is exploring the field's potential to evolve beyond its traditional boundaries, particularly through the integration of emerging technologies and interdisciplinary approaches. This inquiry is driven by a desire to understand how digital transformations and narrative innovations, such as those found in magical realism and the storytelling methods of Hayao Miyazaki, can expand illustrators' expressive capabilities. By examining the digital shift in children’s literature since the 1950s and its impact on visual storytelling, Hsu aims to chart new directions for the discipline, ensuring its relevance and vibrancy in the digital age.

At Syracuse University, Hsu's deep engagement with the principles of design thinking and creative problem solving enriches the educational experience within the college, equipping students with a blend of theoretical knowledge and practical skills. Her forward-looking research into the evolving landscape of illustration ensures that the program remains at the forefront of pedagogical innovation, preparing students to meet the challenges of the creative industries.

Hsu's commitment to interdisciplinary collaboration is evidenced by her co-founding of "The Garden People," a biannual zine that merges interests in ecology, art, and writing. This initiative not only highlights her innovative approach to fostering community and encouraging creative synergy among illustrators, designers, and writers but also exemplifies her dedication to exploring the intersections of visual arts with environmental and literary themes. Through her contributions, Hsu plays a crucial role in nurturing the next generation of illustrators, guiding them towards a future where they can thrive and make impactful contributions to the visual arts and beyond.


  • M.F.A., University of Texas at Arlington
  • B.F.A., University of Texas at Arlington